Cream Substitute: The 6 Best Alternatives For Cooking And Baking

True to the motto “But please with cream!” – this not only sweetens every cake, but it also refines hearty dishes. However, would you like to do without animal products, and are you looking for a lower-fat variant as a cream substitute for cooking and baking? We show you the best 6 alternatives to spice up recipes.

Why substitute cream?

There can be many reasons for this, such as intolerance, health reasons, dietary changes, or lack of stock. Especially in large quantities, the cream is very fatty and contains some saturated fatty acids, which are not beneficial to your health in the long run. A rethink helps so that you don’t have to do without your favorite food completely or change your entire diet.

Cream alternatives:

It doesn’t always have to be cream. You can use the following alternatives to confidently replace cream.

Low-fat (animal) cream

If you are looking for a low-calorie version of cream as an alternative, we recommend cream cheese, sour cream, yogurt, low-fat quark, coffee cream, milk-egg mixtures, or ricotta. You can also use these alternatives for desserts, to bind gratins, or in casseroles.

Vegan cream substitute

You can easily prepare plant-based alternatives yourself, we have listed some substitute products for you.

Coconut cream

It gives your dish an exotic taste and also raises the “good” cholesterol levels, which in turn can reduce the risk of a heart attack. Thanks to its thick consistency, it is ideal as a cream substitute. The advantage here is that the cream does not collapse like cream. It will firm up if kept in the fridge. Therefore, it should soften at room temperature just before serving.


  • as a topping on a cappuccino or as a frosting on a cake
  • e.g. with a vegan pistachio cake with coconut cream frosting


  • to refine in soups, for that extra portion of creaminess
  • E.g. rice curry in coconut cream sauce

Cashew cream

The jack of all trades nut with numerous beneficial effects on your body. Not only do they lower blood pressure, but they can also make you feel happy because they contain a high proportion of L-tryptophan, which releases the neurotransmitter serotonin in the brain. Due to their mild aroma and sweet taste, these nuts are ideal as a cream substitute. Plus, compared to other nuts, cashews are lower in calories and you can easily whip them up with some water as whipped cream.

Tip: Make sure to soak them overnight before using them as whipped cream.

For the cream substitute, puree the soaked cashews with water in a ratio of 1:2. This gives you a tasty and creamy alternative. The exact instructions. You can find out how you can easily make vegan cashew cream yourself here!


  • Topping for pies, like a classic apple pie


  • The base for cream sauces
  • e.g. as a vegan cheese sauce for “Mac and Cheese”

Soy cream

The soy variant is not bad either! A true all-around talent and very easy to whip up with some whipped cream. It convinces above all with its very special sweet and sour taste. Compared to cow’s milk cream and nuts, soy has significantly less fat and a high proportion of unsaturated fatty acids.


  • Less suitable for baking as the consistency is rather thick


  • e.g. as a sauce for delicious spaghetti carbonara
  • or as a refinement of dips

Oat cream

You can conjure up an equally flawless cream substitute from oats. Especially as a sauce base or to give soups a certain creaminess. The oat cream cuts a fine figure in casseroles, gratins, stir-fries, porridge, pudding, or in all kinds of soup and cake recipes, also when it comes to whipping until stiff.


  • Substitute for cow’s milk or as a coffee topping


  • Use in creamed spinach or casseroles

Almond cream

In terms of taste, you can expect a subtle almond note with a slightly sour taste. It has a creamy to viscous consistency.


  • e.g. as a cream filling in a cake


  • e.g. almond cream sauce

Tip: Use almond cream when cooking with acidic products, like wine or lemon juice. Because this cream alternative does not curdle while cooking.

Rice cream

If you are looking for an alternative that is gluten and lactose-free, then choose rice cream. It is a good choice for allergy sufferers and people suffering from lactose intolerance. In addition, this vegetable cream has low-fat content and a mild sweetness.


  • Gladly for baking pastries


  • to refine soups or sauces

Whipping plant-based cream correctly:

Especially if you want to whip cream, the fat content is crucial. Because the vegetable
alternative contains more unsaturated fatty acids, so it is more difficult to get them in shape. We at will show you below how you can do it.

  • Store in the refrigerator at least 3 hours beforehand
  • Use the Mix device so you don’t get sore muscles in your arms!
  • the highest level until stiff
  • Thicken the consistency with starch or locust bean gum
  • Optional: vanilla sugar for desired sweetness

Tip: The coconut and cashew cream is particularly easy to whip up.

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Written by John Myers

Professional Chef with 25 years of industry experience at the highest levels. Restaurant owner. Beverage Director with experience creating world-class nationally recognized cocktail programs. Food writer with a distinctive Chef-driven voice and point of view.

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