When it comes to hot weather, Singapore’s is pretty relentless — think 365 days a year relentless. Thankfully, these homegrown ice cream cafes have got their dessert games down pat, with an assortment of flavours, toppings and accompaniments to help cool you down (and cheer you up) whenever temperatures get a little high.
Here’s our round-up of 15 ice cream cafes in Singapore that are bound to satisfy, whether it’s a plain ol’ chocolate ice cream, a fancy avo gelato, or savoury flavour you’re craving.
1. Tom’s Palette
Tom’s Palette, started more than a decade ago by Chronos Chan and his wife Eunice Soon, has always been focused on researching to create flavours using unconventional dessert ingredients. Ever since the creation of their Salted Egg Yolk Ice Cream (inspired by the Liu Sha Bao, a steamed bun with a runny salted egg yoke custard filling), they have been challenging themselves to push the boundaries.
Each ice cream flavour (from $4 for a single scoop) is designed to evoke all senses, bringing together aroma, flavour, and texture. Interesting flavours they have concocted over the years include Parmesan Cheese and Cream Crackers, White Chocolate Nori (seaweed), a luscious Vegan Peanut Butter flavour, and – believe it or not – Nasi Lemak Ice Cream.
Where: 51 Middle Road #01-01, Singapore 188959
2. Butterknife Folk
Photo: Butterknife Folk
This cosy little shop located along River Valley Road specialises in small batch artisanal gelato and sorbets that are absolute flavour bombs (from $5 for a single scoop). Co-owners Jack and Ingrid draw their inspiration from anything and everything around them, and channel them into their creations.
Butterknife Folk’s extensive range of gelato spans from the good old classics, such as vanilla and strawberry to the bold and quirky, such as nostalgic Root Beer Float (think: A&W) and funky Roquefort Bleu that is made with blue cheese, ondeh ondeh, and a raspberry speculoos.
They also have a vegan range and offer a mix of dairy-free, nut-free, egg-free or gluten-free options so that everybody can enjoy their gelato. And when the season is right, they whip up a creamy, rich Mao Shan Wang gelato that is pure durian bliss.
Where: Funan, #02-02, Singapore 179105
3. Merely Ice Cream
Photo: Merely Ice Cream
At Merely, it is all about making ice cream as tasty and flavourful as possible (from $3.50 for a single scoop). Co-founder Tham Ying Wai shares that natural, quality food ingredients are used in each handcrafted batch of ice cream and most of their ice cream creations contain mix-ins, either in the form of chunks of ingredients or sauce swirls.
These mix-ins provide the additional oomph for their delightful ice creams. The Oreo Milk flavour with oreo chunks and cream cheese mixed into the base; while the Ondeh Ondeh flavour that has an ice cream base made with pandan leaves-infused milk and mashed sweet potato, then mixed with gula Melaka caramel sauce, toasted desiccated coconut and gula Melaka shavings for that smoky caramel boost.
Previously, Merely invented a Hokkaido-style ramen inspired Miso Mamee flavour (white miso, sweet corn and topped with caramelised Mamee noodles), and a Shoyu Seaweed Caramel creation, which had a milk base made with sashimi soy sauce. How quirky!
For the non-adventurous, there is always their best-selling Salted Butterscotch flavour that was launched in 2013. This flavour alone currently accounts for about a third of their sales.
Where: Sunshine Plaza, #01-13, Singapore 189652
Our Tampines Hub, #B1-52, Singapore 528523
Creamier first opened in Toa Payoh in 2011, a stone’s throw away from the bustling wet market and hawker centre, serving their lovely ice creams handcrafted in small batches (from $3.60 for a single scoop).
A decade later, Creamier has moved to a larger location but with roots still in Toa Payoh, and opened two other outlets (Gillman Barracks opened in 2016 and Tiong Bahru in 2017).
Their ice creams capture the essence of the flavours and are lusciously creamy, with good body and a smooth texture. Their bestselling flavour is the Sea Salt Gula Melaka, their take on salted caramel with an Asian twist that is made with palm sugar sourced from Malaysia and hand harvested sea salt from England. The Roasted Pistachio ice cream is rich and resplendent with the savoury-sweet nuttiness of Italian pistachios and the Thai Milk Tea ice cream made from a premium Ceylon tea brew and sweet cream is fragrant and milky as the beverage, albeit frozen, should be.
Creamier also concocts seasonal flavours in partnership with stalwarts in the local food scene. Previous flavours include Masala Chai Latte created with Anthony the Spice Maker; and Tau Huay, a collaboration with Pure Soya Bean, a beancurd store in Toa Payoh.
Regardless of which scoop or scoops of ice cream tickle your fancy, they all go perfectly well with one of their freshly made, crispy-on-the-outside-fluffy-on-the-inside golden waffles – best eaten on-site.
Where: Blk 131 Toa Payoh Lorong 1 #01-02 Singapore 310131
5A Lock Road, Singapore 108927
78 Yong Siak St, #01-18, Singapore 163078
5. The Dark Gallery
Chocoholics rejoice, for The Dark Gallery has expanded to four outlets around Singapore for that indulgent, chocolate fix.
Besides their velvety Single Origin Dark Chocolate drink, and decadent Signature Dark Chocolate Cake with dark chocolate buttercream layered with dark chocolate sponge cake, The Dark Gallery’s selection of homemade chocolate ice creams (from $5 for a single scoop) should not be missed.
There is also a range of plated ice cream desserts for dine-in, such as the Single Origin Chocolate Platter that comprises a 66% Ecuador Brownie, 68% Bali Tart; 72% Venezuela Trifle, and 75% Tanzania ice cream. If you’re there purely for the ice creams, go for The Ice Cream Soiree, where you can choose any three ice cream flavours and get it topped with dark chocolate sauce and caramelised almonds.
Where: Millenia Walk, #01-K5, Singapore 039596
Takashimaya Shopping Centre #B2-29, Singapore 238873
Funan, #01-14, Singapore 179105
Great World City, #01-117/118, Singapore 237994
Apiary is a pretty little ice cream shop decked in light wood located at Neil Road.
The milky and velvety smooth ice creams (from $4.20 for a single scoop) here are made from scratch and flavours are calibrated to the right intensity and balance that allows the ingredients to shine through. Highlights include their Ferraro Rocher flavour and Sicilian Pistachio ice cream, which is a hit not only with locals but Italian customers as well. While these pistachios are costly, the owners stress that it’s not their style to compromise on the quality of the ingredients.
Other unusual flavours will include the Blue Milk, a bestseller that sees the use of blue pea flower and sea salt. A great place to sit down and pair some lovely ice cream with their waffles (charcoal or plain) and yummy brownies.
Where: 84 Neil Road, 088844
7. Birds of Paradise
Photo: Birds of Paradise / Facebook
Helmed by engineer-turned-gelato maker Edwin Lim, Birds of Paradise serves ice creams (from $4.70 for a single scoop) that are light on the palette and refreshing. Their gelatos are flavoured using natural and botanical ingredients: fruits, flowers, pods, herbs, and spices.
Purity of flavour is what Edwin looks for and you can taste it in the floral White Chrysanthemum gelato with crunchy cocoa nibs, the fruity and slightly herby Strawberry Basil and the deliciously fragrant Pandan. Instead of a cup, get your scoop placed in a thyme-infused waffle cone, painstakingly handmade in-store.
Previously a little gelato shop housed in a shophouse along East Coast Road, the shop has expanded to Jewel Changi Airport, and now boasts a shopfront in front of clothing shop In Good Company.
Where: 63 East Coast Road, #01-05, Singapore 428776
Jewel Changi Airport, #01-214/215/216 Singapore 819666
For ice creams that pack a punch of flavour, and some intoxicating booze, Udders is the place to go to. This homegrown ice cream enterprise remains a firm favourite with ice cream lovers (from $4 for a single scoop). What makes their ice cream so udderly successful? They go through 20 to 30 versions of each flavour during the creative process to perfect the desired depth of natural flavour and mouth-feel, and to fine-tune the nuances.
What helps Udders stand out from the rest is their “adults-only”, intensely alcoholic ice creams such as Rum Rum Raisin (3.9% alcohol), Tira-miss-u (Tiramisu 3.8% alcohol using brandy), Baileys & Bourbon (3.3% alcohol), Lychee Martini (3% using vodka) – so potent that the shops need a liquor license to sell them, and you would have to be 18 years old and above in order to purchase.
17 Lorong Kilat, #01-09, Singapore 598139
246D Upper Thomson Road, Singapore 574370
155 Thomson Road, Singapore 307608
212 Hougang St 21, #01-345, Singapore 530212
345 Beach Rd, Singapore 199568
If you’re looking for an Instagram-worthy, over-the-top cup of soft serve, Overrun is your go-to place.
This takeaway-only halal soft serve shop in the Bugis area offers three flavours – signature chendol (coconut, pandan jelly and gula melaka bits), durian chendol, and a new creation every week that they announce on their social media. Prices start from $8 a cup.
Previous amazing-looking concoctions include Brown Sugar Milk Tea with rainbow jelly; Mint Chocolate Cookie Crumbs drizzled with chocolate sauce and decorated with two oreo cookies; and the pink Bubblegum flavour complete with colourful cereal bits and a candy cane.
Where: 18 Baghdad Street, Singapore 199657
Named after the formulas and equations needed to create their gelatos, this neighbourhood café is the brainchild of two childhood friends whose common dream was to open a café.
Recommended flavours are the Bing Bong, their take on the rainbow-coloured Paddlepop ice cream from yesteryears; goma, a combination of organic golden and black sesame; and Earl Grey Tie Guan Yin. On special occasions, they also have limited-edition scoops, like the Earth flavour, which is a mix of goma and match gelato but very much resembles a tiny Mother Earth!
Fancy a more substantial dessert? The cosy ice cream parlour (from $3.20 a scoop) also offers a choice of three items you can have a scoop, or two scoops of ice cream, on – an almond tart, Belgian waffle, or a brownie.
Where: 2 Jalan Bukit Merah, #01-5142, Singapore 150002
11. The Humble Scoop
Tucked away in the basement of Katong Shopping Centre, The Humble Scoop has been diligently dishing scoops of homemade ice cream with nostalgic flavours.
Ice cream flavours created by the owners all have a specific memory tied to it. For example, Orh-Bee-Good (Pulut Hitam) is a memory of the dessert the owner’s grandmother used to cook for the family on special occasions; while the Cereal Killer is a throwback to eating milk-drenched cereal while watching Saturday morning cartoons.
There are also sorbets available – try the Sugar Cane With Lemon. The refreshing taste will certainly evoke the memory of being seated at a sweltering hawker centre noshing on plates of local food, before washing it all down with an ice-cold, freshly-pressed cup of sugarcane juice.
Where: Katong Shopping Centre, #B1-92, Singapore 437844
12. Kind Kones
Lactose-intolerant, vegan-choosing, and gluten-free individuals rejoice, for indulging in cold scoops of ice cream is no longer a dream.
Ice creams on offer at Kind Kones are all-natural and vegan, and are free from dairy, egg, refined sugar, and other artificial additives. The owners promise the flavour hasn’t been compromised, and flavours here run the gamut ranging from the Pistachio Kulfi and Tiramisu, to local renditions Durian and Pandan Gula Melaka. A single standard scoop of ice cream starts at $4.90.
Aside from vegan ice creams, Kind Kones also serve a selection of healthier desserts such as a Chocolate Ganache Cake, and Strawberries & Cream Cake. There are also vegan breads, cookies, and pastries for sale.
Where: Forum The Shopping Mall, #B1-27/K1, Singapore 238884
13. Fat Cat Ice Cream Bar
Well-known in the Bedok area, this ice cream shop has 18 flavours to pick from daily, and two waffles to have them upon.
Ice cream flavours start from $4.50 a scoop and include Smoked Peppermint, Pistachio, Earl Gray Lavender, Ispahan (a combination of lychee, raspberry, rose) and Butterbeer; while the waffles come in Charcoal or Brown Butter flavours. Interestingly, the Charcoal Waffles – topped with your choice of ice cream – also has the option of a salted egg yolk sauce for that salty-sweet flavour burst.
Past interesting-sounding, seasonal flavours include Bak Kwa, Olive Oil Trifle, Candy Cane Chocolate, and Gingerbread & Cream.
Don’t overlook their seasonal plated desserts, where the chefs get to R&D and play with their food to create different textures and tastes. Recent creations include the Sankura-chan, a sphere served on a wooden spoon; and the Grapefruit Campari that is made from fresh grapefruit, Campari, Valrhona opalys 33% white chocolate and Lemon Verbena.
Where: 416 Bedok North Ave 2, #01-25, Singapore 460416
14. Burnt Cones
This café in the west side of Singapore is a relatively new addition to café scene, and one of rarer places to open till midnight.
The café’s name is derived from the waffle cones that are handmade daily. These come in three variations – regular, slightly burnt, and burnt. The variations came about when the owners accidentally overbaked their cones during R&D, but realised that the overbaked cones actually went really well with their gelato so voila!
There are 12 flavours of ice cream flavours in the freezer at any one time, some of which are rotated from time to time. Stalwart flavours include Strawberry Basil, Bronte Pistachio, Kaya Chendol, and Ube (yam). A single scoop starts from $5.
While it generally functions as an ice cream spot, on Fridays to Sundays, Burnt Cones also offers brunch from 9am to 1pm, with menu items such as breakfast burger, and scrambled eggs with sourdough.
Where: 105 Clementi Street 12, #01-02, Singapore 120105
This unassuming ice cream joint with neon signs in the Kovan and Telok Blangah heartlands churns out ice cream daily in small batches, ensuring the consistency of its offerings.
Scoops start from $3.50, and gelato flavours include Milo Mallow, Dark Chocolate, and Macadamia Popcorn. There’s also the lighter-on-the-palate yoghurts, with flavours such as Rockmelon, and Strawberry Peach.
One ice cream flavour that stands out is their Yakult Oreo, which is the owners’ take of childhood favourites folded into one, where a lick of light sourness goes perfectly with sweet cookie crumbs. Another bestseller is the Honey Comb, where honeycomb toffees have been melted with their sweet cream, and crunchy comb bits have been folded within.
Night owls will be pleased to know that the cafes open till 2am daily, just in case a late-night ice cream fix is sorely needed.
Where: 124 Hougang Avenue 1, #01-1446, Singapore 530124
6 Telok Blangah Cres #01-422 Singapore 090006