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Best Substitute for Heavy Cream

Heavy cream can be used in soups, desserts, and other dishes that call for rich, creamy flavor, but you may not always want to use heavy cream in what you’re making. Perhaps you are looking for a substitute that doesn’t contain dairy or that isn’t as fattening. So, what can you substitute for heavy cream?

Let’s take a look at some of the best options for when you want an alternative or you just don’t have any heavy cream available but you still want to make the dish.

Olive Oil and Soy Milk

What can I substitute for heavy cream that doesn’t contain dairy? If you are trying to find a substitute for heavy cream that is dairy free, then you may want to combine olive oil and soy milk.

For a vegan, dairy-free alternative to heavy cream, try mixing soy milk with olive oil. What’s great about this combo is that you get a milky texture from the soy and flavorful fat from the oil. That’s going to provide you with similar functionality and flavor to heavy cream, especially when you combine these in the right quantities.

To make a liquid very similar to heavy cream, combine 1/3 of a cup of olive oil with 2/3 of a cup of soy milk. You can use this recipe for baking and coking, but you will need a different substitute if the recipe requires you to whip the heavy cream.

Butter and Half-and-Half

What is a substitute for heavy cream that can be used almost exactly the same? Half-and-half milk and butter make for a good combination. This substitute is really simple, and it’s easy to mix together as well.

While half-and-half is made from whole milk, it’s not nearly as fattening as heavy cream. In fact, it has about 1/3 of the fat.

Half-and-half is going to lack the flavor and richness of heavy cream, so adding butter helps to solve that issue, making it taste more luxurious. What can I substitute for heavy cream in a sauce?

Butter and half-and-half works perfectly, as it can be used for whipping, baking and cooking, so it’s essentially a perfect substitute for heavy cream when you don’t have any available or you want something less fattening.

Coconut Cream

What is a non-dairy substitute for heavy cream? This is a great vegan substitute for heavy cream, and you can use this ingredient in so many different ways. You can buy coconut cream already made up for you from the grocery or turn coconut milk into coconut cream with a little work.

To make your own coconut cream at home, take full-fat coconut milk and chill it in the fridge for a few hours. Then, pour that into another container and take the remaining thick, cream and use that as your heavy cream substitute.

Simply chill a can of full-fat coconut milk in the fridge overnight, open it and pour the liquid contents into another container. The thick, hardened coconut cream that’s left can then be scooped out of the can and used as a substitute for heavy cream. This is a great option for sugar-free Tiramisu as there are only the natural sugars from the coconut cream. 

If you were wondering what is a vegan substitute for heavy cream, then coconut cream is probably one of the best options. It’s fairly cheap and easy to obtain or make, and it works well in place of heavy cream. However, the taste will be a bit different, so keep that in mind, as it could alter the final flavor of your dish.

Evaporated Milk

What can I use as a substitute for heavy cream? Try working with evaporated milk, as it’s less watery than conventional milk and a good alternative to heavy cream. It’s also able to last much longer, and you can store it in your cupboard unopened for months before it needs to be used.

Why use evaporated milk instead of heavy cream? Well, you’re getting a lower calorie liquid here, as it is not as fattening and unhealthy as heavy cream, so it’s a good alternative for dieters who are looking to cut some calories out of their cooking.

The only downside to using evaporated milk in place of heavy cream is that the milk won’t whip very well. It’s not as thick and heavy, so you get a different consistency but a very similar flavor. You can substitute them at a ratio of 1:1, though.

Milk and Butter

What to substitute for heavy cream that’s simple and readily available. For most people, a good option would be a combination of milk and butter. The butter makes the milk thicker, creamier and richer, with the fat from the butter giving the milk more flavor. Just mix about ¾ of a cup of milk with ¼ of a cup of melted butter.

You can use this for baking and cooking, but don’t expect it to whip as well as heavy cream.

How to Substitute Heavy Cream for Milk

Let’s look at this from the other side now, for instances where you have heavy cream and want to use it as a substitute for milk. You can simply add some water to the cream to dilute it, and this will make it lighter and not as rich. 

If you are substituting out a cup of milk, try half a cup of water and half a cup of heavy cream. That will give you a very good approximation of regular milk for use in your recipe.

How to Substitute Heavy Cream for Whole Milk

Whole milk tends to be a bit richer than some of the other types of milk you may be used to. You may not at not use as much water as I suggested just a moment ago, if you are trying to make heavy cream take the place of whole milk.

The more heavy cream you use, the richer, fattier, and fuller the milk substitute will taste. So, you can use less water and more heavy cream for a sweeter whole milk substitute.

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