Just about every poll, survey, or social media thread cites ice cream as Americans’ dessert of choice. It’s so popular that not only is July 19 National Ice Cream Day, the entire month is devoted to ice cream.

While it’s a summer treat Americans all seem to align around, ice cream has distinctly Philly ties.

Augustus Jackson, a free Black man from Philadelphia, is credited with creating the recipes, and the method to manufacturing in 1832, making it possible to sell ice cream. Nancy Johnson, another Philly resident, is credited with inventing the hand-cranked ice cream maker in 1846. It became an essential tool for homemade ice cream for 19th-century households, and is still relevant for 21st-century coronavirus lockdown home cooking.

But like all things, even Philly ice cream has its own style — an egg-free churn of milk, sugar, and cream that is perfect for filling waffle cones and chocolate sandwiches, or awaiting a drizzle of caramel sauce or sprinkles.

Here are a few ice cream trends to watch for as we continue this month of sundaes:

Plant-based treats

As more consumers consider plant-based diets or other restrictions, more companies are developing ice cream products that replace eggs and cream and sweeteners, with corn, soy, and other derivatives from figs and raisins. Check out Nicks, a Swedish brand, that offers several plant-based and low-calorie flavors including peanut butter. You can find it in stores including Acme, ShopRite, and The Fresh Grocer.

Complex flavors

While vanilla remains Americans’ favorite flavor, more dynamic combinations are inspired by global trends and fruit growing seasons.

Across the U.S., corn is becoming a go-to ingredient. La Michoacana in Kennett Square tops pureed sweet corn ice cream with cinnamon and chili powder. You’ll also find combinations such as guava and cheese, a mix of the fruit and Mexican queso fresco ($10.50 per quart.)

Beyond the cone

This National Ice Cream Month, look for old-fashioned ice cream sandwiches in shops and in recipes updated with interesting cookies that include flavors like lemongrass or ginger. The need for social distancing means that ice cream must be portable, so expect mochi ice cream to have continued popularity. You’ll find treats like Weckerly’s ice cream sandwiches topped with chewy chocolate cookies and made with organic milk and cream. (9 W. Girard Ave.) Also expect to see churros, doughnuts, and other baked goods to become creative vessels for ice cream filling.