How To Make A ‘Tastee’ Root Beer Freeze

Root Beer Freeze

When I was growing up in Long Beach, California, one of our favorite places to go for a treat as a family was the Tastee Freez! For those of you from around the area, remember the one next to the car wash on Stearns? They were FAMOUS for their vanilla cones dipped in chocolate, but for ME… they were famous for their Root Beer Freezes!

Root Beer Freeze

While everyone else was getting their dipped cones or root beer floats, I had to make sure they got my order right… one root beer FREEZE please. :-) I hadn’t had one for YEARS (decades even!) Until recently, when I had a little “happy accident.”

I had wanted to try a neat idea I saw on The Farmer’s Nest for making Soda Pop Ice Cream. Because you know how much I ADORE pretty much any frozen treat! I’ve seen a couple versions of this “recipe,” one using orange soda and one using strawberry soda.

I ended up trying the orange soda, and let’s just say it was a big sticky FAILURE! (Note to self: TWO LITERS of soda will not fit in a Cuisinart Ice Cream Maker!)

Rootbeer Freeze

Now, most normal people would just chalk the whole Soda Pop ice cream experiment up to experience and move on. Not yours truly! I, of course, couldn’t let it go. I had to try again! But thankfully… this time my relentlessness paid off! In a flash of brilliance I decided to try using root beer, not even thinking about the root beer freezes of my youth.

Rootbeer Freeze

This time, however, I did things a little differently. I cut the original “recipe” in half. I used 1 liter of soda and a 14 oz. can of sweetened condensed milk. I also mixed the soda and the sweetened condensed milk in a bowl first before pouring it into the ice cream maker. This got rid of most of the bubbles that contributed to the huge sticky mess I had ended up on my first try.

Rootbeer Freeze

If you don’t have an ice cream maker, try this method:

Combine the ingredients in a large bowl, and pour the mixture into 13×9 inch baking pan. Place into your freezer for about 1 hour. Then, break the mixture into pieces and dump into a large mixing bowl. Beat the mixture until smooth, then return to the pan, and cover. Freeze until firm.

Rootbeer Freeze

My experiment worked beautifully! In about 25 minutes I had this frozen concoction that was every bit as good as the ones I remember eating at the Tastee Freez in my youth.

Root Beer Freeze

Not only did I get to enjoy a sweet treat, but I got to relive a sweet MEMORY as well. :-)


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Jill Nystul (aka Jillee)

Jill Nystul is an accomplished writer and author who founded the blog One Good Thing by Jillee in 2011. With over 30 years of experience in homemaking, she has become a trusted resource for contemporary homemakers by offering practical solutions to everyday household challenges.I share creative homemaking and lifestyle solutions that make your life easier and more enjoyable!

About Jillee

Jill Nystul

Jill’s 30 years of homemaking experience, make her the trusted source for practical household solutions.

About Jillee


Food & Recipes

  • We had a Tastee Freeze in Sevierville, TN and EVERYTHING was delicious! It was the place for all the teens to “cruise” on Friday and Saturday nights and of course the freezes, ice cream, and hamburgers – oh what memories!!!

  • I’m from Long Beach too and as soon as I saw Stearns I squealed! My mom is a huge root beer lover and getting floats was always a special treat. I sent this to her before I could even finish reading. I bet she’d love to try making these. Even the float lovers need a change and this AZ heat has us begging for cool treats.

  • Oh my goodness, “Tastee Freez” one of my favorite places. I grew up in Anaheim and we had one off of Ball road and State College blvd. Root Beer Freeze was my favorite too. I’m going to try this, thank you for the post.

  • Oh how I remember the Tastee Freeze that was within walking distance. When it warmed up in the spring a few of us girls would take our money and sneak away at our lunch break. I didn’t get the root beer but they had some very good other tasty treats that we could eat on the way back to school. I was in the 6th grade and I am sure what we did was against the school rules but never got caught. Lived in Illinois at the time. I think the little ice cream stand is long gone now. What a shame. ;-)

  • Can’t wait to try :)

    I remember A&W’s root beer served in real ice-frosted mugs. C-O-L-D!!!! That became the gold standard for root beer to me. Later I used to order root beer floats and let the ice cream melt, then freeze it for a midnight snack over a good book.

    I’m delighted so many have such fond memories of A&W–the smoothest root beer around! Can’t wait to try your recipe with my grandchildren!

  • Yes I remember and visited there with friends. I sure wish they were still around but your recipe will have to be tried to bring the memory back full force.
    Thanks for the trip down memory lane.

  • When we hit Oshkosh coming from Chicago and then Cleveland,Ohio we would stop at the A&W. Rootbeer floats in little kid glasses. I had forgotton. One of my best memories as I have not been home since grandparents are in Heaven with mom and dad and my brother.
    I will be doing this to surprise my son. Thanks.

  • That looks delicious. Growing up we didn’t have anything like these places. The closest I’ve ever come was the A&Ws. We would sometimes stop at one on our way to Salt Lake area to see family. I’m glad you posted a method that doesn’t need an ice cream maker. Ours broke a few years ago.

  • Jillee, do you remember the butternut candy bar? Hollywood candy company quit making them in the 70’s. I’ve tried everywhere to find the recipe. I’d love to make a batch. Have you heard of them or do you have the recipe that you could share with us? Thanks!

  • I just went to look up the ice cream maker you use, and William-Sonoma has it 55% off!! Woohoo think I am going to get one and surprise hubby!!

    • Well I just went back to the site and it is $12 for shipping.! So I went to Amazon and they have one for $57. (red one) and free shipping. Just thought I would let you know

      • there is a code for free shipping on orders over $49.99 on the website (top corner). I didn’t have to pay shipping for mine, and I got an extra bowl for free!

    • Thank you for the tip! It comes with an extra bowl ($29.99 if you buy separately). Huge savings! Ordered one and I should have it in time for Father’s Day! Yay!

  • Sounds good, though I’d never heard of this before. I’ll be freezing mine in a baking tray . . . But then how do you get the “firm” ice cream into a glass? Also, I wonder if this would work with, say, orange, pineapple or other juice?

    • You’ll have to let the “firm” ice cream thaw a little before putting it in the glass. :-) I’m sure it would works with other juices – give it a try and let me know how it goes!

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