Ever stepped into your local Wowo looking for a choc-ice only to be surprised by red bean and rice? The Chengdu Expat team test out Chengdu’s finest convenience store ice creams…

Grabbing something ice cold during the hot summer weather is something we can all relate to – especially in a city as hot as Chengdu! In China you’re never more than a few steps away from a supermarket or corner shop with its familiar freezer full of frozen treats. What sets Chinese ice cream apart from the rest is the array of unusual and at times downright disgusting flavours available.

With the sun’s rays beating down on our sweltering heads, the Chengdu-Expat team bravely set out to try the weirdest ice creams we could find, and here are our verdicts:


Cengdu-Expat sweetcorn packagingChengdu-Expat sweetcorn panda

Price: 2 RMB

We were relieved at first as we half expected to open a frozen corn on the cob.  Instead we opened a sweetcorn shaped wafer with an ice cream filling. The ice cream had a subtle flavour of corn but the taste was light and sweet – the wafer tasted great too. China’s sweetcorn snacks don’t always hit the spot, but this was very enjoyable and refreshing. We will definitely have this again!

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Green Pea and Red Bean

Chengdu-Expat green pea red bean packagingChengdu-Expat green pea red bean panda

Price: 2 RMB

We know what you’re thinking, “Green peas? In an ice cream?!” but this ice cream was a winner for us… It has a creamy outer layer, with a solid and sweet red bean centre. The actual flavour of the ice cream is a little sweeter than regular green peas and the overall flavour was a little ‘earthy’. If you don’t like super sweet things, but still want a refreshing snack to help you cool off in the Chengdu heat then this ice cream is definitely one to try!

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Chengdu-Expat banana packagingChengdu-Expat banana panda

Price: 3RMB

The team didn’t go bananas for this creamy offering but it wasn’t unpleasant! It was very sweet and tasted a little like banana Nesquick from our childhoods. This is a safe choice for anyone a little afraid of China’s weirder offerings of grain and beans and corn!

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Wheat Germ and Black Seasame

Chengdu-Expat wheat germ seasame packagingChengdu-Expat wheat germ seasame

Price: 3 RMB

The mix between sweet and savoury makes an interesting ice cream flavour….   On a particularly hot day you will find the chocolate coating problematic as it melts and makes the whole affair quite a messy one. Perhaps put off by the word ‘germ’ in the name, this flavour was not for us.

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Chengdu-Expat hawthorn apple packagingChengdu-Expat hawthorn apple panda

Price: 3 RMB

We decided to try this one because it looked really cool on the packet, however when we opened the packet it was just like an ordinary ice cream – ah well! For those of you not familiar with hawthorn berries, they are popular snacks in China (candied hawthorn berries on sticks are a popular street snack in Beijing). They have a sweet and tart taste, similar in a way to red apples and this ice cream was no different. If you have a sweet tooth and want to try something different from the usual mango/strawberry/melon flavours then give this one a try.

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Chilli Chocolate

Chengdu-Expat chilli chocolate packagingChengdu-Expat chilli chocolate panda

Price: 3.5 RMB

This Thai ice cream has some rather ferocious looking chillies on the packaging, but of course living in Sichuan we’ve become rather partial to that ma la tingle. The top half of the ice cream is chilli chocolate flavour. On first bite you can’t feel the heat, but it has a slow burn that eventually sets your mouth on fire! Fear not, once you’ve munched your way through the top half, a cooling coconut cream greats you! This is a really unusual and quite brilliant ice cream, we would definitely recommend for anyone that likes to feel the burn!

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Bitter Coffee

Chengdu-Expat bitter coffee packagingChengdu-Expat bitter coffee panda

Price: 3 RMB

We were prepared for a very strong coffee taste when we unwrapped this one, but it’s essentially a cheap version of a Magnum (other chocolate-based ice cream brands are available!) with the slightest hint of coffee flavour and no bitterness at all. Creamy with a nice chocolate crunch, this ice cream is a great choice if you like Magnums but don’t want to spend more than 5 RMB.

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Chengdu-Expat pear packagingChengdu-Expat pear panda

Price: 3 RMB

The first thing you will notice is the sweetness that stops just short of being too sweet. The pear flavour is strong and avoids the artificial fruit flavour that is so common. Would be the perfect cool down snack on a hot day and we will definitely be getting another one.

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Author: CdExpat_Team


CDIS China Chengdu