I just ate ice cream for lunch. I did it for you. Really, I barely enjoyed it all.

It’s been a while since I did a taste test. Since we’re right in the heart of summer, I thought an ice cream taste test would be appropriate. A chocolate ice cream taste test to be exact, because, growing up I was told there was no other flavor of ice cream besides chocolate. (That was my Mom’s story and she still sticks to it.)

For me, Breyers All Natural Chocolate* ice cream is the one an organic brand would need to beat. It has always been my favorite. So I picked up four brands of organic chocolate and tested them against the Breyers.

Julie’s Organic Chocolate Ice Cream ($3.69 pint) – I’d never heard Julie’s before, but I’m glad I picked it up. It was smooth and creamy with a sweet, but not too sweet chocolaty taste. Its aftertaste was one of both chocolate and sugar, but not overwhelming on either.

Ingredients: Fresh organic cream, organic evaporated cane juice, organic skim milk, organic egg yolks, organic vanilla, carob bean gum, guar gum.

Green & Black’s Organic Chocolate Ice Cream ($4.59 pint) – This ice cream is made with bittersweet dark chocolate and it has a rich chocolate taste. The chocolate definitely outshines the sugar in this one. Delicious.

Ingredients: Organic skim milk, organic cream, organic sugar, organic dark chocolate (organic sugar, organic chocolate liquor, organic cocoa butter, soy lecithin (emulsifier), organic vanilla extract), organic cocoa powder (processed with alkali), organic egg yolks, locust bean gum, guar gum, organic vanilla extract.

Wegman’s Food You Feel Good About Organic Dark Chocolate Ice Cream ($2.99 pint) – Wegman’s is the store I shop at regularly, and the Food You Feel Good About line is their organic or “all natural” line of store brand items. Although this was a dark chocolate ice cream, I tasted more sugary than dark chocolatey. I thought the Green & Black’s had a richer flavor. This wasn’t bad, but it was very sweet. It had the highest amount of sugar per serving of any of the ice creams.

Ingredients: organic cream, organic chocolate base (organic cane sugar, water, organic cocoa, organic corn syrup, organic chocolate extract, salt), organic sugar, organic skim milk, organic cocoa, organic egg yolks.

PJ Madison’s Ramona Chocolate Gelato Style Ice Cream ($5.29 pint) – I didn’t realize this was gelato style when I picked it up. It didn’t seem too different in texture than the other ice creams. It was good – nice and chocolaty.

Ingredients: Organic milk, organic cream, organic cane sugar, organic maltodextrin, organic alkalized cocoa, organic dark bar chocolate (cocoa paste, sugar, cocoa butter, lecithin (SOY) vanilla), organic egg yolks, organic vanilla, locust bean gum and guar gum.           

My conclusions? Well, I would eat any of these ice creams if you put them in front of me. And that’s not true of all ice creams. There are some brands I can’t stand. Here are some of my thoughts on the organic ice creams.

Best to impress grown-ups – Green & Black’s. It’s not too sweet and the chocolate really stands out.

Best to impress kids – The Julie’s or the Wegman’s. Actually, I think the Julie’s would impress both grown-ups and kids. The sweetness of the Wegman’s would make my kids very happy, but it’s not the first of the bunch I’d reach for.

Closest to Breyers – The Julie’s. When tasted next to each other they had a similar amount of sweetness and chocolate taste.

In the end, if I’m going to reach for some organic chocolate ice cream at the grocery store instead of the Breyers, I think I’ll find myself reaching for the Julie’s to satisfy my personal taste.

*Ingredients in Breyers – milk, cream, sugar, cocoa (processed with Alkali), whey, natural tara gum, natural flavor 

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