Ice cream may be good for the soul, but it’s not exactly magic for your waistline. During the warmer months, it can feel like every moment should be spent with a refreshing frozen treat clutched in your hand. In the name of balancing this desire with your quest for the perfect beach body, here's a lineup of our favorite frozen treats that aren’t quite as guilt-inducing.
Snow Dragon Shavery: With locations in Lincoln Park, Evanston and Navy Pier, Snow Dragon serves up the kind of fine-shaved frozen magic that you used to only get from scraping the top off a fresh snowfall. Since enjoying a frozen treat was probably the last thing on your mind this past winter, Show Dragon is here to take the edge off of the summer heat with Taiwanese-style shaved snow, available in flavors such as green tea, fruit lover, key lime and mango.
TrueNorth: A kale banana smoothie is a health-conscious dream come true. At Andersonville’s TrueNorth cafe, this smoothie with kale, pineapple juice, coconut water, banana, avocado and mint is also a perennial bestseller—you'll find people from all over the city in line to get a taste.
Lifeway Kefir Shop: You can find several Lifeway outposts in both the city and the suburbs, blending together fresh-cut fruits with vitamin supplements and Lifeway’s “champagne of dairy” kefir frozen cultured milk. Low-fat and high in protein and probiotics, it’s hard to feel guilty for absolutely destroying your smoothie in about six seconds flat. No judgement.
Yogurt Square: Combining tasty yogurt selections with a candy-shop vibe in Chicago’s Lincoln Square, this neighborhood shop is probably one of the cutest places to grab a froyo in Chicago. While you enjoy your yogurt, pull up a chair and try to guess how many pieces of candy reside inside the bar’s clear glass tables, or take your treat outside to the charming Giddings Fountain just down the street.
Mario’s Italian Lemonade: The family-owned, seasonal lemonade stand in Chicago’s Little Italy is always doing brisk business in the warmer months, offering classic Italian ice in flavors such as watermelon, piña colada and, of course, lemon.
Tallboy Tacos: What better way to stroll the streets of River North than with a rum-infused paleta from Tallboy Tacos? The popsicles served up by this Lettuce Entertain You mainstay are house-made, fun-sized and made in the style of some of your favorite beverages, like strawberry daiquiri and piña colada.
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