Let the ingredients speak.
High-quality ice cream, often referred to as premium and super premium, is always made with real vanilla, nuts, chocolate or fruit. On the other hand, if you’ve ever looked closely at the ingredients in ice cream from less fancy brands, you may have noticed that they only say “vanilla flavored” or “chocolate flavored”. This is because they don’t contain real vanilla or chocolate.
Check the butterfat content
What difference does butterfat make? Besides making ice cream taste less like frozen milk, butterfat gives the product a creamy texture and a mellow flavor. In order to even be called ice cream in the United States, the product must contain at least 10 percent butterfat, according to the Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA) regulations. High-quality brands of ice cream usually contain anywhere from 13 to 17 percent butterfat.
Judge by the amount of mix-ins
Have you ever noticed the amount of mix-ins in high quality brands? You almost can’t stick your spoon into them without hitting a piece of candy, nut, or whatever mix-in they contain. With some of the average brands, however, you really have to dig to find the mixed in goodies.