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The best ice cream in Rhode Island? Try these 9 great spots

Even if July wasn’t National Ice Cream Month (it is -- former president Ronald Reagan declared it in 1984), we’d celebrate with these sweet treats

Pocky Khamvongsa prepares a bubble waffle cone at Kow Kow, at 120 Ives St. in Providence.Colleen Cronin

We all scream for ice cream — especially in this heat.

Even if July wasn’t National Ice Cream Month (it is -- former president Ronald Reagan declared it in 1984), we’d celebrate with sweet treats from these Rhode Island establishments. Skip the supermarket — you can get Chunky Monkey in the freezer aisle all winter long. We’re talking stands serving home-churned ice cream, loaded toppings, waffle cones just off the iron, and knee-buckling sundaes. From vegan sweets to puppy treats, it’s time for a Rhode Trip: here are nine places to try.


Oh my darlin’. Clementine’s combines the charm of a homemade ice cream stand — you’ll find those post-beach favorites like Oreo and chocolate chip — with boutique flavors like oatmeal cookie, butter brickle (sweet butter pecan ice cream with layers of butter crunch candy) or black raspberry chip frozen yogurt in homemade waffle cones. Their pistachio and cotton candy are food coloring-free, and the coffee ice cream is decaf, so you can indulge late at night. Keep your eye out for special batches like birthday cake, Rocky Rhode or — take note for spring — Cadbury Egg. Oh, and bring Fluffy: They made doggy ice cream sundaes complete with biscuits. Open daily (noon to 9 p.m.) at 62 Wave Ave. in Middletown, and open Tuesday-Sunday (noon to 9 p.m.) at 2934 South County Trail in East Greenwich.



Remember back in the day when ice cream novelties meant Flintstone Push-Ups, tri-colored popsicles and Klondikes? Tricycle serves up ice cream novelties 2.0. We’re talking works of art that make for a drool-worthy Instagram scroll. Think passionfruit or golden mango sorbet push pops, toasted coconut ice cream sandwiches, Caramelized Fruity Pebbles Ice Cream tacos, Oreo Cookies & Sweet Cream Ice Cream + Caramel Drizzled Cocoa cookies, black forrest gâteau sandwiches (tart cherry ice cream with ribbons of kirsch cherry compote on white chocolate studded brownies), blueberry crisp sandwiches (chunks of blueberry crisp marbled into Madagascar vanilla) and — oh, yes — chocolate & Guinness stout ice cream sandwiched between browned butter blondies studded with salty potato chip and pretzels. Open Thursdays (3 to 8 p.m.), Friday (3 to 9 p.m.), Saturdays (11 a.m. to 9 p.m.) and Sundays (11 a.m. to 8 p.m.) at 70 Battey St. in Providence. 401-741-3549.



The longtime lynchpin of historic Tiverton Four Corners is a Rhody staple for a reason. That reason: their homemade ice cream is darn good. Dating back 99 years, Gray’s has long been a picturesque spot to enjoy a cone or cup outside. They also now have a Bristol location on Thames Street, if you’re jonesing for a sundae by the sea. The original Tiverton location, smack in the heart of Rhode Island’s FarmCoast, is a buzzy must-stop for locals and tourists. Their flavor list is simple but extensive — think summery flavors from blueberry to lemon, and summer favorites like peanut butter, pistachio, cookie dough, rum raisin, and Oreo. (Two words: coffee cabinet, aka frappe.) 16 East Road in Tiverton, and 259 Thames St. in Bristol. Call for current hours: 401-624-4500.


The Inside Scoop offers dozens of flavors from apple pie to bing cherry, sea salt caramel and sweet cream, along with summer staples like butter crunch, maple walnut, and peppermint stick. They also offer non-dairy ice creams — chocolate coconut almond, mint chip, black raspberry and more —along with soft serve, smoothies, parfaits, and homemade waffle cones, among other sweet treats. Open daily (noon to 9:30 p.m.) at 30 Ten Rod Road in North Kingstown. 401-294-0091.



This is the kind of ice cream shop that could only exist in a foodie city like Providence. Their signature “bubble waffle cones” are treat alone — never mind when they’re brimming with goodness. Think boutique combinations like “Graham Canyon” — graham cracker ice cream, topped with salted caramel drizzle, strawberries and graham cracker crumble — or “Cocoa Crazy” — death-by-chocolate ice cream, covered in chocolate drizzle, Oreos and walnuts. Wednesday through Sunday (1 to 10 p.m.) at 120 Ives St. in Providence. 401-273-2989.


Atomic Blonde Ice Cream — a “woman owned, Veteran owned and gay owned” ice cream truck based in Pawtucket — is the ice cream truck of your childhood dreams. “Colossal ice cream sandwiches” made from real chocolate chip cookies. Specialty sundaes like “Turtle” (hot fudge and caramel topping with mixed nuts on chocolate ice cream) atomic slushies (like peach puree, fresh orange, vanilla ice cream, strawberry boba, cherries) and 24-ounce shakes. The trucks (they’re named Lorraine and Marsha-Mellow) are posted online at



With more than 50 flavors, Lincoln Creamery has something for every sweet tooth: birthday cake to chocolate moose tracks; Cookie Monster (bright blue vanilla ice cream with cookie chunks) to Fluff-N-Udder (marshmallow ice cream with salted peanut ripple and pound cake). We’re not sure which is the most Willy Wonka-like. Oh, and did we mention with eclair milkshakes? Yes, made with full Eclair bars. Open daily (12:30 to 9 :30 p.m.) at 276 Front St, Lincoln. 401-724-1050.


Vegans, fear-not: there’s ice cream for you. And it’s delicious. Made from cashew, oat and soy milks, Like-No-Udder offers vegan soft serve and hard ice creams. Flavors change, but think Thai Tea, Lemon and Crystallized Ginger, Almond Joyful, Coffee Oreo, Egg Nog. Or, perhaps a chocolate peanut butter shake, chocolate whoopee pie sandwich with your choice of ice cream, an afternoon pick-me-up affogato (ice cream topped with espresso) or — yes, they’re real — unicorns. Make your own dream cup, or try a “unicorn of the week.” Open Wednesday through Monday (hours vary) at 170 Ives St. in Providence. 401-228-3880.


Brickley’s has two locations where they offer dang good homemade ice cream — from banana to pumpkin, sweet cream to malted milk ball — in homemade waffle cones. Plus old-school treats like banana splits, shakes, root beer floats and ice cream sodas. All ice creams are made on-site in Narragansett, according to their web site. Open Monday through Thursday (noon to 9 p.m.) and Friday through Sunday (noon to 9:30 p.m.) at 921 Boston Neck Road in Narragansett, and Tuesday through Sunday (noon to 9 p.m.) at 322 Main St. in Wakefield. 401-789-1784. 322 Main St, Wakefield. 401-782-8864.


Lauren Daley can be reached at Follow her on Twitter @laurendaley1.