If You’re Using a Stand Mixer to Make Whipped Cream, You’re Doing It Wrong

updated Feb 27, 2023
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Credit: Joe Lingeman

I have a mess-free method for making spectacularly creamy, super rich, and stable whipped cream quickly and easily. In fact, it’s so good that it has ruined me for all other whipped cream-making techniques.

A few years ago, I was developing a recipe for a no-bake pie and knew my food processor would be the best tool to assemble both the crust and the filling. When it came time to whip the cream for my pie’s billowy topping, I paused. Could I just throw the cream into the processor and save myself the pain of getting out my stand mixer and dirtying another bowl? I gave it a try, and was completely unprepared for how well it would work: Within two minutes, my cream was whipped, my pie was topped, and I had dirtied a single bowl. I was in love.

Now, before you question my authority to judge whipped cream and the “process” (pun intended) required to assemble it, rest assured: this was not even close to my first whipped cream-making rodeo. In fact, when writing my cookbook, Icebox Cakes, I spent an inordinate amount of time making whipped cream. As you might imagine, it features prominently in just about every icebox cake there is.

Credit: Photo: Joe Lingeman; Food Styling: Jesse Szewczyk

After whipping up quarts of whipped cream, on a daily basis, for many months, I think it’s fair to say that I emerged from the recipe testing process as something of a whipped-cream expert. My stand mixer was my tool of choice then, and by the time I submitted my manuscript, I could literally make whipped cream with my eyes closed.

In short, when I tell you that a food processor is the better tool, I know of which I speak (and, honestly, I’m kicking myself for not thinking to use it when writing my book! But I digress). Here’s why a food processor is such a genius tool for whipping cream.

Why You Should Make Whipped Cream in Your Food Processor

The next time that whipped cream is on the menu, whether it’s to top a no-bake cream pie, finish a slice of flourless chocolate cake, or crown an ice cream sundae, here’s why you should turn to your food processor to get the job done.

  1. You don’t need to chill your equipment. When you whip cream in a stand mixer — or by hand in a bowl with a whisk — you have to chill everything before you begin to achieve the cream’s ideal volume and texture. But when using a food processor, the only item that needs to be chilled is the cream itself: The processor takes care of everything else.
  2. You can add all of your ingredients at once. A food processor can handle all of your whipped cream ingredients simultaneously. The machine works so quickly and efficiently that there is no need to add the cream first in order to thicken it — as so many recipes require — before moving on to your sugar, extracts, and add-ins. Just get all those ingredients into the processor bowl and have had it!
  3. A food processor is splatter-free. Mixing whipped cream in a stand mixer can get a little messy. If you turn the mixer up a tad too high when the cream is still in liquid form, you’ll end up with cream everywhere. But with a food processor, the whipped cream ingredients are sealed into the bowl, and while it runs, there’s no change of any cream escaping.
  4. It’s much faster than a stand mixer. No joke, my food processor can make whipped cream in two minutes or less. But even if your cream takes longer to whip than mine does, it’s still going to take less time than it would if you were making it in your stand mixer.
  5. The whipped cream is texturally superior. Food-processor whipped cream has an ultra-creamy texture, due to the fact that is less “airy” than traditional whipped cream. This is also what makes it so stable (more on that below), and gives it a richness of flavor that is downright heavenly.
  6. The whipped cream is super stable. If you like getting as much done ahead of time as possible when it comes to entertaining, food-processor whipped cream is a game-changer. The cream can sit for several hours in the fridge without getting runny and loose, and it can also travel with you atop a cream pie in a warm car (I speak from experience here) for several hours (let’s go with three) without losing its oomph. You can also accomplish this by stabilizing the whipped cream with gelatin or some extra sugar, but with the food processor, additional ingredients are a thing of the past.

Your turn: Have you used a food processor to make whipped cream? What’s your favorite whipped-cream method? Tell us in the comments, below!