Triple Root Beer Float (Grown Ups Only)

Make some easy root beer ice cream, add some really good root beer and a little Root liquor and you have a very grown up dessert! #icecream #rootbeerfloats #dessert #drinks

I love root beer. Root beer is the source of many fond memories for me. Long before the days that Kankakee had Kentucky Fried Chicken or Popeye’s, we had Lloyd’s. Lloyd’s was a grocery on the other side of town. Sunday nights found us often at Lloyd’s picking up fried chicken, Dad’s root beer and the best potato salad I can remember. But I was probably like 5 then and who knows how good it really was. Soda pop was a special treat for us as we always had milk at our meals, so being able to drink root beer was so over the top special.We were then parked in front of the TV to watch Walt Disney that came on at 6:30. I used to love Walt Disney. It always began with the NBC peacock. Remember that peacock?

But on to the root beer stand; the famous Jaenicke’s root beer stand located a bike ride distance from our house on the Kankakee River. It is painted orange and has a giant car port that one pulls up into. It used to be a waitress would meet you at your car and take your order. Those days are now gone, but the root beer stand itself is still there. From what I remember the drive in didn’t pay their waitresses minimum wage; they were just working for tips. Now you actually have to get out of the car and place your order at the window. I used to love that special tray covered with orange plastic mesh, hooked over the edge of the window. The only place I know that does that now is Sonic and even though I love Sonic commercials, it just isn’t the same. But Zoe and Manservant love it!

Make some easy root beer ice cream, add some really good root beer and a little Root liquor and you have a very grown up dessert! #icecream #rootbeerfloats #dessert #drinks

50 some years ago, A and W root beer was served in frosty, icy, giant, heavy mugs. The kind of heavy, glass mug that you were worried your kids would spill in the car. I swear A and W is not the same since they stopped serving root beer in those frosty mugs. I haven’t been to Kankakee in such a long time, but if I were ever close I would stop at the root beer stand. And I’d also order a sauce bun with onions. Well. I’d order two sauce buns with onions. What I’d give for that recipe!

And so it is that summer brought back my root beer memories. Or maybe it was the photo from my brother of his lap holding a sauce bun that he sent about a month ago. As my mouth started drooling, my mind went to work. And though I don’t have a sauce bun, I did make a pretty good root beer float. Using a no churn  ice cream recipe and some recently procured root beer extract, produced some great, but subtle root beer ice cream. Add to that this new liquor that Manservant discovered called Root. It is a very herbally root beer tasting liquor that he has made some awesome cocktails with. If you can’t find it I know there are other root beer liquors out there and if you can’t find those I’m sure a good shot of bourbon would do the trick, but truth be told, who ever turned down a root beer float even if it was a virgin? (That was a long sentence, wasn’t it?)

I served these for dessert and what a perfect ending to a simple summer meal. I also made one for Manservant a few days ago when he had a wisdom tooth pulled. (It ended up not hurting at all, but no-he didn’t turn up his nose at the float.) We sipped our floats while looking out at our yard that continues to improve with the help of our turf consultant. Yes, Manservant hired a turf consultant. He is so much better than a sprinkler guy and I’m NOT kidding!

Make some easy root beer ice cream, add some really good root beer and a little Root liquor and you have a very grown up dessert! #icecream #rootbeerfloats #dessert #drinks

I hesitate to tell you that I used real IBC root beer to make these for friends. However, I did use diet A and W when I made these for Manservant and myself. Yes, there is a difference. IBC makes a great float. The A and W is good and maybe the fact that it was diet soda made it just not as good. The ice cream is a breeze to make and if you can’t find root beer extract just add some vanilla. Tradition is always a good thing! And the root beer liquor? What a way to chill!

Notes: The Root liquor has a very interesting background that you may want to read about. It also will tell you the story about how root beer came to be. (I won’t tell you who made the first root beer, but I will tell you it came about because of prohibition and it was first made in Philadelphia!) Check it out. For all you alcoholic drinkers Root has been compared to an Italian amaro. And here’s another good article from the Washington Post.

Make some easy root beer ice cream, add some really good root beer and a little Root liquor and you have a very grown up dessert! #icecream #rootbeerfloats #dessert #drinks

Triple Root Beer Float
Serves: as many as you want to make
Time to Make: About 10 minutes to make the ice cream and about 6 hours to chill it and 5 minutes to make the float

Root Beer Ice Cream
1 14 oz can sweetened condensed milk
2 t vanilla
2-3 t root beer extract
2 c heavy cream whipped

Root Liquor
Your favorite root beer chilled
Root beer barrels for garnish

Beat cream until stiff peaks are formed. In a large bowl combine condensed milk with extracts. Fold cream into condensed milk mixture. Stir well. spoon into a covered container and freeze. (If I had had root beer barrels when I fist made this I would have crushed some and stirred them into the ice cream.)

To Make Float:
Using a tall glass fill about 1/4 full with Root Liquor. Add 1 scoop of root beer ice cream. Fill to within 3/4 of top of glass. Add another scoop of ice cream. If there is still room, pour in more root beer. Garnish with crushed root beer barrels. (Which really makes this a quadruple root beer float.) Drink through a straw but have a spoon at the ready!

More Summer Treats:

Hot Fudge Sauce
White Chocolate Crumb Topping
Oatmeal Crunch Topping
Chocolate Crumb Topping
Chocolate Cherry Cookies
Maple Salted Macadamia Ice Cream

Make some easy root beer ice cream, add some really good root beer and a little Root liquor and you have a very grown up dessert! #icecream #rootbeerfloats #dessert #drinks

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  • Anna and Liz Recipes
    August 18, 2015 at 5:38 am

    Oh my I would love this love this root beer float right now !! It's makes my mouth salivating!!

  • Biz
    August 17, 2015 at 7:38 pm

    I can't even remember the last time I had a root beer float, but it definitely looks insulin worthy! Hugs!

    • Abbe Odenwalder
      August 19, 2015 at 2:35 am

      Try sugar free Biz. My guess is you won't know the difference, but I did!

  • Katalina @ Peas & Peonies
    August 17, 2015 at 1:04 pm

    Oh happy that I am a grown up, these floats look irresistible!

    • Abbe Odenwalder
      August 19, 2015 at 2:34 am

      Very funny Katalina! It is good to be grown up and this will make you feel young again!

  • [email protected]
    August 12, 2015 at 3:18 pm

    As a teenager, I was a car hop at the A&W around the corner – fun job! I do adore a good root beer float still, and this version looks especially good for one of these hot humid summer evenings – thanks for a great recipe!

    • Abbe Odenwalder
      August 19, 2015 at 2:31 am

      You are so welcome Donalyn! Being a car hop brought great tips in my day!

  • Maureen | Orgasmic Chef
    August 5, 2015 at 11:31 am

    Australians don't drink root beer. It was the first thing I bought when Costco opened. I'm old enough to remember the roller skating A&W drive-ins where they put a tray on your window and you got the frosted glasses full of root beer along with your cheeseburger and fries. oh for the old days 🙂

    • Abbe Odenwalder
      August 19, 2015 at 2:24 am

      I remember that too Maureen! Only I always got a saucebun with onions!

  • Chris Scheuer
    August 4, 2015 at 6:10 pm

    You have a great memory and have painted such a fun picture of "the old days". Love this fun float and the delightful twist you've given it!

    • Abbe Odenwalder
      August 19, 2015 at 2:23 am

      Thanks Chris! I miss the old days, when I was young!

  • Tricia Buice
    August 4, 2015 at 3:51 pm

    Gosh this looks fantastic! My husband would adore it because he is a big fan of root beer. So refreshing for a hot summer night!

    • Abbe Odenwalder
      August 19, 2015 at 2:19 am

      It is refreshing Tricia. Perfect for those long summer nights!

  • Carol at Wild Goose Mama
    August 3, 2015 at 6:41 pm

    Gad this is THE most decadent float. I like rootbeer, but not with your passion. But you have gotten me fired up with this entry. Yeah, it's dessert all right!

    • Abbe Odenwalder
      August 19, 2015 at 2:18 am

      This is a great dessert, Carol! For that matter and thing with ice cream would be a great dessert in my book. And so easy!

  • SavoringTime in the Kitchen
    August 2, 2015 at 9:17 pm

    I used to love going to A & W when I was a teenager. What great memories! I have to check out that Root liquor! I've just learned something new!

    • Abbe Odenwalder
      August 19, 2015 at 2:13 am

      Nothing really like that now, is there? It is a fun liquor and good for sipping!

  • Pam
    August 2, 2015 at 8:48 pm

    I'm not in to root beer, but my hubby loves it and would love this, for sure! Interesting about the root liquor and thanks for the recipe!

    • Abbe Odenwalder
      August 19, 2015 at 2:12 am

      You are so welcome Pam! It is a good one and I bet hubby would love it!

  • Sippity Sup
    August 2, 2015 at 6:36 pm

    I'm a grown up and I'm first in line. GREG

    • Abbe Odenwalder
      August 19, 2015 at 2:12 am

      Aww Greg. Somehow I suspect you are always first in line!

    August 1, 2015 at 4:47 pm

    I once threw up after drinking root beer. Needless to say i've not tried it since, or in about 53 years. But I wanted to see what you did, because it sounded intriguing. Such stunning photos, too!

    • Abbe Odenwalder
      August 19, 2015 at 2:07 am

      Oh Mimi! Not a good thing. But I always tell my kids that taste buds change. Regardless, thanks for looking!

  • Pamela @ Brooklyn Farm Girl
    July 31, 2015 at 8:26 pm

    Root beer floats are our jam, we love them! Once we had a root beer float party – but now we can "adult' it up. Can't wait to taste!

    • Abbe Odenwalder
      August 19, 2015 at 2:02 am

      A party would be so much fun, however we did serve them after dinner for dessert and it worked out great! Enjoy!

  • Lea Ann (Cooking On The Ranch)
    July 31, 2015 at 7:00 pm

    My only childhood memories of root beer are those frosty glasses of A&W. The sheets of ice would slide down the glass. ohmy. I agree about it not being the same. And I bet they started using corn syrup instead of sugar. Don't know that for sure. And Root Beer (and 7-up) floats were my favorite. Pinning your version, sounds wonderful with the milk. I've never heard of Root liquor – – a new adventure! 🙂

    • Abbe Odenwalder
      August 19, 2015 at 1:57 am

      Oh, I loved that ice. Great description, Lea Ann! Maybe we should share one together! It is about time!

  • Emanuele @ guyslovecooking
    July 31, 2015 at 8:41 am

    I have never had root beer. I like your fond memories associated with it though. I love food also for that. It's like music 🙂

    • Abbe Odenwalder
      August 19, 2015 at 1:52 am

      I'm so sad. Surely there must be some place to find one. Food memories are usually the best, aren't they?

  • Angie Schneider
    July 31, 2015 at 2:27 am

    I have never had a root beer. The float sounds and looks really fancy and tasty!

    • Abbe Odenwalder
      August 19, 2015 at 1:51 am

      I don't know how to describe it Angie, but is is unique and creamy and sweet, but not too much! You really need to have one!

  • Kitchen Riffs
    July 30, 2015 at 11:43 pm

    I love root beer floats! Such a great dish. Gotta use the sugared root beer, though — the diet stuff just doesn't taste right, IMO. Love your recipe for root beer ice cream — gotta try that! Thanks!

    • Abbe Odenwalder
      August 19, 2015 at 1:50 am

      Totally agree on the sugar root beer! I don't mind diet Coke, but the real root beer is so much better.

  • Liz Berg
    July 30, 2015 at 10:42 pm

    Katie is my root beer fan! She'll order it whenever it's on the menu. I'll have to treat her to your ice cream—still need to make my first no-churn version 🙂

    • Abbe Odenwalder
      August 19, 2015 at 1:50 am

      It is subtle in flavor, but very rich. Perfect for the float. I'm getting thirsty now!

  • Cheri Savory Spoon
    July 30, 2015 at 8:33 pm

    Hi Abbe, I'm not a big soda person but if I drink soda I drink root beer, I love it, there is a brewery in the next town that makes the best rootbeer but you cannot buy it to take out you have to drink it there. And I love root beer floats. The root liquor sounds delicious!

    • Abbe Odenwalder
      August 19, 2015 at 1:49 am

      The Root liquor is very complex which gives the float a lot of levels-so to speak! Now I have to find the alcoholic root beer that Zoe has told me about!