1/12/2016: Post updated with new additions!
I absolutely totally extremely love coconut. That is still an understatement. I will go the extra mile to hunt down coconut flavoured food! This has not always been the case however, because for the majority of my life I actually disliked coconut until a little more than a year ago when I got hooked on yoga and coconut came into my life. Yoga and coconut is always the perfect combo. It’s more perfect than fries and burger. I have no idea why. Don’t ask me. My interest extends to all things coconut and across all cuisines. It could be coconut water (I did a hunt on best coconut water too), coconut oil, coconut milk, desiccated coconut, and also coconut containing items like putu piring, kueh dardar, red ruby dessert just to name a few. The best, of course, is coconut ice cream because I cannot stop having ice cream even if I’m trying to go paleo.
Anyway, during my mid-year travel last year, I got to try coconut ice cream from US and Europe and it was so good. Too good. First thing I did when I came back (June 2014) was to hunt coconut ice cream in Singapore but somehow, I couldn’t really find any acclaimed ones. I went to random ice cream shops to taste their coconut flavours but they all simply couldn’t make it. Thankfully, good coconut/ coconut milk ice cream started to exist in Singapore just recently and I’m so happy its happening! My strong belief and determination to find good coconut ice cream probably manifested.
Anyway here are some of the good coconut ice creams I’ve tried abroad:
This gelato from Capogiro is the best I’ve ever tasted. This gelato brand is actually really famous and even highly rated on National Geographic.
Coconut soft serve from a random stall in the middle of the beach. It was the best soft serve in my life.
I crossed the border from the French Riviera to Italy for fun and Italy really has good gelato.
Ok so here’s my picks for best coconut ice creams in Singapore! All these are different genres of ice cream so they aren’t really comparable but all pretty good.
1. Liquid nitrogen ice cream
The coconut milk taste is really good. However, the person who prepared the ice cream for me probably wasn’t skilled enough and the texture wasn’t the best it could be. Liquid nitrogen ice cream can go wrong if it freezes too fast before churning enough. The liquid nitrogen method may be gimmicky to some but this produces really fresh ice cream and for coconut milk it is important to be served fresh because it can go bad easily.
2. Thai style coconut ice cream
Those who have been to Bangkok are probably very familiar with this. I have never been there before and have only tried this in Singapore during the Hari Raya Pasar Malam last year, where I had 3 in a single night just because it’s my first coconut ice cream experience in Singapore and I wanted to try every stall. This permanent shop at *Scape, opened late last year, makes it permanently available which is more ideal than seasonal night markets. I like the idea of it being served in a coconut husk because it looks cute and I like the cup of coconut water provided. However, the ice cream itself from this shop wasn’t super fantastic with pretty weak flavour. Nevertheless, the whole package is still pretty good.
3. Creamy coconut ice cream
This one is just classic ice cream, without those gimmicky properties like low sugar/ low fat etc. The texture is so creamy and smooth, and also slightly sticky since this is ice cream (not gelato or sorbet). The ice cream quality at this half a year old ice cream parlour is really good and it is my new favourite ice cream shop in Singapore! The other flavours are pretty good too. I actually returned a few days later to have mint chip because I suddenly felt like it and it was so good.
4. Coconut gelato
This gelato shop is also new, starting only this year.
Conveniently located near my yoga studio, I am happy to find good coconut gelato here! (Now moved to NTU!) Being gelato, it melts faster and the texture is not as sticky as their traditional ice cream counterparts. This also means it’s lighter and you can have more (but well, even for full cream ice cream I can also have more…). The only issue is that they change their flavours pretty often and they may not always have it. But that also means they prepare it fresh and do not keep it in storage and as mentioned coconut milk ice cream must always be fresh. Flavour wise, it is the best coconut gelato in Singapore for now!
50 Nanyang Ave
5. Coconut sorbet
This one is actually topped with chendol and gula meleka as their take on the classic chendol. I prefer the above 4 types of coconut ice cream than sorbet actually, but this is still nice. I had it again when I visited in August 2016 and it tasted even better than before.
6. Coconut Soft Ice Cream
The hype for Korean soft serve (or what Japanese would call soft cream) has kind of mellowed down and Honey Creme (the shop which started the hype in Singapore) has launched several new flavours. That’s a good move, to stay competitive, and serving coconut flavour makes me really happy! They serve it in various combinations too so you can have it over and over again. They have so many coconut related toppings and you could add on as you wish. My favourite would be the coconut chips.
#01-37 313@somerset, 313 Orchard Rd
7. Coconut Potong
I thought I should include this because this should be uniquely Singaporean. I am familiar with ice cream Potong all my life but only recently I noticed the coconut flavour! There are several brands offering this like Kings or FairPrice house brand and it is the most convenient coconut ice cream to have at home being widely available everywhere and very affordable at around $0.60 a stick only when it goes on sale or $0.80 regularly.
Available at most supermarkets island wide and online at RedMart.
68 Orchard Road
#B2-49 Plaza Singapura
3 Pickering Street China Square Central #01-30 Nankin Row