What’s the secret to the success of Vanilla Jill’s, an independently owned frozen yogurt shop in Eugene? The froyo at Vanilla Jill’s is organic, handmade, and actually tastes like yogurt. With flavors ranging from vanilla to coconut-lime, these aren’t super-sweet concoctions from a powdered mix. It might take a minute for the average taste bud to adapt to frozen yogurt tasting like, well, yogurt, but once it does, the experience is nothing but pure bliss.

Vanilla Jill’s opened in the Coburg Station on Coburg Road in March 2010. Since then, the owners, Tim and Megan Stevens, have created a series of frozen yogurt flavors – including traditional vanilla and chocolate, as well as innovative flavor combinations like coconut-lime, raspberry rhubarb, and cinnamon carrot – that have captivated customers. Tim and Megan opened Vanilla Jill’s with the intention of providing unique flavors of frozen yogurt made with healthy, local, and organic ingredients. They don’t disappoint: they use kefir (a fermented milk that is used to make yogurt) from Nancy’s Yogurt in Springfield. With an eye on wholesale production, they moved their scoop shop to the Whiteaker neighborhood in 2016.

The mix of traditional flavors and more gourmet offerings sets Vanilla Jill’s apart from other froyo shops. By providing the option to go wild with raspberry rhubarb topped with almonds and chocolate syrup, but also the option to stay traditional with swirls of vanilla bean and dark chocolate topped with caramel sauce, the menu has a treat made for everyone. And more than anything else, the variety of options including vegan to sugar-free sets this shop apart from its ice cream shop cousins.

This community-centered shop proves that frozen yogurt can be as good as its chilly cream and milk-based competitor. The health conscious ingredients, the tie to other local businesses, and the emphasis on providing a treat for everybody regardless of dietary needs or restrictions, makes this frozen yogurt taste even better on a warm summer’s day.

Stop by and enjoy a scoop! Vanilla Jill’s is located at 298 Blair Blvd., Eugene – right next to Equiano Coffee. You can fan this unique frozen yogurt shop on Facebook and follow them on Twitter for flavorful updates.

Photo by: Michelle Locke