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Ice cream is one of life’s simple pleasures, and although your favorite Häagen-Dazs pint may be off-limits on a keto diet, you don’t have to miss out entirely. With millions of people transitioning to low-carb lifestyles, manufacturers have responded by creating keto ice creams that are rich, creamy, and as close to the "real" thing as you can get. The best keto ice creams aren’t just low in net carbs, but they're also made with clean, healthy ingredients and actually taste good, so you never have to feel like you’re missing out on the treats you love.
Here are the best keto ice creams.
Best Overall: Killer Creamery The Crave Pack Keto Ice Cream
All keto ice creams have one thing in common: They’re lower in carbs than regular varieties. Killer Creamery ice creams take that one step further. Not only are they made with keto-friendly sweeteners, like monk fruit, erythritol, and allulose (a low-glycemic, low-calorie sweetener that’s all-natural and tastes just like sugar with no bitterness or unpleasant aftertaste), but they also include MCT oil, a pure form of fat that’s been shown to increase energy and boost your body’s natural production of ketones.
This variety pack includes eight different flavors, from basic vanilla bean to more sophisticated options, like lemon poppyseed and salted caramel. The cheeky names, such as "No Judge Mint" and "Got Buns?" only add to the appeal.
Best Flavor: Halo Top White Chocolaty Macadamia Ice Cream
Because they’re loaded with healthy fats, macadamia nuts are one of the best nuts for a keto diet—and that’s a great excuse to eat this delectable ice cream from Halo Top. Made with a sugar cookie-flavored base, chunks of white chocolate, and macadamia nuts, it’s so rich and satisfying that you’ll never know it only has 8 grams of net carbs per pint. Yes, that’s per pint. Each serving has just over 2 grams of net carbs.
Halo Top also offers a variety of other keto ice creams in out-of-the-box flavors, like banana cream pie, chocolate cheesecake, jelly doughnut, and caramel butter pecan.
Best Chocolate: Nubocha Vegan Chocolate Arrib Gelato
The Nubocha Chocolate Arriba is crafted by Gianluca Franzoni, the founder and creator of Domori, one of Italy’s finest chocolate brands. Franzoni was on a mission to make the best-tasting, health-conscious gelato—and he may have nailed it. Perhaps what makes it so great is that it’s sweetened only with allulose and has a super clean ingredient list. Here’s the best part: It has 0 grams of net carbs, so you can enjoy a serving (or more) without worrying about getting kicked out of ketosis.
Nubocha has other keto-friendly and equally delicious flavors, like Italian vanilla, peanut butter, and salted caramel, but these have around 7 grams of net carbs per 2/3-cup serving, so keep that in mind when you’re indulging.
Best Vanilla: Mammoth Creameries Vanilla Bean Ice Cream
Mammoth Creameries proves that vanilla doesn’t have to be boring and that it’s possible to make a clean keto ice cream. Although it’s more of a frozen custard than a true ice cream, this keto-friendly dessert is made with minimal, high-quality ingredients, like cream, grass-fed butter, egg yolks, xylitol, vanilla extract, vanilla bean seeds, and pink Himalayan sea salt. It’s rich, creamy, and only has 1 gram of net carbs per serving. There are four servings in the pint.
If you’re not really a vanilla person, Mammoth Creameries also makes chocolate, lemon buttercream, and chocolate peanut butter flavors. You can try them all in the Keto Starter Pack.
Best Cookie Dough: Rebel Cookie Dough Ice Cream
What’s a life without cookie dough ice cream? Thanks to Rebel Cookie Dough, you’ll never have to find out. Made with cream, almond flour-based cookie dough, and egg yolks, and sweetened with a combination of erythritol and monk fruit, this keto ice cream is perfectly macronutrient-balanced with high levels of fat, moderate amounts of protein, and 7 grams of net carbs per pint (roughly 2 grams of net carbs per serving).
You’re not limited to just cookie dough, though. Rebel has a full line of keto ice creams with flavors like chocolate peanut butter, birthday cake, coconut almond swirl, and cookies and cream. It also offers keto ice cream sandwiches in packs of three.
Best Bars: Keto Pint Sea Salt Caramel Keto Ice Cream Bars
If you prefer your ice cream on a stick (and dunked in chocolate), Keto Pint ice cream bars are the choice for you. These low-carb ice cream bars are made with cream, egg yolks, and a combination of keto-friendly sweeteners, including erythritol, stevia, and monk fruit. They’re then dipped into an MCT-rich chocolate coating, made with coconut and MCT oils, to create a delicious, satisfying dessert with 15 grams of healthy fats and only 2 grams of net carbs per serving.
In addition to sea salt caramel, the brand also offer peanut butter cup and mint chip ice cream bars, as well as a full line of keto ice creams by the pint with flavors such as black raspberry, peanut butter cup, butter pecan, and cake batter.
Best Dairy-Free: So Delicious Dairy Free Coconutmilk No Sugar Added Dipped Vanilla Bars
With 7 grams of net carbs per serving, these So Delicious ice cream bars toe the line of keto, but they’re still a nice lower-carb option, especially if you’re trying to avoid dairy. Made with a coconut milk base and plant proteins sweetened with a combination of erythritol, monk fruit, and stevia, they’re high in healthy fats, completely free of dairy, and suitable for vegan diets. While the bars don’t have any added sugar, you’ll have to be careful about working them into your plan since the carbs can add up quickly.
Best Variety Pack: Enlightened Keto Collection Pint Variety Pack
The Enlightened Keto Collection Variety Pack is another excellent option when you can’t decide which flavor you want or need to try them all before picking favorites. The pack includes nine flavors, including mint chocolate chunk, peanut butter cookie and brownie dough, and caramel chocolate double dough. If you don't want the bundle, you can purchase the pints individually.
Made with high-quality, keto-friendly ingredients, like cream, egg yolks, butter, monk fruit, and erythritol, these Enlightened ice creams are one of the lowest net carb options you can find. Most flavors have only 1 gram of net carbs per serving (there are about four servings in the pint) and 17 grams of fat, so you can enjoy a treat while staying in ketosis.
If you want to try all the keto ice cream you can handle, opt for The Crave Pack by Killer Creamery (view at Amazon). If you want to stay low-carb, but prefer to ditch the dairy, the Nubocha Chocolate Arriba (view at Instacart) and So Delicious Dairy Free Coconutmilk Dipped Vanilla Bars (view at Instacart) will curb your sweet tooth.
What to Look for When Buying Keto Ice Cream
With an increasing interest in the keto diet, more manufacturers are creating sweet treats, like ice cream, to meet the demand from consumers—but just because an ice cream is categorized as keto doesn’t necessarily mean you should eat it. Here are the most important things to look for when choosing a keto ice cream.
The most important thing is the net carb count. Ideally, you want an ice cream that contains fewer than 5 grams of net carbs per serving, although lower is better.
There are lots of no-carb sweeteners out there, but they’re not all created equally. Artificial sweeteners, like aspartame, sucralose, and acesulfame K, may not add any carbs to an ice cream, but they can still raise your blood sugar and contribute to other health problems, like weight gain and cancer. They can also leave a funky aftertaste that makes the ice cream less than enjoyable. Look for keto ice creams that are sweetened with stevia, monk fruit, allulose, and/or erythritol. Many manufacturers use a blend of sweeteners to create the most sugar-like taste.
While the net carb count is important, it doesn’t always tell the whole story. Manufacturers are allowed to list zero grams on a nutrition label if there are 0.5 grams or less of a specific ingredient. For example, if there’s sugar in the ice cream, but it only adds 0.4 grams per serving, it can technically be listed as zero grams. This creates a problem when you eat more than the recommended serving size. Check the ingredient list rather than relying solely on the nutrition facts label. Avoid any ice cream that contains sugar or starchy fillers, like corn, oats, flour, rice, and/or wheat.
Some ice creams are marketed as low-carb or “light,” but it’s really because the serving size is so small. When you’re choosing a keto ice cream, make sure that you’re actually going to be able to stick to the recommended serving size (usually around 2/3 cup), otherwise you’ll be way over your net carb goal.
What is keto ice cream?
Keto ice cream is ice cream that’s been sweetened with low- or no-calorie, low-carb sweeteners, like stevia, monk fruit, and sugar alcohols, such as erythritol and/or xylitol, rather than regular sugar. Like traditional ice cream, keto ice cream is made with a heavy cream base, but the omission of sugar drastically lowers the net carb count, so you can enjoy it without spikes in your blood sugar.
Is all sugar-free ice cream keto?
The term “sugar-free” is not synonymous with “keto.” Most ice creams that are marketed as “sugar-free” contain artificial sweeteners that aren’t the best choice for a keto diet. While the carb count may be low, artificial sweeteners, like aspartame, and certain sugar alcohols, like maltitol, can increase cravings and spike your blood sugar and insulin levels, throwing you out of ketosis. Sugar-free ice creams may also contain high-carb fillers and thickeners, like rice or potato starch, that make the net carb count way too high for a keto diet.
Often, sugar-free ice creams are also made with lower-calorie bases, like skim milk, and don’t have a high enough fat content to qualify as a keto-friendly treat. As a general rule, don’t rely on the package’s marketing to make decisions about whether or not the ice cream is suitable for your diet. Always read the ingredient list and nutrition facts label to make informed decisions.
Is keto ice cream healthy?
While keto ice cream is often a healthier option than traditional ice cream, especially for those following keto or low-carb diets, it’s still not considered a health food. Keto ice cream is low in carbs, but lacking in vitamins and minerals, so it isn’t a great source of nutrition. Some ice creams that are marketed as keto also contain questionable ingredients and fillers that you’re better off avoiding or limiting as much as possible. While you can certainly fit it into a keto diet and enjoy it as a treat, make sure you’re not overdoing it and allowing it to take the place of other more nutrient-dense keto foods.
Why Trust The Spruce Eats?
Lindsay Boyers is a certified holistic nutritionist and keto diet expert who has written several keto cookbooks, including "Keto Snacks," "The Keto for Two Cookbook," and "200 under 20g Net Carbs." She’s experienced the power of fat-adaptation firsthand and knows how important it is to stay on track, even when you want a sweet treat.