Can You Freeze Heavy Whipping Cream for Later Use?

Extend the life of your heavy whipping cream by preserving it in the freezer.

Heavy whipping cream is often used for mixing up frosting, pastry filling, making whipped cream, or as a thickening agent in hearty soups and velvety sauces. But too often, recipes call for only a small portion of the heavy whipping cream you bought for such an occasion, leaving you with a half-empty container that's headed towards its expiration date.

Utilizing your freezer with these tips can help save you money and reduce food waste by extending the life of your heavy whipping cream. Learn how to safely freeze and thaw heavy whipping cream for future use.

Can You Freeze Heavy Whipping Cream?

Yes, you can freeze heavy whipping cream straight from the carton. Whether you intend to cook with it or whip it, it will still be good to go with a bit of stirring after it's thawed. As for heavy cream that's already been whipped, you can freeze that, too. Read on to learn how to freeze heavy whipping cream before it reaches its use-by date.

How to Freeze Heavy Whipping Cream

It's easy and quite convenient. You can freeze liquid heavy whipping cream one of two ways:

Freezing Large Portions of Heavy Whipping Cream

To freeze large portions of heavy whipping cream you can place the carton (or whatever container it came in) directly in the freezer. The liquid will expand some when frozen, so if your carton is full, pour out an inch or two of the heavy cream to allow for expansion.

Freezing Small Portions of Heavy Whipping Cream

Sometimes, recipes may call for just a few tablespoons of heavy whipping cream for a creamy flavor and texture. If you want to save smaller portions of heavy whipping cream for individual use, you can freeze it in an ice tray.

Each cube will equal about two tablespoons, although you should measure to be sure. Once the cubes are frozen, transfer them to a freezer-safe plastic bag. Anytime you need a bit of cream for a recipe, you've got some on hand, without wasting a whole carton. For hot dishes, you can skip the thawing and just pop these ready-to-go cubes into the pot or pan.

Freezing Whipped Cream

If you have heavy whipping cream that's already been whipped, it's so simple to freeze and use it again as a whipped topping. Simply stick in the freezer in an airtight container.

Another great trick to try with prepared whipped cream is to spoon mounds or pipe out mini twists onto a Silpat or parchment-lined baking sheet in single portions. Freeze the tray for several hours, or overnight, until the whipped cream dollops are solid, and transfer to a plastic bag for any time hot cocoa or coffee toppers, or delicate dessert garnishes.

How Long Will Heavy Whipping Cream Last in the Freezer?

With proper storage, heavy whipping cream will last about four months in the freezer at best quality, but it will remain safe even beyond that.

How to Thaw Heavy Whipping Cream

To thaw frozen heavy whipping cream, leave it in the refrigerator for one to two days before you need to use it. The amount of thawing time will depend on the size of your container and how much you're trying to thaw.

Before using it, give it a good shake (or stir) to redistribute the butterfat. If you're still noticing a grainy texture, you can add some powdered sugar to smooth it out (as long as the sugar won't affect your final dish). Previously frozen heavy whipping cream will whip just fine. In fact, cream is easier to whip when it's very cold.

How to Thaw Whipped Cream

To thaw frozen heavy whipping cream that has been whipped prior to storage, allow it to sit for about 10 to 15 minutes before use so that it will reach the right consistency. Use it as whipped topping for pies or desserts. If you have frozen individual whipped cream toppers, drop them straight from the freezer into your steaming hot mugs. Don't leave your whipped cream out to thaw completely or it will melt.


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