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Upgrade Your Recipes: 5 Top Single Cream Alternatives

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Have you ever gone to the store and realized you were out of single cream?

It’s a common ingredient in many recipes, but there are times when you need an alternative.

Luckily, finding substitutes for single cream is easy and can be done quickly with a few simple ingredients.

Many of them offer the same results as single cream does, making them reliable substitutes.

Let’s take a look at how to use single cream, and the five best substitutes for it.

What’s Single Cream?

Single cream, also known as clotted cream or thick cream, is a type of pasteurized semi-skimmed milk often added to coffee, smoothies and desserts.

It has a rich flavor, creamy texture and thick consistency that’s perfect for creating rich, velvety dishes.

Let’s take a closer look at what single cream is and how you can use it in your cooking.

What is single cream? Single cream is a type of semi-skimmed milk with a medium fat percentage between 10% and 18%.

The milk can be treated with pasteurization in order to kill any harmful bacteria before it’s packaged.

Single cream contains less sugar compared to other types of creams (including double or whipping cream) since the only sugar present in the product are natural sugars from lactose.

It’s important to note that single cream should not be confused with low-fat creams like evaporated milk or sour cream which have much higher fat percentages and different textures.

Single cream can be enjoyed both hot and cold depending on its intended use.

It makes an ideal addition to coffee and smoothies since it gives drinks an extra richness without causing them to become overly sweet.

In desserts, single cream can be used as an ingredient in cakes, puddings and pies as well as toppings for ice creams or fresh fruits like strawberries or blackberries.

It also makes the perfect addition to savoury dishes such as soups or sauces due to its subtle flavour profile which will not overpower other ingredients in the dish.

The 5 Best Substitutes for Single Cream

While single cream adds richness and flavor to many recipes and dishes, you may be unable to find it in some parts of the world.

If you can’t get your hands on single cream, there are several suitable substitutes that work just as well in both savory and sweet dishes.

Below are five of the best substitutes for single cream:

1 – Heavy Cream

Heavy cream, also known as heavy whipping cream, is one of the most popular substitutes for single cream in baking and cooking.

It comes from cow’s milk, just like single cream, but contains more butterfat (around 36 percent).

It’s a thick and creamy liquid that whips up easily into soft peaks.

When making whipped cream with heavy cream, you don’t need to add any sugar because it already has a slight sweetness.

If you’re looking for a ready-made version, you can purchase cartons of ready-made whipped cream in the dairy section of most supermarkets.

Heavy Cream can be used in all sorts of recipes including toppings for desserts and sauces for savory dishes.

Be aware that it contains more fat than single cream so it shouldn’t be used where you want to keep calories down.

2 – Whipping Cream

Whipping cream, or heavy cream, is another great substitute for single cream.

It has the same creamy texture and flavor but with a much higher fat content: it can be up to 35-40% milk fat when fresh.

This makes it ideal for creating thick, luscious sauces and velvety soups.

It can also be used in place of milk or single cream in baking recipes, as it will produce a richer result.

Just be aware that you may need to adjust the amount of sugar in your recipe accordingly as whipping cream is slightly sweeter, due to its higher fat content.

Whipping cream can also be easily whipped into stiff peaks, making it great for topping desserts or making fresh whipped cream.

3 – Half-half

Half-half, also known as half-and-half, is a combination of equal parts whole milk and light cream.

It can be used as a substitute for single cream in baking or to make creamy sauces.

Because it contains some fat but not as much as heavy whipping cream or single cream, it can be useful to use in reducing the fat content of baked goods without sacrificing on the creaminess or richness of your final product.

Before using half-and-half in place of single cream in baking recipes, you should consider making adjustments to any other liquid ingredients in the recipe accordingly.

4 – Greek Yogurt

Greek yogurt can make an excellent single cream substitute, depending on your particular needs.

Greek yogurt is higher in fat content than regular yogurt, which makes it a nice alternative for those following a low carb or low fat diet.

It has some tanginess to it, so use less of it to establish the creamy texture you are looking for.

You can adjust the amount used to get the perfect creaminess without any strong flavors in the background.

Greek yogurt is also high in protein so this can be a great alternative to add nutrition and health benefits as well.

Just make sure when using Greek yogurt as a substitute for single cream that you buy whole milk variants and always check labels to make sure of the exact nutritional content and fat content depending on what size container you’re buying.

5 – Coconut Cream

Coconut cream is made from the meat of mature coconuts, blended with just enough water to create a thick, creamy liquid.

It’s a great vegan substitute for single cream and can be used in many dishes – sweet or savory.

Plus, it’s generally easier to find than other substitutes.

As a bonus, coconut cream adds a hint of sweetness to any dish, along with its own unique flavor.

Try adding this creamy consistency to your favorite soups and sauces or using it in baking recipes like cakes and muffins for that subtle coconut flavor.

When substituting coconut cream for single cream, you may need to make adjustments to the recipe according to your desired consistency as it tends to thicken more quickly than regular single cream.

Finally, always be sure to check the nutrition label when buying coconut cream since some brands add artificial sweeteners or other additives that can alter the taste and texture of your dish even further.


Whether you’re looking for a single cream replacement due to dietary restrictions, health concerns, or simply because the store was out of stock, the wide variety of options ensures that everyone can find something that works for them.

From dairy-free options like coconut cream and coconut milk to other types of cream with a similar texture and flavor, there is something for every recipe, baking project, and topping need.

No matter which option you choose from this list, it’s important to remember that substitutions are never going to be an exact match.

However, these substitutes can get you very close in terms of consistency and flavor profiles.

With some creativity and experimentation in the kitchen, you can create delicious dishes that are sure to please your palate.

The 5 Best Substitutes for Single Cream

Recipe by Kimberly Baxter Course: Substitutes

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  • Heavy Cream

  • Whipping Cream

  • Half-half

  • Greek Yogurt

  • Coconut Cream


  • Choose your preferred substitute from the list of options.
  • Organize all of your ingredients.
  • Use the proper substitute to cook your recipes.

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