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Double cream and single cream

Updated on May 7, 2009
Single Cream
Single Cream

First time buy a pot of cream, with the intention of cooking oats porridge, which is recommended by a Scottish man.

And then I learned that cream can be divided into double and single by percentage of fat content. Below is my reading notes and would like to share with you, hopefully hubpage won't detect and mark this hub as 'duplicate'.

Cream is composed of the higher-butterfat layer skimmed from the top of milk before homogenization. In un-homogenized milk, over time, the lighter fat rises to the top which process can be accelerated by using centrifuges called "separators".

The yellowish-white colour cream produced by cows grazing on natural pasture, white cream from cows fed indoor.

Double cream is higher in butterfat than single cream. Double cream has a fat content of 48%, single cream has a fat content of 18%, while whole milk has a fat content of just under 4%.  Double cream is known in the US as heavy cream, and single cream being known as light cream, or half and half, or may also be called pouring cream.

Double cream can be heated to a higher temperature than single and the higher buttermilk content sustains it's ability to adapt to almost a scalding point temperature, so double cream is suitable for cooking. While single cream is best kept as a pouring cream on fruit, salad, deserts, or in coffee etc.

Double cream can also be whipped.

It is possible to convert double cream into single cream by adding milk. If you add 100mls of milk to 100mls double cream you will have something with a fat content of around 26%, this is still a bit richer than single cream. 

So, it seems that I have bought the wrong type of cream, I should have bought double cream. I haven't tried out the cream in cooking yet, anyway, I will try it with my porridge, and in my coffee.


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      Chris 6 years ago

      No, Double Cream is NOT Heavy Cream in the US. Heavy Cream is about 35 percent fat.

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      Loz 7 years ago

      Great explanation very easy to understand.