Satisfy your sweet tooth without dairy or gluten

Review of Babes Ice Cream & Donuts


Sophia Steenburg, Editor


I recently had the opportunity to go pick up a cup of ice cream and a donut at Babes Ice Cream & Donuts (Midtown Sacramento). For those that are familiar with Pushkin’s Bakery, this little ice cream and donut shop was founded by the same people. Pushkin’s is known for being 100% gluten-free and dairy-free, so of course, this newer shop is too. Pushkin’s also opened up a brunch spot called Sibling by Pushkin’s, also located in Midtown. 

I had a little bit of a rocky start when trying to visit this establishment. As I was nearing the entrance, two ladies shouted out to me and warned me that I would not like what I was about to eat and that what they had bought was “disgusting.” It was clear to me that they went in under the impression that they were going to get desserts that were full of typical ingredients like dairy and gluten. I was not nervous about eating their food initially, but their comments did make me wonder if I would like the treats I was about to purchase.

I believe that my greatest mistake when approaching this shop was going in towards their closing hours. One thing about small bakeries and shops is that they only make a limited amount of food for the day. Since I came in about an hour before closing, the variety of donuts had been reduced to about four different kinds. They also had a limited amount of ice cream flavors.

I ended up ordering a chocolate sprinkle donut and chocolate-peanut butter ice cream. I ate the ice cream first and it was not even close to as bad as how those ladies described it. I might even call their ice cream good. It had a normal texture and the flavor tasted exactly like how this ice cream would typically taste. It did melt quicker than I hoped it would and left a different aftertaste in my mouth. It reminded me of a different sweet which wasn’t bad.

The donut was a completely different story. It looked exactly like a typical sprinkle donut, just a tad bit smaller. The icing on the donut melted more than I would have liked. Of course, I would not have liked it to melt at all. My least favorite part of this donut was the fact that it was hard. It didn’t crunch, but it wasn’t something that felt fluffy and light when I bit into it.

It felt as if it had been sitting out for a while. It wasn’t crusty like a typical donut’s icing would be after sitting out for so long. I do believe that the donut being hard was just a part of the gluten-free effect. The taste was a little off and did not remind me of a normal donut, but it wasn’t bad enough to spit out. I did not end up finishing my donut.

At the end of the day, this ice cream and donut shop is targeted toward those who actually need their sweet treats to be gluten and/or dairy-free. Or even those who prefer to have no gluten or dairy in their diets.

To thoroughly enjoy what this shop has to offer, I do believe that you need to have an acquired taste for gluten and dairy-free food items. It would not be the worst first food item for someone wanting to try that lifestyle, but for those who are looking for a simple treat to enjoy, you might just be better off giving Rick’s Dessert Diner a try.

Overall I would give this shop a 6/10. Babes Ice Cream & Donuts can be found at 2417 J St. in Midtown Sacramento.