4 Milk Bar Ice Cream Flavors Ranked From Worst To Best

Before bringing her infectious enthusiasm and pastry prowess to "MasterChef" and Netflix's fresh out of the oven "Bake Squad," Christina Tosi found sweet success as the visionary behind Milk Bar. Originally conceived in 2008 as the bakery appendage of David Chang's East Village hit Momofuku Ssam Bar, Milk Bar quickly became a sensation in its own right and has evolved into a hit standalone concept with nine locations in New York and an additional five spots in Los Angeles, Boston, Washington DC, Las Vegas, and Toronto.

If you have a craving for Milk Bar's decadent treats and don't happen to reside near those locations, not to worry. Beyond the brick and mortars, the confectionery offers direct-to-consumer delivery and a selection of sweets are available at retailers nationwide.

Along with selling its famed truffles, cookies, cakes, and namesake pie, Milk Bar recently entered the highly competitive high-end pre-packaged ice cream game. Each of the four flavors is inspired by a signature Milk Bar offering, and of course, we had to try them all. But before we get to our assessment, a few things to note: Each package is 14 oz and not a true pint. And if you're expecting super-premium ice cream you may be disappointed as the ingredient list is rather lengthy. Also note, these are only available via delivery from Milk Bar for $12 per not-quite-a-pint (plus a $15 flat rate for shipping) and at select Whole Foods locations where the retail price tag is an easier to swallow $6 each.

4. Cornflake Chocolate Chip Marshmallow

From the start, cookies have been a staple of Milk Bar's repertoire and Cornflake Chocolate Chip Marshmallow is a standout offering multiple layers of texture and flavor. But when reimagined as ice cream, those winning attributes sadly get lost in translation.

On one hand, we applaud Milk Bar for not simply going with the tried and true vanilla ice cream with cookie dough pieces pairing. Instead, the base itself is cookie dough flavored — or at least claims to be. The taste doesn't quite capture that baked goods essence and leans more towards a tepid coffee with some burnt sugar notes.

While the quality chocolate chips are plentiful, the other add-ins are lacking. The cornflakes are more like cornflecks, similar to the dandruff dregs you find at the bottom of the cereal bag. And contrary to the promo pictures, the melted marshmallow is also noticeably lacking  — Phish Food, this is not.

Milk Bar, if you happen to be reading this and ever decide to extend your ice cream line, Compost, which offers a craveable kitchen sink combination of pretzels, potato chips, graham crackers, coffee, oats, and butterscotch may prove to be a more worthy cookie candidate for a frozen makeover. Oh, and while you're at it, consider trashing that cookie dough base.

3. Cereal Milk

Fans of Milk Bar are well aware that this isn't the company's first foray into the wonderful world of ice cream. Soft serve has long been an in-store staple and Cereal Milk, the utterly brilliant brainchild of Tosi, is the flavor of choice. Like its swirlier counterpart, the hard-packed version manages to evoke that nostalgic bottom of the bowl magic. The creamy Cereal Milk base truly lives up to its name, successfully capturing the essence of cornflakes steeped in cow juice. The balance of sweet and salty is spot on with just a touch of sourness that provides welcome depth, teetering just on the edge of spoiled milk territory.

It's truly a solid effort and our only issues are twofold. Number one: Yet again, Milk Bar is way too stingy with the cornflake add-in which offers welcome crunch and savoriness on the rare occasions it's prominent in a spoonful. Then there's the inevitable comparison with its original iteration and the incredible lusciousness of soft serve is simply the superior vehicle when it comes to Cereal Milk.

2. Pie

First, a little background. The pie, in this case, is a reference to the famed Milk Bar Pie, formerly known as Crack Pie. The company dropped the drug reference in 2019 and a year later offered up a mea culpa which read in part, "We sincerely apologize for the insensitivity of the name. We acknowledge the fact that the criminalization of crack cocaine possession and mandatory minimum sentencing specifically targeted and wreaked havoc on Black communities during the 1980s and 1990s. This systematic targeting of communities of color continues to be an issue 30 years later."

While the name has changed, the ooey-gooey splendor of the pie remains. In some ways, the ice cream version is an improvement. The rich, chess pie-like filling can be saccharine overload but the thick ribbons that are prominent throughout the container aren't as cloying as its pie brethren, gravitating more towards dule de leche in texture and flavor. The velvety "deep" custard-style vanilla ice cream is an ideal base with subtle hints of butterscotch.

Our only quibble is with the toasted oat crust crumbles which bring an off-putting grittiness to the ice cream.

1. Birthday Cake

Far and away the best of the four Milk Bar ice cream options, we highly recommend that you take a ch-ch-ch-chance on this fabulous flavor. Tosi's much-celebrated Instagram-worthy Birthday Cake is suitable for any occasion and its ice cream offshoot takes all those fun and tasty elements and brings them together in an utterly joyful package.

Let's start with the "B'day Cake flavored" base which is essentially a frozen take on cake batter and the result is sweet, creamy goodness. Also in the mix are "B'Day crumbs" which add some nice crunchy texture along with swirls of "B'Day frosting" because it wouldn't be a birthday cake without frosting. Thankfully, this time around Milk Bar gets the add-in proportions just right. For the perfect final touch, rainbow sprinkles offer a vibrant pop of color and a bit of crackle.

If this is what's in store for the future of Milk Bar's ice cream enterprise, we're all in.