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As most vegans know, some ice cream is vegan-friendly, while others are not. It all depends on the brand and flavor you buy. And speaking of brands, one that’s markedly more unique than other ice cream brands is Dippin’ Dots.
Are Dippin’ Dots among the elite vegan-friendly ice cream brands, or is it another one to add to the list of brands to avoid? We investigate to bring you the hard-hitting facts. Read on to learn more about Dippin’ Dots and whether they are vegan-friendly.
What Are Dippin’ Dots?
You probably first saw Dippin’ Dots in malls and theme parks, set up as cute little kiosks designed to attract attention. For those old enough to remember, Dippin’ Dots was popular in the early 1990s, although the company officially opened its doors in 1988.
But it was the ‘90s when Dippin’ Dots started popping up in malls across the United States. They could also be found set up during fairs and at theme parks. Dippin’ Dots were unique, to be sure. The world hadn’t seen anything quite like them when they were first introduced.
So, what the heck are Dippin’ Dots anyway? Dippin’ Dots are ice cream. But what separates them from traditional ice cream is the way in which they are made and how they are stored. Dippin’ Dots are made with a flash-freezing process, which requires liquid nitrogen to achieve.
What’s more, Dippin’ Dots can’t be stored in conventional freezers, as such devices aren’t capable of reaching the -40°F temperature needed to keep Dippin’ Dots frozen. This creates a bit of a problem for retail stores and grocers.
Most simply don’t have the equipment to maintain -40°F. As such, the availability of Dippin’ Dots is somewhat limited. Therefore, the Dippin’ Dots company must often provide its own unique displays/freezers to various outlets.
The appeal of Dippin’ Dots is that their ultra-low temperature allows each bite of ice cream to melt in your mouth. And unlike traditional ice cream, Dippin’ Dots are made up of tiny little balls that are no bigger than a BB. It’s an interesting experience and definitely worth checking out if you’ve never tried Dippin’ Dots.
What Are Dippin’ Dots Used For?
Quite a lot, actually. Dippin’ Dots make excellent treats for birthdays and other special events. They are also perfect for cooling down as you slog through hot summer weather at outdoor events and parks.
IttiBitz vs. Dippin’ Dots
Believe it or not, but Dippin’ Dots has some competition. IttiBitz, as they are called, try hard to emulate Dippin’ Dots. While it’s true that IttiBitz look a lot like Dippin’ Dots, the former isn’t nearly as healthy according to the ingredients.
What’s more, IttiBitz are nowhere close to being vegan-friendly. In fact, IttiBitz uses various ingredients that would make most vegans run for the hills. One of the ingredients that gives us pause for concern is carrageenan.
Various animal studies suggest that the consumption of carrageenan leads to IBD (Inflammatory Bowel Disease). But IttiBitz includes this controversial ingredient to make its little balls of ice cream stay thick and frozen.
Another questionable ingredient is cellulose gum. This, too, is a thickening agent that IttiBitz utilizes to achieve its Dippin’ Dots-like appearance.
But there is a bright side to IttiBitz. You can find them in your grocer’s freezer, as they don’t need the strict freezing requirements as their Dippin’ Dots counterparts. Of course, IttiBitz is cheating the system in a sense. Rather than rely on genuine scientific methods to keep their ice cream frozen, they let potentially harmful additives emulate Dippin’ Dots’ famous texture.
As it stands, Dippin’ Dots is the better brand by a long shot. They are better made, of higher quality, and they provide a better texture. Our advice? Whether you’re vegan or not, stick with the real deal.
Moreover, you can find several types of Dippin’ Dots that IttiBitz doesn’t offer, including Ice Cream, No Added Sugar, Ice, Yogurt, and Sherbet. As you’ll come to find, however, vegans are limited in which types they can eat.
Still, Dippin’ Dots is a quality product that undergoes a unique production process to achieve its famous texture and appearance. IttiBitz takes shortcuts via some off-putting ingredients to make their tiny frozen balls of ice cream.
By our estimation, that disqualifies IttiBitz from being a viable vegan option by any stretch of the imagination.
So, Are Dippin’ Dots Vegan?
They sure are, but there is a catch, as we’ll explain momentarily. Dippin’ Dots deserves high praise for offering vegan-friendly selections. Not only are they a one-of-a-kind ice cream product, but they use generally healthy ingredients and good old-fashioned science to achieve their unique frozen state.
As we stated a moment ago, you are limited in which Dippin’ Dots you can safely consume. Dippin’ Dots comes in five different categories (Ice Cream, No Added Sugar, Ice, Yogurt, and Sherbet). The “Ice” category is the one you want to pay attention to, as all others are non-vegan.
Under the Ice category, you will find seven different flavors. These flavors are as follows:
- Blue Raspberry
- Strawberry Ice
- Rainbow Ice
- Orange Ice
- Liberty Ice
- Lemon Ice
- Lime Ice
The good news is that all flavors are vegan-friendly, so you aren’t limited in your selections. There are absolutely no animal products used in the manufacturing of Ice Dippin’ Dots, ensuring that you can freely enjoy as many Dippin’ Dots as your heart desires without fear of interfering with your vegan diet.
Are Dippin’ Dots a Good Choice for Vegans?
We believe so. While you can’t enjoy every category that Dippin’ Dots offers, there are enough flavors here to satisfy your curiosity if you’ve never tried the brand. And if you’re a fan of Dippin’ Dots who wishes to continue partaking in them, the flavors offered are popular and easy to find.
What’s more, the seven vegan-friendly flavors from Dippin’ Dots are only four fewer than what Cold Stone Creamery offers. If you’d like to see what other companies offer vegan-friendly foods, be sure to explore our comprehensive list here.