Soft serve ice cream isn't made of just milk and sugar

Soft serve ice cream is a staple of summertime, but you might be surprised by some of the ingredients (that you've probably never heard of) that go into each serving.

Like Polysorbate 80. Now, it has nothing to do with sorbet. Rather, it's an emulsifier that prevents milk proteins from coating fat droplets.

SEE ALSO: Eating too many french fries could increase your risk of death

Carrageenan is a carbohydrate that comes from red seaweed, and it's used to stabilize and thicken the ice cream.

Mono and diglycerides help combine ingredients containing fat with ingredients containing water.

RELATED: What your favorite ice cream says about you

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What Your Favorite Ice Cream Flavors Say About You
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What Your Favorite Ice Cream Flavors Say About You

A study conducted by the Smell & Taste Treatment and Research Foundation suggests that your choice of ice cream reveals what type of person you are. Read on to discover the surprising finds.

Image Credit: Comstock

If your favorite is: Chocolate

You're more likely to be: dramatic, lively, charming, flirtatious, seductive and gullible

Image Credit: Baskin-Robbins

If your favorite is: Vanilla

You're more likely to be: impulsive, easily suggestible and an idealist

Image Credit: Baskin-Robbins

If your favorite is: Very Berry Strawberry

You're more likely to be: tolerant, devoted and introverted

Image Credit: Baskin-Robbins

If your favorite is: Mint Chocolate Chip

You're more likely to be: argumentative, frugal and cautious

Image Credit: Baskin-Robbins

If your favorite is: Rocky Road

You're more likely to be: aggressive, engaging and a good listener

Image Credit: Baskin-Robbins

If your favorite is: Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough

You're more likely to be: ambitious, competitive and a visionary

Image Credit: Baskin-Robbins

If your favorite is: Pralines 'n Cream

You're more likely to be: loving, supportive and prefer to avoid the spotlight

Image Credit: Baskin-Robbins

If your favorite is: Jamoca

You're more likely to be: scrupulous, conscientious and a moral perfectionist

Image Credit: Baskin-Robbins

If your favorite is: Chocolate Chip

You're more likely to be: generous, competent and a go getter

Image Credit: Baskin-Robbins

If your favorite is: Rainbow Sherbet

You're more likely to be: analytic, decisive and pessimistic

Want to learn more about this beloved frozen treat? Read on to discover fun facts about ice cream.

Image Credit: Baskin-Robbins

Where did ice cream come from?

While the origins are unknown, early versions of iced treats date back to the second century B.C. Alexander the Great liked to top snow and ice with honey and nectar, and passages in the Bible refer to King Soloman's fondness of iced drinks. Nero Claudius Caesar sent runners to collect mountain snow and flavored it with fruits and juices.

Image Credit: Ross Durant Photography

Presidents love ice cream

Records show that President George Washington spent about $200 (a lot even today!) for ice cream in the summer of 1790. President Thomas Jefferson had a favorite recipe for a Baked Alaska-type dessert that took 18 steps to make! And did you know that President Barack Obama's first job was scooping ice cream at a Baskin-Robbins in Honolulu as a teenager?

Image Credit: Adrian Burke

Ice cream used to be only for the rich

In the early 1800s, before refrigeration became widely available, ice cream was very expensive and only the elite could afford such a luxury. Now, the average American consumes 48 pints of ice cream yearly!

Image Credit: Fuse

Which city and state eats the most ice cream?

According to Bundle, the District of Columbia is the most ice cream-crazy area in America, and its residents eat 85 percent more than the average person. Rhode Island was in second place, and Wisconsin got third.

As for cities, Long Beach, CA love their ice cream most, with the average Long Beacher consuming 268 percent more ice cream than the average American. In second place was Dallas, TX, and Philadephia, PA came in third place.

Image Credit: Comstock

What is the most popular ice cream flavor?

According to the International Ice Cream Association, vanilla is the most popular flavor (with 29% favoring this flavor) while chocolate comes in second with 9%. That's a lot of impulsive, easily suggestible and idealistic ice cream lovers!

Image Credit: Alexandra Grablewski

Want to make your own homemade ice cream treats? It's easier than you think. Watch this video for our tips on how to create your own delicious dessert, and read on for our favorite ice cream recipes for summer.

Blueberry Cheesecake Ice Cream

The flavors of fresh blueberries and cheesecake are perfect together in this ice cream recipe!

Get the recipe: Blueberry Cheesecake Ice Cream

Roasted Peaches with Mascarpone Ice Cream

This summer treat infuses roasted peaches with honey-rosemary syrup. Try grilling them, too!

Get the recipe: Roasted Peaches with Mascarpone Ice Cream

Pink Lady Milk Shake

This rum-spiked milkshake combines fresh strawberries with ice cream for a frozen summer treat. If you're making this for the under-21 crowd, just omit the booze.

Get the recipe: Pink Lady Milk Shake

Want more frozen boozy desserts?

Image Credit: Image Source

Salty Caramel Ice Cream

The sea salt brings out the caramel's sweetness. This ice cream recipe is a crowd-pleaser!

Get the recipe: Salty Caramel Ice Cream

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Last but not least, guar gum is another thickening agent. The substance was banned from being used in diet pills in the 1980s, but it's been found to be safe in small amounts, like that which you'd find in soft serve.

That doesn't mean you'll shed some weight if you eat tons of ice cream. Big companies simply use these ingredients because they're shipping their products all over the world and want it to be uniform and taste the same wherever you go.

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