Sorbet is a frozen confection similar to ice cream, but made without any dairy products. Instead, the dessert is made with sweet syrup made of sugar and water and flavored with fruit juice or puree. The same method used to make ice cream is used to make sorbet. The syrup and fruit churns in a refrigerated machine that mixes air into the ingredients and forms fine ice crystals to make the sorbet smooth.
Data from the U.S. Department of Agriculture indicates that a typical 1-cup serving of sorbet ways around 200 g. Carbohydrates provide most of this amount at just over 40 g per serving with 35 of these calories being pure sugar. Proteins provide just 2.5 g and fats make up only 0.2 g. Sorbet typically contains no saturated fats or cholesterol, around 2 g of dietary fiber and 156 g of water. What remains is made up of indigestible matter and other nutrients.
A 1-cup serving of sorbet contains around 175 total calories. Around 160 of these calories come from carbohydrates. Proteins provide just 10 calories and fats 5 calories per serving. The same amount of sorbet can deliver just under 9 percent of the total calories the average person requires each day.
Sorbets typically provide only modest amounts of vitamins per serving. The exception is vitamin C at 19 mg per serving or just under 24 percent of the recommended daily intake (RDI) for this vitamin. Other vitamins occurring in lesser amounts within sorbet include vitamins B-6 and K, folate, niacin, riboflavin and thiamine.
Only small amounts of dietary minerals are available from 1 cup of sorbet. These include iron at 0.38 mg or just under 4 percent of the RDI, potassium at 106 mg or 2.2 percent, and magnesium at 8 mg or just over 2 percent. Other trace amounts of minerals within sorbet include calcium, phosphorus, zinc, selenium and sodium.
According to the Oklahoma State University Extension, high levels of dietary sugar can contribute to health problems such as nutritional deficiencies, diabetes, heart disease, dental cavities and hyperactivity in children. As with any high-sugar food, sorbets are best eaten in moderation.