What Is A Frosty Made Of?

The frosty is the signature frozen dairy dessert at Wendy’s. It is a halfway point between ice cream and a milkshake in its consistency.

What Is A Frosty Made Of?

When Wendy’s opened in 1969, the frosty was one of the 5 items available to purchase. The founder of Wendy’s, Dave Thomas, wanted a sweet treat for customers to have after their burger.

The frosty originally only came in one flavor, light chocolate. This was a mix between vanilla and chocolate. Since Wendy’s started out with only 1 frosty machine, Thomas used to mix the 2 flavors himself.

This mix of flavors was to create a taste that wasn’t predominantly chocolate, as Thomas believed that the chocolate flavor would be overwhelming when customers bought multiple food items.

After consulting with Tom Kullman, an ice cream mix specialist, Thomas was able to have a frosty that had the taste and consistency he desired.

The light chocolate frosty would remain the only flavor available until 2006 when a vanilla flavor was introduced due to popular demand.

In the summer of 2022, Wendy’s announced that the vanilla frosty would be temporarily replaced with a strawberry frosty.

2022 also saw the addition of Wendy’s first-ever holiday frosty flavor, a peppermint one that would replace the strawberry.

In this article, we cover exactly what is in Wendy’s frosty. We go into detail about some of the ingredients and what exactly they do for the frosty.


According to Wendy’s website, a classic chocolate frosty contains:

  • Milk
  • Sugar
  • Corn syrup
  • Cream
  • Whey
  • Nonfat dry milk
  • Cocoa (processed with alkali)
  • Guar gum
  • Mono- and diglycerides
  • Cellulose gum
  • Natural vanilla flavor
  • Carrageenan
  • Calcium sulfate
  • Sodium citrate
  • Dextrose
  • Vitamin A palmitate

Nutritional Value

  • 350 calories
  • 9g total fat
  • 58g total carbohydrate
  • 47g total sugars
  • 10g protein
What Is A Frosty Made Of?

Ingredient Breakdown

There are a lot of ingredients in a frosty, some of which may be confusing to the average consumer. Below we cover exactly what some of the less commonly known ingredients are.

Guar Gum

Guar gum is extracted from guar beans, a type of legume that is mainly produced in India.

It is used to thicken and stabilize food. It is often used as a gluten-free replacement for wheat flour in baked goods as a thickening agent.

Guar gum has been shown to reduce blood glucose levels and serum cholesterol.

It is commonly used in ice cream because it slows the production of ice crystals, allowing it to remain smooth in consistency.

As well as food, guar gum is also in laxatives, toothpaste, and play slime.

Monoglycerides And Diglycerides

These are both a class of glycerides, which are formed from glycerol and fatty acids. 

Glycerides can come in mono-, di-, and triglycerides. Triglycerides are commonly found in animal fats and vegetable oils, they are then naturally broken down into mono- and diglycerides by enzymes. 

Monoglycerides have 1 fatty acid chain, whereas diglycerides have 2. 

Mono- and diglycerides are commonly added to food as an emulsifier to stop oil and water from separating. They are commonly seen under the name E471.

Monoglycerides are used during the creaming process of milk beverages to ensure stability. They have also been used as a plastic film replacement on fruits and vegetables during transport and storage.

Diglycerides have been used as a fat substitute, due to their ability to suppress the development of body fat.

Cellulose Gum

Also known as carboxymethylcellulose, cellulose gum is a common thickening agent. It is found in the cell walls of plants, primarily trees, and cotton.

It can be used to provide a creamy texture and stop the crystallization of sugar. 


Carrageenan is a natural ingredient extracted from red edible seaweed, more commonly from one known as Irish Moss.

It has gelling and thickening properties and is especially good at binding to protein. This means it is commonly used in dairy and meat products.

It is sometimes used as a vegetarian and vegan replacement for gelatin in some confectionery. 

Calcium Sulfate

This is an inorganic compound and a thickening agent. It is related to hydrates with some common ones being plaster and gypsum.

It is sometimes labeled as E516 in the food industry and commonly used in cheese products, baked goods, and frozen desserts.

As the name suggests, it has a high calcium content so it is also used as a flour fortifier in baking.

It is also used as a coagulant in the production of tofu.

Calcium sulfate also has a long history in the dental industry as a grafting material.

Sodium Citrate

This is used as a food additive to help with flavor and as a preservative, it is commonly labeled as E331.

It has a lightly tart flavor and is commonly found in many drinks like varieties of club soda and drink mixes. Sodium citrate is also found in bratwurst. 

Sodium citrate is also an emulsifier allowing fats to stop separating. Due to this, it is commonly added to melting cheese to stop it from getting greasy and to stay in a liquid form.


Chemically, dextrose is identical to glucose and blood sugar. It is a simple sugar that is made from wheat or corn and is used as a sweetener in many foods.

Since it is chemically identical, dextrose can raise a person’s blood sugar level so sometimes dextrose is used in the medical field and combined with other drugs.

Vitamin A Palmitate

This is also known as retinyl palmitate. It is used as a replacement for the vitamins lost during the process of milk fat removal. It is an antioxidant and a source of vitamin A which helps the immune system.

Final Thoughts

Due to the consistency of Wendy’s frosty, you are able to consume it with a spoon or large straw, it is also popular to dip fries in it.

The frosty is iconic for its thick consistency which is thanks to all of the stabilizers and thickeners in it.

Jenna Priestly
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