Heavy whipping cream has a variety of culinary uses. You can use it to make butter and whipped cream, add creaminess to coffee or soups, and much more.
Heavy whipping cream is full of nutrients but also very high in calories.
This article outlines everything you need to know about heavy whipping cream, including its uses, nutrient content, benefits, and downsides.
What is heavy whipping cream?
Heavy whipping cream is the high-fat portion of raw dairy milk
Fresh, raw milk naturally separates into cream and milk. The cream rises to the top due to its fat content. It’s then skimmed off before further processing
To make heavy whipping cream, this raw cream is pasteurized and homogenized. This involves heating and applying high levels of pressure to the cream to kill pathogens, lengthen shelf life, and improve stability
Many types of heavy whipping cream also contain additives that help stabilize the cream and keep the fat from separating.
One of these additives is carrageenan, which is extracted from seaweed. Another is sodium caseinate, the food-additive form of the milk protein casein
Nutrition of heavy whipping cream
Heavy whipping cream is mostly fat, so it’s high in calories. It’s also rich in choline, fat-soluble vitamins, and certain minerals. One-half cup (119 grams) contains
Protein: 3 grams
Fat: 43 grams
Carbs: 3 grams
Vitamin A: 35% of the Reference Daily Intake (RDI)
Vitamin D: 10% of the RDI
Vitamin E: 7% of the RDI
Calcium: 7% of the RDI
Phosphorus: 7% of the RDI
Choline: 4% of the RDI
Vitamin K: 3% of the RDI
The fat in heavy whipping cream is primarily saturated fat, which was long thought to contribute to the development of heart disease.
However, current research does not show a strong link between dairy fat intake and heart disease. In fact, emerging research suggests that eating saturated fat may help protect against heart disease
Heavy whipping cream also contains choline and vitamins A, D, E, and K, all of which play vital roles in your health.
For example, vitamin A is essential for eye health and immune function, while choline is critical to early brain development and metabolism
Furthermore, heavy whipping cream contains calcium and phosphorus, two minerals that are necessary for healthy bones.
Benefits of heavy whipping cream
Heavy whipping cream and other full-fat dairy products contain several health-boosting vitamins and minerals, including the fat-soluble vitamins A, D, E, and K.
In fact, full-fat dairy products contain more fat-soluble vitamins than their low-fat and fat-free counterparts
What’s more, your body absorbs fat-soluble vitamins better when they are consumed with fat, such as the fat found in heavy whipping cream
Some studies have also found that full-fat dairy products are associated with a decreased risk of obesity, type 2 diabetes, and heart disease
One study in more than 1,300 participants observed that those who reported the highest intake of full-fat dairy were significantly less likely to be obese than those who reported the lowest intake. They also had significantly less belly fat
One 13-week study in 36 adults compared the low-fat Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension (DASH) diet to a high-fat version of the diet containing 40% fat and full-fat dairy products.
Researchers noted that both diets reduced high blood pressure, but the higher-fat diet had the added benefit of decreasing harmful very low-density lipoprotein (VLDL), all while maintaining heart-protective high-density lipoprotein (HDL)
Furthermore, heavy whipping cream appears to be healthier for you than several highly refined low-fat products that serve as cream replacements, such as coffee creamers and whipped topping
Compared to whole foods, these products are less filling and have a greater impact on your blood sugar levels. High intake of these refined foods has also been linked to obesity
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