2-Ingredient Substitute for Heavy Cream for Cooking & Baking by Ann Marie Patitucci

2-Ingredient Substitute for Heavy Cream for Cooking & Baking

Have you ever had the experience of cooking dinner and realizing you’re missing one single ingredient? I have! I’ve also been at the grocery store buying ingredients for a dinner recipe only to learn that the store is out of one key ingredient. To avoid such frustrating moments, I like to know what I can do in a pinch should I be missing something and not want to run out to the store for just one ingredient.

We all know that heavy cream adds richness (and plain ol’ deliciousness) to sauces, soups and casseroles. My family especially loves it in pasta dishes such as lemon shrimp fettucine and alfredo and creamy broccoli fettucine alfredo.

I know I don’t want to be without it when cooking such a dish. So here’s a two-ingredient substitute for you. (I must offer a disclaimer, though: this alternative to heavy cream is a wonderful substitute for savory dishes like those mentioned above. It’s not, however, intended for whipped cream or ice cream.) I hope this recipe saves you a trip to the store and adds rich creaminess to your dish!

Cuisine: American
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 5 minutes
Total Time: 10 minutes
Servings: Makes about 1/2 cup


  • 1/3 cup whole milk
  • 3 tablespoons butter (salted or unsalted)

Here’s how to make it:

  1. Pour an inch of water in a saucepan and bring to boiling. Set a medium heat-proof bowl over the saucepan to create a double-boiler. 
  2. Add butter to bowl and heat until butter is mostly melted, whisking as it heats. Remove bowl from heat, and continue to whisk until butter is smooth and just melted.
  3. Slowly stream milk into butter while whisking. Continue whisking until mixture is smooth, about 2 to 3 minutes. If separation occurs, put bowl back on the double boiler and whisk until mixture is combined.

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Donna John
Great tip! I keep cans of evaporated milk in my pantry, and will use that sometimes, too. Ann Marie Patitucci
Julio Caro
Thanks For Sharing.....

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