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Ice Cream Shops in Central Iowa

Outdoor Activities, Places to Go

Ice Cream Shops in Central Iowa

Ice Cream Treats-3

It is going to be a hot one today!!!! I figured it is the perfect day to share with you some AWESOME ice cream shops in Central Iowa! Yes, I know there is Dairy Queen and about a billion different build your own ice cream/yogurt places, but we have some even better local ice cream shops in the area.

Thelma’s Treats


505 East Grand Avenue, Des Moines

Yes, this is on the top of my list because I have a slight obsession 🙂 What is better then just an ice cream cone? Ice cream in between TWO cookies! They place Anderson Erickson ice cream between two yummy, homemade cookies. Yes, it’s to die for and if you have not tried a Thelma’s, you are missing out. Fortunately, Thelma’s is sold in a lot of the local Hy-Vees, Fareways, and in some restaurants! They even have a special edition made for Zombie Burger called the Zombie Mint Chocolate Chip. Check out all of their awesome combos and where you can buy them here!

Snookies Malt Shop

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1810 Beaver Avenue, Des Moines

Snookies is located in the Beaverdale area and is a class ma and pop ice cream store! Not only do they serve ice cream, but they also have shakes and malts. They will even give your dog a FREE pup cone, when you bring him or her along! They have lots of outdoor seating, where you can enjoy your tasty treat. They are only open for the warmer season, so you definitely want to make sure you check them out this Summer! Also, follow Snookies Malt Shop on Facebook to keep up to-date!

Smokey Row


1910 Cottage Grove Avenue, Des Moines

639 Franklin Street, Pella

111 E. Monroe Street, Pleasantville

109 S. Market Street, Oskaloosa

Not a lot of people think of or remember Smokey Row as a stop for ice cream, I do all the time! This local, coffeeshop is much more then just a coffeeshop! They offer yummy sandwiches, salads, treats and ICE CREAM! They offer old fashions shakes & malts, sundaes, banana splits, root beer floats, tornadoes (similar to a blizzard), coffee-ice cream drinks, and more! This is the perfect place to stop if you are looking for ice cream AND a caffeine boost, which is me on most days 🙂 For their complete menu check here!

Classic Frozen Custard


4000 SE 14th Street, Des Moines

2437 Adventureland Drive, Altoona

I had completely forgotten about this gem until recently. I remember stopping here when I was little and had to have their Lemon Custard! It was so rich and creamy. Located on the South side of Des Moines, they also have a new location in Altoona, right near Adventureland! Make sure you are following Classic Frozen Custard on Facebook, where they announce special deals and flavors!

Van Dee’s Ice Cream Shoppe

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5915 Merle Hay Road, Johnston

Another cute ma and pop ice cream store! These are my favorite 🙂 Not only because the ice cream treats are delish, but you get to know the staff when you visit frequently! This is another ice cream shoppe that is only open for the Summer months, so make sure you check it out while it’s hot out! They offer weekly flavors and specials also. Follow them on Facebook here!

Marble Slab Creamery


2310 SE Delaware Avenue Suite 0, Ankeny

 Marble Slab Creamery is very similar to a Cold Stone Creamery, but I think it’s better 🙂 They have homemade ice cream, yogurt or sorbert; amazing choices of mix-ins and yummy waffle cones! If you are in Ankeny, this is where you need to go for your ice cream treat! Check out their website for deals!

The Outside Scoop

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602 N Jefferson Way, Indianola

So, not only is The Outside Scoop Ice Cream Shop and Restaurant located in Indianola, but they also have a FOOD TRUCK! Food trucks are the “thing” this Summer in Central Iowa! I tasted them at the Food Truck Throwdown a couple weeks back and it was A-MAZING! Yummy! They have some interesting combos including Maple Bacon & Goat Cheese with Roasted Cherries. Make sure you follow their Facebook page to see when and where their food truck is!

Over the Top


 955 NE 56th Street, Pleasant Hill

Located in Pleasant Hill, Over the Top is more then an ice cream shop. They also offer lunch, chocolate, and truffles. This local business makes their ice cream and chocolates right in shop. They offer a huge window where you can see them make the ice cream right there! Check out their website here!

 Black Cat Ice Cream

1501 Grand Avenue, Des Moines

Black Cat Ice Cream is newer to Des Moines and offers ice cream made in Des Moines. It is created with local dairy, local organic produce, made in small batches, and no additives. They post their flavors weekly on their Facebook. Make sure you follow here.


About Author

Erin is a reliable resource and stepping stone for women and families to find support and make connections within our community. She wants families to feel confident to reach out and ask for help and advice to get pointed in the right direction. She enjoys traveling and exploring with her two children in tow!

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