June 20, 2013

How To: Make Whipped Cream from Scratch

There aren't many things quite like fresh whipped cream made from scratch — and the funny thing about it is, just how easy it can be to make at home. Once you make a batch of your own, you may never buy another can or tub again.

Since it's summertime, we've been having fun making small batches of fresh and cold whipped cream with the leftover heavy cream we have on hand from various recipes. It's so much fun to scoop onto a fresh piece of fruit or better yet, mix fruit into it, making an infused cream. Today we're going to show you how to do both.

First up, let's make a batch of plain whipped cream. You might remember we've made butter from scratch using this same method — to get whipped cream, we just add in sweet ingredients at the beginning and stop the process a little sooner. All you will need is heavy or whipping cream, confectioner's suger (powdered sugar), and a little bit of pure vanilla — that's it.

For measuring purposes, you can give or take on the sugar and vanilla based on how much cream you have on hand — roughly for every 1 cup of heavy cream, you will get 2 cups of whipped cream:
  • 1 cup cold heavy or whipping cream
  • 2 tablespoons confectioner's sugar
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla
Other types of sugar can certainly be used, the powdered kind dissolves very quickly. Also, the sugar and vanilla can be skipped or tweaked altogether if you prefer less sweetness to your whipped cream.

The secret for getting great whipped cream is in having very cold cream and a cold mixing bowl. We like to toss ours in the freezer for about a minute while gathering everything else together, then removing it with the cream just before we're ready to begin.

For mixing you can use a stand mixer (our mixer of choice), a hand mixer, or even a bowl and whisk if you're willing to put a little time and muscle into the process. We like the stand mixer since it goes the quickest, allows you two free hands and keeps the mixing process pretty uniform.

Combine all ingredients in mixing bowl and begin to mix on a low setting to get the process started, then turn up the speed to medium high and watch the cream begin to thicken and expand before your eyes:

Once you begin to see soft peaks form, you are almost there. The cream will thicken and cling to your beater when you pull it away from the cream:

This is the stage where you need to watch closely and stop the mixer before it beats the cream too much. You've gone too far if the cream is separating or forms granules. We like our whipped cream a little chunkier over completely smooth peaks, so we push it to the last possible minute before going to far — right about here:

Consistency is a matter of your preference. Scoop cream into a bowl and serve immediately for best results, or save in fridge to serve later. It's best to serve within the same day you make the cream, but it will keep up to 2 days stored in the fridge in an airtight container. 

I'm telling you, you'll never go back to store-bought whipped cream once you've tried one spoonful of this:

Peaches will also never taste the same once you've had a slice of one with a heaping scoop of whipped cream slathered across the top:

Now! If making plain whipped cream weren't enough, let's infuse some fruit into the mix — mulberries to be exact:

We've mentioned a few times over the past couple weeks that the wild mulberry tree down the street from us reached its prime and we foraged a huge colander of berries to make all sorts of recipes with:

To make berry infused whipped cream, just mash up a small bowl full of berries (or other fruit of your choosing) with the back of a spoon to get a loose textured consistency like so:

Then just toss the mashed berries and juice into your almost whipped cream and let the beater spin for another couple seconds to get a loosely incorporated mixture:

It's that simple!

Whichever variation you prefer, it's definitely worth a go — and an especially delicious way to use up some of your leftover heavy cream. Plus, if you're entertaining, you can tell all of your guests the whipped topping was made from scratch!

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  1. Word. :) I haven't bought a can or tub of whip cream in over 10 years. It's just a waste of calories if you don't make it homemade:) Don't you just LOVE your Kitchen Aid Mixer? It is the work horse in our kitchen.

    1. Thanks Angie — YES, love the mixer. While it is technically Tim's mixer, it has become mine overtime since I'm the one that uses it. Sometimes I just try to find excuses to use it I love it so much.


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