Almost Your Mother’s Cool Whip: Natural Stabilized Whipped Cream

I don’t even remember life before cool whip. I do know it topped probably half of the desserts I ate growing up. I also remember how I much I liked it. And how, unlike real whipped cream, which tended to go runny, you could make something that would never fall apart.   Like never.   Ever.

Okay maybe not as long as that 37 year old Twinkie but you get my drift.  Problem is, once you start eating natural foods, cool whip loses its luster.

Natural Whipped Cream on a Sundae

Natural Whipped Cream on a Sundae

With an ingredient list like:

water, hydrogenated vegetable oil (coconut & palm kernel oils), high fructose corn syrup, corn syrup, skim milk, contains less than 2% of light cream, sodium caseinate, natural and artificial flavor, xanthan and guar gums, polysorbate 60, sorbitan monostearate, sodium polyphosphate, beta carotene (color),

cool whip is definitely off my list. Even if I am still mourning a few old recipes that used it. Enter natural stabilized whipped cream.

All it takes is the addition of one simple (and organic if you chose) ingredient–gelatin to make your whipped cream thicker and more durable. The recipe is all over the internet, but I had been missing out.

Plain whipped cream (left) vs stabilized whipped cream at 24 hrs

Plain whipped cream (left) vs stabilized whipped cream at 24 hrs

The stabilized whipped cream clearly has an edge if you want to pipe it onto a dessert since the extra thickness helps it hold its shape. If that isn’t important and you plan to use your whipped cream within 24 hours, you can easily go the plain route.  But if you don’t finish a whipped cream topped dessert,  and it goes back into the ‘fridge for another day or two, that is a potential problem. In my “whip off” (see pictures below) the natural whipped cream was nice at 24 hours but by 48 hours, it was starting to fail. 

Plain whipped cream (left) vs stabilized whipped cream after 48 hrs

Plain whipped cream (left) vs stabilized whipped cream after 48 hrs

On the other hand, the stabilized whipped cream went for days. I tossed it after 4 days because I kept sampling it. Calorie counters–run this experiment at your own risk!

I even successfully froze my stabilized whipped cream after seeing reports that it works well on an ice cream cake. When hard frozen it was really hard (think homemade ice cream that didn’t get whipped enough) which I wasn’t happy with. But once partially thawed the consistency was very much like before freezing. One of my favorite old cool whip recipes calls for freezing then partially thawing the dessert, so as soon as summer rolls around I’ll be giving that a try. (Just a side note–all reports are that Jello itself freezes terribly.) 

Better with natural whipped cream!

Better with natural whipped cream!

Now that I know how to make a better, stabilized whipped cream the dessert possibilities are endless! If someone could just figure out how to take out the calories…

Almost Your Mother’s Cool Whip: Natural Stabilized Whipped Cream

Stabilized whipped cream is a natural (and potentially organic) alternative to cool whip. Yeah, dessert!
Author: Inger
5 from 1 vote
Course Dessert


  • 1 tsp. unflavored gelatin
  • 4 tsp. cold water
  • 1 c. heavy whipping cream very cold
  • 2 T - 1/4 c. confectioners' sugar
  • 1/2 tsp. clear vanilla extract


  • Combine gelatin and cold water in small saucepan. Let stand until thick. Place over low heat, stirring constantly just until gelatin dissolves (it will be clear when dissolved). Remove from heat and cool slightly, but do not let it solidify.
  • Whip cream, sugar and vanilla until slightly thickened. While beating slowly, gradually add gelatin to whipped cream mixture. Whip at high speed until stiff.
  • Refrigerate if not using immediately (and refrigerate any leftovers).
I am not a health professional and nutrition data is calculated programatically. Accuracy may vary with product selection, calculator accuracy, etc. Consult a professional for the best information.
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!


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16 thoughts on “Almost Your Mother’s Cool Whip: Natural Stabilized Whipped Cream

  1. Pingback: Mini Mocha Cheesecakes - Art of Natural Living

  2. Beth

    I’m with you – I grew up eating the substitute, but as an adult I’d never go back.
    Thanks for the great suggestion about stabilizing it!

  3. Juliana

    This is great Inger…I definitely will be “stealing” this recipe…gelatin is a great way to go…I love this!
    Thank you! Hope you are enjoying your week 🙂

  4. grace

    i love cool whip! i definitely had never looked at the ingredient list…now it’s spoiled for me too. 🙂 this is a great alternative!!

  5. Angela

    My sweet Ava Rose is going to be thrilled with this recipes. She makes whipped cream whenever I have a nearly empty container of heavy cream but it never lasts, you just solved her problem!

  6. Karis

    I too grew up eating Cool Whip desserts. My favorite was Jello and Cool-Whip mixed together in a graham cracker crust. Can’t believe I used to eat those two things!

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