Looking for a versatile cake filling that takes no time to whip up? Then you’re going to love this recipe for Delicious Whipped Cream Filling!
This is my go-to cake filling, but is also fantastic served with strawberries, atop hot chocolate, with coffee, on waffles and pancakes, on any type of pie or crumble, and banana splits, of course! Add in some cocoa powder and you have yourself a chocolate version. The best part: this recipe is RIDICULOUSLY EASY and takes no time.
The only essential: you must chill your stand-mixer bowl and whisk attachment for five minutes in the freezer prior to whipping the cream. Is that really necessary? Can’t I just throw it all together and let ‘er rip? Nope. Let’s look at the science!
Whipping causes air bubbles to form. If you whisk some cream around in a bowl with a hand whisk, bubbles form, but they float to the surface and pop very easily. However, if you beat the cream, the fat partially coalesces and creates a barrier around those pockets of air. The fat-encapsulated bubbles link together and the texture of the cream is transformed into stiff peaks of perfection. This process, however, is very much temperature-dependent. Chilled (but not too cold) sets the cream up for an ideal result.
All this bubble talk got me thinking about air volume related to bubble size: would bigger bubbles result in a fluffier outcome?
Does size matter?
I reached out to Professor Douglas Goff from the University of Guelph. Dr. Goff was recognized by New York Magazine as the world’s leading expert in ice cream. His research interest spans more than 30 years, and he has been teaching Food Science courses for almost 20 years. He was kind enough to take the time to answer my questions.
When asked about bubble size, Dr. Goff said that smaller air bubbles result in a firm, stable product with a lower rate of foam collapse. He went on to say that while total air volume does impact fluffiness, it is possible to achieve both high air volume and small stable bubbles.
So bigger isn’t necessarily better, but he did confirm that temperature is important. The ideal temperature range for whipping cream is between 4°-10°C or 39.2°-50°F. Bottom line: chilling is essential! If you’d like like to delve further into the world of whipped cream, here is a link to Dr. Goff’s fantastic page on Whipped Cream Structure.
When beating, keep in mind that the mixture comes together really quickly, and it is possible to overwhip the cream if not watched closely. If left to whip for too long, butter particles will begin to form.
This recipe holds its shape nicely. I recently read a post from Erren’s Kitchen about using a small amount of skim milk powder to further stabilize whipped cream so that it will hold its shape for five days. I decided to give this technique a try, so I set aside a small amount for observation. Unfortunately, my test sample was mysteriously eaten by someone in my household on Day 3. The investigation into the identity of the perpetrator is ongoing. You can find Erren’s post here.
Here is how to make my Delicious Whipped Cream Filling:
Place your stand mixer bowl and whisk in the freezer for five minutes so they become nice and chilled:
You will need the following ingredients for this recipe:
Add the cream to the chilled bowl and beat until the cream starts to thicken slightly:
Add the sugar and mix until incorporated, then add the vanilla:
Beat until the cream develops stiff peaks. It is really that simple!
Here is a printable version of the recipe:
Delicious Whipped Cream Filling
- 1 cup whipping cream (35%)
- 1/4 cup + 2 tbsp powdered sugar
- 1/2 tsp good-quality vanilla extract
- Put the stand mixer bowl and whisk attachment in the freezer for 5 minutes
- Add the cream to the chilled bowl and beat until the cream starts to thicken slightly.
- Add the sugar and mix until incorporated.
- Add the vanilla extract.
- Beat until cream develops stiff peaks. Be careful not to overwhip!
For extra stability: add 2 + 1/4 tsp of skim milk powder to the icing sugar
The “naked” cake pictured below is a Champagne Chiffon cake and is filled with my Delicious Whipped Cream Filling and fresh strawberries. This cake would be perfect for Mother’s Day, anniversaries, or any celebration!
I developed this variation of my Classic Chiffon cake very recently and it was an absolute hit. You can use between 1/2 – 3/4 cup of champagne or any great sparkling white wine for flavouring. The more champagne, the stronger the flavour. You can find the recipe for my Classic Chiffon with the Champagne variation here.
My advice to anyone attempting this recipe combination is to keep the height to a minimum to facilitate serving, and especially if travel is involved. The whipped cream filling travels well when surrounded by a dam of stable icing, but it will make a cake significantly less stable when it is the star of the show. Two or three layers high would be ideal.