Psst... We're working on the next generation of Chowhound! View >
HOME > Chowhound > General Topics >
May 30, 2008 06:22 AM

How much ice cream/toppings for about 70 high school students?

I teach 10th grade and as part of our "spirit week" we are having an ice cream party for our students after they return from a trip to the aquarium. There will be about 70 of them, give or take a few. How much ice cream do you think I need for this number of students?

What about toppings? How many different kinds are enough? And how much of each?


  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. If you can get the large commercial tubs, they are approximately 2.5 to 3 lbs each, depending on the vendor (Carnation, Haagen Daz, etc). You could conceivably get about 70 scoops (standard size) per tub. So, *theoretically* two tubs should be enough--one tub each of vanilla and chocolate--if you only give one scoop per person. Add a third, if you offer strawberry. I'd get a fourth tub, of chocolate or vanilla, just to be safe. High schoolers (especially boys!) will pack it on!

    As for toppings, consider how many kinds you want to offer, then figure your purchasing this way: the fewer kinds you offer, the larger the quantities of each. You could start with the basics:

    chocolate syrup (one large can)
    chopped nuts (one large box)
    maraschino cherries (one large jar)
    whipped cream (you'll probably need at least 10 cans)

    Splurge if needed on
    strawberry syrup
    caramel or butterscotch syrup
    crushed oreos
    chocolate or rainbow sprinkles

    If you have Costco, Sams Club or Smart & Final, they will have the large sizes you need (don't go to your local supermarket--too expensive). I believe the syrup comes in cans to go into a dispenser, so you might have to get some squeeze bottles for that. I suggest bowls only for the ice cream, no cones (too much breakage).

    Finally, scooping ice cream for a crowd is hard, hard work--trust me. Make sure you have at least one person per tub of ice cream (let the ice cream soften a bit before service, otherwise it will be rock hard) and don't forget a pitcher of warm water to rinse the scoop between servings.

    Good luck and have fun!