Vanilla Beans: The Most Beloved Ice Cream Ingredient

Whether celebrating a milestone, drowning sorrows, or just indulging in a summer-day craving, the love of ice cream unites us all. It’s the sweet remedy for life’s woes and the champion of dessert debates—truly the one thing we can all agree on. 

But here’s the thing, if you appreciate ice cream to any degree, there are stars of the show that rarely get a tip of the hat: vanilla beans. The simple fact of the matter is, without these flavorful pods of goodness, the ice cream we all know and love wouldn’t be quite the same. Take a closer look at vanilla beans, where they come from, and just how popular vanilla ice cream really is below. 

Vanilla Beans: A Closer Look 

Vanilla beans, prized for their rich flavor and aromatic qualities, originate from tropical regions such as Madagascar, Tahiti, and Mexico. The cultivation process involves hand-pollination of the orchid’s flowers and nurturing the green pods that eventually mature into vanilla beans. 

Harvesting typically occurs when the beans reach peak ripeness, which is signaled by their plumpness and yellow hue. Once harvested, the beans undergo a curing process that enhances their flavor profile even further.

With a history dating back centuries, vanilla beans have long been coveted for their exotic allure and culinary versatility. Today, vanilla remains a cornerstone ingredient in countless recipes, cherished for its ability to enhance desserts or even add an intriguing layer of flavor to savory dishes. However, there is no question where the bulk of today’s harvested vanilla is used—in our favorite frozen dessert, of course! 

Vanilla and Ice Cream: A Heavenly Made Match 

When it comes to frozen dessert ingredient combinations, few duos evoke as much adoration as vanilla and ice cream, and statistics prove this to be true. Vanilla makes up almost a third of all ice cream flavor purchases every year in the U.S. Therefore, while vanilla may be the most traditional ice cream flavor, it is also a match that has stood the test of time to remain a favorite among the masses, even beating out other classics like chocolate and strawberry. 

A scoop of vanilla ice cream is all creamy goodness punctuated by that telltale vanilla flavor. But what makes vanilla and ice cream such a desirable pair? Perhaps it’s the way their flavors intertwine so harmoniously, or, maybe it is that the traditional flavor is pleasing to our senses because it is so familiar. Another reason vanilla ice cream is a favorite is it is the perfect base for adding other layers of flavor for an even more flavorful treat. 

Vanilla Beans Ice Cream 2

Try In-House Vanilla Bean Soft Serve at Turn Dough 

The verdict is in: the best ice cream starts with vanilla beans, which is why our in-house-made ice cream starts with only the finest vanilla beans. Try one of our freshly baked chimney cakes mounded with sweet vanilla ice cream for a classic treat, or dress it up by opting for one of our 18 signature flavors. Either way, you’re in for a true treat!  

Reeses Soft Serve

Cool Clash: Soft Serve vs. Traditional Ice Cream – Decoding the Creamy Battle!

Ever heard the frosty tale of Mussolini banning ice cream in Italy? Why, you ask? Well, it was considered ‘too American’—quite the chilly standoff! Now, the rivalry between soft serve and traditional ice cream is just as frosty! But what sets these chilly delights apart?

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