Sorbet and Gelato

Personally, I love both of them, but we have to admit that there are differences between sorbetto (sorbet) and gelato.


Sorbet is prepared, for the most part, with three ingredients (fruit, ice, and sugar), while gelato also contains milk or cream.

There is also a difference in the variety of tastes available: while ice cream may have many different flavors, sorbet is most often made with fruit (classics are lemon, orange, and mandarin sorbets), with coffee or mint.

2. Texture

 The ice cream is soft, creamy, ready to lick; the sorbet is grainy and semi dense. You can enjoy it by spoon or even drink!

3.Ways to serve them

Ice cream is enjoyed at all hours: as a snack, in the evening, even in the early morning.

Sorbet is served as an interlude between very different courses, for example meat and fish, especially in restaurants.  Some, on weddings or ceremonies in general, prefer a sorbet to take a break between the first and second courses, to help digestion and “clean the palate”, to better enjoy the following courses.

Of course, that does not mean that you cannot enjoy a sorbet like a classic dessert.

Compared to ice cream, sorbet has a less creamy texture, is semi-dense and being icier, it is colder on the palate and tends to melt faster: for this reason, it is convenient to serve it in cups or glasses.


 It seems that the sorbet has a very ancient history: it is already mentioned in the time of the Roman Emperor Nero, who seems to have made the ice arrive from the Apennines specifically to prepare it. The Arabs, on the other hand, at the time they were settled in Sicily, mixed the snow of Etna with sea salt to keep the temperature of the sorbet low while it was being processed.

What about gelato? It is rather difficult to accurately place the period in which it was born, although it is in the sixteenth century that the preparation of modern gelato begins to spread widely. The first gelateria (gelato shop) in history was opened in Paris by a Palermo-born, Francesco Procopio dei Coltelli, who had moved from Sicily to the court of the Louis the Great.


Sorbet and gelato can be both prepared without an ice cream-maker, but this helps their consistency and the creaminess of the ice cream. In addition, the machine helps in the preparation times. Here are some recipes.

Vanilla Gelato

Pistachio Gelato

Lemon Sorbet

Chocolate Gelato Cake

Blueberries Gelato

3 Layers Gelato Cake

And what do you prefer? What is your favorite taste?