how to stabilize whipped cream

I used to work in a restaurant where we had to whip cream by hand.  Every night.  Sometimes more than once.  In August.  It would be ungodly hot.  My arms would burn.  I would whine.  And complain.  After what felt like forever, the cream would finally come together and make soft peaks.  It was a beautiful thing.  I am not sure why the chef was so adamant about the cream being whipped by hand, but he was.  He was sort of crazy.  Like the Soup Nazi from Seinfield.  But I loved working there and learned so much about food from them.

Anyway, back to whipped cream.  Whipped cream is pretty much the perfect accompaniment for any dessert.  It is light and fluffy and sweet and full of vanilla or whatever flavor you want it to taste like.  It is perfection on ice cream, a pie, cobbler, a bowl of berries.  Or straight up on a spoon.

Whipped cream is a beautiful thing.  You can keep it simple.  Or you can dress it up.  Add some citrus, spice, cocoa, liqueur.  It can really take something simple and make it elegant and over the top.

Apple pie with cinnamon whipped cream?  Yes please.

Blueberry cobbler with a lemon cream?  Oh yeah.

Pumpkin pie with bourbon whipped cream?  Bring it on.

I know what you are thinking.  Do we really need a recipe for whipped cream?  No, of course you don’t.  But for some reason, I didn’t know that you could make whipped cream even better than it already is.  You can make it last longer.  You can stabilize it to keep its shape and so much easier to work with.  Why didn’t someone tell me this ages ago?

how to stabilize whipped creamThere are a few ways that you can do this.  You can use a packaged stabilizer like Whip-it.  I happen to love this product.  You just sprinkle the Whip-it over the cream and let it go.  It works some sort of magic.

Or you can go the cornstarch method.  Add a Tablespoon of cornstarch to every cup of cream and add the cornstarch after the cream comes to soft peaks.

Or you can use the gelatin method.  Add one teaspoon of bloomed gelatin to peaked whipped cream.

Edited to add – I have been using Whipped Cream Stabilizer from King Arthur Flour and it is the best I’ve tried. It doesn’t clump or have any taste. 

Here is the recipe that I am using for this particular whipped cream:

1 teaspoon unflavored gelatin
1 Tablespoon cold water
1 cup cold heavy or whipping cream
3 Tablespoons sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla

how to stabilize whipped creamWhichever method you choose, the technique is pretty much the same.

how to stabilize whipped cream

What do you mean by bloomed gelatin?  Gelatin needs to be heated to go from the granulated form to the liquid form.

how to stabilize whipped creamSprinkle the gelatin over cold water.

how to stabilize whipped creamLet the gelatin stand for a minute or so until the gelatin is absorbed by the water.

how to stabilize whipped creamMicrowave the gelatin for about 30 seconds at high heat.  The gelatin will be clear and melted.  Now you can use it to stabilize your whipped cream.

how to stabilize whipped creamIn the bowl of a mixer, beat the cream until it gets thick and starts to form peaks.  Gradually make your way to high speed otherwise you will be wearing it.  And so will your counters, ceiling, floors, you get the idea.

how to stabilize whipped creamGradually add in your sugar.  I used confectioners sugar here, but usually I am too lazy and use plain old granulated sugar.

how to stabilize whipped creamAdd in your stabilizing agent of choice.  (If you are using Whip-it though, that goes in first.)

how to stabilize whipped creamFlavor it however you want.  I am loving vanilla bean paste right now so I am using it in everything.  You use the same amount of paste as you would extract. I love seeing vanilla bean specks in everything.  There is something so extravagant about vanilla beans.  Maybe because they are just so expensive?

how to stabilize whipped creamLook at all of those gorgeous vanilla bean flecks.  Oh my.  When the cream holds peaks it is done.  Do not over whip or it will start to curdle.

how to stabilize whipped creamFrom this point, you can either just dollop it on things, or you can be fancy and put it in a pastry bag and pipe it on things.  When you stabilize the whipped cream, you get more time out of it before it starts to get watery.

how to stabilize whipped creamSeriously, why didn’t anyone tell me about this years ago?

Whipped Cream


  • 1 teaspoon unflavored gelatin
  • 1 Tablespoon cold water
  • 1 cup cold heavy or whipping cream
  • 3 Tablespoons sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla


  1. In the bowl of a mixer, beat the cream until it gets thick and starts to form peaks. Gradually make your way to high speed otherwise you will be wearing it. And so will your counters, ceiling, floors, you get the idea.
  2. Gradually add in your sugar. I used confectioners sugar here, but usually I am too lazy and use plain old granulated sugar.
  3. Add in your stabilizing agent of choice. (If you are using Whip-it though, that goes in first.)
  4. Flavor it however you want. I am loving vanilla bean paste right now so I am using it in everything.

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179 Responses to Whipped Cream

  1. Nicole says:

    I was curious about what new thing you could bring to whipped cream when I clicked over from Twitter. I’ve never used stabilizers, but that’s a great tip! All of those desserts look fantastic and I wish they were on my desk right now :)

  2. Christie says:

    What’s the benefit of adding the stabilizers? Mine seems to hold up with just the heavy cream, sugar and vanilla. Maybe if you’re adding more liquids (lemon juice, bourbon, etc.)?

    • bakedbree says:

      the whipped cream will last longer, not get watery, and hold its shape. I don’t stabilize all the time, but if I am using it for a cake or want to decorate with the cream I will.

  3. i’ll probably end up going the cornstarch route, given my vegetarian tendencies. but you bet i’ll be reading the ingredients of whip it! before i buy some… that’s a fabulous bit of information! when i was a kid, my favorite thing in the world was strawberry shortcake iced with whipped cream… and this must be how they got that fabulous thick texture at the bakery!

  4. nicky says:

    I love this idea! Thanks for sharing….I loved fresh whipped cream but it does tend to “fall” rather quickly. I just found this blog and added it to my google reader…lots of great stuff here. Thanks.

  5. LeeYong says:

    Very Kewl! Thanks for sharing your info with us… I always love to hear how other bakers handle their situations in the kitchen when the weather can be so hot and humid when dealing with whipped cream.

    Happy baking!

  6. I’ve been cooking for years and always wondered how commercial pastries with whipped cream stayed fresh and fluffy. And now I know! I will be using more than just heavy cream and sugar from now one when preparing whipped cream. Thanks for the great tip. Even old dogs can learn new tricks.

  7. Leah says:

    Whipped cream can also be stabilized by beating in a little instant vanilla pudding powder. (Or other flavor if that’s what you desire.)

  8. Kelly says:

    If I wanted to make the cinnamon whipped cream to go with my pumpkin bread pudding how much cinnamon would I need to add?

    Thanks so much for all of these wonderful recipes….really enjoying them!


  9. Kim says:

    Wow i am so excited to try this! I always wondered how they were able to pipe it. Gonna go try some now to put on my pumpkin cheese cake! I love fresh whipped cream.

  10. Heather says:

    I wanted to make a whipped cream jello salad the day before an event and have recently heard about whipped cream stabalizers. I’ve never used one before, and had nothing on hand, so I used your corn starch method. It seemed just a slight bit chalky tasting. Maybe I didn’t mix it enough? But I will wait until tomorrow to get the final verdict. It certainly didn’t taste terrible, but just had that very slight chalkiness. Can’t wait to see how it holds up though! And maybe the chalkiness will mellow by tomorrow? I still think it’s a great tip! Thank you!!!

    • bakedbree says:

      You are welcome! Hope that it works.

    • Lori says:

      It doesn’t matter if use a starch in gravy, soup or whipping cream; unless you boil it, the end result will have a chalky taste to it. To get rid of it you need to whisk cold cream and corn starch together so the starch is dissolved. Heat to a boil but stir constantly so as not to scorch. Once your cream has come to a boil, let it boil for another 30 seconds, then you can remove it from the heat. Pour into a separate container and chill. If you’re looking to make a chocolate flavored cream, this would be the ideal time to melt the chocolate into the cream. Once chilled, whip as usual.

  11. lorraine says:

    Whip It Stabilizer is the best…. I have used it for many of my home made rum cakes, many delighted guests with this receipe. I can not be with out it. Cannot find in stores. so glad I have found this web site. thank you.

  12. Laura Lee says:

    So exactly how long will this stabilized whipped cream last??

    Can I expect it to hold its shape for 3 hours?

  13. Rane says:

    First, thank you for posting something so in depth on this subject. I am very happy I found it. You said you sometimes find it in the ethnic foods isle, what would that be? I have been up and down the store and cant find it. I need help. If I have to order online what would be the best website? Thank you for your time.

  14. Fran says:

    This is an amazing site. A friend showed me a recipe this morning calling for something which I’d never heard. We checked the market to no avail. and she found it online at something like $8.00 with shipping. I suggested using gelatin and low and behold, that is exactly what you are suggesting. We thought of cornstarch, but it was my feeling that it might be grainy or make the whipped cream taste strange. Her recipe calls for using lemon juice and I’m sure dissolving the gelatin in the lemon juice and then microwaving is going to work just fine. I discovered this site by googling “Stabilizing whipped cream.” Great find. Thanks for all the info and pictures.

  15. Nicole says:

    How did you make that design? Would you please do a post about pipping techniques?

  16. Lucille says:

    Awesome!! My whipped cream ALWAYS melts/falls on me and it’s such a pain when I want need to whip it over and over and over and over again! I’ll probably be trying the corn starch method. In your opinion, which one is the most successful? Also, how long will it stay shape? And does it mess with the whipped cream’s texture, flavor, or color? Thanks for reading this!

  17. Lala says:

    Thanks for posting this. I like the idea of stabilized whipped cream. I never knew that you can flavor whipped cream. What if I need about 4 cups of whipped cream, do I just multiply the amount of unflavored gelatin, Whip-it or cornstarch to add?

    I have a request…everytime I make unflavored gelatin (Knox) to put on top of dessert, I never get the right consistency even if I follow the direction on the box. In other words, I don’t know how to do it. Sometimes it doesn’t set up, sometimes it’s too soft or too hard. I’m not the only one, I asked my friends and they don’t know how to do it right too. Can you teach us through your blog how to make a perfect consistency unflavored gelatin. Thank you very much.

    • bakedbree says:

      Yes, you need to add the same ratio of stabilizer. Flavored whipped creams are delicious. I will try to do a tutorial on how to bloom gelatin. Writing it down.

  18. Kira says:

    Powdered sugar works well, too, since many brands already have corn starch in it. Pretty pictures, by the way. nom nom!

    • bakedbree says:

      It does, but straight powdered sugar does not have enough cornstarch to stabilize. It needs a little more to hold shape.

  19. Love this! I have stabilized whip cream before but your tutorial was so straightforward it was much easier to follow. I just made it to replace cool whip in a strawberry cream pie I’m making. Thanks so much!

  20. jehan says:

    you can also use agar-agar (sea vegetable) powder. You can find this in Asian shops

  21. Shilpi Johri says:

    Thanks a lot for this post!!! I love icing my cakes with whipped cream but it does not stay long. I have to return my cake to the refrigerator from time to time. Its a great tip. I am really excited to try this on my next cake. Thanks again.

  22. Amanda says:

    Thanks so much for posting this information with detail and pretty pictures :D. I am interested in using the Whip It to stabilize my whipped cream, but have to order it first. How much Whip It should I use in this recipe? And do you add it before you whip the cream? Thanks!!

    • bakedbree says:

      You use 1 packet of Whip it to 1 cup of cream. You sprinkle it over the top and then whip. The instructions are on the packet.

  23. Kocinera says:

    What a great tip! I’m a huge whipped cream fan, so this will definitely be a lesson put to good use. I can’t wait to try it out!

  24. Adrian says:

    It looks like this whipped cream is way over-whipped. The cottage cheese grainy texture suggests that you are on the verge of making butter.

  25. Michelann says:

    Great tips! I love vanilla bean paste, too.

  26. amee says:

    That s why i am vegetarian. So that i can replace the meat group with whipped cream. Nce post. And you know, i dont mind a recipe on “just whipped cream”. Sometimes i appreciate a good basic recipe. It reminds us that the best things are simple and we like the voice behind it.

  27. JaniceNJ says:

    Note to self: use a larger dish when microwaving the gelatin. My dish was too small, and I ended up with a sticky, slimy mess in the microwave. Oh, well. I’ll remember next time! I still ended up with about half the amount of gelatin for the whipped cream. I guess I’ll find out later if the cream holds up. I was happy with the tutorial and great pics. Thanks!

  28. This information is so helpful. Thank you! Whenever I try to pipe whipped cream on a cake, it starts to get watery and yellowish which ruins the piping. Next time, I will try to use gelatin or corn starch. Do you think corn starch is as good as gelatin in stabilizing whipped cream?

  29. Pam says:

    Do you have to keep the cake refrigerated or can it be left out on a not very hot day. my Family Loves my cakes but they buy a lot of walmart cakes because of the whipped icing I am always looking for whipped icing recipes but they all can not be left out until right before cutting. plus if I put it between the layers of cake is squishes right out and absorbes into the cake. so I was hoping this was similar to that kind of icing. please let me know

  30. juveria says:

    Hi just to make sure i have it right….if we use WHIP IT, it goes in before the all the whip cream beating right? Like when it’s acutually liquid? I am looking for a good recipe that stabilizes whip cream because that’s the only icing that’s light when eaten. Also, when it sets…does it set like buttercream? So, if you touch it…it doesnt come on your hands? I love how you have different methods of stabilizing it…I was about to buy the wilton stabilized whipping cream mix, but I much rather make it homemade. Thank you for sharing ! :)

    • bakedbree says:

      Yes, follow the directions on the packet of Whipit. It is whipped cream, so it is light and fluffy, it will hold shape though.

  31. juveria says:

    Also, can you freeze the leftover whip cream to use at a later date?

    • bakedbree says:

      I know that you can freeze whipped cream when it is inside something, like a chocolate roll. But if you are talking about freezing a bowl of it and trying to frost something else, I doubt that it would work. I have never tried, so I cannot really help you. Sorry!

  32. Victoria says:

    I am a 14 year old baker who is making a pumpkin tart to bring to thanksgiving and I was wondering – will the stabilized whipped cream hold shape, if piped, for more than 5 hours? That is an extreme example, as I would only need it to hold shape for 3 hours, but the longer it does the better! Also – I have just gotten some new piping bags and was wondering if there was some sort of flour water mixture i could use to practice piping? I don’t want to have to make and waste buttercream frosting! Any tips greatly appreciated!

    • bakedbree says:

      It will hold for 5 hours very easily. To practice piping, buy a can of frosting and pipe on the countertop and just scrape it off and start over. That is how I learned how to do it.

  33. Barb says:

    Hi I am making charlotte rouse, napalion, eclairs cream puffs and will use the stabilizer. What pastry tip would be good for whip cream. I have some but do not know if it is large enough for whip cream thanks

  34. Victoria says:

    Hi! I have two questions – 1, will the whipped cream stabilize if I use regular granulated sugar?
    2. I don’t have a microwave, is there a way to melt the gelatin in a saucepan or double boiler to get that consistency?
    Thanks so much!

    • bakedbree says:

      If you use regular sugar, your whipped cream will be grainy. Powdered sugar will dissolve and granulated will not. Yes, you can melt it in a saucepan.

      • Victoria says:

        Great-trying this recipe today! Cant wait….
        Using it to adorn a Pumpkin Tart….
        Soo- If i blitzed my regular brown sugar in a food processor and then sifted it to make it finer, would my whipping cream still be grainy?
        Sorry for all the questions – Absolutely adore the blog and recipes!!!

  35. Laraina says:

    I have been hunting for a whipped cream icing recipe for least two years now everyone of them failed me, I have tryed this method before but I believe I was given the wrong measuring methods also was not told to heat the geltain. I will give this a try and hope for the best. Thanks for posting this!

  36. Victoria says:

    Used this recipe last night, now it is still stiff and the tart has been in the fridhge all night….. thanks sooooooooooooo much!!

  37. kathi says:

    Wegman’s has a pumpkin layer cake that looks so delicious but if I buy it in the store it will cost $20 (yikes!!). Looks like it would be easy to make. Has a whipped cream layer and I was wondering how to make that layer stay without collapsing. Looks like the stabilized whipped cream may be the trick. I’m going to give it a try…keeping my fingers crossed.

  38. LesleyWingert says:

    I am taking all the pumpkin cheesecakes to the Thanksgiving dinner today and you just solved my big problem! Big smile on my face and a bigger THANK YOU for sharing!

  39. Thanks for the tips! Have you ever used Jello instead of plain gelatin? Would it be the same amount do you think? I”m wanting to make a stabilized strawberry whipped cream and I thought that adding some strawberry Jello in addition to some strawberry puree might make the flavor a little stronger.

  40. Marie says:

    Hey! I just tried this today…but with eggnog. Lol it did not work at all. I was hoping with a stabilizer it might stay light and airy for longer then 30 seconds. But no luck. Oh well. I will def be using this next time I try piping with whipped cream! Thanks!

  41. lina says:

    Instead of using gelatine, can i use agar agar?

  42. sana says:

    Hi ,
    i just loved ur site …. i would like to try for my baby first birthday cake :
    pls tell me if its good enough to pipe roses with this cream , will it stay good enough for 3 hours
    can u pls email me ….
    thanks again

    Looking forward to hear from you soon

  43. Kelsey says:

    Hello! This recipe sounds great and I can’t wait to use it on a cake. I just have one question: what exactly is vanilla bean paste? I usually just use vanilla extract, but I love the little specks you have in the whipped cream! Thanks.

  44. Adelina says:

    Dear “bakedbree” –

    I should have do my home work better and read up on how to stablize whipped cream before attempting to spend money and time on making one that I am completely dissatisfied with! Oh well, I sure hope I learn the lesson!

    So first, THANK YOU for doing this wonderful post and I love the instructions!!!

    I hope you can answer my question, if you have a few minutes to spare. I made a whipped cream frosting adding cream cheese to it and powdered sugar. I had thought it will help “stabalize” the whipped cream frosting so I can use it to frost a cake. Well, the author(s) mentioned that it worked for him/ her so I was excited about it! Mine didn’t come out well at all. It is now only suitable for maybe a filling on a tart or as a spread on a cake/ cupcake or something of that sort.

    Do you think I still have a chance to use one of the suggested ingredients above and continue to whip my frosting and see if it will stabalize? To be honest, I’d already whipped mine for about 15 minutes!!! BIG MISTAKE!!! It is now sitting in my fridge and I’m feeling really disappointed that I cannot use it to frost a plain old cake!

    Please help!!!

    Thank you!

    • bakedbree says:

      Well, I think that the problem is that it sounds like you were making a buttercream, not whipped cream. I do not think that you can save this one. Sorry!

  45. fariz says:

    hello, i’ve just make my cake topped and covered with a Paul’s thickened whipped cream(250ml carton). What can i say is, it stay well, as long as i kept it in the refrigerator. Once i took it out, i need to keep it back as fast as i could, or i have to end up with a ‘molten cake’. For me, the technique that i followed, are based on the joyofbaking blog tips — to mix everything with the cream – sugar, vanilla , etc. and keep it in the fridge for 60 mins or freezer for 30 mins, along with all other instruments, like spatula, piping bags, etc. before it could being whipped. I don’t know, maybe it could be the temperature, as i’m living here in Malaysia which having a max of 30C ++ during the day; but sometimes cooler.

  46. SMH says:

    Hi! Thanks for this great tip.

    If I make a layer cake will the whipped cream hold in between the layers, or will it just squish out?


  47. Precilla says:

    Hi Bree!
    First I want to say thanks for all your tips and great advice, as it would be very troublesome for me to test and try all the ways to make whipped cream :)
    So I have 2 questions for you, I’m making a baby shower cake for my sister next month and I really want to use real whipped cream to ice my cake (no pastry pride here) and I was wondering would it be better to use granulated or powdered sugar with the whip it? Also was wondering if the whip could be colored? Any advice would be greatly appreciated, thanks!

    • bakedbree says:

      Powdered sugar dissolves better. Yes, it can be colored. Pastels, probably not really bright colors.

  48. Tina says:

    Hi, can you tell me if I can use your whipped cream recipe (along with Whip It) in a pressurized whipped cream charger? Thanks.

  49. Angie Kelly says:

    ……………..THANK YOU so very much for the tips on stabilizing whip cream! I used to buy “Whip It” when we lived in the city. But now we are in the beautiful woods of Northern Michigan and I’m lucky to find whip cream not in a “spray can”. Your cornstarch tip is a life saver in strawberry season. Thank you for the tip! Kind thoughts, Angie

    • bakedbree says:

      I order mine online when I cannot find it in my store, but I am glad that the cornstarch method worked for you.

  50. Claire says:

    Hi and thank you so much for this!! I am definitely going to try this out.

    And I just have to say wow, because you seem like a very talented person. First of all, I think you are a great writer and photographer, and I even saw your picture and you are beautiful! And of course, I am absolutely positive that you are an amazing cook/baker as well!!!

    Thanks again and have a fabulous day,

    Claire :)

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