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How to Make Homemade Whipped Cream

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Everything from fresh fruit to pancakes becomes a delightfully decadent treat when you know how to make homemade vanilla whipped cream.

Fluffy fresh cream with a stand mixer

If there’s one thing you need to know how to make from scratch, I’d vote for you knowing how to make whipped cream. Think of it as a life skill.

Did you grow up scooping cool whip into pies? Or squirting it out of those handy cans – sometimes straight into your mouth? My mother was the cool whip of the team every holiday.

My sister first introduced me to whipped cream on Thanksgiving Day many years ago. Watching her pour the cream into the bowl and slap it into fluffy peaks was a game changer for me.

This vanilla whipped cream will elicit a “WOW” from your guests every time. It’s like no one knows how easy it can be. I can speak it from experience.

Once you eat homemade whipped cream, you can never go back. Your taste buds and your family will not forgive you.

vanilla whipped cream

My family happily puts whipped cream on almost everything. Gluten Free Pancakes Many years ago, I wanted to make them extra special. I had fresh raspberries in my fridge, so I decided to whip up some cream for a special treat.

Our youngest son called it “ice cream,” but we all thought the flavor was a perfect match for our favorite vanilla ice cream.

The subtle sweetness and rich vanilla flavor melt into fluffy pancakes that have quickly become my family’s favorite pancake topping. Since then, I’ve been whipping cream on top of my pancakes almost every weekend.

I’m going to try to convince myself not to bake anything for dessert tonight.

Fresh cream in mixer bowl with whisk

You only need 3 ingredients to make whipped cream. However, there are a few things to remember to get perfectly fluffy results every time.

Start with COLD creams, cold bowls and cold beaters. It works even better if you put the bowl and beaters in the freezer for about an hour beforehand.

Room temperature or room temperature cream does not foam well, so put it in a bowl and chill it in the refrigerator until just before whipping.

Cream with sugar and vanilla in a bowl

Note that the end result will be whipped cream, not butter.

Don’t panic if your whipped cream turns buttery. It happens to the best of us. Over-whipped cream can most often be saved by slowly drizzling unwhipped cold heavy cream into his mixing bowl while whipping the mixer at low speed.

Continue adding heavy cream until the crumbled whipped cream returns to its fluffy texture. No additional mixing of 2-3 tablespoons of cream and 1 minute or so is required.

whipped cream in mixer bowl

The cream forms soft peaks after 3-4 minutes. At this point, add vanilla and powdered sugar. If your whipped cream is served with fresh fruit or the like, and it would benefit from the softened cream melting into it, stop mixing at this point.

Usually my goal is a stiffer whipped cream that is perfect for scooping. angel food cake, layered cake frosting, or pumpkin pie topping. A few more minutes with an electric mixer will do it.

The only downside to making whipped cream at home is that I have three boys at home, so I need a mixer with three beaters. My solution to that problem was to lick the beaters myself.

Whipped cream in mixing bowl with whisk

homemade whipped cream recipe

To make this recipe you will need:

  • thick whipped cream
  • Vanilla extract, paste, or seeds from vanilla beans
  • icing sugar

My go-to ingredient for this recipe is basic vanilla extract.
Vanilla Bean Whipped Cream is unlike any other whipped cream you’ve ever tasted.

Whipped vanilla cream in mixing bowl with spatula

What is the shelf life of homemade whipped cream?

Homemade whipped cream will last 1-2 days if not stabilized (made as described below) and 3-4 days if stabilized.

You may have noticed that I haven’t stabilized the vanilla whipped cream. The powdered sugar provides just enough structure to keep it clean until I’m ready to serve it.

To tell the truth, I don’t care about anything else. In my family, most of the time everything is gone at once, and there’s a good chance you’ll find someone licking the bowl and spatula clean.

If you do end up with leftovers, you can safely store them in the refrigerator for 1-2 days.

However, if you want the fluffy cream to stabilize to last for several days, whip 1 tablespoon of cornstarch and powdered sugar before adding it to the cream.

Chocolate cake with whipped cream

flavored whipped cream

Whipped cream can be easily flavored with a variety of extracts and fruit purees. Peppermint or cinnamon add depth of flavor and are perfect toppings for a variety of desserts. Swirl in the strawberry sauce that is sure to become your new favorite topping.

Whipped cream blended with salted caramel sauce might be my best kept secret.

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Serving: 8 Servings (about ¼ cup each)

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  • Pour the cream into a large mixing bowl and beat with an electric mixer for 3-4 minutes until very soft peaks begin to form.

  • Add vanilla and powdered sugar and beat until stiff peaks form, 1-2 minutes more.

  • Serve immediately or store in an airtight container and refrigerate until use.

calorie: 104kcal · carbohydrates: 1g · protein: 1g · obesity: 11g · saturated fat: 7g · Polyunsaturated fat: 0.5g · Monounsaturated fat: 3g · cholesterol: 34mg · sodium: 8mg · potassium: 29mg · sugar: 1g · Vitamin A: 437IU · Vitamin C: 0.2mg · calcium: 20mg · iron: 0.03mg

{First published 7/23/12 – recipe notes and photos updated 4/10/23}

Vanilla whipped cream in a bowl with a spatula

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