For some reason, Aldi ice cream reminds me of an old Dave Attell quote: “Remember when you’re young and you think your dad is Superman? And then you grow up and realize he’s just a drunk who wears a cape?” Was there ever a time that Aldi’s ice cream was good? I remember loving it years ago, back before the recession, but that was also before I tried any other store brands. Now, though, thanks to my wife’s insistence on shopping elsewhere, I get to try a lot of other private labels, and it makes me realize just how far behind the competition Aldi’s frozen offerings are, as a whole.
That being said, I still buy it, simply because it’s convenient to grab considering I shop at Aldi more than anywhere else. It’s also cheap, with a standard-sized 48 oz. carton retailing for right around $2. It’s one of those situations where the value supersedes the actual quality.
Here we have another standard flavor in virtually every ice cream company’s repertoire: chocolate chip cookie dough. And it’s easy to see why the flavor is a mainstay in ice cream shops the nation over: What is it about the combination of raw, uncooked cookies with vanilla-ish ice cream? (Honestly, I could do without the chocolate chips, but those are also standard.) It’s just a combination that can’t really fail (well, unless you’re Kroger).
Maybe it’s because I had Kroger’s version right after, but I have to say that this is one of the better ice cream offerings from Aldi. The ice cream has that same average texture that we have come to expect from Belmont: It’s not too hard, but it’s definitely closer to “hard” than “soft”. I will say it’s edible out of the freezer using a plastic spoon, but some care must be taken at first not to break the spoon.
The ice cream is like vanilla and it’s decent, but not good enough to entertain the taste buds in between cookie dough bites. Thankfully they are spaced out enough that you shouldn’t have to go more than one or two bites at a time before hitting cookie dough gold. The dough is what you would expect, featuring a delicious sugary texture and the standard taste; it’s not going to blow your socks off, but it’s the bare minimum of what most people are looking for. The chocolate chip chunks, on the other hand, aren’t really all that generous, but I personally don’t mind because that’s my least favorite part of cookie dough ice cream. They are just the standard bittersweet chunks that you get in every other brand, and do nothing to stand out.
However, not every product has to be innovative to be good, and Aldi manages to get the basics pretty well down. If you like cookie dough ice cream, this should satisfy that craving for a minimal hit to your wallet.
Overall: 7/10. It’s your basic cookie dough ice cream, but that’s not meant as a slight: Sometimes all we want is an ice cream that sticks to the basics, and Aldi delivers that in spades. The cookie dough pieces are generously scattered throughout and feature that crunchy, sugary texture with an expected taste to match. The ice cream itself is fairly boring (which is typically the case), but thankfully you won’t have to go more than one or two bites before snagging another cookie dough piece. The chocolate chunks seem to be used more sparingly than other brands, but that’s fine by me considering I don’t really care for them all that much (and that goes across all brands, not just Aldi’s). If you just want a no-frills ice cream at a no-frills price, look no further.