Here is my super simple and uber delicious homemade whipped cream recipe. Skip the store-bought and make your own using only heavy cream, powdered sugar, and vanilla extract!
I absolutely love recipes that are simple, quick and homemade. As a busy mom, I don't have time for long and drawn out. And I don't want to feed my family lots of processed ingredients. Simple, fast, and made from scratch. That's what I want.
Whipped cream from scratch is one of the easiest and mandatory recipes that everyone should have in their cooking and baking recipe collection.
It pairs perfectly with so many desserts. You'll make it once and never go back to buying store-bought whipped cream. I feel confident about that!
I also love how I have never been able to screw up this recipe. Because it's so easy, comes out perfectly every time, and tastes ah-maaaazing, I come back to it again and again.
How To Make Homemade Whipped Cream From Scratch
This dessert staple is far easier to make than I'm sure you realize.
Only 2 ingredients are essential for this recipe, but I really feel that great quality vanilla is the 3rd necessary ingredient for that over-the-top, perfect taste.
While you can whisk it by hand, I highly recommend using a stand mixer (or even a hand mixer). Otherwise, you will get quite an arm workout!
With your mixer and a little patience, you'll delight in a sweet and fluffy whipped cream that the entire family (and your friends too) will enjoy! Just don't forget to lick the bowl afterward…it would be a crime to waste any!
While I recommend making it the same day you intend to use it, I have made it a couple of days ahead of time before and had great results.
Where To Use Whipped Cream
You are only limited by your imagination in the ways you can use homemade whip cream!
Here are just a few ideas for using homemade whipped topping:
- My favorite – strawberry (or any berry) shortcake
- Serve on top of any fruits and berries.
- Um…pie! Any kind from pumpkin pie to fruit pies to pecan pie and everything in between
- Add it to your ice cream for an incredible ice cream sundae
- On top of Milkshakes
- Brownies or cookies – yum!
- Top off your hot chocolate with some fresh whipped cream
- Try a little on your waffles or pancakes – what a treat!
Tips for Making Great Fresh Whipped Cream
- Freeze your mixing bowl (preferably metal) for at least 10 minutes before adding ingredients to it
- Use very cold heavy whipping cream.
- You can even freeze your mixer attachments to add an extra chilled element.
- Don’t over-whip! It’s better to under-whip than over-whip.
- I prefer to wait until the last minute to make my whipped cream. You can prepare it up to about 4 hours in advance, and it will keep most of its volume (keep it cold).
- Make sure you start your mixer out on low and gradually increase it to high… otherwise you’ll be finding heavy cream splatters everywhere. Gradually increase speed until stiff peaks form. You’ll know it’s done when it begins to hold its shape and reaches the consistency of Cool Whip. Don’t overmix!
- You can freeze the leftovers! You'll be amazed at how well it works.
Homemade Whipped Cream Q & A
Can I use whole milk for this recipe?
Unfortunately, you can't make whipped cream with milk, half and half, or light cream, as they don't have a high enough fat content to thicken when whipped. Heavy cream, whipping cream, or double cream – basically anything that has a fat content of 30% or higher – is what you need for this recipe.
Can I use heavy cream that has been sitting out?
No. Always start by using cold heavy cream. The longer the cream has been out of the fridge the longer it will take to whip. Plus, warm cream will never actually whip because the fat is no longer solid.
How Can I Speed Up the Process If I Don't Have A Mixer?
Whip over a bowl of ice. I really can't say it enough – keeping your ingredients cold reduces your work and provides better results. Placing your bowl of cream over a bowl of ice while you whip will help your cream stay super cold. Another option is to place the bowl you'll be using in the freezer for 20 minutes before you start. This is especially key if you don't have a stand mixer or hand mixer.
What's the Difference Between Stiff Peaks and Soft Peaks?
Directions for making whipped cream will usually call for whipping until you see stiff peaks. Um, what does that mean?
When your heavy cream thickens and starts to hold its shape, you'll want to start paying attention to the peaks. Here's how:
Hold your whisk up. If the cream on your whisk gently droops or just barely holds its shape, you have soft peaks. However, if the cream stands tall and proud, you have stiff peaks! At this point you are done! Don't keep whipping or you'll over-whip your cream.
Can I Still Use Over-Whipped Cream?
Once your whipped cream starts to thicken, it comes together quickly. In a few whisks (or seconds, if you're using a mixer) you can easily go from stiff peaks to a mess.
Good news! All is not lost if this happens to you. Simply add a tablespoon of cold heavy cream at a time and gently fold it in until your whipped cream smooths back out.
Check out this video to walk you through making homemade whipped cream:
A final thought
You don't need to stick to just one flavor!
The Barefoot Contessa gives some great ideas for flavor differences and additions to change up your whipped cream. She even has a recipe for a make-ahead version that's even more stable (not that I've needed it or tried it so far)
Just 3 simple ingredients and 5 minutes get you an incredible fresh whipped cream that can't be beat! Forget the store-bought stuff – this is way better.