Ice Cream Soda, Just Like the Ones from Old Fashioned Soda Fountains

Celebrate National Ice Cream Soda Day by sipping an old fashioned ice cream soda. There's more to it than soda and ice cream. We'll show you how it's done.

It should be pretty clear we’re big fans of ice cream. From all the ways you can make homemade ice cream, to creating your own custom ice cream cakes, this sweet treat is perfect for summer.

Now we’re back with another way to enjoy ice cream. Celebrate National Ice Cream Soda Day (it’s today!) by sipping an old fashioned ice cream soda. We’ll show you how it’s done.

More Than Just Ice Cream and Soda

Yes, you can make an ice cream soda with a can of Coke (or Pepsi — suit yourself) and a scoop of vanilla. But if you want to get back to basics, you’ll need to change up the recipe a bit.

An old fashioned ice cream soda includes these ingredients: milk (or half and half, to be extra decadent), seltzer or club soda, syrup, and ice cream. You can use chocolate syrup, or you can make your own simple syrups. More on that in a bit.

Ice Cream for Extra Sweetness

Whether you buy it at the store or make it at home, there are far more than 31 flavors of ice cream. But ice cream isn’t the primary source of flavor for ice cream soda. A scoop or two of ice cream helps add sweetness to your drink, along with richness — especially if you opt for milk over half and half.

Ice Cream Soda: We recommend using plain vanilla for an ice cream soda. Vanilla won't overpower the flavor of the simple syrup you add.

That’s why we recommend using plain vanilla for an ice cream soda. Vanilla won’t overpower the flavor of the simple syrup you add. Even if you use chocolate syrup, vanilla ice cream will help lighten the overall flavor of your soda.

Simple Syrup for Flavor Variety

Simple syrup is the basis for the flavor of your ice cream soda. You can use packaged syrups — chocolate, strawberry, and caramel — or you can make your own simple syrup on the stovetop, and flavor it however you choose.

We’ve covered lots of different simple syrups before, including Ruby Rhubarb Syrup and Fig Syrup, as well as simple syrups infused with herbs like rosemary and basil.

If these ideas sound a little too edgy, try making simple syrup with fruit instead, like peaches, strawberries, or raspberries. All of these go well with vanilla ice cream and will make a delicious ice cream soda.

Don’t Forget the Bubbles

Finally, you’ll need some fizz to make your ice cream soda perfect. Because the flavor comes from simple syrup, you don’t need a flavored soda. Instead, use plain seltzer or club soda (you may prefer the taste of one over the other).

Ice Cream Soda: Use bottled seltzer or make your own with a SodaStream machine. We love SodaStream because it's eco-friendly -- just wash and reuse the bottles. Plus you can control the level of carbonation

Buy bottled seltzer or make your own with a SodaStream machine. We love SodaStream because it’s eco-friendly — just wash and reuse the bottles. Plus you can control the level of carbonation depending on your personal preference.

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