Jeni’s Splendid Ice Creams recently announced its summer collection of flavors including Snow Cone Sorbet and Burnt Orange Dreamsicle. Available in pints at Jeni’s scoop shop in Birmingham and online, they are billed as a “delicious take on the classic Americana summer.”

Beloved by adults and children alike, ice cream has been an all-American summertime treat since the founding of the country. George and Martha Washington bought their first of several ice cream makers for their estate at Mount Vernon within months after his victory at Yorktown that ended the Revolutionary War.

So, it may be no surprise that one of the five summer flavors at Jeni’s, which produces both regular and seasonal ice creams, pays tribute to Washington’s mythology with Sparkling Cherry Pie ice cream. It is reminiscent of a sour-tart cherry pie straight from the oven, with added “sparkle” from Sichuan peppercorns. But no cherry trees were chopped down for this one.

Other seasonal flavors from Jeni’s evoke timeless childhood treats (Snow Cone Sorbet with blue brambleberry, watermelon, and pink lemonade sorbets), nuggets of nostalgia (Burnt Orange Creamsicle), and a once-forbidden treat made with cookie dough (Double Dough).

More mature palates may be drawn to Jeni’s fifth summer flavor, Tahini Oat Chocolate Cookies, which combines the flavors of milk chocolate and sesame-flavored tahini ice creams with oat cookie crumbles.

Sweet tastes of summer also are showing up on menus at other ice cream shops around the Yellowhammer State. With flavor profiles ranging from classic to intriguing, these places utilize Alabama’s favorite fruits to create chill treats that take the edge off Alabama’s hot, sticky summers.

Here are a few options.


Big Spoon Creamery

Birmingham, Homewood, Huntsville

The gourmet small-batch ice creamery stocks a dozen flavors, most of which change monthly to utilize in-season ingredients. Sweet Corn Blackberry, currently on the menu, pairs blackberries grown by Petals from the Past in Jemison and a Southerner’s favorite, sweet corn. Another unusual seasonal flavor worth trying at Big Spoon is Sweet Basil; owners Geri-Martha and Ryan O’Hara grew the herb outside their store in Birmingham’s Avondale neighborhood.


Peach Park


The market off Interstate 65 in the heart of Alabama’s peach country sells all things peach. But its house-made Peach ice cream has been enshrined on the state tourism department’s list of “100 Dishes to Eat in Alabama.” The orange-pinkish-hued scoops are studded with chunks of Chilton County peaches that were peeled, trimmed, and churned a few yards from the ice cream coolers.


Trowbridge’s Ice Cream and Sandwich Shop


A downtown Florence landmark for 106 years, Trowbridge’s is one of those old-school soda fountains. Its signature Orange-Pineapple ice cream is even enshrined in the state’s “100 Dishes to Eat in Alabama.” A favorite of Trowbridge’s customers from the beginning, the flavor was discontinued briefly in early 2023 when its original supplier stopped making it in its Alabama facility. The family (four generations have owned Trowbridge’s) quickly turned to a Tennessee dairy, Nash Family Creamery, to the delight of generations in the Shoals area.


Cammie’s Old Dutch Ice Cream Shoppe


Alabama’s beloved Rabbiteye blueberry is in season from mid-May to early July. Look for house-made blueberry ice cream around then at Cammie’s, which opened in 1969 and has been under current ownership since 1998 (all 47 flavors are now made on-site). The shop also makes blueberry cheesecake ice cream and carries other seasonal fruit-based flavors like peach, strawberry, and strawberry cheesecake.


Cannella Gelato


Italian-style gelato is, basically, a skinnier version of ice cream—made from milk with a lower fat content (4-9 percent milkfat) than ice cream (14-25 percent). Gelato also is soft-churned to ensure a smoother, denser texture than ice cream. Located within Mercantile on Morris in downtown Birmingham, Cannella’s lineup includes standard gelatos like its medal-winning signature combo, Lemon, Lavender, Honey, and Goat Cheese. Of course, the seasonal rotating options include a non-dairy Peach sorbetto and Peaches and Cream gelato made with fruit from Penton Farms in Verbena. Or go for sweet heat with Pineapple-Habanero sorbetto.


Blue Ribbon Dairy


It’s hard to find ice cream that’s any more local than Blue Ribbon Dairy. Dairy cows on the fourth-generation family farm in Elmore County produce the milk and cream used to make ice cream on-site. Yes, Blue Ribbon has summer delights like Key Lime Pie and Peach flavors. But with ice cream this fresh, it’s hard to go wrong with anything the Wilson family makes. Blue Ribbon sells its ice cream (and milk) on the farm, at the weekly Pepper Place farmers market in Birmingham, and at stores around central Alabama including Piggly Wiggly and Renfroe’s Market.