By allowing ads to appear on this site, you support the local businesses who, in turn, support great journalism.
Sweet ‘sandwich’ is a favorite summertime dessert
710 ice cream
Neapolitan style ice cream sandwiches are layered with fudge and whipped topping to make a simple ice cream sandwich cake, which is perfect for birthdays and other occasions.

Ice cream sandwiches are a treat any day of the year, but can be particularly refreshing when the mercury climbs. With July being National Ice Cream Month, it’s also a perfect time to enjoy this unique treat.

According to the ice cream novelty company Ice Cream Social, ice cream sandwiches may have evolved from a treat called ‘okey-pokey’ that was once served by street vendors in London. This dessert was a slice of vanilla ice cream cut from a large slab. Providing an easier and more portable way to enjoy a serving of ice cream, ice cream sandwiches, food historians believe, were invented in 1899 by an unnamed pushcart vendor in New York City’s Bowery neighborhood. This vendor served vanilla ice cream between two graham wafers.

The modern ice cream sandwich, which is the more recognizable rectangular serving of vanilla ice cream nestled between two chocolate cookie wafers, is attributed to Jerry Newberg. Newberg began selling these novelties at Forbes Field in Pittsburgh in 1945. Ice cream sandwiches gained popularity around this time for their portability as well as their flavor, so much so that the popular Carvel ice cream company unveiled its own take on the ice cream sandwich – The Flying Saucer – in 1951 to celebrate the opening of its 100th franchise shop.

Other manufacturers have their own ice cream sandwich incarnations, and ingredients vary around the world. Cookies, cakes, biscuits or other ingredients serve as the “bread” to hold the ice cream in place. The novelties also are not difficult to make at home. People can experiment at home by scooping softened ice cream and placing it between home-baked or store-bought cookies.

Ice cream sandwiches also can be turned into other desserts, such as an ice cream sandwich cake or an icebox cake. All that is needed are a few ingredients and some imagination.

Unwrap ice cream sandwiches and layer them in a cake pan, such as a rectangular or a round springform pan (cut the sandwiches in half for the springform pan and layer vertically versus horizontally in a rectangular pan), with hot fudge, caramel sauce and whipped topping, as desired. Extras like chopped nuts, sprinkles, crumbled cookies, or chopped up chocolate bars can be added to the cake to customize flavor. End with a top layer of whipped topping for the “frosting.” The ice cream cake should be covered and frozen for at least 30 minutes before serving.

The internet is full of ice cream sandwich cake recipes in greater detail for those who need more guided instruction. This is one treat that probably won’t have many leftovers.

Ice cream sandwiches originated more than a century ago and remain a delicious treat on a hot day.