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This wonderful, classic Homemade Whipped Cream Recipe is made with just 3 simple ingredients in under 5 minutes! It’s perfect for topping fresh fruit, pancakes, desserts, and so much more!

We’re getting back to basics with today’s recipe! Just like a Perfect Homemade Pie Crust or batch of perfect Banana Bread, I firmly believe that every home baker needs this homemade whipped cream recipe in their arsenal!

whipped cream on a whisk attachment

Sweetened Whipped Cream (aka Chantilly Cream)

Tubs of frozen whipped topping or tubes of pressurized whipped cream from the store can’t compare to a batch of freshly made sweetened whipped cream. Honestly, they don’t even come close to the incredible flavor and texture of real whipped cream made with just heavy cream, powdered sugar, and vanilla extract. Homemade whipped cream just tastes so much better, fresher, and more REAL than anything else. It’s absolutely essential for topping so many desserts, especially pumpkin pie, cheesecake, and trifle!

I learned how to make homemade whipped cream from my mom when I was probably 8 years old. As the oldest daughter in a family of 7, it was my job to make the whipped cream every time we needed it, which was pretty frequent! I literally have DECADES of experience making whipped cream and I’m going to break it down for you so that you too can enjoy the gastronomic delight that is homemade whipped cream.

This recipe is practically foolproof. Done right and freshly whipped cream is stable enough to pipe it in swirls to fill or frost a cake and still hold it’s shape. Anybody can do this!

While the traditional way of making Chantilly cream (the sweetened whipped cream we are making here that is named for a region of France) is to whip it by hand with a whisk, an electric mixer makes it so much easier. It’s worth the minimal amount of time and effort to literally whip this up to really take your desserts to the next level!

a close image of sweetened whipped cream with soft peaks

Recipe Ingredients

There are just 3 ingredients in this recipe, but there are a few important things to know about each of them so that you have success on your first try!

  • Heavy cream: This is probably the most important one to get right. Look for cartons that say “heavy cream” or “heavy whipping cream”. It’s richer than other options with a fat percentage of around 36%. It’s also important to note that it should be very cold, straight from the fridge, for it to whip up to fluffy, billowy clouds of glorious sweetened cream. Regular “whipping cream”, which has a fat content of 30-35% can also be used, but it takes longer to beat and doesn’t hold it’s shape as well as heavy cream does. Do NOT use light cream or half-and-half.
  • Powdered sugar: While you can definitely use granulated sugar, you run the risk of slightly gritty or grainy whipped cream instead of silky smooth stuff. Powdered sugar (also known as confectioner’s sugar) definitely works best. I like my whipped cream on the sweet side, so feel free to decrease the amount of sugar by half if you like it less sweet.
  • Vanilla extract: This flavoring agent adds its own hint of sweetness and wonderful flavor to the whipped cream. If you have clear vanilla extract, it will keep the whipped cream a pure, brilliant white. But regular vanilla extract works just fine and is what I always use.
ingredients for homemade whipped cream

Kitchen Tools You’ll Need

  • Metal or glass bowl: It helps for the bowl to be cold, so don’t use one that just came out of the dishwasher and is still hot. Some folks swear by making whipped cream in metal bowls only, but I’ve used both and can say with conviction that you can get just as good of results with glass bowls.
  • Electric or stand mixer: If you are using a stand mixer like a KitchenAid, you will want to use the whisk attachment. Regular beaters will work just fine with your electric mixer.

How to Make Whipped Cream

  1. Add the cold heavy cream, powdered sugar, and vanilla extract into a bowl that is large enough for the cream to double in volume. The liquid is going to splatter a bit at first, so a larger bowl can be helpful to contain some of the mess so you don’t end up with cream all over your counters.
  2. Beat the ingredients starting on medium speed and increasing gradually to high speed until stiff peaks form. The cream should be thick and hold its shape when you lift the beaters out of the bowl.
  3. Dollop over cheesecakes or pies, use in mousse or to fill cream puffs, or simply enjoy it with a bowl of strawberries or raspberries!

Pro Tip: I like to stop the mixer and lift them out of the bowl to test them, then when it’s looking close I will mix for just a few more seconds (literally only about 5 seconds) until it’s thick with some body and substance to it, but it shouldn’t be beaten to the point where it starts to curdle and break. Those extra few seconds help stabilize the cream though so it’s pipeable and holds up better than if you stop right exactly at the stiff peaks stage. Just be careful at this stage because it’s easy to go too far and turn the whipped cream into butter if you get distracted, which has happened to me a time or two!

whipped cream in the bowl of a stand mixer

Frequently Asked Questions

How long will whipped cream last?

Done right and your whipped cream will last for about three days in the fridge, although it really is best when made fresh on the day you plan to serve it. Keep it covered with plastic wrap or a lid for freshness. Even if you pipe it onto a cheesecake or pie, if you beat it just barely past stiff peaks it should hold up and not melt into a puddle.

What can I use instead of heavy cream?

If you need a dairy-free option, you can actually whip cold, full-fat coconut milk for a good heavy cream replacement. It doesn’t taste just the same, but it has the same lovely texture and makes a good substitute.

How can I fix whipped cream that has been overwhipped?

If you go too far and whip your cream to the point that it is curdled looking, you can usually salvage it by stirring in 1-2 tablespoons of additional heavy cream with a spatula or on low speed with your mixer to loosen everything up a bit.

Does this recipe work as a substitute for Cool Whip?

Yes! The amount is the same as an 8-ounce container of Cool Whip and you can use them interchangeably in any recipe that calls for Cool Whip.

Can I use whipped cream to frost a cake?

While this whipped cream is sturdy enough to frost the outside of a cake, it doesn’t hold up well between layers. I recommend using it on a cake baked in a 9×13 pan or only to frost around the outside of a layer cake while filling it with something sturdier like Vanilla Pastry Cream.

a glass bowl of whipped cream with strawberries beside it

Recipe Tips

  • Avoiding splatter: I have three tips for helping avoid a mess when making whipped cream. First is to use a bowl that is on the larger size. The second is to start your mixer on medium speed and increase the speed gradually. The cream splatters less as it gets thicker. And my final trick is to cover the bowl with a clean dish towel for the first minute, although you have to be really careful to not let the towel get pulled in to the bowl!
  • Flavored whipped cream: You can always add additional flavoring to your whipped cream. Instead of using vanilla extract, you can use any extract you like, such as coconut, almond, mint, lemon, maple, etc. Since those extracts tend to be more potent than vanilla, I recommend starting with just 1/4 teaspoon of each and adding more to get the flavor you like best.
  • Chocolate whipped cream: Add 2-3 tablespoons cocoa powder along with the powdered sugar before beating the cream.
  • Strawberry or raspberry whipped cream: Blitz 1 cup of freeze-dried strawberries or raspberries in a food processor (affiliate link) until they are a fine powder. Add them along with the powdered sugar before beating the cream.
  • Spiced whipped cream: Try adding 1/2 to 1 teaspoon of warm spices like cinnamon, nutmeg, or pumpkin spice!
  • Peanut butter whipped cream: Add 2-3 tablespoons of peanut butter to the cream before beating. You could also use nutella or cookie butter!
  • Hot weather: If it is summer and warm in your house, I highly recommend sticking your bowl and beaters in the freezer for 10-15 minutes and pulling them out just before making your whipped cream. Trust me, it will help a lot!

Use this whipped cream to make Strawberry Shortcake, make a Fruit Salad with Marshmallows, or top an Old-Fashioned Banana Cream Pie!

a glass dessert cup filled with fresh berries and whipped cream

Recipes that use whipped cream

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Homemade Whipped Cream Recipe
Yield: 2 cups

Homemade Whipped Cream Recipe

This wonderful, classic Homemade Whipped Cream Recipe is made with just 3 simple ingredients in under 5 minutes! It's perfect for topping fresh fruit, pancakes, desserts, and so much more!

Prep Time 5 minutes
Total Time 5 minutes

Ingredients

  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 1/4 cup powdered sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Instructions

  1. Add heavy cream, powdered sugar, and vanilla extract in a large bowl.
  2. Use an electric mixer or stand mixer fitted with a whisk attachment to beat the cream on medium speed until it starts to thicken. Increase to high speed until stiff peaks form. Beat a few seconds longer to stabilize the whipped cream, but be careful not to overwhip. The whipped cream should be thick and fluffy and will hold its shape on the beaters if you lift them out of the bowl and turn them upside down.
  3. Use immediately or store in the fridge in a covered container for 2-3 days. You may want to stir it with a spatula to loosen it up before using if it has been in the fridge overnight.

Notes

  • Heavy cream: Be sure to get the product labeled as "heavy cream" or "heavy whipping cream" at the store. "Whipping cream", despite its name, doesn't work as well as heavy cream does.
  • Flavored whipped cream: You can always add additional flavoring to your whipped cream. Instead of using vanilla extract, you can use any extract you like, such as coconut, almond, mint, lemon, maple, etc. Since those extracts tend to be more potent than vanilla, I recommend starting with just 1/4 teaspoon of each and adding more to get the flavor you like best.
  • Chocolate whipped cream: Add 2-3 tablespoons cocoa powder along with the powdered sugar before beating the cream.
  • Strawberry or raspberry whipped cream: Blitz 1 cup of freeze-dried strawberries or raspberries in a food processor until they are a fine powder. Add them along with the powdered sugar before beating the cream.
  • Spiced whipped cream: Try adding 1/2 to 1 teaspoon of warm spices like cinnamon, nutmeg, or pumpkin spice!
  • Peanut butter whipped cream: Add 2-3 tablespoons of peanut butter to the cream before beating. You could also use nutella or cookie butter!

Nutrition Information:

Yield:

8

Serving Size:

1

Amount Per Serving: Calories: 116Total Fat: 11gSaturated Fat: 7gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 3gCholesterol: 34mgSodium: 8mgCarbohydrates: 4gFiber: 0gSugar: 4gProtein: 1g

All nutritional information is based on third party calculations and is only an estimate. Each recipe and nutritional value will vary depending on the brands you use, measuring methods and portion sizes per household.