Is Halo Top gluten and dairy free?

Halo Top has become one of the most popular low-calorie ice cream brands on the market. Many health-conscious ice cream lovers have turned to Halo Top for a guilt-free frozen dessert option. But an important question remains – is Halo Top gluten free and dairy free? Let’s take a closer look at what’s really in a pint of Halo Top.

Is Halo Top Gluten Free?

The good news is that most flavors of Halo Top are certified gluten free by the Gluten Intolerance Group. This means Halo Top has been tested to contain less than 10ppm of gluten. This is well below the FDA threshold of less than 20ppm for foods to be labeled gluten free.

According to their website, all Halo Top flavors are considered gluten-free except for these varieties:

  • Peanut Butter Cup
  • Candy Bar
  • Chocolate Almond Crunch
  • Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough
  • S’mores
  • Chocolate Covered Banana
  • Pancakes & Waffles
  • Birthday Cake
  • Cinnamon Roll
  • Red Velvet
  • Double Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough (Discontinued)

The reason these flavors are not certified gluten free is because they contain cookie pieces or other ingredients that contain gluten. All other Halo Top flavors are gluten-free friendly.

Is Halo Top Dairy Free?

No, Halo Top ice cream is not dairy-free. All Halo Top products contain milk and cream, which are dairy ingredients. Some flavors also contain egg yolks as well.

However, Halo Top does offer a line of non-dairy options made with a coconut milk base. These are labeled as non-dairy or dairy-free. Flavors include:

  • Peanut Butter Swirl
  • Chocolate
  • Vanilla Bean
  • Oatmeal Cookie
  • Caramel Macchiato

So if you need a non-dairy frozen dessert, be sure to look for these coconut milk-based Halo Top flavors. They are made without milk, cream, or any other dairy ingredients.

Halo Top Ingredients

Let’s take a deeper look into what’s used to make Halo Top’s signature light and creamy texture with fewer calories than regular ice cream.

Base Ingredients

The base of Halo Top is made with skim milk and cream. Skim milk has some or all of the fat removed, while cream contains higher fat content. This combination provides a creamy texture while keeping calories in check.

For the non-dairy flavors, a coconut milk base is used in place of dairy milk and cream.


In lieu of high calorie sugar, Halo Top uses alternative lower-calorie sweeteners to reduce calories. These include:

  • Erythritol
  • Stevia
  • Monk fruit extract

These natural, non-nutritive sweeteners provide sweetness with fewer calories than regular sugar.

Thickeners and Stabilizers

To replicate the smooth, creamy mouthfeel of ice cream, Halo Top contains gums and other ingredients to thicken and stabilize the product. These include:

  • Organic locust bean gum
  • Guar gum
  • Xanthan gum
  • Konjac
  • Carob bean gum
  • Carrageenan

Without these thickeners, the product would be too icy and unstable.

Protein Sources

Some Halo Top flavors contain added protein from sources like skim milk powder, egg yolks, whey protein isolate, and milk protein isolate. This boosts the protein content.

Nutritional Profile of Halo Top

Here is a comparison of the nutrition facts between Halo Top and regular ice cream:

Nutrition Facts Halo Top (1/2 cup) Regular Ice Cream (1/2 cup)
Calories 60-70 137
Total Fat 2-3g 8g
Saturated Fat 2g 5g
Trans Fat 0g 0g
Cholesterol 15-20mg 44mg
Sodium 40-70mg 61mg
Total Carbohydrates 11-16g 17g
Dietary Fiber 0-2g 0g
Total Sugars 9-12g 15g
Added Sugars 0g 14g
Protein 2-6g 3g

As you can see, Halo Top provides all the pleasure of ice cream but with significantly fewer calories, fat, and sugar than regular ice cream. The use of low-calorie sweeteners and protein sources allows Halo Top to create a lighter alternative.

Benefits of Halo Top

Here are some of the benefits that make Halo Top a popular reduced-calorie ice cream:

Low in Calories and Fat

Halo Top has a fraction of the calories and fat of regular ice cream. For example, one serving (1/2 cup) of vanilla Halo Top has 70 calories and 2g of fat, versus 137 calories and 8g of fat in regular vanilla ice cream.

High in Protein

Many Halo Top flavors contain extra protein from dairy proteins, egg yolks, or supplemental protein powders. This gives you more protein than regular ice cream.

Uses Natural Sweeteners

Halo Top is sweetened using non-nutritive natural sweeteners like stevia and monk fruit instead of lots of added sugar.

Contains Fiber

Some varieties have added fiber to support gut health.

Lactose-Free Options Available

The non-dairy coconut milk flavors are lactose-free, making Halo Top accessible to those with dairy sensitivities.

Gluten-Free Options

Most flavors are certified gluten-free, excluding those with cookie dough or candy pieces.

Less Sugar Than Regular Ice Cream

Halo Top contains about 25-50% less sugar per serving compared to regular ice cream.

More Volume for Fewer Calories

Since it’s lower in fat and calories, you can eat more Halo Top for the same number of calories as a small serving of regular ice cream.

Downsides of Halo Top

While Halo Top does an impressive job of lightening up ice cream, there are a few downsides to be aware of:

Higher Cost

Halo Top is priced higher than generic store brand ice creams. Expect to pay $4-6 per pint.

Highly Processed

To create the smooth, scoopable texture with fewer calories, Halo Top goes through more processing and uses gums and stabilizers.

Higher in Sugar Alcohols

Sugar alcohols like erythritol are used to replace sugar, which may cause digestive upset in some people.

Not as Nutritious

Since it’s designed to be low-calorie, Halo Top is not as nutritionally dense as whole food options like Greek yogurt.

Can Spike Blood Sugar

The sugar alcohols and other carbs can still spike blood sugar levels in people with diabetes.

Texture and Taste Differences

Due to less fat, the texture is lighter and icier. The flavors tend to be less rich than premium ice cream as well.

Halo Top Flavor Rankings

With dozens of flavors to choose from, which Halo Top pints are the tastiest? Here is a ranking of Halo Top flavors from best to worst:

1. Peanut Butter Cup

Rich peanut butter swirled with chocolate, just like the iconic candy. Fans say this is the most indulgent Halo Top flavor.

2. S’mores

Gooey marshmallow and graham cracker pieces in a chocolate base make this taste just like a campfire treat.

3. Pancakes and Waffles

An authentic buttermilk and maple syrup flavor dotted with fluffy waffle pieces.

4. Candy Bar

Nuts, caramel, and chocolate candy pieces provide crunch and texture.

5. Birthday Cake

Celebratory sprinkles and cake batter flavor make this a party in a pint.

6. Chocolate Almond Crunch

Ribbons of chocolate and crunchy almonds satisfy any sweet craving.

7. Red Velvet

On-trend red velvet cake flavor with pieces of cake baked right in.

8. Cookie Dough

Finally, you can enjoy raw cookie dough without risking salmonella!

9. Sea Salt Caramel

Buttery caramel swirl and sea salt flakes offer the ideal salty-sweet combo.

10. Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough

The chocolate version of Halo Top’s popular cookie dough flavor.

11. Lemon Cake Pop

Bright lemon complemented by pieces of cake and frosting.

12. Caramel Macchiato

Coffee ice cream swirled with gooey caramel, just like the Starbucks drink.

13. Oatmeal Cookie

Wholesome oatmeal flavor studded with cookies.

14. Chocolate

Rich, fudgy chocolate base flavor.

15. Coconut 7 Layer Bar

Shredded coconut provides tropical flavor and chewy texture.

16. Strawberry Cheesecake

Creamy cheesecake ice cream with strawberry sauce.

17. Vanilla Bean

Classic vanilla taste but lighter than regular ice cream.

18. Mint Chip

Peppermint ice cream swirled with dark chocolate chips.

19. Berry Swirl

Raspberry and blueberry sauces create a fruit explosion.

20. Chocolate Mocha Chip

The chocolate and coffee combo provides great flavor but can taste overly artificial.

21. Banana Pudding

Banana flavor can come across as too artificial tasting.

22. Black Cherry

The black cherry taste can be overpowering.


Halo Top provides a smart option for lighter ice cream with fewer calories, less sugar, and more protein. While not completely guilt-free, it can be enjoyed in moderation as part of a balanced diet.

The vast majority of Halo Top flavors are gluten-free, but they do contain dairy. For the lactose intolerant, the non-dairy coconut milk-based options are fantastic. But overall, Halo Top allows ice cream lovers to satisfy their sweet tooth cravings and still stick to their health goals.

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