The 5 Best Halo Top Flavors Will Make You Reconsider the Virtues of Low-Cal Ice Cream

Even if you aren’t on a diet, there’s a time for diet ice cream. That time is when you’re either really hungry or really high and want to devour an entire pint in one sitting. A dessert made with sugar substitutes and a lot less cream than its full-calorie counterparts might sound like the opposite of a treat-yourself food, but diet ice cream giant Halo Top makes up for it by boldly inviting you to go ahead and f**** up an entire container in one sitting. Bless.

Still, let’s be real: Diet ice cream cannot, does not, and will not rival the experience of eating actual ice cream. But, if you’re digging in with the right attitude and your expectations tempered, you can still have plenty of fun and satisfy your ice cream craving. 

The Sporked crew was joined by Mythical senior writer Aubrey Schopinsky as we cracked open more than a dozen pints of Halo Top to find out which flavors taste the best. You might notice that this list doesn’t include any of Halo Top’s Keto Series ice creams. It doesn’t mean we didn’t taste them, it simply means they’re…not good. Can I say dreadful? I’ll say dreadful. One of our tasters described one keto pint’s texture as being akin to cotton, and that can’t be good, right? Halo Top recently announced it was reworking its formulas—and we know where they should start.

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halo top chocolate caramel brownie

Best of the Best

Chocolate Caramel Brownie

Sporked staff writer Jordan Myrick is a low-cal ice cream naysayer, but even they couldn’t resist this chocolatey, surprisingly delicious confection. “I deeply wanted to be anti-this-ice-cream,” they said, “but this tastes good. It tastes like when you let a Fudgesicle get a little soft. But with brownie chunks. Damn, I like that.” Aubrey was into it too. “It’s delicious,” she said. Indeed, this pint of Halo Top, which has an ample ribbon of caramel and a good distribution of brownie chunks, is fluffy and comes off as creamier than some of the other pints we tried. The caramel has a little bit of salt for complexity and the brownie bits are delicious and chewy—and a whole pint is only 360 calories, which is nuts. Whatever you do, just don’t slip up and buy their Chocolate Caramel Lava Cake from the Keto Series. That’s a one-way trip to Cotton Town.

Credit: Ryan Martin / Walmart

Rating:

8/10

Sporks

halo top peanut butter cup

Best for PB Lovers

Peanut Butter Cup

If you like peanut butter, peanut butter ice cream is sort of irresistible, even if it also happens to be a thing we feed to dogs. Well, our guest taster doesn’t even like peanut butter and she was blown away by this ice cream. “This tastes like the insides of a Reese’s cup, but without the bits that make me cough,” Aubrey said. The Reese’s comparison is spot on: The delicious chewy chunks of peanut butter incorporated into the pleasantly fluffy peanut butter-flavored ice cream have the same salty goodness you’ll find in one of the brand’s beloved peanut butter cups. “I would eat this whole thing, it’s so good,” said Sporked editor-in-chief Justine Sterling. “It’s really good and there isn’t an aftertaste. And the texture is really good even though it looks like it would be weird and aerated.” I’ve already used the word fluffy twice to describe these Halo Top flavors, but it really fits. Get off my case!

Credit: Ryan Martin / Target

Rating:

7/10

Sporks

halo top strawberry

Best Fruit Flavor

Strawberry

I’m an absolute perv for strawberry ice cream, especially if it tastes kind of like Strawberry Quick. This pint of Halo Top is irresistibly creamy and bursting with strawberry flavor that nails the Quick-ness I’m looking for. I thought it tasted sort of like a milkshake you put back in the freezer to harden up; Aubrey got ice cream mixed with one of those strawberry fruit bars. “It’s really good,” Sporked editorial assistant Naajia Shukri agreed. “It’s doing its own thing and I like it.” I made a pret-ty complimentary note about this one: If I didn’t already know it was light ice cream, I would not think this was light ice cream. I honestly can’t think of a better endorsement.

Credit: Ryan Martin / Target

Rating:

7/10

Sporks

halo top birthday cake

Best for a Good Time

Birthday Cake

I’m not entirely sure how birthday cake-flavored foods manage to channel the flavor of uncooked batter, but it’s a marvel of modern food science and I love it (although birthday cake-flavored foods will always remind me of that slimy vanilla frosting Bonne Belle Lip Smackers lip gloss we all used to shoplift from Walmart in the late ‘90s—sorry, Walmart). Naajia, a birthday cake-flavor fan, loved the flavor and that sprinkles made it into the mix. Aubrey liked that it’s not quite as sweet as other birthday cake-flavored items so you really could eat a whole pint of this without feeling absolutely nauseated. Still, the flavor is rich and battery and even a little bit salty. This pint also has, hands down, the most appealing packaging. I’m not sure who can resist small multicolored polka dots, but it ain’t me!

Credit: Ryan Martin / Instacart

Rating:

6/10

Sporks

halo top mint chip

Best Refresher

Mint Chip

There are two types of people: those who think mint chip ice cream is delicious and refreshing and those who think it tastes like toothpaste. As a member of the former camp, I thought this pint of mint chip absolutely ruled, thanks in no small part to the itty-bitty chocolate chips incorporated into the ice cream. Small, bitter, delicious. Aubrey thought this one tasted kind of like gum, but I think people who are into mint ice cream will appreciate this low-cal option.

Credit: Ryan Martin / Instacart

Rating:

6/10

Sporks

Best Chocolate Ice Cream

The 8 Best Chocolate Ice Creams Are a Cocoa Lover’s Dream

BreakChocolate ice cream is the king of the ice cream world. Seriously, crack open a 1.5 quart container of Neapolitan, toss it on the counter in the break room, and see which flavor goes first.

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About the Author

Gwynedd Stuart

Gwynedd Stuart, Sporked’s managing editor, is an L.A.-based writer and editor who spends way, way too much time at the grocery store. She’s never met an Old El Paso taco or mozzarella stick she didn’t like.

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  • Halotop Mint Chip is legitimately the worst ice cream I’ve ever had, and I love mint choc chip

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