Chantilly cream (French whipped cream)

Chantilly cream might sound fancy but it’s just whipped cream that’s lightly sweetened and flavoured with vanilla. It’s basically the better whipped cream!

BONUS: Learn the easy trick to make stabilised Chantilly cream so it stays fluffy and perfect for 2 – 3 days. Super handy so you can make whipped cream ahead!

Swirl of Chantilly cream - French whipped cream

What is Chantillly cream

Chantilly cream is just the “proper” French name for sweetened whipped cream. It has the same fluffy texture as plain whipped cream but a more luxurious flavour and an elegant satiny sheen. Basically, it’s a classier, tastier version of whipped cream!

Chantilly cream - French whipped cream dollop on a bowl of fruit

What to use Chantilly cream for

Use as you do ordinary whipped cream! Here are some suggestions:

Stabilising Chantilly Cream (won’t deflate for days!)

Stabilising Chantilly cream means giving it structure so the whipped cream has a longer shelf life. You know how ordinary whipped cream weeps and deflates overnight? If it’s stabilised, it won’t. It will stay fluffy and hold its piped shape (or in a bowl, ready to be piped) for 2 – 3 days.

Another benefit is that stabilised Chantilly cream will not squirt out when you take a bite of cream filled éclairs. Because, don’t you just hate that!?

It tastes the same, has the same fluffy texture and looks the same as ordinary whipped cream / Chantilly cream. So there’s really no point showing you a photo of stabilised whipped cream – because it looks exactly the same!

Bowl of freshly whipped Chantilly cream - French whipped cream

How to stabilise Chantilly cream

Mascarpone is the secret to stabilised whipped cream / Chantilly cream.

There are various methods to stabilise whipped cream. My recipe uses mascarpone which is a genius, thoroughly tested discovery by my French Pastry Chef teacher, Jennifer Pogmore.

Mascarpone is a thick Italian cream with a consistency like cream cheese but a flavour like whipped cream. When whipped with cream, it becomes light and fluffy like whipped cream but it holds its form for much longer than whipped cream.

Unlike other methods of stabilising cream (cornflour/cornstarch, gelatine, pudding mix – ick!), using mascarpone does not alter the flavour or mouthfeel of the whipped cream. It also produces the most reliable result. In contrast, we found that some other methods, like cornflour/cornstarch, produced unreliable results.

Yep, we tested all the common methods. And discarded them all.

Mascarpone is the BEST way to make stabilised cream!

And onwards, to the recipe!


Ingredients Chantilly Cream

All you need is cream, vanilla and icing sugar (powdered sugar) to make Chantilly Cream. For the stabilised option, you will also need mascarpone cream. Some notes on each of these ingredient is below the photo!

Ingredients in Eclairs
  • Cream – Heavy / thickened cream, or cream suitable for whipping (the carton should say). Here in Australia, there are also pouring creams which which will not whip. Such creams are clearly labelled as such!

    Make sure your cream is fridge cold. Warm cream won’t whip!

  • Vanilla – For the best flavour, use vanilla beans. Else, in order of preference, vanilla bean paste (which has the little vanilla specks in it), vanilla extract and lastly, vanilla essence (which is the most economical because it is artificial – and tastes as such).

  • Icing sugar / powdered sugar – This is used to sweeten the cream. It’s finer and lighter than caster sugar (superfine sugar) so it dissolves more easily and adds a slightly more delicate sweetness to the cream compared to ordinary sugar.

    However, caster sugar (superfine sugar) can be used in a pinch. The quantity to use is in the recipe.

  • Mascarpone cream (for stabilised cream option) – This is a very thick, rich Italian cream that has a consistency like softened cream cheese (see video for consistency). Once whipped with ordinary cream, the whipped cream is as light and fluffy as usual and it doesn’t alter the flavour or mouthfeel at all.

    But because, unlike whipping cream, it is thicker and “sets” in the fridge, it gives the whipped cream more structure. Meaning when you bite into something like an eclair, the cream does not squirt out the other end (as much!). And if you decorate a cake with the whipped cream it won’t weep and deflate overnight, like ordinary whipped cream.

    Australians – do NOT use generic home brands (like Woolworths) as I have experienced problems with them in Tiramisu (they are not “authentic” so they are break and become runny when stirred). Use good brands such as:

    • La Casa Formaggio Mascarpone (Woolworths)

    • Montefiore Mascarpone Cheese (Coles)

    • Formaggio Zanetti (Harris Farms)

    • Latteria Sociale Mantova (Harris Farms, pictured below)

    • Any from an Italian deli


How to make Chantilly cream

Whether you are making plain or stabilised Chantilly cream, the method is the same:

How to make Eclairs
  1. Beat – Put all the ingredients in a bowl and beat on high speed with a handheld electric beater or stand mixer. Move the beater around the bowl and if need be, stop once or twice to scrape down the sides with a rubber spatula.

  2. Fluffy with peaks – Beat for 1 1/2 minutes (for 1 cup of cream) until it becomes fluffy and you have peaks that stand straight upright, as pictured above. The more cream you start with, the longer it will take. As a guide, 2 cups of cream takes about 2 minutes.

    Do not beat for ages else you’ll end up with butter! (Really, I’m not kidding. Butter is made from cream – just beat for ages and butter will form!) But before butter, the cream will become chunky and look a bit lumpy.

And that’s it! Ready to spread onto cakes, pipe onto cupcakes or dollop on bowls of fruit!

How to store Chantilly cream

Plain, non-stabilised Chantilly cream is best whipped just before serving. It will start to deflate and “melt” a bit after around 1 hour (sooner, on hot days).

However, non-stabilised Chantilly cream can be kept in the fridge for 3 days.

Stabilised Chantilly cream will keep for 2 to 3 days in the fridge and will hold its piped form (on, say, cupcakes) or stay fluffy and ready for piping/spreading for 2 days, sometimes 3 days.


Hope you find the stabilised Chantilly cream trick handy! These days, I pretty much always stabilise my cream when I use it to decorate cakes and cupcakes because this way I can make ahead, and know that leftovers will be as great as they were when freshly made. It’s been a game-changing tip! – Nagi x


Watch how to make it

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Swirl of Chantilly cream - French whipped cream

Chantilly cream (with stabilised whipped cream option)

Servings2 cups

Tap or hover to scale

Recipe video above. Chantilly cream is the French name for whipped cream that’s lightly sweetened and flavoured with vanilla. Use it as you do plain whipped cream to decorate cakes, pipe onto cupcakes, dollop on fruit and swirl onto sundaes!To make whipped cream hold its fluffy texture and piped form for 2 to 3 days, stabilise it by adding mascarpone. It won’t alter the flavour or texture. Other methods (like cornflour/cornstarch, gelatine) are unreliable or not very pleasant to eat!

Ingredients

Vanilla flavour – choose ONE (Note 3):

For STABILISED Chantilly Cream option (Note 4):

Instructions

  • Whip Chantilly cream – Place all the Chantilly Cream ingredients in a bowl, including mascarpone if making the stabilised version. Whip using an electric beater on medium high for 2 minutes, moving the beater around the bowl, or until stiff peaks form – see in post for photo of what this is. If scaling up, it will take longer. Ready for use!

  • To use – Fill a piping bag with nozzle of choice and pipe. Spread onto cakes or dollop on a bowl of fruit or onto pies!

Recipe Notes:

1. Cream – You need to use cream labelled heavy or thickened cream, or whipping cream (or a combination of those words!). Low fat cream won’t whip. 
Make sure it’s fridge cold, else it won’t whip. 
2. Sweetener – Or use 3 tablespoons of caster sugar (superfine sugar) for every 1 cup of cream.
3. Vanilla flavour – Pods are best (but pricey!), follow by vanilla bean paste (I use this because I like the authentic specks) then vanilla extract. Vanilla essence is artificial and tastes as such – not recommended!
Vanilla pod – To scrape the seeds out of a vanilla pod, cut the pot in half lengthwise using a small sharp knife. Then scrape down the split pod using the blunt side of the knife to scrape the seeds out.
4. Stabilised cream has the same light mouthfeel as plain whipped cream, but it has more structure so it will hold its fluffy form or piped form for 2 to 3 days, and it doesn’t squirt out as much when you bite into a éclair. There’s various ways to make stabilised cream but mascarpone yields the best result. Will keep for 2 days without deflating or weeping like normal cream. Read in post for more information.
5. Mascarpone is an Italian cheese/cream that tastes like a rich cream. It has a consistency like softened cream cheese, it’s not pourable. Be sure to get a reputable brand, not an economical house brand as cheap imitations are runny (pourable) so won’t work as a thickener to stabilise the Chantilly Cream.
4. Making ahead – Non stabilised Chantilly cream will start deflating after 1 hour but will keep for 2 to 3 days in the fridge (though it will weep). Stabilised cream can be kept in an airtight container or piping bag for 48 hours, and it will be fluffy like freshly made! 

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