Stabilized Whipped Cream for Icing Cakes

Whipped Cream for cake decorating sometimes needs a little help to maintain its integrity on cakes that may be expected to hold up for more than a few hours. With the help of a little gelatin, you can achieve this.
For those of you who do not use gelatin, you may substitute agar agar in the same quantities.

For those of you who cannot find either, just leave it out.  You will not have a “stabilized” whipped cream, but it’s not the end of the world.  Many people use straight up whipped cream on their cakes and it is fine.  This stabilized whipped cream only aids in preserving your cake for maybe an extra day.  Whipped cream is so highly perishable and delicate that there is not much we can do to give it longer shelf life.

Plain Powdered Gelatin 7g (1 packets 1/4 oz )

Cold Water 1/4 c (2 fl oz)

Boiling Water 1/4 c ( 2 fl oz)

OR-

Stabilizer: Plain Powdered Gelatin 1 teaspoon 

Cold Water 1-1/2 tablespoons

Boiling Water 1-1/2 tablespoons

Method:
Bloom the gelatin in the cold water. Let stand about 5 minutes.

Add the boiled water to the gelatin mixture and stir to dissolve. Use immediately in quantities specified in the recipe, or store the entire amount in a clean plastic container with a lid in the refrigerator for up to 3 weeks. Use as needed by melting desired amount in the microwave slowly. DO NOT FREEZE the gelatin mixture.

Whipped Cream Recipe:
2 cups Heavy Cream
1/4 cup Confectioners Sugar (or to taste if you like sweeter or less sugar)

Method:
In a small microwaveable bowl add 1 Tablespoon of the gelatin stabilizer and microwave on medium power for just 10 seconds at a time until it melts.  DO NOT BOIL.

In another separate bowl add 1/4 c of the heavy cream from the above recipe for whipped cream.  Microwave this until it is hot to the touch, then add it to the gelatin mixture.

Reserve.

Next pour the heavy cream into the bowl of the Kitchen Aid mixer with the whip attachment and whip on high speed.
As the cream begins to get frothy and gain volume you can add the confectioners sugar. Continue whipping until you achieve desired peaks necessary for your specific application. Just before you have reached your desired peaks consistency, pour in the warm cream/gelatin mixture and whip a few seconds longer.
Soft- Medium – Firm peaks are the 3 stages of whipping cream.

Always refrigerate any cake or dessert that is made with whipped cream as it is highly perishable.
It is not a great idea to store whipped cream for more than a day, it will lose its volume that we worked so hard to achieve. But if you MUST, 3 days maximum and you WILL have to re whip again, so in my opinion, what’s the point? You should really just do it ala minute.

Comments

  1. Rachael says

    I will be making chocolate cupcakes for my baby girls first birthday next month.I am going to be using your stabilized whipped frosting for the icing. I was planning on making the cupcakes and icing them the night before. Would they be able to sit out at room temperature all night long or should I just make the icing and do the icing the next morning? If the next morning can they then sit out at room temperature for a few hours?
    Also where do you get the heavy whipping cream at?

    Thank you for your time in reading and responding and for the excellent video and recipe.

    • Gretchen Price says

      whipped cream must stay refrigerated at all times (1 hour out at the maximum)
      Heavy Cream is purchased in the supermarket

  2. says

    Dear Gretchen,
    Can I use meringue powder to stabilise the cream instead of gelatin. I know it can be used to stabilise buttercream and wondered if it would work for whipping cream as well.
    Thank you for all your great videos. My baking skills and knowledge have improved markedly since watching them.
    Soreya

  3. Sherrin Lim says

    Hi Gretchen,

    May I pls check with you if this stabilised whipped cream will hold 6 layers rainbow cake? Thk you..

    • Gretchen Price says

      yes it should, just go very thin in between the layers so it doesn’t slide too much and KEEP REFRIGERATED!
      ALSO CLICK HERE to pick the best cake choice for refrige cakes

  4. Rajashree says

    Hi

    I made whipped cream frosting for birthday cakes (just a small cake…not much large). The problem is the cream taste nice and smooth and buttery (get an after taste of butter) but my husband soesnt like it. He says store bought or bakery whipped cream taste better. I am not sure what they add to get that taste.
    For the whipped cream, i just use whipping cream, sugar and vanilla essence.
    As such till now, i am not having any issues with the icing going off since i decorate the cake right before the actual cake cutting.
    But any advice on how to get the buttery taste off the whipped cream frosting? or probably make it more store-like texture?
    I am planning to make a black forest cake this week-end and want to make the whipped cream frosting for that. please help.

    • Gretchen Price says

      whipped cream should not taste like butter, unless you are whipping it TOO MUCH to the point where you are actually making butter??

  5. Lori says

    I tried reading all the comments, but my head is spinning now!

    I’m making my own wedding cake. We don’t like fondant and some people complain that buttercream is too sweet. I was thinking of using the stablized whipped cream to frost and decorate my cake. What are your thoughts. How long can it be left out, ect.?

    • Gretchen Price says

      I would not ever do a wedding in whipped cream, but others have. It cannot stay out for longer than an hour really

  6. Curtis Bell says

    Hi Gretchen,
    I love your blog and watch your videos everyday… I’m making some strawberry cupcakes for a friend and I want to use whipped cream instead of buttercream can I add strawberry puree to your recipe to achieve the desired results?

  7. deb says

    Thanks for the info on whipped cream stabilizer.. Fondant designs on cakes are incredible,but some people hate Fondant .

  8. Tan says

    Hello Gretchen, my whipped cream frosting on cake had hair cracks after the fridge. I used whipping cream with sugar no gelatin added, appreciate your help. Thanks.

    • Gretchen Price says

      sometimes this happens to whipped cream, since the air will leech out the moisture and cause cracking
      always best to ice with whipped cream at the very last minute

  9. Ann Marie says

    OMG…I need serious help…I need to make approx. 60 cupcakes for a 14 yr girls birthday and I really want to impress her (who my kidding her dad)..I guess my question is..would it be better to use the whip cream icing or the butter cream icing. I want the icing to taste more like butter and not so sweet and of course the cupcakes have to be pink. If all goes well maybe I will finally get that date that I want with him..lol thank you so much love your video’s
    P.S…how many days in advance can I do this so I don’t have to do it all in the same day.

    • Irasema Yanez says

      you might not need this by now but if you want a frosting that holds well, not so sweet, tastes like butter and you can make in advance i would make her recipe for Swiss butter cream frosting! it is the best! i would use it white though..it doesn’t take color as well as an american butter cream.

  10. Mike says

    HI Gretchen! There was a thought just pop in my head, and I’m not sure if it works, and since ur a master or baking, I hope you could help me :

    Can I combine whipped cream icing and American butter-cream (which is straight up butter and confectioner sugar) together ? Will it curdle? I had try to mixed Swiss Meringe butter cream with non-dairy whipped cream, and the outcome was a disasster. Can you help me ?

    • Gretchen Price says

      You can do it, I don’t do it, but it CAN be done.
      I feel that the lightness of the whipped cream mixed with the heavier buttercream is not appealing.
      It shouldn’t break, and if it does, it has more to do with the science of agitating those fat molecules to the point of breaking.
      (Read What is Ganache for more clarity on what I mean)

      But anyway- may I ask WHY you want to do this? What is it you are trying to achieve?

      • Mike says

        Hi Gretchen ! Thank you for your respond. I’m just kid who want to move to New York and apply to CIA next year, and with a passion on baking and cooking, I just want to try new things, and create my own recipes. Personally, I like the richness and the creaminess of American butter cream; however, its way to thick, and heavy, and sometime you can even taste the strong flavor of butter in it. In the other hand, whipped cream is light, and white,odorless, not very creamy and spreadable, but its taste like foam to me ( I guess). So I try to create a frosting that is in between ,that has richness, and creaminess, but its still light, and white, and odorless. Just like some people try to mix whipped cream frosting, and creamcheese frosting together, to create a light creamcheese frosting.

        • Arina says

          Try Ganache frosting….
          Depending on how much you want to make use equal parts of whipping cream and chocolate (white, milk, semi-sweet, dark as you prefer). Heat it in a double boiler stirring until all chocolate dissolves and the mixture is smooth with no lumps and shades. Let it cool down, and refrigerate it. Prepare it one day in advance. The day you want to use it take it out from the refrigerator, whip it until forms stiff peaks. It should be fluffy and also pretty heavy at the same time. Can be used for frosting and also for decorating but you cannot really make fancy roses. And it is yummy.

  11. Melissa says

    Anyone debating on buying the decorating kit, do it.. Got mine this week and love it!! .. Gretchen, I made this pie and it’s fantastic!! I have a couple of (probably dumb) questions.. Should it cool completely before adding the stabilized whip cream? And I baked mine for an hour and 15 minutes.. It was great but wondered if it just took my oven longer or if I messed anything up in the mixing portion? I have never even eaten or liked pumpkin pie and had 2 slices of this.. Will definitely be making it for holiday get togethers!

  12. Michelle Cowle says

    Hi Gretchen me the pest again…I believe read all 480 comments to see if you had already answered this but I don’t think you have..(you do get some doozies lol) I have been using whipped cream as icing on birthday cakes for years because no one in my family likes the sweetness of buttercream or fondant. ( no I haven’t tried your famous buttercream yet …that’s next!) but in the meantime when I do my writing on the cake sometimes it will melt and bleed into the whipped cream and sometimes it stayes perfectly in tact. The only similar question was asking if you could and you replied you didn’t..so my question is do you know why it only works some of the time..I have experimented and cannot find the answer. Oh P.S. It is icing (buttercream) I am using to write my messages. Thank you so so so much..you truly are a gem…Michelle

    • Gretchen Price says

      yeah for a good laugh once in a while just read the comments on here :(
      The color bleeds into whipped cream for me everytime. I warn my customers about it. There is such a high moisture content in whipped cream that just naturally picks up the color and makes it bleed
      I sometimes write with a lighter color of BC first then go over it with the darker color, this way it has a sort of barrier

  13. says

    Hi Gretchen first let me say love your videos and website such a great help :) but I have a couple of question……. I’m making a Tres leches cake for my daughter’s bday and I wanted to add some strawberries and whip cream for a filling in the cake (1) could I use this recipe for the filling? (2) should I put the strawberries and whip cream filling before I add the milk base for the Tres leches or after?(3) or what is your best opinion on how I should assemble this cake? please help thank you and one more question sorry but if I add color to whip cream when should I add it to the cream?

    • Gretchen Price says

      Hi great Thanks
      #1- Yes
      #2 Im not sure what you mean
      #3 tres leches is a liquid mixture that soaks the cake (like a sponge cake)
      So I typically do not use a filling when making this cake.
      I just use whipped cream icing.

      not to say it cannot be done, but I don’t really have a great advise for you here Im sorry

  14. Tammy loupe says

    Hi Gretchen ,

    Would this be the icing needed for a Chantilly cake i am wanting to make for my parents 64 th Anniversary . I just love your site and blog thanks If there is a different one i should use can you send me the link .

  15. Neveen says

    Hi Gretchen
    Just a shout out to let you know how much I appreciate your wonderful videos and your generosity. You are definitely a giver and the world need more people like you! God Bless your kind heart and Bless your wonderful work. Your videos are amazing and super easy to understand, those videos have given me confidence in baking, and I can’t thank you enough. Oh by the way I think if anyone wishes to thank you in a practical way, they should purchase your books which I will do in a minute :)

  16. Jill says

    Gretchen, I’m wondering how long I could keep this stabilized whipped cream out at room temperature? I want to use it as a frosting for cupcakes at a wedding Thanks for sharing your tips and tricks. It is so appreciated.

  17. Lori says

    Hi Gretchen,

    I tried this recipe today but I’m not sure what I did wrong. The whipped cream was good. After when I added the mixture of geletin and cream it turned into cottage cheese like?

  18. Crystal says

    Hi Gretchen,

    Thanks for your speedy responses. Two questions: 1) What are your thoughts about/experience with stabilized whipped cream made with reduced fat cream cheese, white sugar, and heavy whipping cream? 2) I’m making a three tier (12″ 10″, 8″ unstacked) tres leches cake for a wedding (today). Can I use stabilized whip cream to decorate this cake with cornelli lace? Cakes were made yesterday and have been “soaking” overnight. I intentionally did NOT over-saturate them as I’m worry about structural integrity and being able to flip them out of the pans. Thanks in advance!!!

    • Gretchen Price says

      yes, you can buy gelatin in the supermarket in USA but I don’t know where YOU live, so I don’t know

  19. Lyndsay Land says

    Do you usually frost the cake the day of? I am making a cake for a baby shower and really didn’t want to have to worry about doing that the day of. What are your thoughts?

  20. Patty Nardi says

    Hi Gretchen,

    Can I make rosettes and ruffles with stabilized whip cream, and will they hold up?

    I will put them on a cream cheese cake.

    Also, I will be transporting this in a car for a two hr. drive. Any suggestions on how to do this and keep everything pretty.

    Thank you

  21. Crystal says

    Hi Gretchen! I would like to know if u can color the stabilized whip cream frosting? And if so, do I use a liquid or gel like Wilton or Americolor and at point do I mix it in? I love your videos and recipes!

    • Gretchen Price says

      yes you can and it is best to use oil based colors for whipped cream, however I have (in a pinch) used gel paste and it comes out Ok too

  22. Laura says

    Hi :)
    I’m going to try to make my nephew ao after truck cake and I was wondering how to make this recipe in chocolate. Thanks for your help

  23. christina says

    Hi Gretchen,

    Can i use whipped cream as filling for the butter cake and on the top frosting i use butter icing. i need to do this saturday. need your advice. thanks.

  24. Luna says

    I’m making an 8-inch three layer cake. Is the whipped cream stiff enough to hold up cake layers and still show through when you cut the cake? Thanks.

  25. Junior says

    hey so I am very new to baking, and I’m going to make a checkerboard cake using red velvet and chocolate cake. I wanted to use whipped cream cream cheese frosting for the filling and your whipped cream recipe for icing the cake. Basically since I’m new to this I was just wondering if these flavors seem balanced or do you think the cake would taste like crap lol. I’m using light filling and icing because my dad doesn’t like very heavy and sweet stuff.

    • Gretchen Price says

      I think the flavors will be great, but I warn that chocolate cake and red velvet in a Checkerboard Cake may not have the effect (visually) that you are looking for
      Since they are so close in color

  26. says

    Hi
    I use a lot of your recipes and they are wonderful! I have a customer who doesn’t like sweet frosting. I was wondering that if I used the whipped cream frosting can I put fondant on top of it? If not what would you recommend?

    Thank You
    Melissa

    • Gretchen Price says

      I do not recommend Whipped Cream under fondant, it is very slippery and doesn’t not hold well, if it starts to slip under the fondant, it will take your fondant right with it!
      I use a THIN coat of buttercream under fondant just enough to GLUE It, she will never know it is there!

  27. Elijah says

    Hi so I was planning on making this for my dads birthday cake this week and I was just wondering how to keep the cake from getting hard. What I mean by this is every time I put a cake In the fridge it gets hard in a couple of hours. And I’m assuming I’d need to refrigerate it since ill be using whipped cream as an icing for the cakd

  28. Kelly says

    I’m confused with the information at the top of the recipe regarding the gelatin measurements…its this: Plain Powdered Gelatin 7g (1 packets 1/4 oz ), Cold Water 1/4 c (2 fl oz), Boiling Water 1/4 c ( 2 fl oz) OR this: Stabilizer: Plain Powdered Gelatin 1 teaspoon, Cold Water 1-1/2 tablespoons, Boiling Water 1-1/2 tablespoons. Which are you to use?

    I need to make a Football Field Cake for a party on Sunday – I’m setting delivery up for Saturday night and asking them to keep it in the fridge – to preserve the icing/decorations…I need an EXCELLENT recipe and I know you’d never let me down. :) Just need help understanding the top section regarding the most important part that I’m looking for in a whipped cream frosting recipe…stabilization.

    Thanks in advance!

    ~ Kelly ~

    • Gretchen Price says

      It is a LARGE recipe, or a SMALL recipe, pick which you prefer. I make it in large batches and keep in the fridge so when I need to stabilize some cream, I just hack off a hunk, melt it and Im done, but some folks have been complaining that my recipe was too large (and apparently no one can do math?) so I revised the recipe to reflect both Large and Small quantities, either way the method is the same

      Good Luck!

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