Odd Jobs if You Love Ice Cream

Extra sprinkles, please.

Odd Jobs is a newsletter about careers that don’t fit in cubicles. Too many people are miserable with their lives, jobs, and themselves. Why not do something odd and make $$$ while you’re at it? I’ve got a million ideas for you.

Ps. we’re doing a fun giveaway this month ($25 Amazon gift card & a t-shirt we designed!!!) enter to win here. The more you share this newsletter with your pals, the more you’ll climb to the top of the leader board and snag the grand prize).

I eat a lot of ice cream.

When I first moved to New York City, 10-years-ago, I would eat ice cream for breakfast.

I know that’s not healthy and many health professionals would say NO!!!!! but back then, it was really all I could afford to eat. I was making pennies at my job, paying too much for rent, and $1 ice cream from the local bodega just fit my budget.

I’ve since swapped ice cream for yogurt and berries (#adulting) but find myself getting cozy with a few scoops of Moose Tracks almost every night.

The other day, a friend asked me if I wanted to try an ice cream flavor called, “Chip Happens”. I didn’t ask questions and asked her to give me some in a bowl.

After one bite, I yelped out:

THIS ICE CREAM HAS POTATO CHIPS IN IT!

How odd.

But what’s even odder is that people out there have jobs in the ice cream industry and make decisions on names of flavors, ingredients to make people’s eyes bulge, and even get paid to taste the concoctions before they are packed in pints and shipped around the world.

How do they get those odd jobs?

Let’s dive into that.

(PS. The whole week is ice creamed themed…..get ready and SUBSCRIBE!)


Odd Jobs in the Ice Cream World

Ice Cream Taste Tester

The Gig:

An ice cream taster assesses the quality of ice cream on a flavor, consistency, smell, texture and appearance level. Ice cream tasters perform testing for about five hours of their workday and spend the rest of the day developing new products and combining new flavors. Here’s what they do:

  • Creating new chemical concoctions

  • Designing flavor concepts

  • Performing quality assurance tests

  • Beta-testing failed ice cream

  • Giving out ice cream samples

The Pay:

Their average salary is $68,970 per year and can vary depending on the employer, the location and the candidate's experience.

The Training:

Route #1: Earn a degree in food chemistry, food quality control and management, food microbiology.

Route #2: Become an apprentice at an ice cream manufacturing company. This is the best way to learn about ice cream making.

Route #3: Take care of your palate to be a good tester: Choose tea over coffee. Avoid spicy food. Avoid smoking.

Route #3: Gain experience in ice cream tasting, consider working in an ice cream shop. Practice assessing various aspects and distinguishing each ingredient of the ice cream you taste.

Ice Cream Maker

The Gig:

Ice cream maker definition: a professional chef specialized in the making of a range of chilled products from scratch including ice cream, sorbets and frozen desserts. They may also make plated desserts, ice-sculptures and iced decorations.

Ice cream makers are in charge of the ice cream making process from A to Z, starting with researching and devising recipes and flavors, or developing product lines, right through to purchasing raw materials, and executing production using techniques such as churning, mixing and pasteurizing. From there, they will also package and display products, and/or serve and plate them.

The Pay:

The salaries of Ice Cream Makers in the US range from $18,740 to $44,900 , with a median salary of $26,950 . The middle 57% of Ice Cream Makers makes between $26,950 and $32,590, with the top 86% making $44,900.

The Training

Route #1: Professional Certificate, a six-month training course comprising practical sessions using high-tech equipment to learn the range of culinary techniques and skills, on which students will be taught by industry professionals and renowned master ice cream makers.

Route #2: Work experience. Find a local ice cream maker and become an assistant. Learn from them every single day until you too become an ice cream making pro.

Ice Cream Scooper

The Gig:

Now hiring - a real job:

Van Leeuwen Ice Cream is hiring part-time Event Scoopers to work our amazing NYC Ice Cream Truck team. Our scoopers are the ultimate Van Leeuwen ambassadors as they exemplify our world-class standards in everything they do. Our Ice Cream Truck / Events team has the opportunity to work music festivals, movie sets, private parties and more! We are looking for self-starters who are easily able to work as a part of a team or alone. The ideal candidate is someone with amazing energy, fantastic people skills, and a love for ice cream!

The Pay:

We found this gig that pays $20 an hour.

The Training:

Route #1: Work in the food industry with any other position.

Route #2: Have all the other skills needed and be willing to learn the ice cream world.

Other skills:
Flexible availability (weekends are a MUST)
Self-motivation and ability to work independently
A great attitude
Ability to effectively work well as part of a team and autonomously
Ability to thrive in a fast-paced environment
Ability to lift 30+ pounds
Exceptionally high standards for cleanliness


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