A Popular Comfort Food Is Now An Ice Cream Flavor

By Joseph Farago | Published

Limited-edition flavors have been a relatively commonplace occurrence for brands trying to keep up with the precarious marketplace. With many unusual flavors making headlines, it’s a rewarding PR move. Kraft Mac & Cheese took the outside-of-the-box approach and paired its signature meal with Brooklyn creamery Van Leeuwen to create the first macaroni and cheese ice cream.

The first pint of Van Leeuwun’s macaroni and cheese ice cream was released in select stores last July. Unexpectedly, the pints were a massive success amongst customers, reacting positively to its unorthodox flavor combination. Since the Kraft ice cream received rave reviews from its initial tasters, Van Leeuwen and its partners are launching a nationwide release for these limited-edition pints.

Due to its rapid rise in demand, Van Leeuwen had no choice but to make more macaroni and cheese ice cream. In July, the primary launch wasn’t supposed to lead to nationwide distribution of the flavor; the cheesy pints sold 6,000 pints within the hour, which signaled to both companies that this unusual flavor was a massive hit. The macaroni and cheese dessert was regarded with favorable adjectives like delicious and enjoyable, a welcomed surprise for Kraft’s PR stunt.

After a second, minor release of macaroni and cheese ice cream, Van Leeuwen is about to distribute this flavor in Walmarts across all 50 states. Though the taste testers at the Brooklyn creamery knew the Kraft flavor was exquisite, they never expected that most people would agree that their unfamiliar treat was enjoyable. Van Leeuwen will be releasing seven other flavors alongside the Kraft-flavored ice cream, all sold exclusively at Walmart.

macaroni and cheese ice cream

If macaroni and cheese ice cream is up your alley, then the seven other flavors Van Leeuwen debuted will undoubtedly interest you. These ice creams include Hot Honey, Pizza, Planet Earth, Royal Wedding Cake, Bourbon Cherries Jubilee, and Wildberry Shortcake. While some flavors are somewhat expected, others recreate comfort foods similar to the mac-and-cheese pint. Each flavor will be part of a “10-week” rotation at Walmart stores, with no other information surrounding the extension of their limited-edition releases.

Van Leeuwen and Kraft decided to pick Walmart to distribute the macaroni and cheese ice cream for its wide range and accessibility. Ben Van Leeuwen, the founder of Van Leeuwen creamery, said that excellent ice cream should be “widely available on the market.” This part of his ethos led him straight to Walmart, one of the most common supermarkets and department stores around the nation.

Ben Van Leeuwen is, of course, ecstatic about the success of the macaroni and cheese ice cream. He shared on his Instagram how the ice cream was concocted, adding that his staff “churned the familiar, cheesiness of Kraft” into the ice cream with just a couple of other ingredients. One scoop will transport the taster back to a familiar experience of eating Kraft’s iconic American comfort food. With just a few extra elements in the mix, the mac-and-cheese pint has Kraft’s cheesy, salty goodness at the forefront of the flavor palette.

This year, brands have been hard at work conjuring up the most thrilling, newsworthy flavor to impress nationwide audiences. Kraft and Van Leeuwen’s macaroni and cheese ice cream indisputably takes the cake. With initial success in 2021, rest assured these pints will continue to sell out in markets everywhere.