Not that long ago, vegan ice cream was hard to find in Pittsburgh. Last year, we sent Alexa Peduzzi out to report back on the vegan ice cream scene. Scroll down past our newly updated list for a more in-depth review of two of her favorites.
Where to find vegan ice cream in Pittsburgh
If you are looking for a shop that offers a selection of vegan ice cream, try one of these:
- Sugar Spell Scoops // Sharpsburg – This shop only sells vegan ice cream and desserts.
- Millie’s // Shadyside – Millies offers both vegan ice cream and sorbet, flavors change, but there are usually two vegan options available.
- Millie’s // Lawrenceville
- Millie’s // Market Square
- Frio Creamery // Lawrenceville – This shop is known for ice cream from Penn State creamery, but they also have a selection of vegan ice cream.
- Happy Day Dessert Factory // North Side – Pittsburgh’s newest ice cream shop also sells almond milk soft serve.
- Naturoll // Lawrenceville – Offering rolled ice cream, Naturoll offers vegan options that can be customized with a variety of toppings.
- Naturoll // Robinson
- Naturoll // Cranberry
- Antney’s // Greentree – Keep an eye on the Antney’s Facebook page for their dairy-free options.
Looking for Dole Whip?
- The Scoop // Lincoln Place
- Sugar & Spice Ice Cream // Baldwin
- Crafton Ice Cream // Crafton
- Al’s Cone Zone // Jefferson Hills
- Dari Delite // Bridgeville
And if you are looking for a vegan milkshake in Pittsburgh- all of the dairy-free shakes at The Milkshake Factory are vegan.
Know of another local ice cream shop that offers vegan treats? Please let us know! Send an email to [email protected]
A review of Sugar Spell Scoops & Millie’s vegan ice cream offerings
When I was asked to write an article about the best vegan ice cream in Pittsburgh, I…
- Leapt for joy, questioning if this was actually real life (it was)
- Drastically underestimated how tough it would actually be to come up with a winner
The latter forced me to split this review into two “categories” based on your ice cream mood:
- The Best Vegan Ice Cream That’ll Make You Feel Like a Kid Again
- The Best Vegan Ice Cream for a Grown-Up Palate
In terms of vegan ice cream options, we live in a very good, delicious timeline. Not only are there a ton of different store-bought choices from major grocery stores–Aldi’s vegan ice cream is actually quite delicious–but local ice cream shops have now started to dip their
toes scoops into the vegan ice cream arena.
As you may have guessed, we’re focusing on local vegan ice cream choices today. My belly is now full of all of the coconut-, hemp-, and cashew-based ice creams you can find in Pittsburgh, and here are my two winning shops:
The Best Vegan Ice Cream That’ll Make You Feel Like a Kid Again: Sugar Spell Scoops
My clear winner in this category is Sugar Spell Scoops in Sharpsburg. It’s an edgier, vegan-only ice cream shop with toppings and flavors galore.
Sugar Spell Scoops is unique for a few reasons:
- They change their 100% vegan menu every single day.
They offer four flavors each day, all homemade, and you can find their flavor offerings on Instagram.
The day we went, they had Chocolate Chip, Coffee, Dragonfruit Sorbet, and Iced Pumpkin Loaf. After trying them all, we got single scoops of the Chocolate Chip, Coffee, and Iced Pumpkin Loaf flavors.
Mine was Iced Pumpkin Loaf, and it was packed with fall spices and marbled with a vanilla icing. It was sweet–I don’t think I could have had more than one scoop–but it totally satisfied my dessert craving.
- They have your favorite childhood ice cream toppings (and more!)
One of the most exciting things about Sugar Spell Scoops is their toppings. I mean, who doesn’t love trashing up their ice cream with colorful, crunchy, and sparkling fun?!
They have cookies, candies, nuts, sprinkles, and sauces, all ready to make your treat a little more special. We tried their signature Glitter Sugar Sprinkles on the Iced Pumpkin Loaf, their caramel sauce and graham cracker crumbles on the Coffee, and their peanut butter magic shell on the Chocolate Chip.
Each topping was less than $1, so be sure to scope out your faves or try something new!
- They have epic sundae and specialty ice cream options.
While a scoop of one of their flavors-of-the-day with a topping is delicious, perhaps you want to go a little crazier at Sugar Spell Scoops.
They typically offer a featured sundae that is beyond creative–I’ve seen them advertise a “Taco Salad Sundae” with coconut lettuce, chick-o-stick cheese, and crispy cocoa rice meat, as well as a “Friday the 13th Sundae” featuring a chocolate machete, bloody raspberry sauce, and Crystal Lake sugar crystals.
Not only that, but they also offer other sweet treats like s’mores sandwiches, sketti & meatballs, and chocolate wands.
The creativity at Sugar Spell Scoops is completely unmatched, and as a vegan, it’s just such a treat (pun intended) to be able to walk into an ice cream shop and be able to order anything. Sugar Spell Scoops is doing vegan ice cream right!
The Best Vegan Ice Cream in Pittsburgh for a Grown-Up Palate: Millie’s
If you’re looking for some elevated flavors, outrageously creamy bases, and the cutest aesthetic, Millie’s is for you.
I’ve worked with Millie’s in the past on some Instagram content, and if you haven’t tried their ice cream, boy are you in for a treat (literally!). While a lot of Millie’s menu isn’t vegan, a lot of it is! And the flavors are just out-of-this-world creative.
Their Dairy-Free Dark Chocolate is my all-time favorite ice cream. I’ve never had a chocolate ice cream so rich and decadent before; in fact, it’s almost savory in the best bittersweet chocolate way possible. It’s as creamy as melted chocolate, and if you look in a dictionary for the word “chocolate,” chances are you’ll see a big ol’ picture of a scoop of Millie’s Dairy-Free Dark Chocolate Ice cream there. In my opinion, it’s the ice cream. No question.
Millie’s other classic vegan flavors include Dairy-Free Mint, Dairy-Free Bananas Foster, and Dairy-Free Mango, but they also introduce new vegan flavors all the time. Most recently, they’ve announced two new vegan fall-forward flavors: Mulled Wine and Pear Sorbet and Maple Bourbon Pecan!
I mean…if those flavors don’t pair perfectly with cozy sweaters, knee-high boots, and infinity scarves, I don’t know what does.
Small-batch, high-quality, and Pittsburgh-proud is Millie’s game, and I couldn’t love them more if I tried.
Looking for more vegan eats in Pittsburgh?
This story and photos are by Alexa Peduzzi. Alexa has written several stories for Very Local about vegan options in Pittsburgh, and she joined us on our podcast to talk about plant-based eating in Pittsburgh.
Follow Alexa on Instagram.
This story was originally published in October 2019. It has been updated to include more details for summer 2022.