17 Spectacular Ice Cream Sundaes
Take your ice cream game to the next level this summer.
If you’re like us, you’re way more likely to eat ice cream straight from a store-bought pint for dessert than to build a sundae out of it. We’re here to tell you though, when it comes to special occasions, birthdays, and theme parties, there’s nothing better than an ice cream sundae. Check out our 17 recipes for flavor ideas—but truly, there’s no wrong way to make one.
At their most basic, an ice cream sundae is a (glass) bowl of ice cream topped with sauce or syrup, whipped cream, a maraschino cherry, and sprinkles. There are a number of stories as to where the sundae got its name (was it served 0n a Sunday? Was the creator someone with the last name Sunday? We may never truly know), but what is true is that everyone’s got a favorite recipe. Take inspiration from some of ours, like our Froot Loops sundae (with raspberry sauce), our s’mores sundae (self-explanatory in the best way), our spiked chocolate brownie sundae (crumbled brownies, hot fudge, and a drizzle of Godiva liquor), or our Eton mess sundae (meringue + strawberry). Can’t pick just one? We get it. You could make Disney’s monstrosity of a kitchen sink sundae—it’s got bananas! cupcakes! an entire can of whipped cream!—pretty much everything you could want, including the sink. OR make a sundae bar with all your favorite toppings—you won’t have to share or choose.
Too cold out for ice cream, or does a massive bowl of dairy seem like a lot? Don’t worry, you can still get your sundae fix. Try one of our sundae-inspired recipes instead: We’ve got ice cream sundae cupcakes, hot fudge sundae nachos, grilled peach sundaes, hot fudge sundae dip, and grilled pineapple sundaes. You can even enjoy a breakfast sundae—just swap out the ice cream for your favorite yogurt flavors (don’t worry, we’re still topping with sprinkles and a cherry).
Want more chilled dessert ideas? Check out our favorite milkshake recipes, no-bake desserts, and icebox cakes too.
Your favorite breakfast cereal only gets better when you cover it with ice cream and top it with raspberry sauce. It's a fruity flavor bomb, and we totally give you permission to eat it for breakfast. 😈
Get the Fruit Loops Sundae recipe.
Anything that starts with a bed of peanut butter is bound to be good! This sundae starts with as much PB in the bottom as you like, and just keeps delivering on deliciousness thanks to tons of hot fudge, peanut butter cups and vanilla ice cream.
Get the Peanut Butter Cup Sundae recipe.
Too much of a good thing is never enough. Cookies & cream ice cream, mini Oreos, chocolate chips, and a dusting of Oreo cookie crumbs on top make this one amazing creation.
Get the Oreo Sundae recipe.
Broken pieces of meringue cookies (store-bought or homemade), sliced strawberries, and strawberry ice cream turn a low-brow sundae into something worthy of English high tea.
Get the Eton Mess Sundae recipe.
There's so much s'more to love in this insane dessert. On top of a base of marshmallow topping sits vanilla ice cream, hot fudge, and graham cracker pieces. Then it's finished with a malted milk ball JUST BECAUSE.
Get the S'mores Sundae recipe.
It's a chocolate-lover's fantasy: Chocolate chocolate-chip ice cream, crumbled brownies, hot fudge, and a drizzle of Godiva liquor makes this sundae almost too much to handle.
We might have overdone it on this one. Heath Bar ice cream gets covered in chocolate sauce and an entire concession stand's worth of toppings: M&Ms, Milk Duds, Whoppers...and even Jujyfruits and a few Sour Patch Kids, for authenticity.
Get the Movie Madness Sundae recipe.
A 28-ingredient sundae?! Be still, our hearts. This dessert is aptly named for its epic range of toppings (Bananas! Cupcakes! An entire can of whipped cream!) and for the fact that it’s served in a slightly shrunken replica of a chrome kitchen sink.
Get the Kitchen Sink Sundae recipe
Grilling helps caramelize the sugars in pineapple before topping with dulce de leche and vanilla ice cream. Say "aloha" to your go-to summer dessert.
Get the Grilled Pineapple Sundaes recipe.
These pops are bananas! They're like everything you love about an ice cream sundae, but with chocolate-covered bananas as the star.
Get the Banana Split Pops recipe.
Brownie cup > ice cream cone, especially when you can use a box mix!
Get the Brownie Ice Cream Cups recipe.
You can customize this dessert with whatever toppings you'd like, but hot fudge and rainbow sprinkles are an absolute must. Serve with waffle cone pieces or vanilla wafer cookies.
Get the Hot Fudge Sundae Dip recipe.
These poppable bites are perfect for mini celebrations. The best part? Unlike a sundae, you can eat a ton of them!
Get the Strawberry Sundae Bites recipe.
Underripe peaches are the worst—unless they're grilled. Over the flame, they get deliciously charred and caramelized, perfect for serving with ice cream and caramel sauce.
Get the Grilled Peaches recipe.
We know, these aren't technically ice cream sundaes, but they look enough like one that we're counting it! Yogurt gets topped with all your favorite ice cream ingredients, plus Cheerios for good measure.
Get the Breakfast Sundaes recipe.
Okay, okay, these aren't actually an ice cream sundae, but they're so cute, we just had to include them anyway. Take inspiration from our ice cream-stuffed cupcakes and fill these with your favorite flavor to get them even closer to a sundae.
Get the Ice Cream Sundae Cupcakes recipe.
You'll be hard-pressed to find anyone of any age that doesn't love a hot fudge sundae, making them the perfect thing to serve to a group. You could set up a DIY sundae bar, or make these hot fudge sundae nachos!
Get the Hot Fudge Sundae Nachos recipe.