What Is Cooking Cream And How Is it Different From All-Purpose Cream

This is the cream to use for cooking.

All-purpose cream is a super versatile ingredient. It is a shelf-stable dairy that can be used for a number of recipes. It can be used in both cooking and baking, including those no-bake recipes that we love making during the heat of the summer.

There are other kinds of cream on the market but none are quite the same. The other kind of cream that you might find is cooking cream.

Cooking cream, also marketed as culinary cream, is different from both whipping cream and all-purpose cream. The biggest difference is how it can be used. These are what makes cooking cream different and how these differences make it the cream you want to use for cooking:

1 Cooking cream cannot be whipped but stays liquid even when chilled.

Whipping cream has more milk fat than other creams which makes it easy to whip to soft and even stiff peaks. All-purpose cream can be used hot or cold. It has been treated to be stable for cooking and baking and stabilizers added to the cream to make it easy to use in almost any recipe.

Cooking cream however is not meant to be whipped. It does not contain as much fat as whipping cream and will not become as thick as all-purpose cream even if chilled.

unwhipped cooking cream
Photo by Riell Santos

2 Cooking cream is thinner in consistency and easily blends into other liquids.

Cooking cream might also be known as light cream or single cream in Europe. It’s a thinner, more liquid consistency than either whipping cream and all-purpose cream which makes it easy to stir into soups, sauces, and even gravies and stews.

cooking cream brands
Photo by Elle and Vire, Emborg, Anchor Dairy, Anchor Food Professionals

3 Cooking cream won’t curdle when heated or even boiled.

The main reason why cooking cream is the best kind of cream to use when cooking is because it will not curdle if your dish is brought to a boil. It’s perfect for making creamy pasta sauces such as carbonara and simmering in soups and stews such as cream of mushroom soups and super milky sopas when you don’t have evaporated milk on hand.

Cooking cream is easier to find than you think. You can find these brands of cooking cream at these supermarkets:



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