Stabilized whipped cream piped into a glass jar.

Stabilized Whipped Cream

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Thanksgiving is approaching and today I’ve got the easiest stabilized whipped cream. It’s only 4 ingredients and there’s no cream cheese, pudding or gelatin required! This whipped cream is perfect for topping pies or squares but also easily pipeable.

This stabilized whipped cream tastes just like regular whipped cream but will last much longer without wilting due to the addition of one tiny ingredient. Cream of tartar is an acid, you may have used it if you’ve ever made snickerdoodles, but it’s also a great stabilizer. In adding it to our cream with a little sugar and vanilla, voila, much more stable whipped cream.

I love making my own homemade whipped cream but it’s generally not very stable, especially in heat and humidity. I also love making Italian meringue which is partially stabilized with an acid, like cream of tartar. I’ve never been a fan of needing to use cream cheese or gelatin to make stabilized whipped cream so I decided to try using cream of tartar.

I honestly had no idea if it would work or if it would add a sour taste but I needed to try anyways. The first time I tried, I definitely added to much cream of tartar, it was quite sour. But the next try was perfect! It didn’t alter the taste at all and the cream held it’s shape. Now I use this cream to top any dessert I want including tarts, cakes and squares.

How Long Will It Hold It’s Shape?

In testing, I haven’t had it wilt on me yet. I’ve had it sat out, piped on top of my creamy lime bars, for 4-5 hours in 25 degree heat with no issues. As it’s primarily cream, I wouldn’t recommend leaving it out of the fridge for longer than that anyways.

If it’s piped on something that’s kept in the fridge, I’ve had it last longer then I would actually eat the dessert. It is currently sitting on top of a cheesecake in my fridge that is 8 days old and I’ve just been too lazy to actually throw out. The cream still looks exactly the same as when I piped it on in little swirls!

How Much Do I Need?

Whipping cream will double in size so if you use 1 cup of cream, you’ll get 2 cups of whipped cream. Depending on what you’re making that may be enough. This recipe is easily doubled or tripled though. I actually usually make a double batch as my family loves lots of whipped cream.

Here’s an example. If you’re making a pie and you cut it in 8 slices, I’d say whether you pipe or scoop the cream on, you’re typically putting 2-3 tbsp of cream on each slice. There are 4 tbsp in 1/4 cup so you’d need about 1-1.5 cups of whipped cream.

Of course if you don’t want to do all this math, just err on the side of caution and make extra! I doubt it’ll go to waste!

Amount and Type of Sugar

If you prefer your cream on the sweeter side, I recommend making the recipe as written. If you’re like me and prefer it a little less sweet, you can do 3 tbsp of sugar. I haven’t tested the recipe with less sugar than that as the icing sugar is helping act as a stabilizer. Keep in mind, the whipped cream will be most stable as the recipe’s written with the 1/4 cup of icing sugar.

I tested the recipe using icing sugar as it will help absorb moisture, therefore making a more stable whipped cream. I don’t recommend granulated sugar here for this reason as well as it may give your cream a grainy texture if it doesn’t fully dissolve.

What Can I Use It On?

As this is a stabilized whipped cream, it’s incredibly versatile. You can pipe it onto cupcakes, cakes, cheesecake, squares/bars, etc.

Some of my favourite recipes to top with this whipped cream are my:

Creamy Lime Bars
Fudgy Coconut Flour Brownies
Chocolate Cupcakes
Chocolate Chip Mug Cake

Or some of my family enjoy just scooping big bites of cream with my chewy ginger molasses cookies or double chocolate cookies.

Creamy lime bars cut into squares with stabilized whipped cream piped on top and lime zest.

Soft vs. Medium vs. Stiff Peaks

You may see these terms in various recipes, usually used in different ways. Soft peaks is when the cream is just starting to get air incorporated and you’ll see that the ripples from the whisk will start to be noticeable and not immediately disappear. You should be able to get small peaks at this stage but they’ll immediately fall over. I don’t recommend whisking this cream to only soft peaks however as typically soft peaks are part of a recipe and are folded into a batter.

Medium peaks will go a bit beyond that. The cream will hold it’s shape to a point and be smooth and glossy. At this stage the peaks will slightly fall over. This is great for topping pies or similar desserts when you want that fluffy dollop of cream on top.

Stiff peaks are when the cream will hold its shape completely. The peaks will stay upright and not fall over. This is the consistency you’re looking for if you want to pipe swirls, or frost a cake or cupcakes. At this consistency the cream won’t deflate or slide off.

Overwhipped Cream

If you overwhip the cream, you may be able to save it by pouring an extra 1-2 tbsp of cream in and folding it in. If this doesn’t work, you can continue beating the cream until it separates and you’re left with butter. The liquid that separates is actually buttermilk so you can also save that.

Baking Tips

  • Using cold cream, a cold whisk and a cold bowl makes it easier for the cream to whip up. If you don’t have space to put bowls, etc. in your fridge, don’t fret, I’ve never had an issue with it whipping up and have never prechilled my tools or bowl.
  • I recommend using icing sugar in this cream as it helps absorb some moisture, further stabilizing the cream. Using granulated sugar may give the cream a grainy texture.
  • I create my recipes based off weights so I recommend measuring by weights if you own a scale. It’s actually so much easier and makes for much less cleanup. I wish I had baked by weight from the beginning, I could never go back now.

In honour of Thanksgiving, today’s song is about family and friends. Here’s We Are Family by Sister Sledge. Happy baking!! **Disclaimer: Liv’s Little Muffins owns no rights to this song.

Don’t forget to leave a STAR REVIEW if you try my recipe! Follow me on Facebook or tag me on instagram @livslittlemuffins. Find more ideas on my Pinterest or Whisk.

Stabilized whipped cream piped into a glass jar.

Stabilized Whipped Cream

Olivia Daly
The easiest stabilized whipped cream to make. Only 4 ingredients and no cream cheese, pudding or gelatin required!
5 from 3 votes
Prep Time 6 minutes
Total Time 6 minutes
Course Dessert, Snack
Servings 2 cups


  • 1 cup (220g) whipping cream (cold, use straight from fridge)
  • 1/4 cup (35g) powdered sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/4 tsp cream of tartar


  • In the bowl of a stand mixer or large mixing bowl if using a hand mixer, add all of the ingredients. Attach the whisk attachment.
  • Whisk the mixture at medium-high speed. After about 2 minutes, it should start to get frothy and foamy, continue whisking for about 1-2 more minutes.
  • At this point, medium peaks should be forming. Medium peaks will partially fall over. Stop here if you want that glossy dollop on a piece of pie, etc. If you want to pipe this, continue whisking for about another minute until stiff peaks form.
  • Stiff peaks will not fall over. Stop whisking once the stiff peaks form otherwise you will overbeat your cream. *See notes
  • Place into a piping bag and pipe immediately or store in the fridge for up to 5 days and enjoy!


*If you overbeat the cream and it looks kind of lumpy, you can try pouring an additional 1-2 tbsp of cream in. Fold this in. If this doesn’t help, rather then throw it away, you can continue whisking until butter forms. The liquid left in the bottom of the bowl is buttermilk which can also be saved to use later. 
Keyword homemade whipped cream, no cream cheese stabilized whipped cream, no gelatin stabilized whipped cream, simple whipped cream, stabilized whipped cream, whipped cream
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!

Nutrition Facts

Serving Size2cups
Servings16 (2 tbsp)
Amount Per Serving
% Daily Value *
Total Carbohydrate56g
Dietary Fiber0g
Total Fat5g
Saturated Fat3g
Trans Fat0.17g


    • Yes, that should be fine! If you are using a liquid food coloring and need a lot, you may need to add a little more icing sugar to offset the extra liquid though. I recommend a gel food coloring in possible.

  1. I am very excited to try this recipe. Wondering if anyone has had experience freezing and thawing this stabilized whipped cream? I am hoping to make a cake that can be frozen and thawed 2 days later for an event. I’d imagine this would work just fine, but would love confirmation from someone who has made it first hand. Thank you in advance!

    • Hey, I haven’t frozen this specific recipe but have frozen whipped cream in other recipes before and the texture was the same. However I’ve never frozen it when it’s been piped so I can’t promise it would hold it’s shape. I do believe it should be fine though. If you try, let me know how it turns out!

    • Yes, that should work fine but I would store the cake in the fridge. Depending on the size of the cake, you may need to double or triple the recipe.

  2. 5 stars
    This is so good! Sadly, the cake I wanted to put it on failed miserably (not one from this site) but at least the whipped cream was delicious!

    • Thanks so much! I’m glad so you loved it! That sucks about the cake, it’s so disappointing when desserts don’t turn out right!

  3. 5 stars
    This turned out perfect!! I used it to top a chocolate cream pie and it held it’s shape all day plus tasted amazing!!

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