Cocowhip Frozen Dessert Comes to Austin

Local women bring us Australia’s favorite healthy treat

What’s a sweaty Austinite to do when the craving for frozen sweet treats destroys every ounce of willpower? There’s froyo, but not if you’re lactose intolerant. Sorbet is an option, too, but not even vegans want that noise when it’s creamy sweets they desire. Enter Cocowhip.

Not to be confused with the So Delicious brand’s CocoWhip!, this coconut-based whipped topping is a dairy-free, guilt-free frozen dessert straight out of Australia. When Audrey Wright discovered the sweet treat while living near Sydney, she brought the product stateside with every intention of getting Austin hooked. Wright partnered with her childhood friend, Abbey Ward, and the duo began distributing Cocowhip to the Southwest, starting right here in Austin.

Cocowhip is a binge-worthy dessert without the guilt. Like ice cream, but way more nutritious, it’s the original healthy soft serve. It’s 85% coconut water and packed with probiotics, plus it’s totally vegan, gluten-free, and contains no refined sugar, just a little coconut sugar for sweetness. It’s kid-friendly, allergen-friendly (the only folks who can’t partake are those with coconut allergies), and low in fat and calories: 97 calories, 3.7 grams of fat and 16.1 carbohydrates per serving.

All those stats – plus the flavor – made Wright, who has a bachelor's degree in holistic nutrition and is a vegan herself, absolutely taken with it. “Cocowhip really resonated with what I believe in from a nutritional standpoint,” she said. “Not only does it taste great but it fits my lifestyle.” Ward is a fan because she can give it to her four kids without fear that they’ll start bouncing off the walls.

For 15 months the team has been working on introducing Cocowhip to Austin’s large vegan and health-focused communities. It’s already hugely popular in Australia – there are 100 Cocowhip locations – but it’s been a hard road to get the new trend to stick here in Texas. Building a new business with a new product is tough, but they believe all the effort is worth it. “I wouldn’t be doing this if I wasn’t passionate about it,” Wright said.

Austin is now home to the first two locations in the whole state: Last summer, People’s Rx on North Lamar became the first to carry Cocowhip, and the downtown Whole Foods started offering it at the start of the year at the juice and smoothie bar. Now that they’re finally getting some traction locally, Wright and Ward plan to expand to San Antonio, Houston, and Dallas. (We’re hoping for more Austin locations, too.)

There are five flavors so far, with two or three available at each of the local spots. Original Coconut is always on tap, but alongside the classic might be Cacao Bliss, Super Berry, Minty Matcha, or African Mango and Turmeric. Wright’s favorite? Cacao. Always cacao.

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