A saving grace for my kids and I during this summer has been going to get a sweet treat on a whim, just because we all need a little pick me up these days.
Not only does it give us a change of scenery, everyone is more than willing to hop in the car and head out to one of Franklin’s adorable sweet shops!
You see, going to get an ice cream cone, a box of tiny donuts or a snow cone starts with anticipation and excitement on the way to the destination. As you pull up, everyone is racing to get their seatbelts off in order to make a sweet selection that suits their fancy for the day.
Maybe you are craving a tart and tangy yogurt or a rich, decadent chocolate cone of ice cream after dinner. On a crisp fall morning, there’s nothing better than warm, right out of the fryer cinnamon sugar donuts, or a freshly baked chocolate chip cookie for an afternoon snack.
Whatever you are craving, I can promise you, we’ve got something to satisfy any sweet tooth in and around Franklin.
This newly-opened ice cream shop located in the stunning Westhaven community of Franklin is what sweet dreams are made of.
Sweethaven is serving up the highest quality, creamiest ice cream sourced straight from the dairy state of Wisconsin. Only one other ice cream store in Tennessee actually carries this brand of ice cream, because it’s so difficult to get, but the owners say its well worth it for the premium quality.
I wholeheartedly agree with them, especially after sampling the “Exhausted Parent” flavor with bourbon-spiked, espresso ice cream swirled with bittersweet chocolate chunks, and a crowd favorite, the upgraded “Mint Chocolate” ice cream, made with mint-flavored ice cream laced with Andes Mints, Grasshopper cookies, and chocolate fudge swirl.
If you’re looking for a lighter, tangy treat, the farm-fresh frozen yogurt will not disappoint, with flavors like the bright, citrus Valencia Orange, and the Coconut Milk froyo, a light, subtly sweet dairy-free option. And wait there’s more!
Make your frozen treat a party with the Artisan Sprinkle Bar, how fun is that? Kids will love topping their Dole Whip yogurt, inspired by the happiest place on earth, with the “Mouse Ears” sprinkles, featuring signature Disney colors and mouse ears confetti.
My top pick for a hot summer afternoon might just be the Orange Cream froyo topped with the “Rose All Day” sprinkle blend.
Sweethaven also offers locally brewed fruit teas from TennesSweet, fresh baked goods from Sugar Drop bakery, and specialty sodas. We just can’t get enough of this darling ice cream shop, done right!
Tiny Little Donuts and Bicentennial Park
Tiny Little Donuts made fresh in a tiny, little airstream in downtown Franklin is such a happy way to start the day. Kids and adults simply adore these mini confections, especially with the addition of sprinkles on top!
Grab a box of a generous dozen, complete with tiny little forks, with your choice of one of their six tasty flavors. As much as I enjoy a fancy donut from time to time, I so appreciate the simplicity of a box of mini cinnamon sugar or chocolate glazed donuts that we can all share.
My kids usually go for the classic glazed with sprinkles, of course, and my husband and I split the lemon glazed with a cup of their freshly brewed coffee.
The name of the game here is keeping it simple, the coffee, the donuts, and the flavors are familiar and approachable. We usually grab a box then head down the street to Bicentennial Park by the river to enjoy our morning delight, before a walk or bike ride.
It’s a simple Franklin morning, that never gets old! Be sure to look out for their seasonal flavors as well, the Pumpkin Pie Spiced donuts are the perfect addition to a crisp, Fall day in downtown Franklin.
Tiny Little Donuts has also expanded with another airstream location in Franklin at 1203 Murfreesboro Rd, making these tiny little treasures even easier to find around town!
Triple Crown Bakery
What would this list be without a quaint, local bakery? Pastry Chef Alena Vaughn is a classically trained pastry chef who worked in the bakery business for several years before deciding to come home to raise her babies for 13 years.
When her family settled in Franklin, she decided to pursue her dream of opening her own French-inspired bakery in downtown Franklin, and it has quickly become a local favorite!
The beautiful pastries, cookies, and cakes welcome you as you walk in, as well as the big smiles and friendly staff at Triple Crown. Kids will delight in the “big as your face” sugar sprinkle cookie or the homemade pop tarts all made from scratch, in house.
If your children have an adventurous palette, they might also enjoy the Pavlova, a crisp meringue topped with fresh whipped cream and berries. For an adult treat, try the Citrus Almond Brioche French Toast, the chef’s favorite, made with fresh brioche bread, soaked in a citrus syrup, baked to perfection, and topped with homemade almond cream and sliced almonds.
This fall, Alena’s dreams will expand with a move to a new, larger space with front porch seating on 118 Fourth Ave North, closer to the heart of downtown!
Blue Monkey Shaved Ice
The Blue Monkey Shaved Ice truck is spreading a little happiness on these hot summer days with fluffy, colorful cups of goodness.
Dave Wong actually worked as a server and saved his money for four years in order to start this fun, snow cone business, and I, for one, am thrilled he followed through with his snow cone making pursuits!
Let me tell you why, this is not your typical shaved ice, the syrups are homemade with zero corn syrup or gluten, and the ice is shaved-off ice blocks of filtered water creating an extra soft, snow-like texture. As far as favorite flavors, where do I even begin?
The fresh pineapple and coconut flavors topped with the homemade “snow cream” topping, made with sweetened condensed milk, will immediately put you in an island state of mind.
The Strawberry Lemonade and Watermelon Basil are two more fan favorites, made with all-natural, real fruit. For the kids, you can’t beat the Rainbow Shaved Ice and the Sour Gummi Worm flavor, they will certainly be squealing with joy and asking for more!
Check out the Blue Monkey website to keep up with the shaved ice truck schedule for the week around town. Cheers!
Nestled in lovely the town of Brentwood, you’ll find a frilly and fun sweet shoppe called Sugar Drop. Owner Brooke O’dell is an award-winning cake artist, and she has turned Sugar Drop into the area’s go-to specialty shop for all things sweet!
Her signature “Drippy Cakes” in a variety of flavors and vibrant colors are available for pick up and special order, as well as homemade cookies and bars from family recipes that are nearly a century old.
Kids will be in heaven with the colorful, sprinkled confections to choose from, such as the white chocolate dipped Oreos and Mega Dipped Mallows, oh my!
Mom and dad won’t be too concerned about the kids’ sugar high once they sink their teeth into a scrumptious Almond Sugar Cookie Bar or a gooey Millionaire bar.
Looking for a fun activity for the whole family? Grab a cookie decorating kit complete with plain cookies, frosting, and decorative toppings for some creative fun, with a sweet ending.
Not only will you find baked goods and candies to enjoy here, but this is also a one-stop-shop for baking and party supplies to use at home including balloons, cake toppers, and paper goods.
Quite possibly the creamiest ice cream in Franklin can be found at the Mexican style ice cream shop, Paletas Tocumbo.
Kids and adults will be wide-eyed with anticipation as soon as they walk in and see the vast array of frozen treats. The creamy paletas include unique flavors like avocado and kiwi along with more familiar flavors such as strawberries and cream and chocolate-dipped ice cream pops with sprinkles!
The bright pink, cotton candy ice cream is a summer childhood dream. However, for a more authentic Mexican street treat, try the Mangonada, made with mango sorbet with a kick from Tajin (a chile-lime salt), and Chamoy which is made from fermented fruit, salt, sugar, and chile. And wait, there’s more!
They also serve a variety of Horchata, which is a refreshing Mexican drink made from ground rice, condensed and evaporated milk, cinnamon sticks, and vanilla. This creamy and flavorful drink is served chilled, ideal for a hot summer day.