This post is dedicated to the first wave frozen yogurt shops in California. These shops are truly old school. They serve the frozen yogurt to customers, rather than allowing for self-serve. And they have a thing for low carb frozen yogurt. Several large froyo chains emerged in Southern California, during the first wave of frozen yogurt.
Here’s a quick snapshot of these iconic frozen yogurt shops.
- The Bigg Chill (10850 W Olympic Blvd., Los Angeles, CA) in West L.A. opened in 1990 and it still looks the same – but that’s how customers like it. They carry over 400 rotating flavors, including flavors from Carbolite, Wow Cow and dairy-free options. The flavors are kept up to date on their website, with flavor changes on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays. They’re known for their vegan cookie dough.
- Froglanders Frozen Yogurt (915 Pearl St., La Jolla, CA) turns 30 years old this year. Current owner Dinyar Khosraviani purchased the iconic shop in 2010. The shop offers eight yogurt flavors a day, smoothies, shakes, acai bowls, yogurt pies and more.
- Humphrey Yogart (4520 Van Nuys Blvd., Sherman Oaks, CA) moved to a new location inside Gelson’s earlier this year, after 32 years at their original location in the same shopping center. It’s under the same ownership. They fell in love at the shop back and they truly love frozen yogurt. The menu has been pared down but they still have custom blended frozen yogurt, smoothies and shakes.
- Malibu Yogurt (23755 Malibu Rd., Malibu, CA) has been swirling froyo for over 30 years. When the original owners decided to sell the shop in 2008, two long time customers decided to purchase the shop. It’s the only frozen yogurt shop in town. The shop has a surfing theme and they serve 16 rotating flavors of frozen yogurt (including Carbolite), Graeter’s Ice Cream, shaved ice and smoothies.
- Yogurt Palace (130 S Main Ave., Fallbrook, CA) has been serving froyo since 1977. Family owned and operated, Yogurt Palace is known for its reasonable prices and generous portions. Check their FB page for the daily flavor schedule.
- Ace Frozen Yogurt (160 E Duarte Rd., Arcadia, CA) remains an unassuming mom and pop frozen yogurt shop in an older strip mall. It either opened in 1986 or 1990 and serves Dannon YoCream froyo, smoothies, shaved ice, froyo pie and fruit salad.
- Penguin’s Frozen Yogurt was once the largest frozen yogurt chain in California in the 1980’s. While many of the locations have closed, Penguin’s survives with locations in La Canada Flintridge (711 Foothill Blvd., #A, La Canada Flintridge, CA), Marina Del Rey (4023 Lincoln Blvd., Marina Del Rey, CA), South Pasadena (1105 Fair Oaks Ave., South Pasadena, CA) and Westwood (2180 Westwood Blvd., Ste 1A, Los Angeles, CA). Penguin’s is a dessert emporium that offers frozen yogurt, ice cream, sundaes, smoothies, shakes, frozen yogurt cakes, frozen yogurt pies and more. They always have low carb and sugar free options.
- Golden Spoon Frozen Yogurt started in 1983 in Southern California and became one of the largest froyo chains in the country. Known as the froyo for ice cream lovers, their desserts are served with a golden spoon. They started in 1981 as an outgrowth of a Tustin health food store called “Yogurt and Things.” The name Golden Spoon was adopted in 1983.