FREE Delivery on orders over £99 | T&Cs apply

The Different Types of Whipped Cream

15th February 2019All Year RoundGeneral

The Different Types of Whipped Cream


 Cream is a versatile kitchen ingredient and is often a staple in dessert recipes and sweet or savoury sauces. It’s important to choose the right type of cream, depending on what you are making.

This is because the different types of cream can dictate its suitability for a recipe, its taste and most importantly, its ability to whip.

What are the Different Types of Cream?

Cream is a dairy product that is taken from milk before homogenisation. It is made from the higher-fat layer skimmed from the top of milk, which in unhomogenised milk is less dense and eventually rises to the top.

The amount of butterfat content determines how well the cream will whip and how stable it will be. Cream with a higher butterfat content is more stable, tastes richer and has a better consistency. 

Cream comes in various thicknesses and forms, with the most common different types of cream being:

  • Half and half cream – 12% butterfat content. Cream that is made up of half whole milk and half cream. Does not whip but can be used as a substitute for heavy whipping cream.
  • Sour cream – 18% butterfat content. Sour cream is much lower in fat content and gets its sour taste from active culture, Lactobacillus. 
  • Single cream – 20% butterfat content. Cream with low-fat content that does not thicken when beaten.
  • Whipped cream – 30% to 35% butterfat content. Heavy cream that is whipped and beaten until light and fluffy.
  • Whipping cream – 30% butterfat content. Cream with enough butterfat in it to allow it to thicken when whipped. Does not whip as well as heavy cream but works well for toppings and fillings.
  • Heavy cream – 36% to 38% butterfat content. This cream whips denser than whipping cream. Whips up well and holds its shape. Doubles in volume when whipped.
  • Crème fraîche – 38% to 40% butterfat content. This type of cream combines the tanginess of yoghurt with the thickness of whipped cream.
  • Double cream – 48% butterfat content. Double cream is the British term for what is known as heavy or whipping cream in the United States. It is thicker than US whipping cream.
  • Clotted cream – 55% to 60% butterfat content. This type of cream is also known as Devon cream and is traditionally served with scones. 
  • Mascarpone cream – 70% butterfat content. A thick and fluffy cream that is high in fat content benefits from the use of lactic acid.

Does the Brand of Cream Matter?

When shopping for cream, the brand isn’t important. The most important thing to look out for when shopping for cream is the butterfat content. 

The butterfat content in cream determines its thickness and what it would be most effectively used for i.e. whipping.

Double Cream vs Heavy Cream

Double cream is much denser than heavy cream and has a higher butterfat content. Due to its higher fat content, double cream can be poured over hot food without it separating.

Double cream is typically found in the UK, whereas heavy cream is usually found in the US. Heavy cream in the US is heat-treated, which means it is heated during its separation process. As a result of this heat-treating, double cream tastes far fresher.

Is Heavy Cream the Same as Whipping Cream? 

When it comes to heavy cream vs whipping cream there are several variations. Heavy cream and whipping cream are both made by mixing milk with milk fat. 

Heavy cream and whipping cream are almost the same nutritionally but differ slightly in fat content. Both heavy cream and whipping cream have significantly high saturated fat content but heavy cream has a higher overall fat content than whipping cream.

Heavy Cream vs Heavy Whipping Cream for Recipes

Heavy cream and whipping cream are both heavy creams and can be used in recipes interchangeably because of their almost identical nutritional make-up. 

Something to look out for is whether the whipping cream is heavy whipping cream or just regular whipping cream. Regular whipping cream has a slightly less fat content and will therefore provide a lighter result.

Whipped Cream vs Whipping Cream 

Whipping cream is a thick cream that when whipped, doubles in volume. Whipped cream is most often bought in cans or cartons, it’s a thick cream that has already been whipped and is often bought in aerosols cans.

In short, whipped cream is just whipping cream after it has been whipped.

Experience the Different Types of Whipped Cream with Discount Cream

If you’re looking to utilise one of the different types of cream in one of your own recipes, Discount Cream provides a leading UK supply of N2O Cream Chargers and Cream Whipper Dispensers to help you get started. 

These tools will help turn your standard cream (ideally with a fat content between 27-36%) into airy whipped cream ready for any dessert or drink. If you’ve never used one before, check out our guide on How to use Cream Chargers and Dispensers.

Contents