Can You Use Heavy Whipping Cream in Coffee?

The world of coffee additives has a new rising star: heavy cream. While some people prefer their coffee sweet, there’s been a rising demand for rich coffee drinks, especially in American coffee culture.

Whether you want a keto-friendly treat or just a decadent dessert coffee, heavy whipping cream is an intriguing option. So can you use heavy whipping cream in coffee? What does it taste like? And is it really keto-friendly? Let’s find out together.

What Is Heavy Whipping Cream?

Heavy whipping cream is the thick cream that rises to the top of fresh milk due to its high-fat content. It’s removed during the manufacturing process and sold as a separate product. Heavy whipping cream has a fat content of at least 36%, which makes it popular for toppings, sauces, and recipes that require a cream that is resistant to curdling.

You’ll sometimes see it labeled as heavy cream and sometimes as heavy whipping cream, both of which are the same product with the same fat content. Whipping cream, though, is not the same, as it has a fat content of only 30%.

Can I Use Heavy Cream in Coffee?

Pouring heavy cream in coffee, showing the rich change in texture

Yes! Because of its high-fat content, coffee with heavy cream creates a decadently rich drink. If that sounds appealing, you should try using heavy whipping cream as coffee creamer.

You can also froth your heavy cream, but it won’t froth as well as less fatty kinds of milk and creams. You’ll be able to get it to a silky texture, but I wouldn’t expect any significant layer of foam.

Lastly, you can whip the heavy cream. That whipped cream can then be added to black coffee to create a variant of cafe con Panna or espresso con Panna, a coffee drink that is typically made by topping espresso with regular whipped cream.

An espresso con panna, espresso with whipped cream

Is Heavy Cream Good in Coffee?

It is if you like rich, creamy beverages. Fans of Starbucks lattes might like this drink. If you only use a dab of creamer or milk in your coffee, heavy cream is probably not going to appeal to you. 

If you are on the fence, you may want to try breve coffee first, which uses half-and-half instead of heavy cream. Traditionally, breve coffee is made with espresso, but you can make it with drip coffee instead if you prefer or if that’s all you have handy.

You can also try espresso with heavy cream, which might appeal more to those looking to keep the strong coffee flavor in their drink. Since both the espresso and the heavy cream are very rich, though, that is certainly a drink best consumed in moderation. A better balance might be an Americano with heavy cream, as that dilutes the espresso to a strength close to regular drip coffee.

Does Heavy Cream Curdle in Coffee?

Heavy cream doesn’t curdle as readily as lower-fat creams and milks. However, it can still happen. No milk or cream products are immune from curdling, but heavy cream does take longer to start curdling on its own.

Curdling is often associated with dairy products going sour, but it may actually be fine to use heavy cream that curdles when poured into coffee. Cream and milk curdle with age, but acidity and high temperatures also contribute. If you pour heavy cream into a steaming hot, acidic cup of coffee, it may curdle slightly even if the cream is still perfectly safe to use.

Health Impacts of Using Heavy Whipping Cream in Coffee

A heart in a cup of coffee, illustrating the health impacts of coffee

Heavy cream is not a great choice for those looking to cut back on the fat in their diet. It also has a high-calorie content, with about 51 calories per tablespoon. Unlike most coffee creamers, though, it doesn’t have any added sugars.

Coffee drinkers that want an occasional decadent treat may find heavy cream to be a tasty option. However, most will probably not find it to be healthy enough to become a daily coffee additive.

Is heavy cream in coffee keto?

It is! Coffee is very keto-friendly, and heavy cream introduces a dense source of good fats that contains few carbohydrates. For that reason, many keto diets actually suggest using heavy cream in coffee for weight loss.

Coffee Richer Than Elon Musk

It’s always exciting to find a new or unique coffee additive. There are plenty of sweet coffee options out there, but it’s rare to find coffee drinks that are decadently rich without added sweetness. Using heavy whipping cream in coffee is not a universally appealing option, but if you love rich coffee, this option can’t be beaten.

If you want exciting ways to tweak your coffee with heavy cream experience, I highly suggest trying it with AeroPress espresso or with coffee made with espresso beans. If you’re a fan of flavored coffees, French press coffee, or cold brew coffee — those all go great with the richness of heavy cream. Now go enjoy the decadent side of the coffee world!

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