Can you use heavy whipping cream instead of heavy cream in pasta dishes? Are they the same? Will you get the same creamy pasta dishes if you substitute heavy cream with heavy whipping cream in pasta? What you should pay attention to when you will substitute them? Let’s find out!
What Is the Role of Heavy Cream in Pasta?
The heavy cream in pasta dishes is used to add the creamy texture to the dish and to thicken the pasta sauce. No matter if we are talking about a recipe of mac and cheese, Alfredo sauce, vodka sauce, or cheese sauce.
Can I use heavy whipping cream instead of heavy cream for pasta? Yes! As both ingredients don’t differ too much in milk fat content and are used in pasta to add thickness and creamy elements to the dish.
What Is the Difference Between Whipping Cream and Heavy Cream in Pasta?
The main difference between the whipping cream and heavy cream is the fat content. Usually, the heavy cream contains at least 36% of milk fat while the whipping cream is lighter and usually it contains up to 35% of milk fat. Usually, the fat content in heavy whipping cream is 30-35%.
Pro Tip: Pay attention that the heavy cream cooks quicker than whipping cream. If you substitute the whipping cream in pasta, you should cook it a bit longer than the recipe calls for.
Also, it is worth mentioning that even the whipping cream whips well, as it is lighter than the heavy cream, it has a “pillowy” texture. This means that after a time, it will lose its texture and will become liquid.
So, if you will replace the heavy cream with whipping cream, serve the pasta dish and enjoy it as soon as possible to keep the creamy texture.
What Is the Difference Between Whipping Cream and Heavy Whipping Cream?
If you will see the word “heavy” on the package with whipping cream that means that it is higher in fat. Usually, the milk fat content, in that case, is 35%. If it is labeled as just whipping cream, it should have around 30% of fat.
In our case, when we substitute it in the pasta dishes, we will lose a little bit of creaminess. But this difference will not be so noticeable.
What Are Other Substitutes of Heavy Cream for Pasta?
Crème Fraîche is also a diary that has a similar consistency to heavy cream and it works great in pasta dishes. Actually, you may consider that creme Fraiche is one of the best alternatives because besides the creaminess it also adds a taste of cheese. The only difference in comparison with heavy cream is that the crème Fraîche has a slight tang, but this is not a problem for the pasta.
If you’re looking to reduce the fats from the original pasta recipe that is asking for heavy cream, the half-and-half is a great option. In its composition, you will find half cream and half whole milk which makes it an ideal variant if you’re looking for the same creamy texture but you want to reduce the calories.
Usually, the half-and-half contains only 10-12% of milk fat.
If you use half-and-half instead of heavy cream in pasta, a serving of pasta will go down to only 120 calories per serving.
Quick Note: You can substitute the same amount of half-and-half with the amount of heavy cream that is asked in the original pasta recipe.
If you’re looking for the same creamy consistency and also want to get an additional flavor of cheese, you can easily substitute the heavy cream in pasta with cream cheese. It has almost the same thickness and you can use it in the same amount as is indicated by the heavy cream in the pasta recipes.
Milk and Butter
Milk and unsalted butter can be one of the easiest substitutes if you’re looking to substitute the heavy cream in pasta because we almost have all the time milk and butter in our fridge.
For that, use the ratio of 1/4 melted unsalted butter and 3/4 of whole milk. Mix everything well and in the end, you will get 1 cup of a great substitute for heavy cream for your pasta dishes.
Quick Note: If we’re talking about substituting the heavy cream with milk, you can use whatever milk you have, like whole milk, evaporated milk, almond milk, and unsweetened coconut milk.
As whipping cream and heavy cream come from the same process of separating the cream from the milk and the main difference between them is only the slight difference in fat content between them, you can easily replace the heavy cream with whipped cream in pasta.