18 best ice-cream shops in London

Whether Insta-worthy ice cream, gorgeous gelato or sumptuous sorbet, we give you the inside scoop on the best ice-cream shops in London.

From innovative approaches to generations-old Italian techniques to vegan ice cream, find your next frozen treat with our guide to London’s ice-cream shops.

1. Bubblewrap

Get your hands on a bubbly gelato-filled waffle topped with weekly-changing goodies, from Oreos to salted caramel and fruit, at Bubblewrap in Chinatown. For another Instagram-worthy dessert, head to nearby Bake, famous for its fish-shaped tayaki cones crammed full of matcha ice cream.

2. Chin Chin Labs

For something a little different, head to Chin Chin Labs, the go-to parlour for liquid nitrogen ice cream in London. Watch as your dessert is frozen to order using a dash of liquid nitrogen, and select from an exciting array of weekly-changing flavours at this cool cafe in Camden.

3. La Gelatiera

Creative flavours, such as tongue-tingling chili and basil, have won La Gelatiera an impressive list of foodie awards. Its name refers to the gelato churn used in Italy, and reflects the spot’s dedication to handmade treats. Drop by the gelato lab to learn all about the traditional techniques used at this ice-cream shop in London.

4. Lick

Head over to Lick in Soho, which offers a tasty range of 24 unique ice-cream flavours every day. Sample gelato-based milkshakes, floats and affogato (coffee and gelato) made using Illy coffee at this independent ice-cream parlour. There’s also an array of gelato cakes, allergy-friendly gelato and alcoholic flavours for adults.

5. Gelateria 3BIS London

Located in Borough Market, Gelateria 3BIS London focuses on the history and craftsmanship behind the tasty Italian dessert. This picture-pretty parlour’s sorbet and gelato creations are made using the highest quality ingredients sourced from Italy. You’ll also find beautiful pastries and incredible coffee.

6. Gelatorino

Those with a sweet tooth should visit ultra-cool Gelatorino. Take your pick from delicious Italian flavour creations including amaretto and panettone, as well as sorbet and gelato cocktails, made using only the very best natural ingredients.

7. Gelupo

Stop off for a scoop of artisan gelato at Soho's Gelupo. This London cafe takes its gelato creations seriously and uses specialist churning equipment to ensure a more luxurious outcome. Be tempted by unusual flavours such as lemon, custard and almond, or mango sticky rice, alongside a good range of vegan options.

8. Greedy Goat

Pick up a pot of guilt-free ice cream at Greedy Goat in Borough Market. This popular stall on the London ice-cream scene serves up a flavour-packed selection of desserts made using British goat’s milk. Take your pick from deliciously inventive flavours including rhubarb and custard, cherry bakewell and more.

9. La Grotta Ices

Get your hands on some of La Grotta Ices' coveted creations made from seasonal ingredients at Spa Terminus in Bermondsey on limited Saturdays from May to September. Alternatively, pick up a tub of its ice cream from Leila's Shop on Calvert Avenue or E5 Bakehouse.

10. Mamasons Dirty Ice Cream

Try something totally unique at "dirty ice cream" specialist Mamasons Dirty Ice Cream, which brings Filipino flavours and techniques to Chinatown. Don't be fooled by its name, the hygiene is top-notch at this parlour, which churns out flavours such as purple ube, milo, black buko and vegan specials guyabano and calamansi.

11. Milk Train

Milk Train has taken soft-serve ice cream to a new level with its quirky cafe in Covent Garden. The showstopper in the shop’s creative portfolio is the dreamy candyfloss cone, which combines two of your favourite childhood treats – ice cream surrounded by a cloud of candyfloss.

12. Oddono's

Cool down with a delicious ice-cream cone at much loved Oddono's. Open since 2004, this family-owned Italian gelato shop has a range of more than 100 flavours and makes its authentic creations daily at its artisan laboratory, age-old and new recipes.

13. Ruby Violet

Get your gelato gratification at Ruby Violet's swanky parlours in Tufnell Park or King's Cross. Here, scrumptious small-batch frozen treats made from organic milk, free-range eggs and ethically sourced ingredients await.

14. Snowflake

Fall in love with luxurious desserts at Selfridge's Snowflake. This artisan ice-cream maker offers sweet puddings created from organic milk and nuts grown in the Italian mountains. Choose from waffles, crepes, ice-cream sundaes and vegan desserts.

15. Soft Serve Society

If you prefer yours soft-serve, venture to Soft Serve Society in Market Hall Fulham and Boxpark Shoreditch. With toppings including candy floss and popping candy, flavours such as charcoal, and freakshakes overflowing with naughtiness, you'll cause serious ice-cream envy among your friends.

16. The Parlour

Treat yourself at high-end ice-cream spot, The Parlour at Fortnum & Mason. As well as a selection of new and innovative ice creams, including an afternoon tea-inspired sundae, this luxurious London eatery also offers artisanal coffee, hot chocolate and savoury snacks.

17. Udderlicious

Wander over to the Udderlicious in Islington for top ice-cream treats. You’ll find a decadent selection of handmade ice cream and sorbet, from wild cherry to Irish coffee. If you’re celebrating, make sure to ask about the personalised ice-cream cakes which are a firm favourite with visitors to this London cafe.

18. Yorica

Ogle the selection of completely allergen-free and vegan ice cream and shakes at Yorica. You won’t find dairy, nuts, eggs, gluten or other hidden allergens in this London shop’s picture-perfect ice cream, meaning absolutely everyone can enjoy it.

For more sweet treats, check out some of the best London chocolate shops, visit a scrumptious cake shop or treat yourself to afternoon tea in London.