Drink a Polar Bear (Creamy Vanilla Coke)

Drink a Polar Bear:  Creamy Vanilla Coke Recipe on @whiteonrice

Man are we ever ready for the warm weather to end. Longing for the days beyond t-shirt and shorts attire, it seems like every day we are biding our time and trying to find ways to stay cool and refreshed. Worst of all, we’re in for another big heat wave in Southern California before the weather even attempts to cool down a bit.

Now you know why we’re posting a cold drink recipe in the beginning of October. It’s drought-dry and blistering hot over here.

Polar Bear: Creamy Vanilla Coke on @whiteonrice

Iced tea, sea salt iced coffee, thai iced teas, gin & tonics, fresh lemonade and limeades. We’ve been making just about every refreshing beverage we can think of to satiate our thirst.

Lately I was reminded of one of the favorite treats I had growing up. There was (and still is) a local drive-thru burger place in my small hometown called Czer’s In & Out. It was where we’d grab a slew of seasoned fries after sports practice. Or got that post game soft serve ice cream after Little League (half chocolate and half vanilla, please). It is impossible to grow up in that town without having fond memories tied to Czer’s.

Delicious Polar Bear Drink: Creamy Vanilla Coke Recipe from @whiteonrice

One of their off the menu items was a Polar Bear. A creamy vanilla coke. I’m sure they weren’t the first and other places have their own names for it, but that is what we all knew it as. Kind of like having a coke float without the ice cream, it was always a summer time favorite.

This last summer when I went up to go fly fishing with my dad we stopped by Czer’s. I pulled up to the window and asked if they still had Polar Bears, not sure if she’d even know what I was talking about being that it isn’t on the menu and about 20 years have past since I’ve had one there.

Without a bit of hesitation, the girl smiled, “Of course!”

It was great to be in my hometown, and a bit more refreshed too.



Love our gray and white striped straws for all occasions.

It's Polar Bear Time! Creamy Vanilla Coke on @whiteonrice

Polar Bear Recipe (creamy vanilla coke)

Yield: 1 Serving

Total Time: 5 Minutes

Guessingly based off of Czer's In & Out Polar Bear, a hometown favorite. It isn't the prettiest drink after 10-15 minutes, but it is delicious.


  • 12 ounces (355ml) Coke
  • 2 tablespoons (30ml) half & half
  • 1/2 tablespoon (8ml) vanilla syrup


  1. Fill a glass of ice with the coke, making sure there is about one-inch of free space at the top of the glass.
  2. Slowly pour the half and half and vanilla syrup into the Coke.  Gently stir and enjoy.
Recipe Source: WhiteOnRiceCouple.com.

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Recipe Note for Salt: All recipes containing salt are based on kosher or sea salt amounts, not table salt. If using table salt, reduce the amount used to taste.

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{ 16 comments… read them below or add one }
  1. Emily

    We like to call these Dirty Diet Cokies here in Utah. 😉

  2. Kathy

    Isn’t this what Laverne always drank on Laverne and Shirley way back in the 70’sj

  3. z

    Sounds very good, I have added milk ( I would use the half and half now that I see what you did) to cold rootbeer, tasted like a rootbeer float without ice cream…I haven’t had a cola in quite some time, will have to make an exception! Thank you…

  4. ATasteOfMadness

    Vanilla coke was my favorite drink ever! But the stopped selling it in Canada 🙁 Thanks for showing me that I can make it at home 🙂

  5. Sherry

    Would it possible to skip a step and simply use Vanilla Coke instead of vanilla syrup and Coke? I ask this because I have a stash of Vanilla Coke and I since I only drink soda a few times a year, it probably would be a good way to use it up…

  6. Rileysue

    I was so happy to see this post. Nels’ In and Out in LaGrande Oregon was the place to go for a Garden Burger, Curly Fries with Special Sauce and a Polar Bear. Haven’t had one in years but I think I’ll remedy that soon!

  7. Joyce

    It reminds me of “Laverne and Shirley” and their favorite pick me up, “Milk and Pepsi”.

  8. Annie @ ciaochowbambina

    Ahhh! This sounds so delicious! I’ll be making this, this weekend! I have those straws too! Love it!

  9. Matt Robinson

    What a great & tasty way to beat the heat here in SoCal. My boys will love these!

  10. Jennifer

    I wonder if a creamy vanilla coke with rum would be good…or whiskey. 😉

    1. Jeni

      Ahhhhh I may be a fan of fireball whiskey + vanilla coke, so I think that a little fireball to this would be awesome.

      1. White on Rice Couple

        I like the way you girls are thinking! Might have to fireball one of these tonight.

  11. Megan

    What a treat! Going to make this this weekend. Thank you!

  12. Laura (Blogging Over Thyme)

    I had no idea this even existed!!! I haven’t had a Coke in the longest time, but I’m totally craving this, despite the fact that its gotten cooler on the East Coast 🙂

  13. Tara

    You’d never believe this but I was JUST thinking about this drink on Tuesday! It’s one my mom used to make for my brother and I when we were kids, except using milk rather than half-and-half and without the vanilla syrup (no one used vanilla syrup in the 80s!). Such great memories this one brings back and now I’m dying to try it with vanilla syrup! Thanks for sharing!

  14. Katrina @ Warm Vanilla Sugar

    How have I never heard of this before?! YUM!

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