Milkshakes are one of man’s greatest creations. Whether it’s 2 am and drunk you wants something sweet to go with a greasy burger, or it’s 5 pm and you need protein to fuel your workout, milkshakes are the perfect answer to life’s many problems.
I tried to find out who makes the best milkshake, but as it turns out, the United States is pretty darn good at making my favorite dessert. After searching social media, polling college students, and a little help from The Daily Meal, I compiled a list of the top milkshakes in every state across the country.
Alabama – Cookies and Cream Shake from Hamburger Heaven
Hamburger Heaven is proof that some things are done better the old-fashioned way. With several locations around Alabama, Hamburger Heaven plays an active role in their community through events such as their annual cookout to raise money for the American Red Cross. So if you stop in for an ultra thick cookies and cream shake, rest assured your money is going to a company with heart. If you wanna keep your heart healthy/mitigate the effects of this shake, try out these 7 foods.
Alaska – Root Beer Float from Lucky Wishbone
Technically a float is not a milkshake, but take one sip of this root beer float from Lucky Wishbone and you’ll understand why it’s on the list. A landmark for locals, Lucky’s has been serving up warm meals to Alaskan families before Alaska was even a state. Yeah, it’s that cool. Not in Alaska? Try our DIY version.
Arizona – Lucky Charms Marshmallow Shake from Paradise Valley Burger Company
Home of the Brulee Burger, Paradise Valley Burger Company is a must-try in Phoenix. This restaurant believes in high quality and unique foods and their menu is a testament to their motto. Their Lucky Charms marshmallow shake takes the best parts of cereal and incorporates them into one unforgettable treat. It turns out the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow is actually just Paradise Valley Burger Company. While you’re there, try out these other must-eat foods in Phoenix.
Arkansas – Vanilla Shake from The Purple Cow
Dining at the Purple Cow is more than just another meal, it’s a memory in the making. Modeled after classic diners, The Purple Cow certainly proves they are a great spot “for the young of all ages.” Though it may seem strange at first, don’t let the color of their iconic purple vanilla milkshake scare you. We assure you it is as delicious as it is whimsical. Don’t forget to try out Arkansas’ signature cocktail when you’re nearby.
California – Date Shake from Hadley Fruit Orchards
No matter where you live, Hadley Fruit Orchards is a must-have on your food bucket list. Though date shakes are available up and down the California coastline, Hadley’s is home to the most popular date milkshake. Using locally-grown Deglet Noor Dates, this shake has a sweet caramel taste that is so distinct you’ll know it had to come from Hadley’s. Missing California? We can relate.
Colorado – Wild Blackberry Shake from Sassafras American Eatery
Using locally-grown and organic ingredients, Sassafras American Eatery is stepping up the southern comfort food game. This restaurant may only be open for breakfast and lunch, but they won’t judge you if you order a boozy milkshake to go with their biscuits and gravy. Try their wild blackberry spiked milkshake and you’ll see why boozy shakes beat mimosas for brunch any day. If you try making one at home, we highly suggest pairing it with these champagne pancakes.
Connecticut – Chocolate Chip Shake from AC Petersen Farm
A.C. Petersen Farms has been a Connecticut favorite for “farm fresh” milkshakes since 1939. Offering over 40 flavors of ice cream, they have a flavor bound to please even the pickiest of ice cream connoisseurs. For those up to trying anything, make sure you check out their chocolate chip shake. This incredibly rich treat will convert you into a chocoholic after just one taste. Don’t forget to try these Connecticut favorites as well.
Delaware – Triple Thick Strawberry Shake from Charcoal Pit
The Charcoal Pit is a perfect example of a restaurant that appreciates their community. They have grown a lot since their small four table and countertop days and now give back to their neighborhood with 9 distinct sundae creations representing the local high schools. Though their sundaes are creative, it is their triple thick milkshakes that deserve appreciation. Head to the original location for a triple thick strawberry shake and you’ll see why the “Pit” has stuck around since 1956. We hear the perfect time of year to visit is the fall. Here’s why.
Florida – Key Lime Pie Shake from The Tin Cow
With 22 different milkshake flavors to choose from, The Tin Cow is no stranger to variety. Though they offer 4 non-alcoholic flavors, their spiked milkshakes are all the rage. From flavors such as red velvet to pecan pie, finding a shake that suits your mood is no problem. If you want to order like a true Floridian, check out their spiked key lime pie shake. One sip and you’ll know why people want to live out their final days on Pensacola Beach. Like the booze but not the key lime? Don’t worry, there are other boozy pie shakes you can make anytime.
Georgia – Nutella With Toasted Marshmallow Shake from Flip Burger
An Atlanta classic, FLIP Burger takes all your preconceived notions about what a burger place should be and tosses them out the window. You may be thinking, why is my milkshake smoking? Don’t worry, it’s just the liquid nitrogen they use on their shakes. That’s right, you get a chemistry lesson and a mighty fine milkshake all in one. If you’re brave enough to try their Foie Gras shake, be our guest, but for now we’ll stick with Nutella and burnt marshmallow. If liquid nitrogen isn’t your thing, why not make a Nutella shake at home?
Hawaii – Chocolate Shake from Teddy’s Bigger Burgers
Teddy’s Bigger Burgers takes the backyard cookout flavors you love and elevates them to restaurant quality. You’ll come for their burgers, but really no meal is complete without a Teddy’s Bigger Burgers milkshake. They may not have a long list of extreme flavors, but Teddy’s chocolate shake proves the age-old adage, “If it ain’t broke don’t fix it.” Wanna stay on the lighter side? Here’s our healthy chocolate shake.
Idaho – Caramel Shake from Frostop Drive-In
The Frostop Drive-In may have exchanged owners over the years but their iconic taste has never wavered. Old-fashioned in the best kind of way, the milkshakes served up by Frostop will have you wondering why there are not more locations across Idaho. Grab an order of fries (after all, potatoes are a superfood) and their caramel shake and taste for yourself the sweet and salty bliss Highway 20 has come to know and love for over 40 years.
Illinois – Chocolate Cake Shake from Portillo’s
Portillo’s, originally known as The Dog House, has come a long way since their trailer days. Their hot dogs are top notch and may help you live a long life, but ask anyone who has been there and chances are they will tell you about their milkshakes. Portillo’s takes two classic desserts, milkshakes and chocolate cake, and blends them into one hefty creation. The chocolate cake shake is so decadent you may need to order a small, but this shake is living proof that size doesn’t matter. Not a fan of chocolate cake? Try out this cake batter milkshake instead.
Indiana – Boba Tea Shake from Wyliepalooza Ice Cream Emporium
Wyliepalooza Ice Cream Emporium may have started out as a simple conversation between a mother and a daughter over a slice of pizza, but is now one of the most Instagrammed hot spots in Indianapolis. With over 70 unique flavors to choose from, Wyliepalooza proves this buzz is not in vain. Their Boba Tea Shake destroys the assumption that there can be too much of a good thing. Stop by Wyliepalooza ASAP so you can have your shake and eat it too. If you’re drooling over this one, you should probably know you’re addicted to boba.
Iowa – Chocolate Bourbon Pecan Pie Shake from Hamburg Inn No. 2
Located right outside downtown Iowa City, Hamburg Inn No. 2 is an Iowa landmark. Though they offer classic shake flavors, if you go to Hamburg Inn, you must try their chocolate bourbon pecan pie shake made with an entire piece of pecan pie. We’re not saying drinking their milkshakes will make you president but with visitors such as Ronald Reagan, Bill Clinton, and Barack Obama, it doesn’t hurt to try. For a full list of must-eat Iowa foods, check this list out.
Kansas – Chocolate Malt Shake from Old Mill Tasty Shop
Witchita’s original soda fountain, the Old Mill Tasty Shop, is filled to the brim with history. It’s no question Old Mill knows what they are doing when it comes to milkshakes, after all, they have been serving up old-fashioned malts since 1932. Grab a seat at the counter and order up their classic chocolate malt shake. You won’t be sorry. Plus, while you’re there, check out this coffee shop. It may just make a Kansas City fan of you.
Kentucky – Banana Split Shake from Tolly Ho
Right outside the University of Kentucky, this 24-hour diner has been serving late-night eats to college kids since 1971. Whether you want a late night Mega Ho or maybe just a Country Fried Ho, rest assured Tolly Ho has you covered. However, no night out is complete without a classic Tolly milkshake so stop by for their Banana Split Shake. It may not be as good as a degree from the University of Kentucky, but it’s pretty darn close. Wanna keep the deliciousness and lose the calories? Try this healthy banana split you can eat for breakfast.
Louisiana – Chocolate Cherry Freeze from Camellia Grill
Ask any Tulane University student and chances are they will tell you they’ve popped into Camellia Grill at least once during their collegiate years. Seating may be limited, but once you make it up to the counter, be sure to order their legendary chocolate cherry freeze. It’s definitely well worth the wait. Can’t make it to Camellia, but wanna try this shake out? Try this chocolate cherry concoction and use your imagination.
Maine – Sea Salted Duckfat Caramel Shake from Duckfat
The name may be obscure, but Duckfat is unique in all the best ways. Though they offer classic shake flavors such as real vanilla bean, if you hit up this Portland spot, the sea salted duck fat caramel is a must. Can’t get enough duckfat? Be sure to order some duckfat fries to dip in your shake. Yum-o. Make sure you stop by Maine’s classic college food joint as well, because, frankly, why wouldn’t you?
Maryland – Bacon Milkshake from Papermoon Diner
Open 24 hours, The Papermoon Diner is ready to satisfy your salty and sweet cravings. Though their shake flavors such as peanut butter madness and chunky monkey are worth a try, their bacon milkshake is the epitome of all things right with the world. Maple syrup, bacon crumbles, and chocolate ice cream? We’re ready all day, every day.
Massachusetts – Fluffanuttahh Frappe from Wahlburgers
When you sit down to eat at Wahlburgers, you are not just another customer, you are family. Inspired by childhood memories, Paul Wahlberg started this restaurant as a way of sharing his favorite recipes for all generations to enjoy. If you want a true Wahlburger experience, then order their fluffanuttahh frappe spiked with marshmallow vodka and créme de banana. We won’t blame you if you start humming Good Vibrations after just one sip. Not down with the fluffernutter in frappe form? Try these brownie cups instead.
Michigan – Rock and Rye Shake from Mercury Burger Bar
Part of the ever-expanding Corktown, Mercury Burger Bar is one of the best additions to the neighborhood. With 15 different specialty burgers, there is always something new to try, but if you favor consistency, then make sure you try their rock and rye faygo shake. This bad boy is better than a classic float and is sure to keep you coming back each and every time. Still digging Michigan? Check out the best of Ann Arbor’s food porn to get you in the mood.
Minnesota – Hot Fudge Malt Shake from Annie’s Parlour
Annie’s Parlour is a Dinkytown staple and whether you are a native or just passing through, this restaurant always promises a good time. They are open late so pop in for a quick bite but don’t forget to order their hot fudge malt shake. The only thing better than sitting on the back porch at Annie’s Parlour on a warm summer night is sitting on their back porch with a shake. Plus, don’t forget to get Minnesota’s famous hotdish.
Mississippi – Chocolate Malt Shake from Brent’s Drugs
Recently featured in Vogue as one of the coolest classic diners in the country, walking into Brent’s Drugs is like stepping back in time. Originally opened as a pharmacy, this diner has been a Jackson landmark since 1946. Brent’s Drugs is vintage done right and with history this rich, the only way to truly appreciate this diner is with a chocolate malt shake, complete with whipped cream and of course, a cherry on top. If you’re not in a sugar coma already, be sure to try the best (non-milkshake) dessert in Mississippi.
Missouri – Chocolate Banana Malt Shake from Crown Candy Kitchen
Crown Candy Kitchen has been a St. Louis tradition since 1913. Stop by for a bite, but don’t you dare think about leaving until you’ve tried their milkshakes. Think you can handle their chocolate banana malt shake? How about five? If you can drink five of their classic malt shakes in under 30 minutes, you get them for free. Fail to drink all five and it’s time to pay up. Maybe it’s best if you just stick with the one. Feeling healthy? Try this chocolate banana smoothie bowl instead.
Montana – Huckleberry Shake from Big Dipper Ice Cream
Big Dipper Ice Cream opened its doors in 1995 and has been serving up homemade ice cream ever since. If you are from Montana, there is a good chance you’ve tried their signature Huckleberry ice cream. If not, what are you waiting for? Follow the stars and head towards Big Dipper Ice Cream for their Huckleberry shake. You won’t be disappointed. Plus, everyone knows huckleberries are best in the PNW.
Nebraska – Vanilla Shake from Runza
Now a national chain, Runza started out as a small drive-in restaurant in 1949. Though they come a long way since their original shop, the same great Runza sandwich has never changed. What’s the only thing better than a traditional Runza sandwich? How about $1 mini shakes? If you stop by this Midwest classic, go for a vanilla shake, but with a price as low as $1, you might as well try all of them. You do you. If you’re not much for vanilla, here’s how to pimp your shake.
Nevada – Chocolate Butterfat Shake from Heart Attack Grill
The aptly named Heart Attack Grill doesn’t mess around when it comes to food. With menu items such as the Octuple Bypass Burger and Coronary Dog, it’s safe to say you’ll need to seek medical attention from their wait staff of nurses. If you manage to get through a meal without a spanking, reward yourself with their chocolate butterfat shake topped with a slab of butter for an extra coronary kick. Too much butter for you? Try a healthy chocolate shake instead.
New Hampshire – Sea Salt, Caramel, and Pretzel Shake from BRGR Bar
BRGR Bar may be reinventing the standard burger joint, but it is their milkshakes that receive all the attention. Offering both non-alcoholic flavors such as chocolate and peanut butter, and spiked adult flavors such as apple pie ala mode, BRGR Bar is stepping up the milkshake game in the best possible way. Stop by for their sea salt, caramel, and pretzel shake. Seriously guys, you’ll thank us later. Love weird flavor pairings? Try these surprisingly delicious snack combos next.
New Jersey – Coffee Chip Shake from Holsten’s
Featured in The Sopranos, Holsten’s has been the place for homemade ice cream in New Jersey since 1939. Though they offer special ice cream flavors of the month, the shake you need to try is their coffee chip shake. You may think you like coffee, but you’ve never tasted it like this before. It’s about to rock your world. If you’re digging that combo, we suggest these Mocha Protein Pancakes. You can thank us later.
New Mexico – Lavender Shake from Shake Foundation
Ask anyone who has tried Shake Foundation’s Green Chile Cheeseburger and they will tell you that the green chile heat is no joke. Luckily if you are not a fan of spicy, or if you have a baby palette, they have shakes to cool you off. Need something light after a dense burger? Go for their lavender shake. But if the spice is still too much for you, check out these do’s and don’ts of eating spicy food.
New York – Sweet N Salty Shake from Black Tap Craft Burgers and Beer
In the era of extreme milkshakes, Black Tap does not shy away from the challenge. Though this NYC restaurant is not even a year old, their signature shakes such as the sweet n salty, jam-packed with M&M’s, pretzels, caramel candies and chocolate syrup, have helped Black Tap make a name for themselves across social media. I mean honestly, if you eat at Black Tap but don’t Instagram your milkshake, did you even go?
North Carolina – Grape Shake from Tony’s Ice Cream
Tony’s Ice Cream is southern comfort food done right. This family-owned and operated restaurant has been serving up milkshakes and fried ‘loney (bologna) sandwiches since 1915. What makes their milkshakes so fresh? The ice cream they use is homemade right next door to the restaurant. Order like a native and pop in for their grape shake. You won’t be disappointed. Looking for more North Carolina eats? We’ve got you covered.
North Dakota – Oreo Shake from Kroll’s Diner
It’s a Monday night and the inside of Kroll’s Diner is packed with college kids. Is there a game on? Nope, something better. It’s Shakey Mondays, meaning buy one get one free milkshakes. Grab a friend, or a stranger if you have to and get your butt down to Kroll’s to try their Oreo shake. Or if that’s too much work, you can make your own healthy Oreo shake.
Ohio – Classic Strawberry Shake from United Dairy Farmers
United Dairy Farmers may have started as a way to combat rising premium milk delivery prices, but nowadays, they are taking over the farm fresh milkshake game. An Ohio tradition, UDF is the perfect spot to grab a shake before heading out on a road trip with your family. Whether you are traveling through Cincinnati or stopping in Columbus, make sure you swing by UDF and grab their classic strawberry shake. There’s nothing else quite like it. Want more strawberries? Get your fix.
Oklahoma – Strawberry Cheesecake Shake from Braum’s
Braum’s Ice Cream was founded on the principle, “if you want something done right, then you have to do it yourself.” From milking their own cows to bottling their own milk, Braum’s truly does put their money where their mouth is. When you take a sip from a Braum’s milkshake, you know what you are drinking is fresh, so head on by and grab their strawberry cheesecake shake. Trust us, Braum’s is a milkshake done right. Here’s another way to enjoy strawberry cheesecake. We promise, you’re gonna love ’em.
Oregon – R.P McMurphy Shake from Blueplate
Stepping into Blueplate is like stepping back in time into your favorite memory. Whether you belly up to the bar or slide into your favorite corner booth, you know that once you sit down at Blueplate, you are exactly where you belong. If you want to heighten your experience here, order their R.P McMurphy shake complete with butterscotch ice cream, toffee covered cashews, honey roasted peanuts, and vanilla crunch granola. Just one sip and you may never want to go back to reality again. If you’re not in the area, here’s an easy way to try out a snack-filled milkshake at home.
Pennsylvania – Salted Caramel Pretzel Shake from Field Burger and Tap
What makes The Field Burger and Tap’s milkshakes so darn good? They use legendary Penn State Berkey Creamery ice cream in all of their shakes. If you’re a Penn State student, The Field’s alcoholic shakes are the sweetest pregame you could ask for. Go for their salted caramel pretzel shake spiked with caramel vodka, just remember not to text you ex when you’re done. However, if you prefer pre-gaming from the comfort of your living room, then check out these boozy mint chocolate chip and Oreo milkshakes.
Rhode Island – Awful Awful Chocolate Shake from Newport Creamery
Where my chocolate addicts at? Newport Creamery has been an active member of the New England landscape for 80 years. During this time, they perfected their awful awful shake, but don’t let the name scare you away. The full phrase means “awful big, awful good” and we are not ones to disagree. Check out this landmark spot and order an awful awful chocolate and taste for yourself the truth of the name.
South Carolina – Carolina Car Bombe from Grill Marks
First there was the Irish Car Bomb – now, thanks to the creative minds over at Grill Marks, we have the Carolina Car Bombe. This boozy shake is the perfect starter to the best night you’ll never remember. Made with Tullamore Dew, Baileys, and Highland Oatmeal Porter the Carolina Car Bombe is worth every cent of the $10 price. Love boozy desserts? Try out these (including Irish Car Bomb cupcakes).
South Dakota – S’mores Shake from Phillips Avenue Diner
If you want all-American food at its finest then Phillips Avenue Diner is the place for you. Head there on Tuesday nights for their “It’s a Shakedown” special where they feature half-priced shakes with the purchase of an entree. That’s right, you get their s’mores milkshake complete with graham crackers, hot fudge, and toasted marshmallows for only $3. Yes, please and thank you. If you can’t get enough s’mores, here’s a handy guide to eating them year-round.
Tennessee – Bushwhacker Shake from Broadway Brewhouse
Though there is some discrepancy as to which restaurant is the actual “Home of the Bushwhacker,” what we can say for certain is that Broadway Brewhouse serves up one heck of a version. The ingredients may change based off who is making your drink, but the overall taste of the Bushwhacker is coffee and chocolate. Make it your first drink before a night out or make it your hair of the dog the next morning. Either way, the Bushwhacker is bound to be one of the best mistakes you ever drink. If you’re looking for more good eats in Tennessee, we’ve got you covered.
Texas – Roasted Banana & Brown Sugar Shake from 24 Diner
Voted one of the top 24-hour diners in the country, this Austin hot spot knows their way around a milkshake. What makes 24 Diner a standout is their farm-to-table approach. By partnering with local farms and utilizing their products such as those found in their Texas Coffee Traders Espresso shake, 24 Diner makes sure you leave with a taste of Austin. Want to order like a local? Go for their roasted banana and brown sugar shake. One taste and you’ll realize why people say, “Don’t mess with Texas.” Want more to eat in Austin? Here are the 50 things you need to eat in Austin before you die.
Utah – Bubble Shake from Iceberg Drive-Inn
Since 1960, the Iceberg Drive Inn has been bringing people together through their love of good food. Though you won’t find gluten free and low-calorie options on this menu, what you will find are their iconic ultra thick milkshakes. They have over 40 flavors to choose from, but if you want the full Iceberg Drive Inn experience, check out their bubblegum shake. Who counts calories anyway?
Vermont – Muddy Shake from Muddy Waters
It may be a coffee shop, but that doesn’t stop Muddy Waters from serving up one of the best milkshakes north of the Mason Dixon line. Combining two of the world’s greatest treats, espresso and ice cream, the muddy shake is a perfect coffee/sugar fix when you’re studying for finals. Studying from home? Don’t worry you can make a similar version for yourself.
Virginia – Peanut Butter, Chocolate, Banana Shake from Ted’s Bulletin
The sons of Ted Neal, owners of Ted’s Bulletin, clearly demonstrate their father’s idea that “every meal is an opportunity for togetherness.” Whether you are from out of town or just down the street, dining at Ted’s always feels like a welcome home. Pop in for a peanut butter, chocolate, and banana shake and you may never want to go back to your real home again. Too lazy to leave your apartment for Ted’s? You can make your own peanut butter shake at home and not even put on pants.
Washington – Caramel Macchiato from Lunchbox Laboratory
Though Lunchbox Laboratory may have started as a small culinary concept honoring a mother, this restaurant has grown into a Seattle staple. With off-the-wall burgers such as The Dork, a duck and pork patty combination, Lunchbox Laboratory’s culinary creativity knows no bounds. With 16 shakes to choose from, it may be hard to pick just one, but their caramel macchiato shake spiked with caramel vodka, Baileys, and Kahlua will leave you buzzed and energized in the best kind of way. If you need the caffeine but not the booze, try your hand at your own coffee milkshake.
West Virginia – Mountain Mud Slide Shake from The Corner Shop
Nestled in historic Bramwell, The Corner Shop is a go-to West Virginian destination for homemade ice cream. Once a pharmacy, this ice cream hideaway is a perfect break from your everyday struggles. Order up one of their classic mountain mud slide shakes and after a few sips, you’ll forget all the problems you had walking into The Corner Shop. Wanna know what food unofficially represents West Virginia? Click here.
Wisconsin – Fat Elvis Shake from Monty’s Blue Plate Diner
Unlike other diners included in this list, what makes Monty’s Blue Plate Diner stand out is their vegetarian menu options. From their vegetarian masaman curry to their vegan banana walnut pancakes, Monty’s has a dish for any and all customers. As if their food was not enough to convince you to stop by, their Fat Elvis shake certainly will. Though it’s already loaded with peanut butter, bananas, and chocolate syrup, the menu dares customers to add a strip of bacon as well. That’s a dare we are willing to take. And if you were curious, this is Wisconsin’s unofficial cocktail.
Wyoming – Oreo Milkshake from Johnny J’s Diner
If you’re looking for a diner with authenticity then look no further than Johnny J’s. Whether you pop in for breakfast, lunch, or dinner, the folks at Johnny J’s are ready to serve you up some old-fashioned American classics. Stop by their one and only location for their Oreo milkshake and you’ll leave a happy customer. Fun fact: That symbol on your Oreo isn’t as innocuous as it may seem.