Heavy Whipping Cream in Coffee: Everything You Need to Know

Uses For Heavy Whipping Cream
Uses For Heavy Whipping Cream

Most of us start our mornings with a cup of coffee. We drink the same coffee every morning, and even a few times a day. A great way to make your coffee a little bit different, so you don’t get bored of adding some heavy whipped cream. We know that heavy whipping cream is used in cooking and baking, but what about using it with coffee?

Heavy whipping cream can be added to coffee instead of milk or your usual additives. It makes your coffee taste sweeter, and it reduces your need to add sugar. It also changes the texture of your coffee and makes it smoother.

Many people like to put heavy whipping cream in their coffee because of its taste and how it makes it feel softer and fuller. Heavy whipping cream is not only a tasty additive, but it is also very beneficial for you. Here is a little about what heavy whipping cream is, where it comes from, its benefits, and how it can make your coffee and mornings better.

What is heavy whipping cream?

Raw, fresh milk naturally separates into cream and milk. Heavy whipping cream is the thick part of the milk that rises to the top due to its high-fat content. It is the fat, rich part of fresh milk. It is skimmed off before additional processing.

To make heavy whipping cream, this raw cream is pasteurized and homogenized. This process involves heating and applying high levels of pressure to the cream to kill pathogens, lengthen shelf life, and improve its stability.

Many types of heavy whipping cream contain additives that are used to help stabilize the cream and keep the fat from separating. One of these pathogens is carrageenan, and it is extracted from seaweed. Another pathogen is sodium caseinate, the food-additive form of the milk protein casein.

Heavy whipping cream has about 35-40% milkfat, one of the highest fat contents compared to other dairy products. To compare, the half-and-half that is usually put in coffee has about 10.5 to 18% milkfat.

Heavy whipping cream is used for everything from ice creams to chowders to pasta sauces. Its shelf life in the fridge is long, and it can even be frozen and used in recipes later on.

Whipping or churring heavy whipping cream causes its molecules of fat to clump together. This property causes heavy whipping cream to turn into whipped cream after a few minutes of whipping. After churring for a few minutes, the whipped cream would turn into butter.

Buttermilk is another popular dairy product, and it is the fluid that remains after heavy whipping cream has been churned into butter.

Heavy whipping cream is very high in calories because it is mostly fat. One half-cup contains 400 calories, 3 grams of protein, 43 grams of fat, 3 grams of carbs, 35% Reference Daily Intake (RDI) of Vitamin A, 10% RDI of Vitamin D, 7% RDI of Vitamin E, Calcium, and Phosphorous, 4% RDI of choline, and 3% RDI of Vitamin K.

The fat in heavy whipping cream is primarily saturated fat, which was long believed to contribute to the development of heart disease. However, recent studies did not show a strong link between dairy fat intake and heart disease. Current research suggests that eating saturated fat may in fact help protect against heart disease.

It also contains choline and vitamins A, D, E, and K, all of which play vital roles in your health. Vitamin A is essential for eye health and immune function, while choline is critical to early brain development and metabolism. Heavy whipping cream also contains calcium and phosphorus, two minerals that are necessary for healthy bones.

Heavy whipping cream is used for a lot of dishes, but these are its most common uses.

Sour cream

To make sour cream, you need buttermilk and heavy whipping cream. Heavy whipping cream yields a thicker sour cream, perfect for topping everything from soups to tacos.

Whipped cream

One of the most common uses for heavy whipping cream is for whipped cream. You can make whipped cream by combining your cold heavy cream with a bit of sugar, honey, or maple syrup and a dash of vanilla, then beat on high until stiff peaks form. You can use it to top fresh berries, cakes, or your morning coffee.

Ice cream

Heavy whipped cream is also used to make ice cream.

Crème fraîche

To make one of France’s most famous and decadent creams, all you need is buttermilk and heavy whipping cream.

Biscuits and scones

Heavy whipping cream is used to make biscuits and scones. It gives them a creamy and fresh flavor with an incredible texture.

Chowder and Seafood Bisque

Another common use for heavy whipping cream is in making chowder and seafood bisque. It gives it a rich and thick texture.

Soup and Broth

Heavy whipping cream can be used if you’re looking for a tasty variation of mussels. You can also use it for cream-based soups like broccoli, potato, and cream of mushroom.

Caramel Sauce

A somewhat surprising use of heavy whipping cream is in making caramel sauce.

Frosting and Cake

Another common use for heavy whipping cream is for frosting your cake. You don’t have to frost your cake with plain heavy whipping cream. To make things more interesting, find some frosting recipes that will take your cake to another level.

Pasta Sauce

Heavy whipping cream can help thicken your pasta sauces and fill them with flavor.

Salad Dressing

If you want a creamy salad that’s not too thick, try using heavy whipping cream as your base. Once you did that, whisk in some citrus juice, oil, seasonings, and fresh herbs.


Adding heavy whipping cream will give a rich and delicious flavor to your scalloped potatoes, mashed potatoes, and potato pancakes.


If you want to give your wholesome breakfast a decadent upgrade, try adding a dash of heavy cream alongside fresh berries in your oats.

Cream Sauce

In case that your chicken tastes somewhat bland, the easiest way to enhance its flavor is to create a sauce for it. If you want a rich sauce, try making one with heavy whipping cream.


If you’ve been wondering how to make perfectly soft, creamy, and custard-like scrambled eggs, add some heavy whipping cream to your scrambled alongside your salt and pepper. Cooking them on low heat will help to make them fluffy and creamy as well.

Panna Cotta

Panna Cotta is a chilled dessert served throughout Italy, and it calls for heavy whipping cream.

Pastry Fillings and Pipings

Pastry cream, also known as crème patissière, is used in cream puffs, éclairs, and fruit tarts, and it is made with heavy cream. Heavy whipping cream can also be whipped and used as piping for desserts like cookies and cakes.

Chocolate Ganache

Chocolate ganache is spread on cupcakes, used in truffles, or poured over cakes. It is made out of chocolate chips, heavy whipping cream, and the right proportions and temperature.

Irish Cream

You can make your own Irish cream at home. It only calls for a few ingredients, and heavy whipping cream is the main one.

DIY Cheese

You can also make your own cheese at home. It is actually pretty simple and allows you to enjoy a preservative-free, fresh flavor with the help of heavy whipping cream.

Even though heavy whipping cream is the main ingredient in many dishes, it is not irreplaceable. If you don’t have heavy whipping cream, or can’t eat it for some reason, here are its substitutes.

Milk or Half-and-half and butter

Milk or half-and-half and butter are possibly one of the most commonly used substitutions for heavy cream. Butter adds fat to the milk or half-and-half, making it more similar to the consistency and taste of heavy whipping cream.

Soy milk and Olive oil

If you’re looking for a dairy-free alternative to heavy whipping cream, try mixing soy milk and olive oil to achieve a quick substitution. Olive oil adds fat to the soy milk and provides a good, moist texture in baked goods.

Cream cheese

Using cream cheese as a substitute for heavy whipping cream will give you a similar consistency with the full and savory flavor of whipping cream.

Greek Yogurt and whole milk

If you need a healthier, protein-packed alternative to heavy whipping cream, try experimenting with a mixture of Greek yogurt and milk. The yogurt is thick, and the substitution will work well with things like soup.

Coconut cream

Another nutritious and creamy alternative to traditional heavy whipping cream is coconut cream. It’s very versatile, vegan, and it works well in sweets and treats. Use it to make whipped coconut cream or coconut ice cream.

Whole milk and cornstarch

You can also use whole milk and cornstarch to substitute heavy whipping cream. Cornstarch acts as a thickening agent, and once it’s mixed with milk, the milk takes on a texture similar to that of thick heavy cream.

Benefits of heavy whipping cream

Heavy whipping cream has many benefits, as it contains several health-boosting vitamins and minerals, including the fat-soluble vitamins A, D, E, and K. All full-fat dairy products contain more fat-soluble vitamins than their low-fat and fat-free counterparts. Your body absorbs fat-soluble vitamins better when they are consumed with fat, like the fat found in heavy whipping cream.

Some studies show that full-fat dairy products are associated with a decreased risk of obesity, type 2 diabetes, and heart disease. One study conducted with over 1,300 participants observed that those who reported the highest intake of full-fat dairy were significantly less likely to be obese than those who reported the lowest intake. They also had significantly less belly fat.

Another study compared the low-fat Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension diet to a high-fat diet version containing 40% fat and full-fat dairy products. The researchers concluded that both diets reduced high blood pressure. The higher-fat diet had the added benefit of decreasing harmful very-low-density lipoprotein, all while maintaining heart-protective high-density lipoprotein.

Heavy whipping cream seems to be healthier for you than several highly refined low-fat products that serve as cream replacements, such as coffee creamers and whipped topping. Coffee creamers and whipped toppings are less filling and have a greater impact on your blood sugar levels. High intake of these refined foods has also been linked to obesity.

Drawbacks of using heavy whipping cream

There are also some downsides to consuming heavy whipping cream often. Heavy whipping cream is very high in calories, containing 400 calories per 1/2 cup, which means that it can be easy to consume more calories than you need if you use it often.

About 70% of people are lactose-intolerant, which means that they should avoid heavy whipped cream.

Some research reveals that dairy products may contribute to mucus production in many people, even those who aren’t allergic or intolerant. One study with over 100 adults with excessive nasal mucus production found that going dairy-free helped reduce the problem. The adults that went on a dairy-free diet for a week reported significantly fewer symptoms of excessive mucus production than those who went dairy-free for just two days and then reintroduced dairy into their diets.

Many heavy whipped creams have additives like carrageenan and sodium caseinate. These have been linked to intestinal damage when consumed in high doses in animal and test-tube studies.

Homogenization, which is heat or pressure-based process that keeps the fat from separating in the cream, is believed to prevent you from getting some of the raw milk’s benefits.

One recent study suggests that consuming raw dairy products may help prevent autoimmune conditions like asthma and allergies.

In case you don’t have heavy whipping cream at home and need it urgently, or if it’s too expensive in your area, you can try making your own. It won’t taste the same, but it will be equivalent in texture and fat. To make your own heavy whipping cream, you will need ⅓ cup of butter and ¾ cup of milk.

Start by measuring out the required amount of milk into a bowl.

Next, melt the butter in a pan. Keep in mind that butter can burn quite easily, so it is important to make sure that you use a low temperature and keep stirring until it is fully liquefied. When it is completely liquid, place it in a bowl and allow it to cool. Lastly, when the butter has cooled, add it to the milk, and stir energetically until everything is fully combined with a smooth consistency. If you prefer to put in less effort, you can use an electric mixer.

Can you use heavy whipping cream for coffee?

If you got bored of drinking the same coffee every day and would like to switch things up, adding heavy whipping cream could be a good idea.

Many people add heavy whipping cream to their coffee as a way to make it taste sweeter and fuller. Other people like to add heavy whipping cream because it changes the texture of their coffee, making it thicker, which then makes it feel smoother.

Heavy whipping cream is a great addition to your morning coffee if you don’t have time to grab breakfast as it gives you more calories and keeps you energized. Keep in mind that one ounce of heavy whipped cream contains 100 calories, so be mindful of how much you use.

When you add heavy whipped cream to your coffee, you should expect it to become a few shades lighter.

In some cases, coffee will curdle heavy whipping cream. In most cases, the reason for it is that heavy whipping cream is either spoiler or starting to get spoiled. Keep in mind that coffee is acidic, and acid tends to curdle things like milk and heavy whipping cream.

To avoid this problem, you should add smaller amounts of heavy whipping cream to your coffee.

If you add some heavy whipped cream to your coffee and a film starts to appear on the surface after a few minutes, don’t be worried. It is most likely just the heavy whipping cream separating from the coffee. Make sure to give it a little stir, and it will fuse itself back nicely.

This happens more often with hot coffee than with ice coffee because hot acid is more potent than cold acid.

If you are wondering how to know for sure if your coffee is curdled, try it. It tastes bitter and has the wrong taste. Don’t keep drinking it, and throw it away.

Another additive can also cause problems. If you are using, for example, a syrup to sweeten your coffee and it starts to look like the cream is curdling, it could be that the syrup contains citric acid and is reacting with the cream. Check if your syrup contains citric acid, and if it does, try to make a new coffee without it to see if the problem is in heavy whipping cream or the syrup.

What is coffee with heavy whipping cream called?

Coffee that is made with heavy whipping cream is called Espresso con pana, and Vienna Coffee. That said, it doesn’t mean that these two coffees are the only ones with heavy whipped cream. You can add it to any coffee you like, for example to black coffee.

How much heavy whipping cream should you put in coffee?

The amount of heavy whipping cream in your coffee depends only on you and your preferences. Some people will use more, and some people will use less. It is recommended that you start by adding one tablespoon and gradually adding more until you find your perfect amount of heavy whipping cream.

What does heavy whipping cream taste like in coffee?

Adding heavy whipping cream to your coffee will result in a different taste of the coffee.

Heavy whipping cream cuts down the bitterness of your coffee, but it doesn’t compromise the nutty taste of coffees. The heavy whipping cream will also bring out the natural coffee flavors, and you will find that although heavy whipping cream doesn’t taste like anything, you can separate the taste of it and coffee when you take a sip.

Heavy whipping cream also reduces your need to add sugar, as it makes the coffee taste sweeter.

Some people also like how heavy whipping cream affects coffee texture, making it feel smoother and softer.

How do you add heavy whipped cream to coffee?

Adding heavy whipped cream to coffee is quite easy.

Step one: Start by making your coffee like you normally would but don’t add anything to it.

Step two: Pour the heavy whipping cream into a small saucepan and heat gently while stirring until it’s frothy.

Step three: Pour the warm in a big cup, add coffee, and stir.

Here are some other recipes for adding heavy whipped cream to coffee.

Whipped Mocha

You can make whipped mocha by taking equal amounts of ground coffee powder, granulated sugar, and hot water to make your whipped coffee with an egg whisk of a beater. Next, mix your milk and heavy whipping cream and put a dollop of the whipped coffee on top to enjoy your whipped mocha.

Whipped Keto Mocha

If you want a diet-friendly coffee drink, try whipped keto mocha. You need to replace granulated sugar from the previous recipe with some artificial sweeteners or stevia. Replace the milk with heavy whipping cream, and that’s it.

Iced Coffee

You can add heavy whipping cream to your iced coffee as well. To make it, brew your favorite coffee with 1 tbsp coffee with 1 cup milk that will be boiled down to half. Add heavy whipping cream.

What’s the difference between heavy whipping cream and heavy cream?

Heavy whipping cream and heavy cream are essentially the same things, as they both have to contain at least 36% of milkfat.

Both heavy whipping cream and heavy cream have the same nutritional value; they both have about 50 calories, 5 grams of fat, and 3.5 grams of saturated fat per tablespoon.

Even though heavy whipping cream and heavy cream are virtually the same things, they have some differences.

Heavy cream will whip better and hold its shape better than heavy whipping cream. That’s why it is more recommended for pastry fillings, piping, and toppings. Because of its higher fat count makes a better thickening agent for creamy sauces and creamy soups.

Heavy whipping cream also whips well but has a lighter, pillowy texture. Unlike heavy cream, it’s more likely to lose its loft and become liquid again after some time. To whip heavy whipping cream better, keep your cream, mixing bowl, and beaters in the refrigerator before whipping.

Can you use heavy whipping cream instead of milk?

Whether you run out of milk when baking or when making coffee, you can use heavy whipping cream instead of it.

To substitute milk with heavy whipping cream, you will have to dilute the heavy whipping cream.

The difference between milk and heavy whipping cream is that milk can have anywhere between 0-3,5% milkfat, while heavy whipping cream has 35% milkfat. Using simple math, that means that you will have to dilute the heavy whipping cream 10 times.

So, to substitute 3.3 oz milk with heavy whipping cream, you will have to use 0.3 oz heavy whipping cream and 3 oz water.

But milk also contains sugar. The sugar in milk is called lactose, and about 70% of people in the world can’t digest it. Lactose needs to be substituted in diluted heavy whipping cream by an alternative sweetener, like erythritol, stevia, or monk fruit in order to make milk.


Charlie McFarlane

Specialty Coffee Enthusiast. Hungry for knowledge in the art and science behind specialty coffee and decided to document my journey, while sharing it with the public. More than 10 baristas were interviewed; over 21 farms were visited across 5 countries. Almost 100 Coffee Shops. Bean of choice: Pacamara. Preferred coffee country: Panama. Preferred Brewing Method: Aeropress. Facebook | Instagram | Twitter

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