Green tea ice cream may not be the healthiest treat around, but it certainly isn’t bad for you either, especially if you enjoy it in moderation.
Since many of my clients are trying to eat healthier desserts, I often get asked is green tea ice cream good – both in terms of health and taste. Therefore, I decided to do some digging to find out.
This post contains what green tea ice cream is made up of as well as what to expect in terms of taste. Let’s learn more!
If you are purchasing your green tea ice cream, then it is almost certain that the brand will add sugar to the ice cream. This is true for companies such as Haagen-Dazs, Trader Joe’s, and Mr. Green Tea. They do use cane sugar instead of traditional white granulated sugar, however.
So, does this make these ice cream a healthier option? Well, on a molecular level, cane sugar and granulated sugar are essentially the same. Also, apart from carbs, cane sugar doesn’t really contain any nutrients.
Still, as long as you enjoy cane sugar in moderation, there are a few benefits that you can enjoy. This includes more energy, a better mood, and also the storing of sugar as healthy fats.
As you are probably aware green tea does contain caffeine – around 28mg per cup. Some ice cream brands use matcha in their formula which contains even more. There is about 70mg in a single teaspoon of matcha.
Of course, these numbers aren’t really a good indication about how much caffeine is actually in your green tea ice cream. For one thing, not all brands are forthcoming about the type of green tea that they use or how much actually goes into their ice cream.
Due to this, it can be pretty tricky to get an accurate idea of how much caffeine you are consuming. When one consumer emailed Haagen-Dazs about this, the reply was that there was about 25mg of caffeine per ½ cup of ice cream.
If you are trying to limit your caffeine intake or are sensitive to caffeine, it is a good idea to always start with a scoop of the ice cream. Make sure to eat the ice cream earlier in the day as well so that the caffeine has plenty of time to leave your system.
Based on how you react to the ice cream, you can decide to increase or limit how much you consume at one time.
The number of calories can be quite different from one brand to another. This, of course, depends on the ingredients used in each formula. Here is a breakdown of how many calories are in each serving of top brands:
Most brands offering up the green tea flavor do contain dairy. It is quite difficult to find vegan versions – at the moment, Snow Monkey is one of the few brands that don’t contain dairy. Unfortunately, it is a bit tricky to find stores that sell the ice cream as it isn’t widely available.
The good news is that the brand uses banana and apples to sweeten the ice cream and only contains 135 calories per two-thirds cup serving. Thus, if you are looking for a healthier option, then this could be it.
You don’t need to be told that the exact flavor can vary from one brand to another. In some cases, the green tea taste isn’t strong at all. Thus, the ice cream will tend to be sweeter. With other brands, the flavor will be noticeable and be a bit more bitter.
Keep in mind that the exact quality and type of green tea will impact on how the ice cream tastes. Therefore, it is quite possible that with higher quality leaves or extracts that you notice certain floral or vegetal flavor profiles.
As mentioned, some brands do use matcha instead of regular green tea. Then, does green tea ice cream taste like matcha in this case? Yes, it can. You may find that this ice cream does taste sweeter and creamier. Once again, this will depend on the kind of matcha that is used.
Well, it isn’t just about flavors that go well with green tea ice cream. It is also about the kind of flavors that you preserve.
Some people like to keep it traditional, adding components such as red bean paste or sweetened condensed milk. If you prefer a healthy accompaniment, then fruits – citrus in particular – will be an excellent addition to your scoop.
In case you would like a more indulgent treat, why consider chocolate? White chocolate is definitely a winner, but milk or dark chocolate may be a better option, depending on your preferences. Top it off with chopped nuts like pistachios and you will have yourself a sundae!
Of course, if you want the perfect flavor combination, it is all about a little trial and error. Or, ask others what they like to add to their green tea ice cream. You will be surprised by just how creative people can get. You will also be interested to learn just how amazing some of these pairings can be.
Then, what’s the conclusion? Well, green tea can’t be classified as traditionally healthy as it does contain sugar and other processed ingredients. However, there is absolutely nothing wrong with enjoying a scoop every now and then. Just bear in mind that this ice cream does contain caffeine.
As for the taste, green tea ice cream is a creamier and sweeter version than what you are used to with the drink. In the case of brands that use a lot of green tea, though, you can expect the flavor to be a bit more bitter.
There you have it – a rundown on green tea ice cream and what to expect from this treat. Now, you can enjoy it with a bit more information on your hands.
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