14 Easy Ways To Take Whipped Cream To The Next Level

Whipped cream is sweet and smooth. It offers the perfect complement to a wide range of desserts and beverages — hot chocolate, pies, ice cream sundaes, and everything in between. Adding a dollop (or more) of whipped cream to your treats does more than simply enhance the way they taste. It can also upgrade the way they look, allowing you to serve works of art to friends and family.

We're all familiar with the rich and creamy taste of whipped cream. And, while there is absolutely nothing wrong with a classic whipped cream recipe, it isn't the only option you have. There are actually several ways that you can further elevate the taste of your whipped cream through the addition of various flavors. Let's take a look at some of the top ideas you can try if you're really looking to up your whipped cream game and wow your taste buds. The perfect whipped cream, regardless of the flavor you choose, should be made following the same basic steps. Before diving into the various flavor options, let's start with a brief tutorial on making whipped cream.

Start with the right ingredients and cooking tools

Starting with the right ingredients is essential when making whipped cream. The most important ingredient you'll need is heavy whipping cream. You don't want to skimp on the fat and try to use half-and-half, whole milk, or anything else. In order to get the liquid to firm up into whipped cream, it has to have at least 30% milk fat. Half-and-half has less than 20% milk fat, and there will, obviously, be even smaller amounts in whole milk or other options. 

Once you have your heavy whipping cream, you also want to chill it. It should be nice and cold to help achieve light and airy whipped cream. If you're making a standard whipped cream, you'll also want to add a little powdered sugar and some vanilla extract. However, if you're making one of the flavored options shared below, you may not need these ingredients.

Beyond the right ingredients, you must also have the proper kitchen tools if you want to make whipped cream. First, you'll need a metal mixing bowl (trust us, metal will help you achieve the best results). You'll also need electric beaters (or a standing mixer) and a whisk. And plan ahead: Before you make your whipped cream, place the beater, whisk, and metal bowl in the freezer for a bit. Getting them cold before mixing will also help achieve the right consistency and airiness.

Watch your speed when whisking

Once you have all of the ingredients in the bowl and are ready to start whipping the cream, set your electric mixer on a low speed. If you start too quickly, all you're going to do is cause some of the ingredients to splatter out of the bowl, which could mess up your ratios. Keep a good grip on the bowl so it doesn't slide away from you, and use the beaters on a low setting. After a bit, the cream will start to get less liquidy, and you can up the speed a bit.

One trick with making whipped cream is knowing when to stop mixing it. You want the cream to be nice and smooth, but also firm enough to form dollops. Stopping before it reaches this stage will leave it too runny. However, you also don't want to overbeat the cream and make it too stiff. If you do, the cream could actually end up separating, which definitely isn't what you want. Some chefs recommend turning off the electric beaters or standing mixer as you're nearing the final stages. Switching to hand whisking at the end will give you better control over the texture and consistency of the cream and will prevent you from over-whipping it.

Make it a chocolatey dream with cocoa powder

Chocolate makes (almost) everything better. Adding cocoa powder to whipped cream opens up a whole new world of possibilities. Even better, chocolate whipped cream is simple to make. Start with some heavy whipping cream. You'll also need sugar (choose granulated sugar if you desire a smoother whipped cream or powdered sugar if you want your whipped cream to stay more stabilized). And, of course, you will need cocoa powder to add the yummy chocolate flavor.

As you're browsing in the baking aisle at the grocery store, you may realize that there are a few different types of cocoa powder: natural cocoa powder, Dutch process cocoa powder, and black cocoa powder. You can use any of these to make your chocolate whipped cream, but each of them will have a different taste. Natural cocoa powder, the type you see most often, is slightly bitter by itself but will taste scrumptious when mixed with the sugar and cream. It will yield a relatively light-brown chocolate whipped cream.

Dutch process cocoa powder is alkalized. With its higher pH level, this cocoa powder isn't as bitter as natural cocoa powder. This can be an excellent choice for a chocolate whipped cream. You can also try black cocoa powder. As you can probably guess, this type is very dark. It is even more alkalized than Dutch process cocoa powder and may be the best choice if you want a deep chocolate-colored cream to serve with your treats.

Add espresso to pair with chocolate treats

Chocolate desserts, such as pies, cakes, and puddings are tasty on their own, delicious with regular whipped cream, but simply out of this world when paired with an espresso whipped cream. The added espresso flavor in the cream really enhances the taste of chocolate, making you feel like you're indulging at an upscale restaurant.

Espresso whipped cream, of course, starts with heavy whipping cream. You'll also need a little espresso powder, some powdered sugar, and a bit of vanilla extract. Follow the tips above, beating the cold heavy whipping cream and other ingredients in a chilled bowl until they reach the desired consistency. Once you've finished making the cream, dollop it on top of your favorite chocolate cake or even use it to top chocolate waffles or pancakes for a breakfast that is heavenly. You could also add some espresso whipped cream to your morning coffee or a mug of hot chocolate for an extra special treat.

Get ready for fall with cinnamon-flavored whipped cream

Cinnamon-flavored whipped cream is the perfect topping for fall treats. You'll need heavy whipping cream, cinnamon, and powdered sugar. You may want to do a few trial runs with the recipe to find the ideal amount of cinnamon for your preferences, since some prefer a stronger flavor, while others may want just a hint of cinnamon in their whipped cream. Start by adding about ½ teaspoon of cinnamon, and sample the mixture before it is fully whipped up to see if it has the desired flavor. Sprinkle in a little more if you desire a stronger flavor.

This whipped cream pairs beautifully with pumpkin pie, apple pie, French toast, and more. If you're hosting Thanksgiving this year, your guests will be truly impressed with how the cinnamon enhances the flavor of their favorite holiday desserts (you don't have to tell them how easy it was to make). After everyone is done with dessert, save some of the whipped cream to add to your coffee the next morning. You can enjoy a luxury latte without spending the money to buy from a coffee shop.

Give it a peppermint twist to enhance winter baked goods and beverages

While cinnamon makes us think about fall, peppermint conjures up thoughts of winter and feeling cozy wrapped up in a blanket or sitting by the fireplace. Did you know that you can easily make a peppermint-flavored whipped cream to turn classic beverages and desserts into winter wonderland treats? Peppermint-flavored whipped cream is delightful with hot chocolate. It also tastes amazing when used to top cakes, chocolate cream pies, and even cookies.

To make peppermint whipped cream, start by beating the heavy whipping cream on its own in a cold metal bowl for a few minutes until it starts to thicken a bit. Add in a little peppermint extract and some powdered sugar or granulated sugar. Continue beating until the cream gets to the preferred consistency. Before serving your baked goods or beverages with the peppermint whipped cream, consider chopping up a few candy canes or other peppermint candies. Sprinkle the chopped bits over the whipped cream for an extra special — and delicious — touch.

Try a peanut butter-flavored cream for a special dessert topping

You've been missing out if you've never tried peanut butter whipped cream. Fortunately, you can remedy that right away by making your own. As with most other whipped cream recipes, you need only a few ingredients: heavy whipping cream, powdered sugar, and creamy peanut butter (do not use crunchy peanut butter as it won't result in a smooth and creamy finished product). Start by beating the peanut butter for a few minutes to get it really smooth, then add the cold heavy whipping cream and powdered sugar. Continue beating until the mixture starts to hold its shape well.

If you'd prefer a slightly lower fat alternative, consider adding PB2 instead of peanut butter. The powered peanut butter will still impart a delicious flavor, but because it is made without additional oils, it doesn't have as much fat as standard peanut butter. You could also try this recipe with almond butter, sunflower butter, and other peanut butter alternatives. These could be a good option for anyone with peanut allergies to try.

So, what can you top with peanut butter whipped cream? What can't you top with it is probably a better question. Peanut butter whipped cream tastes good with chocolate or vanilla pudding, brownies, and so much more. It would also taste spectacular over an ice cream sundae — yum!

A strawberry flavored cream is refreshing and delicious

If you're looking for something with a light and refreshing taste, we would suggest strawberry whipped cream. While it can be great year round, it is really ideal for the warmer summer months. You can add a few dollops over angel food cake or pound cake for a special treat. Strawberry whipped cream can also double as a delicious dip for fresh fruit.

There are actually a few different ways that you can add strawberry flavor to whipped cream. You can choose whichever sounds best to you or the one that uses ingredients that you already have on hand. Of course, you'll need to start with heavy whipping cream regardless of which strawberry flavoring you choose. A little vanilla extract can also enhance the flavor of strawberry whipped cream.

One option is to use fresh strawberries. They will need to be puréed until smooth before mixing them with the whipped cream. If you don't have fresh strawberries, you can also make strawberry whipped cream using a packet of strawberry Jell-o powder or strawberry syrup.

Serve a delectable breakfast with maple whipped cream

Whipped cream isn't only for dessert. If you're preparing breakfast or brunch for a special occasion, make it a little extra sweet with a few dollops of maple whipped cream. Maple whipped cream can be the perfect topping for a stack of pancakes, warm and fluffy waffles, or fresh-out-of-the-oven cinnamon rolls. It adds a special touch and can be an alternative to using plain syrup. You could also use it to top pumpkin or apple pies and other sweet treats.

As you can probably guess, you'll want to use maple syrup to make maple whipped cream. Add a few tablespoons into the cold heavy whipping cream, along with a little vanilla and a pinch of salt (optional). Start your beaters on a lower speed and then increase to a faster speed until the cream stiffens. You could also make other similar whipped creams following the same principles and using molasses, honey, or brown sugar syrup.

Kick whipped cream up with booze

Want to try something a little different and a little extra special? Make an alcohol-infused whipped cream for boozy desserts and drinks. The next time you're entertaining, you can impress your guests with vodka-, bourbon-, whiskey-, or rum-infused whipped cream. Use it to top brownies, skillet cookies, cakes, and more. You can even drop a few dollops of the cream into hot chocolate or coffee to make an adult beverage.

The steps for making boozy whipped cream are the same as those for making other varieties. Start with the cold heavy cream and powdered sugar, then add about 1 shot of alcohol. If you want your whipped cream to have a stronger alcoholic flavor, add a little extra. You can also cut back on the amount of alcohol if you don't want it to be too strong. Then, beat the cream until stiff, serve, and enjoy. Be careful, though. You may not want to lick too much of this recipe off the beaters!

Add herbs for a savory cream

You can also make an incredible savory whipped cream with herbs to serve with meat, fish, dinner rolls, soup, salads, or nearly anything else. You can substitute the cream in place of butter or other sauces or toppings. The specific herbs you'll want to add to the recipe will vary depending on what you plan to serve it with. For example, if you're making steak, consider adding thyme, tarragon, and parsley to the whipped cream. A rosemary-herb whipped cream could be absolutely delectable with lamb chops. As you can see, the possibilities are nearly endless.

While you can make savory cream with dried herbs, the overall texture and flavor will be better if you use fresh herbs. Aim to use a few sprigs total of the different herbs you want in your recipe. Adding a pinch of salt is also a good idea when making savory whipped cream. For optimal results, get your herbs stripped and chopped the night before you plan on making the whipped cream. Add them into a sealed container with the whipping cream. This will help infuse the flavor of the herbs. Then, right before you beat the cream, strain out the herbs. They'll leave behind their flavor while still ensuring that your cream is nice and smooth.

Chill whipped cream that isn't being served right away

Making whipped cream and serving it fresh are ideal. Doing so will ensure that the whipped cream has more volume and is better able to hold its shape (think about a well-formed dollop on a slice of pie). However, making and serving whipped cream right away isn't always an option. You may also be making more than you plan to use at a given time and want to save it for later.

You can store homemade whipped cream in the refrigerator for a few days, but eating it within 24 hours will be best. You should promptly put away any cream that won't be consumed immediately, rather than leaving it out on the counter for awhile. If you're making some to enjoy right away and some to save for later, transfer what you want to save to an airtight container and get it in the fridge as soon as possible. The back of the refrigerator is cooler than the front. Because of this, you should aim to store your whipped cream in the back of your fridge.

Serve using a whipped cream dispenser

While store-bought whipped cream can't compare to homemade whipped cream (especially one of the flavored options shared above), the aerosol containers can make it easier to artfully top your treats and beverages. Spooning it out of the bowl will taste just fine, but it doesn't always look as nice. The cream just sort of spreads out and makes a mess over your baked goods and beverages. Not ideal if you're trying to entertain or impress anyone.

Fortunately, you don't have to sacrifice beauty in favor of taste. You can purchase a whipped cream dispenser that will make it possible to top treats with a perfectly formed dollop of whipped cream. Many dispensers come with different nozzles, allowing you to choose your preferred design option. Once you've beaten the heavy cream and whichever flavors you choose, add them to the canister and attach the lid and desired nozzle. Some dispensers even come with a nitrous oxide (N2O) cartridge, which will allow you to combine the ingredients directly in the canister.

Freeze leftover whipped cream instead of tossing it

Did you know that you can store leftover whipped cream in the freezer to enjoy at a later time? That's right. If you don't use all of the whipped cream you make to top your baked goods, you don't have to throw it out or eat more than you really should. And freezing allows it to last a bit longer than if you just stowed it in the fridge for a few days.

Just use a spoon or whipped cream dispenser to place dollops of the cream onto a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. After filling up the parchment paper with the extra whipped cream, place the baking sheet flat in your freezer. Let the cream freeze overnight, then remove the frozen dollops from the parchment paper. Put each one into a plastic freezer bag or airtight storage container. This way, you can take out just a few dollops at a time (they'll thaw quickly) and use them to top your favorite dessert. The frozen whipped cream can also make a wonderful addition to a mug of hot chocolate; the heat from the drink will help it melt quickly, too.