The best Italian ice probably comes from your local Italian ice shop. It’s probably quaint as heck and you’ve probably been going there since you were born. I won’t pretend like you can buy something as good as your childhood memories in the grocery store. But, after trying 13 different Italian ice flavors from the frozen aisle, I can tell you that a few are worth stacking in your freezer.
Though I did try 13 different Italian ice flavors, I could only find two Italian ice brands: Lindy’s and Luigi’s. Apparently, if you sell Italian ice, your name must start with an “L.” So, when it comes to the question, what’s the best Italian ice brand, the answer is simple: It’s either Lindy’s or Luigi’s. If you like softer, stretchier, creamy Italian ice, Luigi’s is the best Italian ice brand for you. If you like your Italian ice…icier…you’re a Lindy’s guy.
But what about the best Italian ice flavors? That’s when things get a little more complicated. Grab your tiny plastic shovel spoon and let’s count down the best store bought Italian ice flavors you can buy at the store.
Note: Some of these flavors only come in dual flavor packs, so we’ve ranked them together.
- Luigi’s Lemon
Lemon is the quintessential Italian ice flavor. It’s what you get at a street fair on a hot, sticky, East Coast summer day. It should taste like frozen lemonade and it should cool you down, instantly. Luigi’s does a pretty darn good job. It’s very tangy and light and refreshing. It’s icy, but you can still easily get a spoonful. You don’t have to hack away at it like you’re mining for ice. And it’s not weighed down with too much sugar—a perfect middle-of-the-day palate cleanser. It’s definitely not the best Italian ice we tried overall—I wish it had a bit more flavor—but it’s certainly the best plain lemon Italian ice we tried.
Credit: Merc / Kroger
- Lindy’s Lemon Raspberry
All you icier-is-better fans out there, this one’s for you. Lindy’s Lemon Raspberry is so icy and the flavor is almost like a raspberry Margarita. It’s like Margarita granita, which is also very fun to say. Say it! Fun, right? It’s fruity without being overtly sweet and ends on a slightly bitter zesty note that I personally adore. Yes, you have to chip your way into it, but if you want something refreshing, zesty, and not crazy sweet, this is the best Italian ice for you!
Credit: Merc / Albertsons
- Lindy’s Blue Raspberry + Cherry
If you taste Lindy’s Blue Raspberry against Luigi’s Blue Raspberry, you’d think they came from two totally different imaginary fruits. Luigi’s is stretchy and gooey and like candy. Lindy’s is fresh and icy and a lovely pale blue color. And it tastes like a real berry. One bite of this and you’ll believe that there’s an actual patch of blue raspberries out there somewhere. The cherry flavor that accompanies it isn’t as good as the blue raspberry, but it tastes like a classic cherry popsicle without tasting like cherry medicine and that’s good enough for me.
Credit: Merc / Walmart
- Luigi’s Cherry & Lemon Swirl + Blue Raspberry & Lemon Swirl
Luigi’s Cherry & Lemon is definitely the best Italian ice we tried. It’s so tangy and refreshing, and the texture is just icy enough. You can easily scoop a spoonful without digging into it, but it’s not so soft that it’s cold goop. The lemon and cherry mixed together provide a perfect blend of citrusy tartness and fruity depth. And the blue raspberry and lemon flavor that comes in the package is also a good combo. The lemon is zesty and while the blue raspberry is seriously blue (it really tastes like blue, there’s no other way to describe it), the lemon cuts that artificial flavor nicely. It really gives Airheads candy vibes. Buy this two-pack for the Cherry & Lemon and stay for the Blue Raspberry & Lemon. They’re the best Italian ice flavors you can get in the freezer aisle.
Credit: Merc / Walmart
Best of the Best
Other Italian ice flavors we tried: Lindy’s Peach, Lindy’s Pineapple, Lindy’s Strawberry Lemon, Lindy’s Lemon, Luigi’s Watermelon, Luigi’s Blue Raspberry, Luigi’s Strawberry