An ice cream cone, poke (Ireland and Scotland) or cornet is a dry, cone-shaped pastry, usually made of a wafer similar in texture to a waffle, which enables ice cream to be held in the hand and eaten without a bowl or spoon. Various types of ice cream cones include wafer (or cake) cones, waffle cones, and sugar cones.

Many styles of cones are made, including pretzel cones and chocolate-coated cones. A variety of double wafer cone exists that allows two scoops of ice cream to be served side by side. Wafer cones are often made with a flat bottom instead of a pointed, conical shape, enabling the ice cream and "cone" to stand upright on a surface without support. These types of wafer cones are often branded as "cups".


A sugar cone, with chocolate ice cream.

Edible cones were mentioned in French cooking books as early as 1825, when Julien Archambault described how one could roll a cone from "little waffles".[1] Another printed reference to an edible cone is in Mrs A. B. Marshall's Cookery Book, written in 1888 by Agnes B. Marshall (1855–1905) of England. Her recipe for "Cornet with Cream" said that "the cornets were made with almonds and baked in the oven, not pressed between irons".[2][3]

Edible cones were patented by two entrepreneurs, both Italian, separately in the years 1902 and 1903. Antonio Valvona, an ice cream merchant from Manchester, UK, patented a biscuit cup producing machine in 1902, and in 1903, Italo Marchiony, an ice cream salesman from New York filed for the patent of a machine which made ice cream containers.[2][4] Abe Doumar and the Doumar family can also claim credit for the ice cream cone.[5]

In 1904, at the St. Louis World's Fair a Syrian/Lebanese concessionaire named Albert Aboussie had his ice cream booth, when he ran short on paper cups, he was next to an waffle vendor, who sold Aboussie waffles. Aboussie rolled a waffle to contain the ice cream. And the ice cream cone was born.

At the age of 16 Doumar began to sell paperweights and other items. One night, he bought a waffle from another vendor transplanted to Norfolk, Virginia from Ghent in Belgium, Leonidas Kestekidès. Doumar proceeded to roll up the waffle and place a scoop of ice cream on top. He then began selling the cones at the St. Louis Exposition. His "cones" were such a success that he designed a four-iron baking machine and had a foundry make it for him. At the Jamestown Exposition in 1907, he and his brothers sold nearly twenty-three thousand cones. After that, Abe bought a semiautomatic 36-iron machine, which produced 20 cones per minute and opened Doumar's Drive In in Norfolk, Virginia, which still operates at the same location over 100 years later.[6][7]

In 2008, the ice cream cone became the official state food of Missouri.[8]

Commercial cones

The earliest cones were rolled by hand, from hot and thin wafers, but in 1912, Frederick Bruckman, an inventor from Portland, Oregon, patented a machine for rolling ice cream cones. He sold his company to Nabisco in 1928, which is still producing ice cream cones as of 2017. Independent ice-cream providers such as Ben & Jerry's make their own cones.

In 1918, a Lebanese immigrant, Albert George, started the George & Thomas Cone Company, and began to mass-produce baked ice cream cones to sell to restaurants, as well as the everyday consumer.[9] That company became Joy Ice Cream Cone Company, now named the Joy Cone Company, located in Hermitage, Pennsylvania. The company has two facilities, its eastern facility located at 3435 Lamor Road in Hermitage, PA, and its western facility located at 2843 West Shamrell Blvd. in Flagstaff, Arizona.[10] In July 2017, the company started construction of another $24 million plant at its Hermitage, PA location which will be fully operational in spring of 2018.[11] The company produces over 2 billion ice cream cones (sugar, cake, and waffle cones)[12] a year. Joy Cone is the largest ice cream cone maker in the world.[13] The company is still owned/operated by the George family along with the employees as an ESOP (employee stock ownership plan).[9] In September 2017, Joy Cone completed the purchase of BoDeans Baking Group, with its Le Mars, Iowa plants, along with a second subsidiary, Altesa, which makes ice cream cones and related products in Mexico City.[11] This will permit Joy Cone to expand sales into Central America.

Pre-filled cones

In 1928, J.T. "Stubby" Parker of Fort Worth, Texas created an ice cream cone that could be stored in a grocer's freezer, with the cone and the ice cream frozen together as one item.[14] He formed The Drumstick Company in 1931 to market the product, and in 1991 the company was purchased by Nestlé.

In 1959, Spica, an Italian ice cream manufacturer based in Naples, invented a process whereby the inside of the waffle cone was insulated from the ice cream by a layer of oil, sugar and chocolate. Spica registered the name Cornetto in 1960. Initial sales were poor, but in 1976 Unilever bought out Spica and began a mass-marketing campaign throughout Europe. Cornetto is now one of the most popular ice creams in the world.

In 1979, a patent for a new packaging design by David Weinstein led to easier transportation of commercial ice cream cones. Weinstein's design enabled the ice cream cone to be wrapped in a wax paper package. This made the cones more sanitary while also preventing the paper wrapper from falling off during transportation, or from becoming stuck to the cone.[15]

Ice cream cones
Sugar cones 
Unwrapped pre-filled cone 
Soft serve ice cream in a wafer style cone 
A 99 Flake ice cream cone 
Sugar cone dipped in rainbow sprinkles 
Waffle cones 
Chocolate soft serve ice cream with sprinkles in a waffle cone from Dairy Queen 

See also


  1. ^ Julien Archambault, Le Cuisinier économe ou Élémens nouveaux de cuisine, de pâtisserie et d'office, Librairie du commerce, Paris, 1825, page 346.
  2. ^ a b Stradley, Linda. "History of Ice Cream Cone". What's Cooking America. Retrieved 2008-05-13. 
  3. ^ Weir, Robert. "An 1807 Ice Cream Cone: Discovery and Evidence". Historic Food. Retrieved 2008-05-13. 
  4. ^ "United States Patent and Trademark Office". Retrieved 5 October 2012. 
  5. ^ Marlowe, Jack. "Zalabia and the First Ice-Cream Cone". www.aramcoworld.com (Issue July/August 2003). Aramco Services Company. Retrieved 2016-02-16. 
  6. ^ The Ocean View Nickel Tour - Part VII. Rkpuma.com. Retrieved on 2015-11-20.
  7. ^ History Doumar's. Doumars.com (2013-06-16). Retrieved on 2015-11-20.
  8. ^ IT, Missouri Secretary of State -. "The State Dessert - Missouri Secretary of State". sos.mo.gov. Retrieved 2018-01-27. 
  9. ^ a b About us Joy Cone Company. Retrieved Feb 1, 2018.
  10. ^ FAQs, General Questions Joy Cone Company. Retrieved Feb 1, 2018.
  11. ^ a b Joe Pinchot (July 18, 2017). "More Joy for cone factory". The Sharon Herald. Retrieved Feb 1, 2018. 
  12. ^ Joy Cone Company Ice Cream Cones WebstaurantStore.
  13. ^ Mans, Jack (1 June 2009). "Labler is a Sweet Solution for Ice Cream Cone Maker". Packaging Digest. 46 (6): 38–41. Archived from the original on 20 January 2013. Retrieved 12 October 2012. 
  14. ^ Funderburg, Anne Cooper. Chocolate, Strawberry, and Vanilla: A History Of American Ice Cream. Popular Press. Retrieved June 10, 2012. 
  15. ^ "The United States Patent and Trademark Office". Retrieved 11 October 2012.