It's easy to get answers about health and nutrition! Just send your question by email to [email protected] and Dr. Harlan will respond to selected questions of general interest. Answers will be posted in the Ask Dr. Gourmet newsletter (sign up now!) and archived in the Ask Dr. Gourmet section of the website.

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Ask Dr. Gourmet

Are sherberts and sorbets lactose-free?

Dr. Gourmet, my children are lactose intolerant. I have been told by some that they can consume both Sherbet and Sorbet, and that they can only consume Sorbet by others. Could you please help me to define the difference and determine what is best for them?

Dr. Gourmet Says...

Scoops of lactose-free mango sorbet

Technically the definition of sherbet means that it will contain milk or cream. Sorbet would not contain dairy and should be essentially fruit, water, and sugar. Here's more on the difference between sherbert, sorbet, and ice cream.

Check the package of the sorbets that you purchase. Most will have only these three ingredients and not contain milk or lactose.

Thanks for writing,

Timothy S. Harlan, MD, FACP, CCMS
Dr. Gourmet