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Paletas: Oaxacan chocolate, mango con chamoy, guava de requesón, avocado and Buddha’s hand on a plate.
Paletas at Ditroit.
Wonho Frank Lee

Cool Off With a Paleta at These 10 Los Angeles Shops

Frozen Mexican paletas and nieves are an ideal treat when temperatures spike

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Paletas at Ditroit.
| Wonho Frank Lee

In late August 2022, a pending heat advisory put all of Southern California into triple-digit temperatures. Late-summer activities in 100-plus degrees might include a trek to the beach, to air-conditioned movie theaters for a few hours of relief, or to one of the many paleta shops throughout the Southland. Fruit-filled, frozen Mexican treats on a stick are some of the best gifts of summer, although they’re wonderful to consume any time of the year. The water-based nieves variety can include natural fruits like mango, coconut, or banana, but creamy, milky paletas that turn the flavors and coolness up significantly aren’t to be missed.

Wandering around LA, one might notice storefronts with “Michoacana” in the name, but that doesn’t always mean they’re related. Many are independent and churning out some of the region’s best flavors in frozen form. Here are 10 places around town to find fantastically cooling paletas.

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Note: Restaurants on this map are listed geographically.

Colmelati Hand Crafted Ice Cream

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Colemelati’s Oaxacan-inspired North Hollywood shop is decked out with neon signs and fun colors. There’s always something cool to order, such as fresh green juices and the caramel cajeta latte, along with paletas in flavors like watermelon, mango, and blackberry granola.

La Michoacana Ricas Nieves

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Born in Michoacan, Jesus Hernandez Morales opened his family-operated business after learning how to make ice cream from his father. His paletas are inventive and packed with flavor, including one made with avocado, a horchata version, and even an option that tastes like a cappuccino. In addition to Inglewood, find La Michoacana Ricas Nieves in Montebello and Hawthorne.

The Paleta Bar

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Directly across from Hollywood and Highland is the Paleta Bar, where customizing paletas is the name of the game. There’s a massive display case featuring dipping options like white chocolate, cereal toppings, and fresh fruit. The hardest part is selecting a base paleta, with options like Tajín or lime with chimoy.

A display case with paletas/Mexican popsicles.
The Paleta Bar
Mona Holmes

Mateo's Ice Cream & Fruit Bars

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Just like most paleta shops, Mateo’s Ice Cream & Fruit Bars sells sandwiches, esquites, and fresh juices. Luckily, there are four locations (Koreatown, West LA, Del Rey, and Mid-City) to nab a refreshing paleta made of jamaica/hibiscus or guava.

Viva Cafe

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Viva Cafe is nestled in Koreatown on Eighth Street near Normandie. There’s always a flavor that appeals here, with options that include cookies and cream, vanilla, or coco de leche (coconut milk).

La Michoacana Supreme

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Situated directly across the street from the former Pacific Dining Car and a four-block walk from the Westlake Metro station, La Michoacana Supreme has ample parking in a congested area. The best idea is to buy a dozen paletas and pack them into a freezer for future enjoyment. Check out the shop’s location in the City of Commerce, as well.

Cascada Refrescante

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As the name implies, chilly paletas and more are on offer at Cascada Refrescante. And while the frozen treats are outstanding, the licuados (smoothies) are also worth a try on a hot day.

Ditroit Taqueria

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Damian chef Enrique Olvera opened his taco shop in 2020. Here, the team prepares outstanding food along with paletas in flavors like jasmine rice with milk, white chocolate, and puffed rice dip. It’s not uncommon to see new additions to the menu, so check Ditroit’s Instagram to see the goods.

Paletas: Oaxacan chocolate, mango con chamoy, guava de requesón, avocado and Buddha’s hand on a plate.
Ditroit’s paletas
Wonho Frank Lee

La Michoacana Boyle Heights

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La Michoacana is nestled in central Boyle Heights, on a busy stretch of Cesar E. Chavez Avenue. The most popular paleta flavors here include mango with chamoy, as well as one inspired by gansito, a strawberry jelly-and-cream cake with chocolate.

Mega Raspados Don Manuel La Michoacana

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Mega Raspados lives up to its name with a massive selection of smoothies, juices, and paletas.

The latter includes treats on a stick made with tequila, mamey, queso, or pistachio. If the Boyle Heights location isn’t convenient, there are six others throughout Los Angeles, including outposts in Montebello and Lynwood.

Colmelati Hand Crafted Ice Cream

Colemelati’s Oaxacan-inspired North Hollywood shop is decked out with neon signs and fun colors. There’s always something cool to order, such as fresh green juices and the caramel cajeta latte, along with paletas in flavors like watermelon, mango, and blackberry granola.

La Michoacana Ricas Nieves

Born in Michoacan, Jesus Hernandez Morales opened his family-operated business after learning how to make ice cream from his father. His paletas are inventive and packed with flavor, including one made with avocado, a horchata version, and even an option that tastes like a cappuccino. In addition to Inglewood, find La Michoacana Ricas Nieves in Montebello and Hawthorne.

The Paleta Bar

A display case with paletas/Mexican popsicles.
The Paleta Bar
Mona Holmes

Directly across from Hollywood and Highland is the Paleta Bar, where customizing paletas is the name of the game. There’s a massive display case featuring dipping options like white chocolate, cereal toppings, and fresh fruit. The hardest part is selecting a base paleta, with options like Tajín or lime with chimoy.

A display case with paletas/Mexican popsicles.
The Paleta Bar
Mona Holmes

Mateo's Ice Cream & Fruit Bars

Just like most paleta shops, Mateo’s Ice Cream & Fruit Bars sells sandwiches, esquites, and fresh juices. Luckily, there are four locations (Koreatown, West LA, Del Rey, and Mid-City) to nab a refreshing paleta made of jamaica/hibiscus or guava.

Viva Cafe

Viva Cafe is nestled in Koreatown on Eighth Street near Normandie. There’s always a flavor that appeals here, with options that include cookies and cream, vanilla, or coco de leche (coconut milk).

La Michoacana Supreme

Situated directly across the street from the former Pacific Dining Car and a four-block walk from the Westlake Metro station, La Michoacana Supreme has ample parking in a congested area. The best idea is to buy a dozen paletas and pack them into a freezer for future enjoyment. Check out the shop’s location in the City of Commerce, as well.

Cascada Refrescante

As the name implies, chilly paletas and more are on offer at Cascada Refrescante. And while the frozen treats are outstanding, the licuados (smoothies) are also worth a try on a hot day.

Ditroit Taqueria

Paletas: Oaxacan chocolate, mango con chamoy, guava de requesón, avocado and Buddha’s hand on a plate.
Ditroit’s paletas
Wonho Frank Lee

Damian chef Enrique Olvera opened his taco shop in 2020. Here, the team prepares outstanding food along with paletas in flavors like jasmine rice with milk, white chocolate, and puffed rice dip. It’s not uncommon to see new additions to the menu, so check Ditroit’s Instagram to see the goods.

Paletas: Oaxacan chocolate, mango con chamoy, guava de requesón, avocado and Buddha’s hand on a plate.
Ditroit’s paletas
Wonho Frank Lee

La Michoacana Boyle Heights

La Michoacana is nestled in central Boyle Heights, on a busy stretch of Cesar E. Chavez Avenue. The most popular paleta flavors here include mango with chamoy, as well as one inspired by gansito, a strawberry jelly-and-cream cake with chocolate.

Mega Raspados Don Manuel La Michoacana

Mega Raspados lives up to its name with a massive selection of smoothies, juices, and paletas.

The latter includes treats on a stick made with tequila, mamey, queso, or pistachio. If the Boyle Heights location isn’t convenient, there are six others throughout Los Angeles, including outposts in Montebello and Lynwood.

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