Heavy Cream Recipe

Have you ever run into a situation where you want to make a recipe that calls for heavy cream but you don’t have any in your refrigerator?  It’s not something that I often purchase so this past weekend when I wanted to make alfredo I made my own homemade heavy cream.  It’s actually a very simple process and only requires two ingredients, milk and butter!  Here is a simple heavy cream recipe that can be used as a substitute for store bought heavy cream.

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Homemade heavy cream recipe

What is heavy cream?

Heavy cream is commonly found at grocery stores and is often also called heavy whipping cream.  It is the fat rich part of milk having at least 36% milk fat.  Heavy cream is used to make chowders, pasta sauces, ice cream and more.

How to make homemade heavy cream with milk and butter

This recipe is for a heavy cream substitute.  That said, it’s really only ideal to use this recipe in warm recipes like sauces and soups.  The cooking process will help the butter and milk combine even further.  The butter will add fat back to the milk more similar to the consistency and taste of heavy cream. Read on to learn how to make heavy cream with milk and butter.


1/2 cup butter

1 cup whole milk


Melt the butter

I would recommend letting the butter and milk come to room temperature and then when ready, melt the butter.  You can either do this in a pan on the stove or in the microwave.

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Slowly add milk

If the milk is room temperature you can slowly add it to the butter and whisk it together to combine.  If you didn’t allow the milk to come to room temperature, I would suggest letting the butter cool a bit before adding the milk.  This will prevent it from curdling.

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Homemade Heavy Cream Recipe

Cook Time 5 minutes


  • 1/2 cup Butter (1 stick)
  • 1 cup Whole Milk


  1. Let both the milk and butter come to room temperature before making the heavy cream.

  2. Melt the butter in a medium saucepan.

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  3. Add the milk and whisk to combine with the butter.

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  4. Store in the refrigerator for up to one week.

Other great heavy cream substitutes

Half and half and butter

Half and half is made from cream and whole milk so it has a higher fat content than milk to start with.  Adding butter will further increase the fat content and create a great heavy cream substitute when you’re in a pinch.  Start by melting 1/4 cup of butter and then add 1.5 cups of half and half.  This will give you 1.75 cups of heavy cream substitute.

Soy milk and olive oil

This is a great dairy free and vegan alternative.  The olive oil provides the fat necessary to mimic heavy cream.  To make 1.5 cups of this heavy cream alternate, combine 1/2 cup of olive oil with 1 cup of soy milk.

Homemade heavy cream recipe

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What is your favorite recipe that uses heavy cream?

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