Difference Between Ice Cream and Sherbet

To beat the scorching heat and stay cool during summer, many people usually consider frozen-treats before anything else. Different types of frozen desserts are well-known and easily available anywhere around the world.


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These numerous forms of frozen delicacies either have diverse definitions as per different nations or might just differ due to the diverse styles it’s introduced in, for instance, gelatos, slush, sherbet, sorbet, frozen yogurts, ice-creams, and so on.

Taking everything into consideration, amidst so many styles and alternatives in frozen-treats, it is often confusing for individuals to think about how unique two frozen delicacies are from one another and what might the primary dissimilarities be that would truly set them apart. Here, let’s take the example of ice-creams and sherbets.

Typically, ice-cream and sherbets are prepared in the same manner, and can only be discriminated by the different ingredients each delicacy uses.

Ice Cream vs Sherbet

The difference between an Ice cream and a Sherbet is that an ice-cream is a well-liked sweetened frozen milk-based dessert which is made from main ingredients like sugar, milk, eggs, some flavoring, organic fruits, cream, as well as colorings and has to contain at least 10% butterfat whereas a Sherbet is a more-dense alternative to an ice-cream, made up of slightly different ingredients like natural fruits, water, cream, milk or buttermilk, sweetened fruit juice, flavorings, as well as vegetable gum as a stabilizer and by law, must consist of only 1 to 2 percent milkfat.

Ice cream vs Sherbet


Comparison Table

Parameter of comparisonIce creamSherbet
MeaningIce cream is a frozen dairy product made up of milk, cream, sugar, and sometimes egg yolks as well.Sherbet is a dessert made of fruit juice, sugar, and buttermilk or milk.
TextureIce creams have a thick and fluffy texture when compared to all the frozen desserts.Sherbet has less cream and is not as rich as ice cream.
Fat contentIce creams have a high-fat content of approximately 14-25% butterfat.Sherbet has a butterfat content of approximately 1-2%.
FlavorIce creams have a variety of flavors and they have almost everything from cocoa to pistachios.Sherbets have very few flavors and are restricted to mostly organic fruit flavors.
TemperatureIce creams are stored at very cold temperatures, as compared to other frozen desserts, of 6°F -10°F.Sherbet is mostly stored at a temperature of 10°F -22°F as this makes it denser and more extravagant in flavor.


What is Ice Cream?

Ice cream, which was also known as iced cream or cream ice, is a frozen dairy product which is often eaten as a dessert. Ice creams have either coloring added to it or different flavors like cocoa, strawberry, and so forth.

They likewise comprise of cream, milk, fruits, and sugar. Ice creams are generally kept at a temperature of 2 °C or 35 °F. Ice creams have different meanings in various countries and are otherwise known as the great American dessert.

Ice creams can also be served with other desserts like apple pie, cakes, etc.

There were days when ice creams were provided as a luxurious dish. The US produces almost 900 million gallons of ice cream.

Certain nations have guidelines they have to follow when producing ice cream. For example, in the US, ice creams must have a composition greater than 10% milk fat and 6-10% of milk and non-fat products.

Australia and New Zealand are among the world’s largest ice cream consumers as they consume roughly 18 to 20 liters per day.

 Ice cream can be of numerous sorts like: premium, regular, light, economy, and less-fat. Premium ice creams are slightly thicker, have a high-calorie count, and are used for gourmet flavoring.

Economy ice creams have 10% butterfat while regular ice creams have 10-11% butterfat and are mostly used for milkshakes. Light ice creams have 50% less butterfat when compared to regular ice creams and less-fat ice creams have 25% less butterfat than regular ice cream.

ice cream

What is Sherbet?

Sherbet is a frozen dairy product that is mostly fruit-based and is made by blending fruit, fruit puree, cream, and various other flavors which are then churned. Sherbets are also made like ice creams but the ingredients added to make the dessert are different.

Sherbets are mostly heated at an exceptionally high temperature to enhance the richness and flavor of the dish. After heating the dessert, they are cooled to maintain a uniform texture and further kept at a cold temperature until it’s partly frozen.

Sherbets are usually kept at warm temperatures of approximately 10°F -22°F.

Sherbets are considered to have 2% of milk or cream in the dessert as anything below 1% is water ice and anything above 2% to 10% is referred to as ice cream. Unlike ice-creams, sherbets are of only one type.

In the UK, sherbet is often called sherbet powder to make an effervescent drink. Sherbets are considered creamier than sorbets and are in a lighter pastel color.

Sherbets do not have many flavors when compared to ice creams as sherbets are made of very limited fruits such as oranges, strawberries, etc.


Main Differences Between Ice Cream and Sherbet

  1. Ice creams are a dessert that is mostly made of buttermilk, cream, sugar, and in some cases, egg yolks. Sherbet, also known as sherbert, is made up of sugar, milk, and fruit juice.
  2. Ice creams when churned at a high speed results in a unique texture which is fluffy and rich in texture. Sherbet is not so rich and has a very less portion of cream when compared to ice creams.
  3. Ice creams comparatively have a high-fat content, than other frozen desserts, mostly 14-25%. Sherbet is considered to have a low milk fat content of 1-2% when compared to ice creams.
  4. Ice creams relatively have many flavors and include everything according to the customer’s preferences like from nuts to chocolate sauce as toppings. Sherbet has very limited flavors and is mostly made up of fruits like oranges, bananas, etc.
  5. Ice creams are stored at cold temperatures of 6°F -10°F because the cold temperature numbs one’s taste buds and this doesn’t permit strong flavors to come through in ice cream. Sherbet is mostly preferred when they are denser and hard, and a warmer temperature makes the sherbet richer in taste, hence they are stored at a temperature of 10°F -22°F.
Difference Between Ice Cream and Sherbet


  1. https://agris.fao.org/agris-search/search.do?recordID=KR2004005226
  2. https://www.journalofdairyscience.org/article/S0022-0302(31)93456-5/abstract
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