Everyone at Duke knows the best study break involves some form of ice cream. Whether it's froyo, gelato, custard or just good ol' ice cream, the magical flavor and topping combinations in frozen desserts seem to melt our worries away and help us conquer everything on our busy plates.
Durham certainly has a lot to offer in regards to food, and frozen desserts definitely live up to the "foodie-city" hype. As a haven for small businesses, Durham's got some unique sweet spots, as well as everyone's favorite chains to provide just a little extra comfort for anyone feeling homesick.
10. Red Mango
If you're stuck on campus without a car, Red Mango is definitely the best option you've got. Though it can't stand up to some of its big-name froyo competitors, they do offer unique flavors like Nutella, peanut butter, and cake batter, and a variety of toppings.
If froyo isn't your thing, they also have tons of smoothies and smoothie bowls (which are all the rage right now). Regardless of your preferences, Red Mango will help you get through that late night study grind.
No college town is compete without Cookout, and we can all attest that their milkshakes have made our Duke experiences significantly better. From the late night trips to the basketball watch party snack of choice, Cookout milkshakes have always been there for us. They make unfortunate situations better, and make the great nights just that much greater.
It's also a franchise unique to the South, so for those of us who have come from farther away, Cookout will always make Durham that much more special in our hearts.
Everyone's heartbroken about Local Yogurt's recent relocation to downtown Durham, but our hearts still sing whenever we see the LoYo truck parked anywhere near campus.
The flavors at LoYo are a little underwhelming, but never disappoint in taste and texture. The best part is you can always depend on LoYo for the perfect froyo date.
It's not unique to Durham, but they keep getting more creative with their flavor concoctions, and each one tastes better than the last. As Duke continues to flourish and welcome new and exciting changes, undoubtedly Ben and Jerry will too, always providing a delicious treat for any student in need of one.
#SpoonTip: Mark your calendars now for Free Cone Day!
Located in Hillsborough, it may be a hike from Durham, but is worth every mile. This delicious ice cream is true "cow to cone," incorporating all local ingredients from North Carolina. Even better, you get to enjoy this highly-rated homemade ice cream on a beautiful and relaxing farm, far away from the stress that college can bring.
Head there now to catch their Autumn flavor specials, including NC sweet potato, pumpkin spice, maple, brown sugar bourbon, black walnut and rum raisin.
Because what other college town dedicates a whole store to popsicles? Plus, they've got select spots on campus (looking at you, Div School) where you can grab one to cool off on a hot day.
They offer cream-based flavors and water-based flavors to fit everyone's popsicle needs. They feature unique flavor options you may have never seen in popsicle form, and also offer different monthly specials to keep things exciting.
Sometimes, all you really need to calm your stress is a good, old-fashioned snow cone. Pelican's SnoBalls can give you just that, but in so many exotic flavors (see for yourself here) that you'll truly struggle making a decision.
If ice cream is more your thing, they won't let you down because they offer SnoCream as well, although it's debatable if it can really compete with some of Durham's best ice cream spots.
If you're looking for the best selection of froyo flavors and toppings, look no further. Menchie's is a brightly-colored, fun-filled atmosphere.
The flavors really take the cake in the froyo world. Spiced chai latte, chewy peanut butter cookie, and Swiss Miss classic hot chocolate just barely start the extensive list of creative creations, and that's just the base. The walls of toppings help you to take your dessert to the next level with just about anything sweet you could dream of.
The downside? You may feel like a child because of how brightly decorated and animated the entire space is. But don't we all want to take a break from college and pretend we're still kids every now and then?
A hidden gem in a rather remote area of Durham, Goodberry's offers the most delicious custard with any mix-ins you'd like. They are opposed to how the ice cream business has become so industrialized, so they focus on entirely natural ingredients.
The result is an extremely rich and creamy custard – so thick, it could be flipped upside down in its cup and won't go anywhere. Even better, your toppings will be swirled throughout it for you, so you get toppings in every bite and don't have to stir it yourself.
They may have limited flavors, but with all the mix-ins you have the power to create countless new flavors yourself!
1. The Parlour
Topping the list, the Parlour is simply a must, and Durham would be incomplete without its presence. Downtown is not always super quick or convenient, but the Parlour is 100% worth it every time.Their flavors are completely unique and special to their business, always keep us on our toes. The Parlour is charming and creative, and you know you won't get anything even close to this tasty anywhere else in Durham.
So take a break from Perkins and hit up one (or all) of these delicious dessert destinations. You won't regret it.