Making Trash Panda @ The Merry Dairy

This week I got to live out a life-long dream I never knew I had until it happened: I got to help a local ice cream shop create a vegan ice cream flavour. But not just any flavour. The ultimate flavour. A flavour named after one of my favourite animals. TRASH PANDA.

What, you might be asking yourself, is Trash Panda? It’s a delicious concoction created by The Merry Dairy featuring a chocolate coconut base with drool-worthy chocolate covered pretzels, Oreo bits, and in-house fudge & raspberry drizzle. It’s a kitchen sink kind of flavour that is like a raccoon’s buffet. And I got to try it. It is INCREDIBLE.

I met up with Amelia, head ice cream maker, who has worked at The Merry Dairy for five years. She walked me through the process of creating their delicious flavours and I got to learn all about what led them to their newest vegan flavour.

The Merry Dairy is a local ice cream shop that started their plant-based journey by creating a vegan coffee coconut flavour. They got their name because of the happy, merry-like and joyful experience that comes along with enjoying a good ol’ scoop. Since then, they’ve created over 30 ingenious flavours like Sugar Plumped Fig and Earl Grey or the wildly popular Radler Sorbet. We joked that one day, they might even become the Merry Non-Dairy, because their vegan flavours fly off the shelves. So much so, they had to create a dedicated scooping freezer in the front of their store. (Way to go vegans!)

Back to Trash Panda, though. I’m a sucker for their vegan coffee flavour, but after today I might be a convert. Seriously, it took everything in me to not to ask for a funnel so I could just down the whole batch. As Amelia says, their vegan flavours are created with the coconut base top-of mind. They choose ingredients that will enhance and work with their plant-based option – a dance of flavours. It’s truly an art to watch them work their magic. Everything is made in house, with the exception of the oreo crumble mixed in. They create their own vegan base,  fudge and raspberry drizzle. All the way down to drizzling chocolate on the pretzels and chopping them up. Are you drooling yet?

Well, I’m happy to announce that Vegan Trash Panda is now available in store at The Merry Dairy. Head on over to 102 Fairmont (or order online for delivery!) and try it for yourself!

GIVEAWAY: Want to try the Trash Panda Flavour? Share our Instagram or Facebook post and tag us at @vegottawa. Every post that tags us will be entered to win a tub of their incredible new flavour!

Vegan Ice Cream Bingo

Is there anything better than a good vegan scoop? We don’t think so. That’s why we’ve curated a list of the best vegan ice cream options in Ottawa, but made it BINGO! Make sure you check out the incredible options below, and scroll all the way down to read about our giveaway!

Moo Shu Ice Cream – Scoops, Bars & Pints. Vegan Chocolate, Vegan Dalgona & Coffee & Others on Rotation

Lois N’ Frimas – Scoops. Mint chip, espresso/peanut butter, salty caramel, pistachio, and cookie dough

Dairy Queen – Non Dairy Dilly Bars

Beachconers – Scoops & Pints. Varies with flavours like vegan maple walnut or  vegan chocolate orange.

Menchies – Scoops. All sorbet options (up to 15) are vegan.

The Merry Dairy – Scoops & Pints. Flavours like Coffee or Hibiscus Passionfruit.

La Diperie – Scoops & Bars. Raspberry Soft Serve, Cookie Dough. Vegan Bars: Vanila, Chocolate, Mango, and Raspberry.  

Cinnaholic – Pineapple Dole Whip

Carp Custom Creamery – Scoops & Pints. Flavours like chocolate mint oreo, peanut butter chocolate, vanilla, strawberry sorbet, peach sorbet and more.

La Cigale (Chelsea, QC) – Scoops & Pints. Banana Oreo or Chai Almond flavours. 

Oat & Mill – Scoops & Pints. Scoops available at Little Jo Berrys & Jojo’s Cremeria.

Chocolat Favoris – Scoops. Vanilla or Raspberry Soft Serve. Chocolate dip and topping varieties.

Marble Slab Creamery – Scoops & Pints. Chocolate, Coconut milk, Strawberry Banana or Pina Colada.

Ikea – Strawberry Softserve

Pascales – Scoops, Bars & Pints. Scoops available at Carlington Coffee House pop-ups. Flavours like Vanilla Coconut, Dark Chocolate Cashew and Tahini Caramel.

Strawberry Blonde – Coming soon! Pints. Flavours like vanilla, chocolate, brownie fudge.

Baskin Robbins – Scoops & Pints. Strawberry Streusel.

Thimble Cakes – Coconut Scoops. Flavours like cherry mint chip, cookie dough, and more.

Chris’ Ice Cream –  Pints available upon request. Flavours like maple oat milk, oat milk latte, strawberry coconut milk and roasted peach sorbet.

Mantovani 1946 – Gelato & Sorbetto Scoops. Flavours like Vegan Hazelnut, Tropical Sorbetto and dark chocolate gelato.

Heritage Hemp (PlantX Market) – Vegan Vanilla Hemp Iced Pints.

Farinella – Gelato Scoops. Flavours include Dark Chocolate, Mango, Pear, Strawberry, Raspberry, Dark Chocolate Mint, Dark Chocolate Cookies & Cream & Grapefruit.

Honey -Various gelato scoops.

Piccolo Grande – Sorbet Scoops. Flavours include Lemon, Lime, Mango, Passion andFruit. Grapefruit and Cherry available seasonally.

Share your ice cream posts with us on Instagram and Facebook by tagging us at @vegottawa and your next cone might be on us!  Every post that tags us and uses #vegottawa will be entered to win a $10 gift card to Cinnaholic to try their delicious dole whip!

Liz Wheeler is the current President of VegOttawa Association. She is passionate animal advocate who is dedicated to improving the lives of animals in our community. She has completed a certificate in Animal Welfare from Thompson Rivers University and a certification in Anthrozoology at the University of Windsor. Liz is a philanthropy officer for a national animal protection organization, the founder of Secondhand Stories, and creator of Ottawa For The Animals. She is a cat mom and dedicated feline enthusiast. When she’s not busy advocating for animals, she enjoys snacking on delicious vegan food.