The Best Ice Cream in Virginia

Virginia is home to some of the finest ice cream shops in the country. We know, because we’ve tasted our way through the state! Today, we’re highlighting some of the best spots to try. Whether you’re strolling through the historic streets of Alexandria, enjoying the breeze in Virginia Beach, or exploring the city in Richmond, you’re always close to a scoop of delicious ice cream.

Before we started our official tasting process, we asked a few local ice cream experts to weigh in on their favorite spots. Brian Beard, owner of Discover Richmond Tours, told us, “I love the texture at Bev’s – it’s been in Carytown for 25 years and is the only place I’ll get something really low key like a simple chocolate chip. Ruby Scoops (Hot Honey Cornbread) and Spotty Dog (Miso Peanut Butter & Jelly) have the most creative flavors.”

According to Jenna @charlottesville_eats told us, “I love Chaps Ice Cream, which has been a staple in Charlottesville for almost 40 years and has two locations, on the corner and Downtown Mall. They offer flavors such as heath bar crunch, pistachio, and German chocolate and make the most delicious handmade waffle cones.”

Genya from @hello.roanoke told us, “No visit to Roanoke is complete without a stop at Blue Cow ice cream. It’s located right off the Roanoke Greenway, so you can stroll along the river while enjoying your cone. I love how they mix up their flavors seasonally, my current favorite is their key lime pie!” She added, “Homestead Creamery is absolutely worth the short drive from Roanoke. This quintessential farm market produces the freshest, most delicious ice cream! Don’t leave without grabbing some farm fresh milk in a glass bottle too, I recommend the orange milk, which tastes just like a creamsicle!

With these recommendations in mind, we started our tasting process and we found so many good spots along the way. We attempted to sort out the top 10 but we also included a list of some additional favorites because we just couldn’t leave them out!

10 Best Ice Cream Spots in Virginia 

Chaps Ice Cream (Charlottesville)

Chaps Ice Cream has been a staple for almost 40 years and has two locations in Charlottesville, one at the Downtown Mall and the other at the UVA corner.

Stepping into Chaps Ice Cream feels like a journey back in time. The parlor’s vintage decor, with old-fashioned signage, cozy booths, and a classic soda fountain, creates a warm and inviting atmosphere.

Favorite flavors include Heath Bar Crunch, Pistachio, and German Chocolate; they also offer vegan chocolate ice cream and a rotating dairy-free flavor. 

Not to be forgotten is a place to put your ice cream. According to Jenna of @charlottesville_eats, they make “the most delicious handmade waffle cones.” 

Address: 223 E Main St, Charlottesville, VA 22902

Bev’s Homemade Ice Cream (Richmond)

Bev’s Homemade Ice Cream and Café is a woman-owned small business that has been scooping their house-made ice cream in Carytown since 1998. Customers love the texture at Bev’s and consider it the only place they’ll get something low-key like simple chocolate chip. 

Regular flavors include Vanilla, Chocolate, Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough, Espresso Oreo, Cookies & Cream, Mocha Almond, Butter Pecan, Black Raspberry, and more! The Espresso Oreo is my personal favorite.

You don’t want to miss the weekly special flavors, which are generally season-influenced. They also offer gelato, sherbet, oat-based vegan ice cream, and dairy-free sorbet. 

Founded by Beverly and now continued by her dedicated employees, Bev’s a Richmond classic.

Address: 2911 W Cary St., Richmond, VA 23221(Closed Mondays)

Ruby Scoops Ice Cream (Richmond)

Another Richmond favorite is Ruby Scoops Ice Cream & Sweets, which, according to Brian Beard, owner of Discover Richmond Tours, offers some of the most creative flavors. 

Ruby Scoops is known for its unique flavors, such as Hot Honey Cornbread, Honey Lavender, and Ube cookies and cream. They also offer non-dairy options, including Blueberry Lemon Cookie, Mango Key Lime Pie, and Cake Batter. 

Ruby Scoops is owned by Rabia Kamara, who’s had a passion for cooking since a young age. Fun Fact: In 2021, she won Food Network’s Ben & Jerry’s Clash of the Cones!

Address: 120 W Brookland Park Blvd., Richmond, VA 23222 (Closed Mondays) Ruby Scoops also has a mobile truck that you can catch at local farmer’s markets and events.

Lolly’s Creamery (Virginia Beach)

Lolly’s Creamery is a Virginia Beach original with four locations in the Hampton Roads community. Lolly’s uses the freshest ingredients to serve flavors like Strawberry, Coffee, Mint Chocolate Chip, and Double Dark Chocolate. 

They also offer rotating monthly flavors and vegan and dairy-free options. While seating is limited inside, you can grab a spot in the covered outdoor area. 

With its commitment to using fresh, locally sourced ingredients and inventive flavor combinations, Lolly’s Creamery offers a delightful experience for all who visit.

Grab a quart of your favorite flavor to take home if you can’t get enough of Lolly’s. 

Address: 2809 Atlantic Ave, Virginia Beach, VA 23451 (Located in the Ramada Plaza, Facing the Boardwalk)

Doumar’s Cones & Barbeque (Norfolk)

A historic gem in Norfolk, Doumar’s Cones & Barbecue has been serving ice cream since 1904 and is credited with inventing the ice cream cone. This iconic spot combines delicious homemade ice cream with a nostalgic dining experience. Their classic cones and sundaes are a must-try.

You can also indulge in their Banana Fudge Cake, Hawaiian sunset, Hot Fudge Cake, or a classic milkshake. If you’re looking for good old-fashioned car service, you don’t want to miss Doumar’s! 

Address: 1919 Monticello Ave, Norfolk, VA 23517

Pop’s Ice Cream and Soda Bar (Roanoke)

Located in Grandin Village of Roanoke, Pop’s Ice Cream and Soda Bar is a popular local spot with a retro feel.

With its vintage décor and friendly atmosphere, this charming spot brings the nostalgic feel of a classic soda fountain to life. Pop’s is renowned for its rich, creamy ice cream, traditional soda fountain drinks, and classic American diner fare.

You can play a board game while you enjoy a scoop or two of your favorite ice cream like Butter Pecan, Coconut Fudge, or Mint Chocolate Chip. 

Address: 1916 Memorial Ave SW, Roanoke, VA 24015 (Closed Monday & Tuesday)

Nathan’s Dairy Bar (Manassas)

Nathan’s Dairy Bar is a family-owned gem that has been serving up soft serve in Manassas since 2001. This classic dairy bar offers a nostalgic experience with flavors like Cheesecake, Cookie Monster, Butter Pecan, S’mores, and Mocha Java Chip. 

I recommend checking their Facebook page before you go because they post special flavors and promotions like buy one, get one free. 

Not ready to end your night? You can walk next door and play a game of putt-putt at The Magic Putting Place! 

Address: 8948 Mathis Ave, Manassas, VA 20110

Blue Cow Ice Cream Co (Roanoke, Richmond, Virginia Beach & Fredericksburg)

Roanoke’s Blue Cow Ice Cream Co. stands out as a local favorite, most likely for its innovative flavors and high-quality ingredients.

Each batch of ice cream is handcrafted in small quantities, ensuring a perfect blend of taste and texture. According to Genya from Hello Roanoke, “No visit to Roanoke is complete without a stop at Blue Cow ice cream. It’s located right off the Roanoke greenway, so you can stroll along the river while enjoying your cone. I love how they mix up their flavors seasonally, my current favorite is their key lime pie!”

Popular flavors include Goat Cheese with Blueberry Swirl, Cookie Monster, and Sea Salt Brickle. 

Seasonal offerings keep the menu fresh and exciting, allowing for new and unique tastes throughout the year.

Address: 1115 Piedmont St SE, Roanoke, VA 24014, 12171C W Broad St. Henrico, VA 23233, 2817 Shore Dr. Virginia Beach, VA 23451, 607 William St. Fredericksburg, VA 22401

Island Creamery (Chincoteague)

Located on Chincoteague Island, Island Creamery has served fresh, homemade ice cream since 1975. Its ice cream flavor inspiration comes from local fruit farmers, its team members, and occasionally customers like you and me. 

Its flavors are made from local dairy and ingredients, and popular options include Wallops Rocket Fuel (chocolate with cinnamon and chili pepper), Bourbon Caramel Crunch, and Marsh Mud (rich chocolate). You can also grab an ice cream cake for your next celebration. 

Don’t let the long lines fool you! This place is like a well-oiled machine, quickly moving customers in and out of line.

Address: 6243 Maddox Blvd, Chincoteague, VA 23336

Moo Thru (Remington)

Moo Thru in Remington is a must-visit for anyone traveling through Northern Virginia. This family-run creamery uses milk from its dairy farm to produce incredibly fresh and creamy ice cream. We love the farm-to-cone experience.

Popular flavors include Cookies and Cream, Dark Chocolate, Cake Batter, and Fresh Strawberry. You can also grab lunch while you’re there with options like grilled cheese, hot dogs, and chili dogs. 

The Remington location offers drive-through and walk-up options, with plenty of picnic tables for seating. It can get busy, so pack some patience. 

Can’t get enough of Moo Thru? ( I don’t blame you!) You can rent an ice cream truck for your next event! Click here for more details. 

Address: 11402 James Madison Hwy, Remington, VA 22734

More of the Best Ice Cream in Virginia

It was challenging to narrow down the list to the top 10, so I’ve included more of my favorite ice cream shops in Virginia. As always, comment below if I missed your favorite!

The Dairy Godmother (Alexandria)

Ice Cream Jubilee (Arlington)

La Moo Creamery (Arlington)

Mimi’s Handmade (Arlington)

Toby’s Homemade Ice Cream (Arlington)

Nice Cream (Arlington)

Bluegrass Creamery (Charlottesville)

Chandler’s Ice Cream (Charlottesville)

Carl’s Frozen Custard (Fredericksburg)

Cowbell Ice Cream (Leesburg)

Kline’s Dairy Bar (Multiple Locations)

Tipped Cow Creamery (Purcellville)

Charm School (Richmond)

Gelati Celesti (Richmond)

Spotty Dog Ice Cream (Richmond)

Bratcher’s Ice Cream Parlor (Roanoke)

The Split Banana (Staunton)

Effee’s Frozen Favorites (Warrenton)

Carousel Frozen Treats (Warreton)

Red Fox Creamery (Winchester)

Pack’s Frozen Custard (Winchester)

Sabor Michoacano (Williamsburg)

Virginia Ice Cream Manufacturers

Beyond walk-in shops, Virginia has its fair share of ice cream manufacturers. Whether they’re selling ice cream wholesale to other resellers or as franchises for individual ice cream shops, here’s the scoop on ice cream production in Virginia!

Genya from Hello Roanoke also mentions that “Homestead Creamery is absolutely worth the short drive from Roanoke. This quintessential farm market produces the freshest, most delicious ice cream! Don’t leave without grabbing some farm fresh milk in a glass bottle too, I recommend the orange milk, which tastes just like a creamsicle!”

Here are some of our other favorite ice cream companies that are churning ice cream in Virginia:

Dutt & Wagner (Abingdon)

Sugar Bear (Charlottesville)

Nightingale Ice Cream Sandwiches (Richmond)

Garber’s (Winchester)

Bonus note: Even though the Hershey Corporation is headquartered in Pennsylvania, Hershey ice cream is manufactured in Winchester, Virginia! Learn about their company mission at the M S Hershey Foundation — they’ve been doing GOOD since 1935.

That’s Our Scoop! 

So, next time you’re looking for a cool treat, indulge in a scoop (or two) from these fantastic spots! Did we miss your favorite spot? Let us know in the comments below!

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