There are many ice cream shops and parlors in the Houston area that allow you to mix and match custom ingredients to create your own unique, and potentially one of a kind, creamy creation. In the past, I found myself visiting these places and being excited by the mere fact that I got to choose my ice cream and add just about anything under the sun to it. I always had my go to mix: chocolate chips, caramel, pecans, and a cherry on top. I usually go overboard and my ratio of mixed ingredients to ice cream is generally 4:1 easily. At Red Mango, an ice cream shop that focuses on both low fat and non-fat frozen yogurt, they take it a step further. Red Mango offers two types of store concepts including full service and self service stores.
At their Houston locations, you call the shots. Offering the self service concept, you are able to pick your size, select a cup or cone, choose your frozen yogurt flavor (each location will have several options), and choose your sin (sorry, your "mix"). My favorites thus far have been their Cake Batter and the Vanilla Bean. There are typically 5-7 frozen yogurt variations available at each store and I am unsure of how often they change, but they have some pretty amazing flavors. I have provided a complete list of their flavors below for your reading pleasure. On a side note, the self service model is pretty interesting, as I think it is cool to be able to add your own ingredients, I did find myself over-doing it...in a major way. I really think I put wayyy to much stuff in there! I guess there are pros and cons to everything, right? Well, they got the last laugh as my price tag was as high as the pile of pecans I had strategically placed around my caramel sauce. We all know scales don't lie even though we wish they would :).
In addition to frozen yogurt, Red Mango also offers Fresh Fruit Smoothies, Fruit & Yogurt Parfaits, Frozen Coffee Chillers (available in Vanilla, Caramel, Mocha and Natural Coffee), and Artisan Hot Chocolate. The first Red Mango was opened in 2007 and today, they have over 190 locations (seems this whole self service concept is pretty successful). The vibe of the stores are fun, bright and welcoming and the employees are always helpful. Many of the locations, specifically CityCentre, have a great patio, which is prime for people-watching. There is a smaller space for inside seating as well, but who wants to do that! In summary, there is nothing more divine than enjoying great weather and the company of your custom-made ice cream. Just be careful of your ratio...you will end up having ice cream with your caramel versus caramel with your ice cream!
Vanilla Cookie Cream
Key Lime Pie
Peppermint Dark Chocolate
Dule De Leche
Red Mango Houston Locations:
CityCentre (Self Service)
801 Town & Country Blvd., Ste. A
Houston TX, 77024
Woodlake Square (Self Service) ~ Coming Soon
9664 Westheimer Rd., #300
Houston TX, 77063
Rice Village (Self Service)
2565 Amherst St.
Houston TX, 77005
~ Shanna "Urban Girl" Jones, Urban Swank