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HMRC internal manual

VAT Food

Excepted items: Ice cream etc: Other frozen desserts

Gateaux and cakes Frozen gateaux and cakes, including cheesecakes, which have to be thawed completely to be eaten are zero-rated but those containing ice cream are standard-rated. Baked alaska, which requires further cooking, is zero-rated.

Cheesecakes Frozen cheesecakes which are usually eaten fully defrosted are zero-rated. A recent development has been the introduction of cheesecake type desserts which can be eaten either straight from the freezer or after just a few minutes at room temperature. These are zero- rated as they are more akin to traditional cheesecakes than to ice cream, ice lollies, frozen yoghurt and water ices.

Mousse and similar products Mousse and other types of chilled desserts which have to be completely thawed before eating are zero-rated. Such products can be distinguished from ice cream by the fact that they contain agents which maintain their texture when thawed.