A local ice cream vendor has rolled out a line of frozen dairy-free and vegan desserts geared toward diabetics and keto diet followers.
Love’s Ice Cream, which is in the Grand Rapids Downtown Market, at 435 Ionia Ave. SW, added the line of “low net carb” gelato in four flavors: mixed berry crumble, mint chocolate chip, peanut butter cookie and chocolate fudge brownie, according to Love’s last week.
Each flavor is 2-3 grams of net carbohydrates per serving.
“Our mission at Love’s is to make ‘worthy treats for everybody,’ which to us, means that every single person, no matter your dietary needs, deserves to be able to delight themselves with delicious, minimally processed treats made with uncompromising ingredients,” said Chris McKellar, founder, owner and chef, Love’s Ice Cream.
“There are a myriad of reasons why someone may not be able to eat regular ice cream, but we have options for all, so everyone has a seat at the table.”
McKellar began researching how to create low net carb gelato when his sister-in-law was diagnosed with an aggressive form of cancer in 2018.
After conventional chemo and radiation didn’t seem to be working, his sister-in-law began researching the effects of diet on cancer and decided to change the way she ate, nearly eliminating all carbs to assist her body with natural healing.
During this process, McKellar decided it was “unfair” that she had to eliminate ice cream, so he set out to develop a treat she could still eat, even on a keto diet to "help her feel normal and to give her hope.”
He tested several iterations using food chemistry to find the right type of natural sugar that would sweeten the frozen treats without metabolizing in the body, while still providing the taste and texture of traditionally sweetened ice cream.
The resulting gelatos are flavored and colored with food ingredients instead of artificial flavorings and colors and made without sugar alcohols.
Love’s low net carb ice creams are available at the Downtown Market by the scoop and by the pint.
McKellar aims to expand the low net carb product line in the future with handmade chocolates and more.
Founded in 2013, Love’s Ice Cream and Chocolates makes treats ranging from 14% butterfat grass-fed dairy ice cream to vegan gelato and handmade chocolate confections.