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Ice Cream Soda Bar

With summer nearly here an ice cream soda bar is a fun choice for kids and grown ups alike. We'll show you how to make it both stylish and tasty!

Every great party needs guest interaction. A great way to facilitate this is by setting up self-serve food or drink stations.

Set up your ice cream soda bar on a side table where you would like your guests to gather. Using an existing dresser or desk is a great idea and is more welcoming than portable tables. Top with pretty fabric and set out all the ingredients you need to create a variety of flavors.

 frame chalk board

Chalk board signs are easy to create, and fun to use for any occasion. This one was made by removing the mirror that was inserted, and spray painting the cardboard backing with chalkboard paint.

Not only is it decorative, but it also provides a place to write down the instructions, or recipes for each flavor. Coordinating chalkboard tags found for $1 each are tied around bottles, and pails of ice cream.

 ice cream buckets

It's always a good idea to present food or condiments in pretty containers (not grocery packaging). Galvanize buckets do a great job of keeping the ice cream cold when pre-filled and put into the freezer.

NOTE -- line the bucket with parchment paper or another container to hold the food, as the buckets may not be food safe.

Chic Tip -- Pre-scoop ice cream balls and freeze so they are easy to put into glasses.

 flavored syrups

You will want to provide a variety of flavors for your guests to choose from. An attractive way to present flavored syrups is using tall shot glasses.

We served chocolate, strawberry, and vanilla syrup in ours. In order to have fizz you'll need to add seltzer water or soda. 

Root beer, cream soda, and fruit flavored soda are all you need to prepare a multitude of flavors.


The basic formula for creating your ice cream soda is 2 scoops vanilla ice cream in a tall glass, add flavored syrup (amount will vary), top with seltzer or soda. 

It's customary to add a long spoon and a straw (we have special "spoon straws" here), and top with whipped cream and a cherry.

Here are some recipes to help get you started.

  chocolate ice cream soda

Chocolate Soda

2 scoops vanilla ice cream
chocolate syrup
seltzer water
whipped cream

To Make: Combine the ice cream and syrup in a tall glass. Then, pour seltzer over it to fill the glass completely. Garnish with whipped cream and cherry, if desired.

orange dream

Orange Dreamsicle

2 scoops vanilla ice cream
orange juice
cream soda
whipped cream

 To Make: Add two scoops of ice cream to an old-fashioned soda glass, then pour over orange juice. Top with cream soda and garlish with whipped cream and cherry.

strawberry ice cream soda

Strawberry Soda

2 scoops ice cream
strawberry syrup
cream soda
whipped cream

To Make: Add two scoops of ice cream to a glass (we like strawberry, but you can also use vanilla.) Drizzle strawberry flavored syrup over the ice cream. Finally, top with soda and stir. Garnish with whipped cream and cherry.

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Meet our Writer
Jennifer Geddes
Celebrations Writer

Jennifer Kelly Geddes has hosted Christmas cookie swaps, New Year's open houses, Thanksgiving for 22, and all manner of dinner parties in her Manhattan and Ghent, NY homes.

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