This Little Miggy Stayed Home: Coffee Ice Cream?

Tuesday, January 09, 2007

Coffee Ice Cream?

So I'm just curious. . . for all you Mormons out there, do you think it's wrong to eat coffee flavored ice cream? I mean it's definitely not a "hot drink" but it certainly has coffee in it (not coffee flavoring as some would rationalize--at least when I've checked). I know this isn't the only gray area when it comes to the W.O.W. (cola, alcohol/liquor in cooking, etc) but this one is close to my heart. Also, if you don't think it's wrong, why? I don't want to hear about your bishop who loved ice cream smoothered with Irish cream liquor (as was the case with one of my former bishops) and therefore you think it's OK--that argument doesn't stand up for me. I want to hear how you feel about it. And of course if you do think it's a problem, why? Any suppoprting quotes from GA's is extra credit.

And for you non-Morms out there . . . are we uptight or what?



  1. amy.
    the real question is not coffee or not, but rather you want to be a grey mormon or a temple white mormon??

    as for me and my house, we will follow the lord!

  2. So Pete, you're saying this isn't even grey . . . it's obvious that any member of the Church who eats coffee ice cream is knowingly disobeying the W.O.W? You're sitting next to my husband aren't you . . .

  3. Anonymous12:02 PM


    I like the quote from President Packer in April 2001 G.C. when he said "I love coffee ice cream and I think you should too." I'm very familiar with this quote as my bishop asked me to speak about coffee ice cream last week (imagine my surprise). Hopefully, this quote settles the matter for all of us.

    -old friend

  4. Dear Old Friend--

    Can you provide a link to this quote? I'm on the verge on excitement, but can't let myself go there til I see something myself.

    Also--please identify yourself! C'mon, we're "OLD FRIENDS" . . .

  5. This is my idea: I guess the whole basis for the WOW is to avoid addiction. This is typical how I determine these grey WOW areas. With diet coke, I consistently ask myself, am I becoming addicted to this? "Do I need it, or do I like it?" If I'm not sure, I stop drinking it for a while to see, and I've never missed it so that answered my question. But someone else may have a different experience. Maybe you should try going without coffee ice cream and see how you feel? Do you think you need it or just like it? I wouldn't recommend cutting out ice cream altogether because that might have severe emotional consequences but at least the coffee flavor to test your addictive level ( PS not doctrine)

  6. Good point Liz. No, I don't eat coffee ice cream regularly (ice cream, yes. . . coffee ice cream, no). In fact, I think I had once decided maybe I shouldn't get it anymore--just to avoid the grey area--but I ordered it the other night (probably hadn't had it in a couple years) and it got me to thinking about this again. I like your point, but do you think the only reason for the WOW is to avoid addiction? What about the council to eat meat sparingly and all that . . . that doesn't seem to fall into an addiction category.

  7. Yeah I do kind of think it all comes down to addiction and maximizing our free agency. I just breezed through a few conference talks online and it's the biggest reason they talk about: addiction and also moderation (which is really how to avoid addiction). Even eating meat sparingly and exercise, if you think about it, all contribute to your health which maximizes your free agency. And avoiding addiction is all about being free! Anyway, that's just how I 'determine' the grey areas for myself. And I do think it's a individual thing, that's why not everything is spelled out.

  8. Miggs, I think I agree with Liz on this one. Its an individual thing and that is why we cannot find a lot to back it up. Nate and I have been discussing this also lately. We have also been trying to find info on green tea. Do you know anything about this? There are TONS of different green teas out there. Some with caffine, some herbal, some japanese etc etc. So, I love green tea. I drink it maybe twice a week. I cannot find anything on it so I was just going to ask the bishop on Sunday what he thinks. What do you think? PS...I really miss your lessons on Sundays :(

  9. amy, once again, i love your posts. This is funny we were JUST talking about this yesterday. Me and a friend were sitting in a cafe yesterday here in London and discussing. It's funny, b/c i feel that members in foreign countries have a stricter WOW code that they follow.
    I was at an English family's house last week and they threw out all their cappuccino flavored godiva chocolates...which i was sad about. Then i thought maybe i was missing something. People on my mission too wouldn't drink Coke or eat coffee flavored bread or ice cream or anything that's green tea either.
    I agree with the other posts minus peter. It's a personal thing with the Lord. Coffee has an addictive substance, but in the ice cream flavoring i don't think it does that. But i too want to see a link to Packer's quote!

  10. Liz--yeah, I can definitely see that. I too think the WOW is a lot about addictions (and the subsequent loss of agency). I also think general health plays a role--the physical body being an intrigual part of the soul (a substance could hurt your body without it necessarily being an addiction)and not allowing ourselves to get into bad situations because we weren't in the right state of mind (again, could happen without necessarily being addicted). But yes, when it comes to coffee ice cream, the best way to look at it would probably be the addiction factor . . . well and health, since caffine is also just not good for you. But I agree--it is individual. And I'm glad they don't tell us how to do everything.

    Tawni--the only thing I've ever really heard about tea is herbal vs. other. As far as I have heard herbal tea is the only acceptable kind to drink. I have heard that ina addition to caffine it's also about the tanic acid in tea leaves (apparantly this is bad for you). Again, this just has to be individual--I grew up drinking herbal tea (still do) but have even heard some people who think that's wrong. Again, just what I've heard--not from GA's either or anything, but talking to bishops, etc.

  11. This one is tough for me since I love coffee ice cream and flavored things. I haven't had the ice cream in years. I think I just decided one day to stop eating it. I wouldn't look down on anyone else who ate it because consumption is a personal decision. I'm also not ruling out ordering it in the future.

    I think the difference was that a decade plus ago I loved it sooo much, it probably wasn't healthy. I decided to give it up, which I think was the right decision for me at the time. I've had it once or twice since that time and may have some again. It's a personal decision that I think only you can answer.

  12. Anonymous11:04 PM

    One time, both Elder Holland and Merrill Bateman went to my aunt and uncle's house to ask them for a donation to BYU.

    My point? My aunt and uncle and their kids eat coffee ice cream all the time. So, you have to ask yourself, would one of the Twelve Apostles seek funds for the Lord's University from a tainted and wicked source? I think not. Therefore, you can rest assured that coffee ice cream is perfectly fine.

  13. sinners.
    find what ration-LIES-ation you can.

    i heard of a guy who was eating a coffee-flavored ice cream cone when he was hit by a car on 53rd and 7th ave (ironically a mormon).

    later he visited all his friends and family to tell them how great the terrestial kingdom was.

    you can find the full account at:

    for your reading pleasure

  14. miggs.
    and i was sitting next to your husband. but he had no influence on my words of truth and testimony.

  15. Anonymous10:32 AM

    You all might be interested to know that statistically speaking, 1 out of 53 Mormons actually goes to hell over coffee ice cream. It boils down to being the straw that broke the camel’s back. Sorry, for the disappointment but my sources are pretty much top-secret. With regard to the WOW, I’ve never had a lesson in church about eating meat sparingly or getting on the tread mill for that matter. It's just more fun to pat ourselves on the backs for not being drunks. As Mormons, we steer clear of the pitfalls of drug and alcohol addiction but run head first into obesity, heart disease and frumpy clothing. Not my intention to be Mr. Preachy pants. I'm a terrible Mormon in so many ways and always have been. Miggs, I can’t identify myself. I don’t want to add too much drama to the blog. We have a bit of a history. Always love to hear the "miggs" perspective on things.

    old friend

  16. Petey--I'm not taking you seriously.

    Old Friend--I'm not taking you seriously either . . . except I think you have some good points about patting ourselves on the back for not being drunks while simultainously over eating our way to hell . . . however I'm sure I've heard general health addressed in WOW talks.

  17. I agree that it is most likely a personal choice, but I also can't see Pres. Hinckley snarfing down on coffee ice cream. I think it is one of those things that goes unsaid, like wearing a white shirt to church or drinking colas. I also can't see any GAs drinking colas, which I personally enjoy occasionally. It's tough to draw the line sometimes--what if it was a coffee-flavored hot drink? Why are Morms not ok with decaf coffee? I think the bottom line (already stated) is to make a personal decision you feel good about and stick with it.

  18. Anonymous6:04 PM

    Okay, this topic has been officially beaten to death but I just have to throw out my final comment. As Mormons don’t we believe in absolute doctrines - I.E. don’t smoke, don’t drink etc… How can a decision such as eating coffee ice cream be subjective or a personal choice as many of you are suggesting? True, we are to search , ponder, pray and not everything is spelled out for us (thank goodness) but that doesn’t mean God’s commandments are subjective does it? If two different people were to seriously study this issue and pray, would God give them different answers-”Go for it Billy” “It’s not for you Sally, you’d strung out in two weeks!” I’m inclined to think not. I do believe that judgment will ultimately be black and white with allowances for individual circumstances. With all of that said, I’d eat coffee flavored ice cream in a second. My liquor collection (that I use for cooking) is unsurpassed in all of Mormondom. At the end of the day, I’ll probably be part of the dreaded 1/53rd but relativism won’t be my excuse. Props to brack for a few of the thoughts he introduced, good sh-- or shiz for all you righteous peeps.

    Old Friend

  19. Prophet for Myself7:32 PM

    "allowances for individual circumstances" = definition of grey areas.

    Some notable prayers:
    Peter the Apostle: "Is it ok for me to drink wine?"
    God: "Yeah it's cool. Just stay away from pigs, for now."

    Me: "Is it ok for me to drink wine?"
    God: "What, are you retarded?"

  20. for the record, i've heard a lot of talks about excercise as part of the word of wisdom and moderation with meat and things of that nature. this has never really been an issue for me since i don't like coffee flavored anything or cola. i guess i'm going straight to the celestial kingdom then.

    i am intrigued by the drama comment from amy's "old friend". cause i've known her for many years, and i am wondering if i'm familiar with this drama. maybe we can now all place bets on who amy's "old friend" is. who's in?

  21. Anonymous9:01 PM

    Good stuff Prophet, wish you were here to discuss in further detail over a cup of nice faux coffee. This discussion is interesting but could go on forever though. Caroline, I actually don't know Miggs but stumbled on this blogg through a series of links. It's always more fun to receive comments from mysterious people in our past. Sorry to disappoint. Take care y'all it's been fun!

    Old friend-- who's not actually that old or a friend

  22. Old friend, you are hilarious. You too Petey. I just wrote Petry.

    "I flied?"

    "No, you falled."

    This is an interesting discussion. I, for one, don't eat it. Not that I think it's terrible. I guess my early strict adherence to the WOW, compliments of my upbringing, are to blame.

    When I was in sixth grade I remembered feeling just AWFUL after tasting a friend's Slurpee and finding out it was Coke flavored.

    I also remember giving away a Dr. Pepper flavored Lip Smackers that came in a variety pack.

    These are silly examples, but I remember my mom saying as I was growing up that we shouldn't have things that are flavored like the real things because then we may develop a taste for them and try out the real thing. Therefore, no decaf ANYTHING. No Beer flavored Lip smackers either.

    I think that is a wise thing to tell children. Make it as black and white as possible. There are too many gray areas as it is. Teach children to be absolute.

  23. Tiff--I LOVE that you just referenced The Land Before Time. . . I should really get that movie. . . anywho. . .

    I like what Prophet said, but I also agree with Tiff. Obviously there are different commandments for different times (maybe even different people--usually not though). However, when a commandment is given, like the WOW, I think it best not to try and find the loopholes. So the grey area . . . well maybe it's not that grey. I can argue that eating coffee ice cream is quite different from actually drinking coffee . . . but I could also argue that eating a pot brownie is quite different from actually smoking pot.

    However, I also think we grow into the gospel at our own pace (particularly these grey areas), which is where personal decision comes into play. If I've had a witness or impression to change a certain behavior than I should. If I haven't felt that impression yet, it's probably because Heavenly Father is still trying to help me undestand a more fundamental principle before worrying about the specific (and maybe less important) details of that or other principles. For example, I "dress up" for church. It's what I do. That's what I was taught by my parents. Even GA's tells us we need to wear our Sunday best. However, if there is someone at church who was not taught such things and was wearing jeans and a t-shirt, I don't think Heavely Father cares at that moment. The bigger principle is that they are at church . . . appropriate dress can be worried about later . . . maybe even much later.

  24. Your last post totally made me think of the wrap-up resolution speeches that Jerry springer makes at the end of his sideshow.

    Don't you love how he gets all philosophical and serious at the end?

    PS - Miggs, I am NOT comparing you to Jerry Springer. Or am I?

    PPS - I love that you knew what I was referring to in my previous post.

  25. Jerry Springer. huh. When I wrote that post I was all "man I sound so smart/righteuos, I hope people don't get confused and think I'm Elder Holland or something. . . good thing I've got my blog alias to alieviate any confusion. . . but I better dumb it down just in case . . ." So yeah, I can totally see where you get the Jerry Springer thing. :)

  26. At work I usually add some ice to my coffee and call it kosher. Or, another favorite move, is to begin with a 1/4 cup of hot chocolate and add a few dashes of coffee (about 3/4 cup or so).

    In reality I'm a big fan of coffee ice cream, coffee candy, and coffee cake (one of my primary kids baked me one for Christmas!), whether flavored that way or made straight from the beautiful smelling bean. What makes me feel comfortable with it is that I don't feel like it impairs my ability to feel the spirit in any way. The sugar in the ice cream alters me more than the coffee, I'm pretty sure. And since I'm not going to get fanatic and preachy about sugar consumption, although I'm sure there are some great points for abstaining, I'm not going to get bent out of shape over the use of the coffee bean in my ice cream.

    If we do reject coffee ice cream, should we also reject any product made in the same room with it, as that product would surely contain coffee traces? I think to avoid any food that could possibly be linked to the W.O.W. no-no list would lead us down a path somewhat impossible to follow, and, in my opinion, not the intention of the W.O.W. in the first place.