Cool Off this Summer with Frozen Desserts

How to Tell the Difference Between Frozen Desserts

Ice CreamTrying to beat the heat with a little frozen goodness this summer? You have options. Here’s the skinny on some of the most popular frozen desserts for a hot summer day.

Ice cream. Of course.At the top of the list, ice cream claims over 85% of the frozen desserts sold. Premium ice cream contains between 11% and 15% butterfat—it’s typically richer and denser, but you pay for it in calories. Regular ice cream contains 10% to 11% butterfat. Light ice cream means that there is either 50% less fat OR 33% fewer calories than the regular ice cream produced by that particular company.

Frozen yogurt. Frozen yogurt is the second most popular frozen dessert—its popularity has spread nationwide recently with frozen yogurt places popping up all over. National retail sales of frozen yogurt have grown 3.5 percent, from $171 million in 2005 to $177 million in 2011. This frosty treat simply combines yogurt with milk and flavoring. Frozen yogurt was introduced in New England in the 1970s under the name Frogurt.

Sorbet. This is a frozen dessert that is made from fruit purée and can include the flavorings of herbs and spices. It is then whipped to lighten its texture. Sorbet contains no milk.

Sherbet. Like a sorbet, this is a fruit based product, but milk is added for creaminess. But by law it can contain no more than 2% butterfat.

Frozen custard. The defining ingredient is egg yolk, which can comprise between 2% to 6% of the total weight of the custard. It also contains a mixture of heavy cream and milk, and the fat percentage is typically between 10% and 18% or more. Both the egg yolk and the cream give frozen custard a rich creaminess.

Gelato. Gelato is a traditional Italian frozen dessert. It has very little fat and is made using only milk (no egg yolks.) Having little or no cream reduces fat content while intensifying the flavors. The big difference between gelato and ice cream is in the amount of air that is whipped into the product (20% air for gelato and up to 60% for ice cream).

What’s your favorite? Try your own fun creations with frozen dessert recipes from KitchMe.


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