Coconut whipped cream is such a baking and dessert staple in my life that I’m not sure why I haven’t shared a basic recipe for it until now. Several recipes throughout OE shared instructions on how to make it – it tops this chocolate orange tart, sandwiches a giant scone cake, and ices gluten free cupcakes – and it’s a great staple recipe to know.
Although this is a common addition to desserts in vegan/dairy free baking, it’s also really handy when we’re all shopping less as coconut milk is shelf stable. No need to go out to buy whipped cream when you can pop a can of coconut milk in the fridge instead.
There are a couple of things to keep in mind, which are outlined in greater detail in the tips and notes section. The main point is to check the type of coconut milk you’re buying to make sure it’s whippable (not a word). Otherwise this is just as straightforward as any other whipped cream.
Scroll to the bottom of the post or click “skip to recipe” above to see the recipe card with full ingredient measurements and instructions.
- Two cans of full-fat coconut milk (refrigerated ahead of time)
- Maple syrup (or honey if not vegan)
Chill the cans of coconut milk overnight, or for at least eight hours, before beginning. I keep at least one can in the back of the refrigerator at all times just in case (you can always take it back out for curry).
Scoop the cream out of the cans and place it into a large bowl. Add the maple syrup and vanilla, and whip on high speed with an electric hand mixer for 1-2 minutes. Ideally, serve immediately. The whipped cream can be refrigerated, but it does harden a bit.
You can whip by hand with a bit of elbow grease, though it’ll be softer peaks, or use a standing mixer. The only trouble with a standing mixer is that the size of the bowl can make it a bit tricky for the whisk to get in and whip properly. A hand mixer is best.
Tips and Notes
There’s a lot of junk floating around the internet about exactly what brand or type of coconut milk you need to make whipped cream. And it’s junk! I use different brands all the time and never have any problems.
Look for two things: no additives in the milk, just coconut solids and water, and that when you shake the can you don’t hear it sloshing around everywhere. If the cream and water is separated, it makes little to no noise when shaken. So go around the store shaking cans of milk, no one cares anymore. It needs to be a minimum of 60% solids to work properly and most brands list that in the ingredients.
As you might see in the ingredient photo, one of my cans of milk is a lot more solid than the other. Both were refrigerated for the same amount of time. This doesn’t really matter, and if anything, the really hard and solid stuff doesn’t whip as nicely. As long as the cream and water is separated you should be fine.
I think you can probably use powdered sugar to sweeten, but I’ve never tried, and I’d be concerned about a grainy texture. I always stick to liquid sweetener. As usual, maple syrup and honey are used interchangeably but honey should be avoided if you’re making this for someone following a fully vegan diet.
You can use vanilla extract, as outlined, or vanilla powder or a scraped bean if you want to be fancy. Alternatively, a bit of cinnamon or other spices are nice too, depending on the season. For a lighter option go for the zest of a lemon.
Recipes with Coconut Whipped Cream
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Coconut Whipped Cream
- 2 cans 400ml / 13.5 oz full-fat coconut milk
- 1-2 tablespoons maple syrup to taste
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- Place the cans of coconut milk in the refrigerator to chill overnight or for at least eight hours before beginning. See the notes in the post about what type of milk to choose.
- Once the coconut milk has chilled, scoop the cream from the tops of the cans into a large bowl. Add the maple syrup and vanilla.
- Whip the cream for 1-2 minutes at high speed with an electric hand mixer, or until soft peaks form. Serve immediately. The whipped cream can be chilled but will harden slightly in the refrigerator.