Chill Out, Oklahoma

8 minutes

It is so hot right now that I’m starting to think the sun is mad at me specifically. My kids’ baseball and softball games are starting at 8:30 p.m. to cope with the sweltering weather and I don’t even want to get into the small bank loan I’m going to need to pay the air conditioning bill this month.

But as a food obsessive of some note, this weather often has me thinking about the best foods and drinks to keep me cool, because dads just aren’t allowed to skip their kids’ games.

Here are some of the treats I’m using to fight off the sweaty summer blues.

Cherry Limeades from Braum’s

Some of the treats on this list will be hard to come by for those who can’t make an hours-long trek across the state on a whim, but Braum’s is blessedly ubiquitous. And while there’s nothing wrong with a sundae, a triple-dip waffle cone full of rocky road, or a vanilla mix packed full of crushed Butterfingers, my already over-sized waistline can’t take them as more than an occasional treat. But the cherry limeade is different. Braum’s is one of the only places left that make this southern delicacy the way it was intended: with limeade. Sorry, but lemon-lime soda doesn’t cut it for this dude.

Best of all, when the drink is gone, you can fish out a few cherries to snack on and wait until the ice turns into a slushy mess that you can drink down for instant brain freeze.

Big Dipper Creamery has three location in the Tulsa area to find the extremely indulgent Cookie Butter Cookie Dough ice cream. Photo courtesy Big Dipper Creamery

Big Dipper Creamery has three location in the Tulsa area to find the extremely indulgent Cookie Butter Cookie Dough ice cream. Photo courtesy Big Dipper Creamery

Cookie Butter Cookie Dough ice cream from Big Dipper

Ice cream is good, full stop. Some are better and some are worse, but ice cream is a net positive. When I have the opportunity, however, the ice cream I want most comes from the Big Dipper Creamery in Tulsa. Their Ponyboy flavor (malted sweet cream with chocolate swirl and brownie chunks) is an absolute delight and Ooey Gooey Butter Cake is made with cream cheese ice cream and from-scratch butterscotch that gets my old man heart a-pumpin’.

But the Big Dipper team is always in the lab, churning up something new, and they recently re-released the sumptuous Cookie Butter Cookie Dough this summer. Here's how they describe it:

"We add a heaping amount of cookie butter to our sweet cream and top it off with chunks of our very own edible chocolate chip cookie dough."

Apologies if I just made your eyes roll back in your head.

Get There
Big Dipper Creamery, Mother Road Market, 1124 S Lewis Ave Tulsa, OK 74104 or TravelOK.com
Mint and mango make a super-refreshing combination in this popsicle from Wondervan Pops in Oklahoma City. Photo courtesy Wondervan Pops

Mint and mango make a super-refreshing combination in this popsicle from Wondervan Pops in Oklahoma City. Photo courtesy Wondervan Pops

A Mango Mint popsicle from Wondervan Pops

I remember making some pretty decent popsicles in my youth with a plastic Tupperware kit my mom got at one of those mysterious and clandestine Tupperware Parties she was always being invited to. But as tasty as my frozen orange juice on a plastic stick was, it pales in comparison to the panoply of incredible flavors offered by the wonderful Wondervan Pops. Sweet and tart cherry almond is addictive and the creamy bite of avocado lime makes it very easy to be green. But for something both tropical and refreshing, I am a firm fan of the Mango Mint popsicle.

"The Mango Mint is one of the most refreshing pops that we make," says Wonderpops owner Ben Pendleton. "It's soo dang good but often overlooked. The fresh mint that we puree up with the mango and fresh lime juice is magic. It's got a very mojito vibe about it, so it is a perfect dead heat of summer popsicle."

Adults in Lawton can cool down with boozy treat from Nice Ice Baby. Photo courtesy Candy Hanza

Adults in Lawton can cool down with boozy treat from Nice Ice Baby. Photo courtesy Candy Hanza

An Adult Beverage from Nice Ice Baby

Lawton has a lot going for it. With Fort Sill Army Base due north, the city has become a crossroads for travelers from across the country and around the world. Some of the finest world cuisines can be found in Lawton, as I’ve been lucky enough to sample. From Pakistani food to German eats, there’s a little of everything and a lot of it’s good.

But this time you’ll need to leave the kids at home for a visit to Nice Ice Baby, which specializes in daiquiris and pina coladas. With seven daiquiri machines spinning up frozen treats and at least forty-five flavors to choose from across a wide variety of chilled sips, finding something to fit your palate is a cool breeze on a hot day.

Get There
Nice Ice Baby, 148 E Lake Dr Medicine Park, OK 73557 or TravelOK.com
The ice is very nice in Enid where Tropical Freeze slings sno-cones and Italian ice. Photo courtesy Tropical Freeze

The ice is very nice in Enid where Tropical Freeze slings sno-cones and Italian ice. Photo courtesy Tropical Freeze

Tiger’s Blood Sno-Cone from Tropical Freeze

Sometimes, all you need to fight the heat is a big cone of ice. And if it’s drizzled with sour apple or cherry or some other lovely fruity syrup, all the better. In Enid I turn to Tropical Freeze for my sno-cone fix. As much as I love some of the specialty combination names—Frog in a Blender is terrifyingly evocative—my go-to sno-cone flavor has long been Tiger’s Blood. How coconut and strawberry came to be known by this fierce-sounding moniker is beyond me, but it’s sweet and cold and addictive.

But Tropical Freeze also has Italian ice, which has a texture closer to ice cream even though it contains no dairy. Made with nothing but finely shaved ice, fruit, and sugar, it's a slightly more natural treat for those seeking to beat the heat. While the main location is always busy, Tropical Freeze is now available at parties and events on a new trailer, meaning anyone in Enid can bring some much-needed relief to the people.

Get There
Tropical Freeze, 3608 West Randolph Avenue in Enid or tropicalfreeze.net
Written By
Greg Elwell

Greg Elwell served as research editor and web editor of Oklahoma Today from 2018-2023. He also has worked for newspapers, medical research organizations, and government institutions.

Greg Elwell
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