I definitely crave ice cream more than I should, and creating this post did not help at all. There's a lot of different types of ice cream shops around Missoula, award winning and all, that need to be recognized. Here's my top five hot spots to get ice cream in Missoula.

  • 1

    Big Dipper

    Obviously Big Dipper is going to be number one, right? Even saying "Big Dipper" in my mind makes my mouth water. My personal favorite is their banana milkshake. I know, who would order that, right? Maybe the creaminess of the ice cream with the blend of banana is what makes my taste buds scream. But seriously, once you try it, you'll be hooked. If you aren't feeling that adventurous, I would also recommend two scoops of mint Oreo ice cream on a waffle cone. Mark my words, your experience will not be the same if you do not have your ice cream in a waffle cone. Did I mention their waffle cones are homemade? Oh yeah, they went there. Big Dipper is not unfamiliar with winning "Best of Missoula" awards every year either, in addition to gaining national attention from Food and Wine Magazine and Budget Travel Magazine. Located at 631 South Higgins (map), Big Dipper really is the best place to get great gourmet ice cream. Go check them out and see what all the hype is about!

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  • 2


    I know, froyo isn't exactly ice cream, but it's the "healthy alternative," right? Even though the yogurt is non-fat AND sugar free, it sure doesn't taste like it (but I'm totally okay with that). I go to u-Swirl more than I probably should; After all, I am a "frequent swirler" card holder. My usual is vanilla yogurt with strawberries, bananas, kiwi, cookie dough (duh), waffle cone pieces, and a few gummy bears. Ugh, is anyone else hungry now? Froyo has definitely become the new up-and-coming thing in Missoula and I think it's here to stay. u-Swirl is located at 1220 SW Higgins, Suite 1 (map) and is open until 10 p.m. Looks like the traditional scoop of ice cream has some competition!

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  • 3

    Dairy Queen

    Okay, who doesn't love a blizzard every now and again? That's all I ever get when I head down to DQ... I should probably switch it up sometime. When I don't get my usual small cookie dough blizzard (I kinda really like cookie dough apparently), I get a hot fudge banana nut whip. Not familiar with the nut whip? Guess what... It's a treat exclusive to MISSOULA! Missoula Dairy Queen owner Art Mandell came up with the idea of combining a blizzard with almonds, complete with a dollop of ice cream in the middle to make for the perfect dessert. Sounds tasty doesn't it? Don't restrict yourself just to banana though. I heard strawberry is pretty good, too. There's four locations across Missoula where you can pick up this new treat: 3753 North Reserve Street (map), 1735 South Higgins Ave (map), 2515 Brooks Street (map), and 2901 Brooks Street in Southgate Mall (map).

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  • 4

    Cold Stone

    Is the usual freezer ice cream just not cutting it for you? Looking for something exciting and adventurous? How about a little "Birthday Cake Remix" to sweeten up your life? Do you "Like It" or "Love It?" Maybe you "Gotta Have It?" Cold Stone Creamery in Missoula has been scooping and creating since 2005 and there's no stopping them now! Not feeling like the boring old scoop of vanilla? Try their "Milk and Cookies" milkshake... It's killer. Milkshakes and signature creations are only two of their many selections to help satisfy your sweet tooth. Cold Stone is located at 3275 North Reserve Street Suite F (map).


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  • 5


    You didn't seriously think I would forget about "31 Flavors" did you? Locally owned since 1978, Baskin-Robbins of Missoula was the first of its kind to be opened in Montana way back when and has yet to fail in serving some of the greatest flavors of ice cream I've had. I bet you could guess... Yeah, the classic chocolate chip cookie dough ice cream is my favorite. However, I do love their rainbow sherbert as well. Baskin-Robbins is located at 1880 Brooks Street (map), or don't forget to stop by at "Out to Lunch" every Thursday downtown and grab a scoop or two.

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