Substitutes for Clotted Cream

Clotted cream is a beloved topping for scones, desserts, and other delightful treats, known for its rich and velvety consistency. This thick cream originates from England, where it’s traditionally made by heating unpasteurized cream, allowing it to cool and form a layer of clots on the surface. While clotted cream is undoubtedly delicious, there are times when you might not have it handy or prefer a healthier alternative.

Worry not, as there are plenty of substitutes that can step in for clotted cream without skimping on taste or texture. By understanding what clotted cream truly is and what makes it unique, you’ll be better equipped to find fitting alternatives to use in your recipes. From mascarpone to Greek yogurt, there are ample options to choose from that will suit both your palate and dietary needs.

Key Takeaways

  • Clotted cream is a rich, thick topping made from heating and cooling unpasteurized cream
  • Numerous substitutes can provide a similar taste and texture, including mascarpone, heavy cream, and Greek yogurt
  • Selecting the right alternative depends on your preferences, dietary needs, and the specific recipe you’re making

Understanding Clotted Cream

Clotted cream is a thick, rich, and velvety dairy product loved by many for its luxurious texture and indulgent taste. You’ll often find it in the southwest of England, particularly in Devon, where it’s been an essential part of the region’s culinary repertoire for centuries.

The process of creating clotted cream involves gently heating cream, which is high in butterfat content, until a tender, golden crust forms on the surface. This crust is a result of the butterfat rising to the top and concentrating as it cools. With a fat content of roughly 55 percent, clotted cream’s smoothness and indulgence come from this high butterfat, which is a key distinguishing factor from other creams.

When you sample clotted cream, you might immediately notice its distinct mouthfeel. The texture is dense and spreadable, similar to softened butter, making it an ideal accompaniment for scones, pastries, and fruit desserts. Many people even use it as a lavish alternative to whipped cream or butter.

Though clotted cream has become synonymous with southwest England and Devon, you may be seeking substitutes during times when it is difficult to find or when culinary creativity calls. Fortunately, there are alternatives that encapsulate the essence of clotted cream, successfully replicating its rich texture and high fat content.

While clotted cream holds a special place in the hearts and palates of many, utilizing the aforementioned substitutes allows you to enjoy its indulgent characteristics without being tied to a specific geographic location or recipe requirement.

Essential Clotted Cream Substitutes

Finding a suitable substitute for clotted cream can be challenging, especially when you desire that rich, velvety texture in your baked goods or as a topping. However, there are a variety of options that you can consider when looking for clotted cream substitutes. In this section, we’ll explore the top choices that can effectively mimic the taste and texture of clotted cream.

1. Mascarpone cheese: Mascarpone is an Italian cream cheese with a smooth, velvety texture, making it an ideal substitute for clotted cream. The flavor is milder than that of clotted cream, but when mixed with a touch of sugar, you’ll get a great alternative. Simply mix 1 cup of mascarpone with 2 tablespoons of granulated sugar, and you’re good to go.

2. Whipped cream: Whipped cream is another readily available option for a clotted cream substitute. While not as thick and indulgent, you can enhance its richness by adding cream cheese to it. For every 1 cup of heavy whipping cream, fold in 2 tablespoons of softened cream cheese after whipping.

3. Crème fraîche: This French dairy product has a tangy flavor and creamy texture that can work well in place of clotted cream. Although it’s not as thick, it can still provide a delightful velvety mouthfeel. If crème fraîche is not available, you can easily make it by mixing 1 cup of heavy cream with 2 tablespoons of buttermilk and allowing it to thicken at room temperature for about 24 hours.

4. Devonshire cream: Also known as double cream, Devonshire cream is a luxurious British cream that is similar to clotted cream but not as thick. Simply whip it until soft peaks form, and you’ll have a delicious topping for scones or other desserts.

In summary, when looking for substitutes for clotted cream, you have several options to choose from. By experimenting with mascarpone cheese, whipped cream, crème fraîche, or Devonshire cream, you can find the perfect alternative to suit your taste buds and culinary needs.

Exploring Mascarpone as an Option

When looking for a substitute for clotted cream, one option to consider is mascarpone. This Italian cream cheese is known for its rich, creamy texture and delicate flavor. It can be a great alternative, especially if you’re using it in sweet dishes and desserts.

Mascarpone is a soft Italian cheese that originates from the Lombardy region of Italy. It is made by curdling cream with citric or tartaric acid, which gives it a smooth, spreadable consistency. This makes it perfect for incorporating into recipes or spreading on scones or bread.

One of the key features of mascarpone is its versatility in the kitchen. You might recognize it as an essential ingredient in tiramisu, a classic Italian dessert. However, its uses extend far beyond that. Mascarpone can be used in a variety of sweet and savory dishes, such as in cheesecakes, pasta sauces, and even as a topping for fresh fruit.

If you decide to use mascarpone as a clotted cream substitute, keep in mind that it is slightly sweeter than traditional clotted cream. This may affect the overall flavor profile of your recipe, but it can still offer that luxurious, creamy texture you’re looking for. You can also try adjusting the sweetness by adding a pinch of sugar or a few drops of vanilla extract.

In summary, mascarpone is an excellent option to consider when searching for a clotted cream substitute. Its creamy texture, mild flavor, and versatility make it a suitable choice for many recipes. The next time you find yourself in need of clotted cream, don’t hesitate to give this soft Italian cheese a try.

Heavy Cream and Whipping Cream

When looking for a substitute for clotted cream, both heavy cream and whipping cream can be viable options. These creams have a high fat content, which makes them suitable alternatives.

Heavy cream typically contains around 36-40% fat, making it thicker and richer than whipping cream. It can be whipped into stiff peaks and adds a luxurious texture to your recipes. To use heavy cream as a clotted cream substitute, chill it and then whip it until it has a thick consistency. This will provide a nice velvety texture similar to clotted cream.

Whipping cream, on the other hand, has slightly less fat content, around 30-36%. It can also be whipped, but the resulting texture will be a bit lighter than that of heavy cream. This option may be suitable if you’re looking for a somewhat less rich alternative to clotted cream.

Keep in mind that neither heavy cream nor whipping cream will have the exact same taste as clotted cream, as they lack the characteristic “clotted” bits. However, they can still work as decent substitutes in various dishes, including scones, cakes, and other desserts.

In some cases, you may also consider using heavy whipping cream, a slightly less common dairy product with a fat content around 36-48%. This cream is essentially a combination of heavy cream and whipping cream, and it can provide a more authentic substitute for clotted cream when whipped to the right consistency.

Lastly, full-fat milk may be used in a pinch as a clotted cream substitute, but it will not yield the same rich, creamy texture due to its significantly lower fat content. To achieve a closer consistency, you could try combining full-fat milk with butter or cream cheese. Overall, full-fat milk is not the best option, but it could work if other alternatives are not available.

Remember that experimenting with these substitutes will help you find the one that best suits your preferences and the specific requirements of your recipe.

Applying Crème Fraîche in Recipes

Crème fraîche is a great substitute for clotted cream in a variety of recipes. This cultured cream, made by adding lactic acid bacteria to heavy cream, has a slightly tangy flavor and smooth, velvety texture that works well in both sweet and savory dishes.

When using crème fraîche in place of clotted cream in your recipes, it’s important to take note of the differences in taste and consistency between the two. Crème fraîche has a lower fat content than clotted cream, which can result in a lighter texture in certain recipes.

For recipes that call for dolloping cream on top, such as scones or fruit desserts, simply replace the clotted cream with crème fraîche. The tangy flavor adds an unexpected twist that complements the sweetness of these dishes.

In cooked dishes like sauces and soups, crème fraîche tends to be more stable than clotted cream when heated. This means you’ll be less likely to encounter issues with curdling, which can be problematic when using clotted cream. To incorporate crème fraîche in these recipes, just replace the clotted cream with an equal amount of crème fraîche, and you should achieve a similar result.

Here are a few tips for using crème fraîche in your recipes:

  • To enhance the richness of crème fraîche, you can mix it with a small amount of heavy cream, creating a consistency closer to that of clotted cream.
  • Since crème fraîche has a tangy flavor, you might want to adjust the sweetness of your recipe, especially in desserts, to strike the right balance.
  • If you cannot find crème fraîche in your local store, you can make your own at home by adding a few tablespoons of buttermilk to heavy cream, and letting the mixture sit at room temperature for 12-24 hours, until thickened.

By understanding the properties of crème fraîche and how to incorporate it into your recipes, you can confidently use this versatile, cultured cream as a substitute for clotted cream in many dishes.

Incorporating Greek Yogurt for a Tangy Twist

If you’re looking for a substitute for clotted cream, consider incorporating Greek yogurt for a tangy twist. Greek yogurt is packed with protein and boasts a tart, rich flavor that can add depth to scones, fruit salads, and desserts.

To use Greek yogurt as a substitute, choose a full-fat version to replicate the creamy texture of clotted cream. You can either use it directly in place of clotted cream, or for a closer match in taste and consistency, try combining the Greek yogurt with whipped cream or mascarpone cheese. This blend will give you a richer, creamier result that is excellent for dolloping on your favorite treats.

The added benefits of using Greek yogurt stem from its nutritional composition. It is lower in fat and calories compared to clotted cream, making it a healthier option. Moreover, Greek yogurt is a great source of protein, with about 10 grams per 100 grams, and is an excellent choice for those seeking a higher protein intake in their diet.

In summary, Greek yogurt can serve as a versatile substitute for clotted cream, offering a tangy, rich flavor and added nutritional benefits. Don’t hesitate to experiment with this alternative in your recipes, and enjoy the unique flavor it brings to your table.

Utilizing Cream Cheese and Sour Cream

If you’re looking for a substitute for clotted cream, considering using a mixture of cream cheese and sour cream. Both of these ingredients are readily available in most grocery stores and can effectively mimic the taste and texture of clotted cream.

To create your own clotted cream substitute with cream cheese and sour cream, start by combining equal parts of each ingredient in a bowl. For example, you may use half a cup of cream cheese and half a cup of sour cream. Mix the ingredients together until you achieve a smooth, creamy consistency, and the mixture thickens slightly.

Cream cheese contains a lower fat content compared to clotted cream, which may affect the overall richness of your dish. However, you can increase the fat content in your cream cheese and sour cream mixture by opting for full-fat versions of these ingredients. The blend of these two products will provide a balance between creaminess and a slight tanginess, similar to the unique taste of clotted cream.

Remember to modify the proportions of cream cheese and sour cream as needed, depending on your preference for fat content and consistency. The versatility of these ingredients allows you to customize your own clotted cream substitute to meet your desired taste and texture. As you experiment with the mixture, you’ll become more confident in creating a satisfying alternative to traditional clotted cream, suitable for any recipe that calls for it.

Clotted Cream in Various Dishes

Clotted cream is a deliciously rich and thick cream that makes various dishes taste delightful. Its traditional pairing with scones and jam creates an unsurpassable combination that you don’t want to miss. You can explore your creativity in the kitchen and incorporate clotted cream into different recipes for an outstanding experience.

Not only is clotted cream an essential component in British afternoon tea, but it also works wonders in a variety of baking recipes. For instance, try using clotted cream as a filling or topping for cakes, muffins, and biscuits. You will savor the sumptuous difference it offers your baked goods.

When planning a dessert menu, consider incorporating clotted cream into your pudding, ice cream, or pastry dishes. Mixing clotted cream into your pudding recipe adds richness and creaminess, while swirling it into ice cream brings a luxurious touch to the frozen treat. If you’re feeling adventurous, try your hand at making pastries filled with clotted cream. The flaky, buttery crust complements the cream’s velvety texture, offering a delightful surprise in every bite.

Don’t limit yourself to just sweet treats; clotted cream can also be a tasty addition to savory dishes. For example, you can stir it into sauces or soups for a creamy texture or use it as a garnish for pies. Moreover, incorporating clotted cream into your pancake batter elevates the dish’s richness and takes brunch to a whole new level.

Whether you’re baking a cake or whipping up a batch of pancakes, clotted cream is a versatile ingredient that can elevate your dishes. Don’t hesitate to experiment and give your favorite recipes a new twist with clotted cream.

Additional Tips and Considerations

When looking for substitutes for clotted cream, it’s important to consider the desired texture and flavor profile. Here are some additional tips and considerations to help you choose the perfect alternative.

Whipped cream can be an excellent alternative since it has a light and airy texture similar to clotted cream. You can make it at home by whisking heavy cream until soft peaks form and then adding a touch of honey to sweeten it. Serve it alongside traditional British scones and fresh berries for a delightful treat.

For a slightly denser alternative, try using double cream. This type of cream has a higher fat content, giving it a silky texture that works well in many British cuisine dishes. Double cream can be flavored with a bit of strawberry jam or lemon juice, depending on your preference.

If you’re concerned about calories and calcium intake, consider using buttermilk as an alternative. Buttermilk has a tangy and nutty flavor that can complement various dishes. Though it’s not as rich as clotted cream, you can still use it as a garnish for desserts or mixed with coffee for a unique twist.

For a homemade touch, ask a knowledgeable friend or your mother for their favorite clotted cream recipe. Experimenting with these recipes can help you create a substitute that’s both delicious and satisfying. Remember that homemade clotted cream will need to be stored in an airtight container, and it’s best to consume it within a few days.

Finally, don’t be afraid to get creative with your clotted cream substitutes. You can mix and match flavors and textures to create your perfect alternative. Just keep the overall dish in mind to ensure that your chosen substitute complements the other ingredients.

When exploring alternatives to clotted cream, keep these tips and considerations in mind to ensure that your substitute is both delicious and fits the context of your dish. Happy cooking!

Frequently Asked Questions

What can be used instead of clotted cream?

You can use alternatives like mascarpone, crème fraîche, or even cream cheese if you’re seeking a substitute for clotted cream. These options work especially well when mixed with a bit of sugar and vanilla extract to create a similar taste and texture.

Can double cream replace clotted cream?

Yes, double cream can be used as a substitute for clotted cream, but keep in mind that its consistency is not as thick. It’s essential to whip the double cream to achieve a thicker texture similar to clotted cream.

How can I make a mock Devonshire cream?

To make a mock Devonshire cream, you’ll need to mix equal parts of softened cream cheese and whipped heavy cream. Add a teaspoon of vanilla extract and a tablespoon of sugar for every 8 ounces of cream cheese. Combine well and chill the mixture for an hour or two to achieve the desired thickness.

Which American product is similar to clotted cream?

Mascarpone is an American product that closely resembles clotted cream in texture and taste. It’s a mild and rich Italian cream cheese that can be used as a substitute for clotted cream in various recipes.

Is it possible to create a clotted cream substitute with cream cheese?

Indeed, you can create a clotted cream substitute using cream cheese as the base. Whip together equal amounts of softened cream cheese and heavy cream until smooth. Add sugar and vanilla extract for sweetness and flavor.

What are the differences between mascarpone and clotted cream?

Mascarpone is an Italian cream cheese with a smoother and creamier texture, while clotted cream is a thick, spreadable cream with its origins in England. Mascarpone is milder in taste compared to clotted cream, and its fat content differs slightly; mascarpone has around 60-75% milkfat, while clotted cream contains 55-60% milkfat.

Homemade Clotted Cream Substitutes

Here's a simple recipe for a clotted cream substitute:
5 from 1 vote
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 15 minutes
Course Substitute
Cuisine British
Servings 4
Calories 155 kcal


  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 1/2 cup sour cream
  • 1 tablespoon powdered sugar


  • In a mixing bowl, whisk together the heavy cream and sour cream until well combined.
  • Add the powdered sugar and continue to whisk until the mixture is smooth and slightly thickened.
  • Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 1 hour, or until the mixture has thickened to the desired consistency.
  • Serve the clotted cream substitute with scones, tea, or your favorite desserts


Note: This substitute won't have the exact same texture and flavor as traditional clotted cream, but it's a great alternative if you can't find clotted cream or want a lighter option.


Calories: 155kcal
Keyword clotted cream substitutes
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!
Follow Us
Cassie brings decades of experience to the Kitchen Community. She is a noted chef and avid gardener. Her new book "Healthy Eating Through the Garden" will be released shortly. When not writing or speaking about food and gardens Cassie can be found puttering around farmer's markets and greenhouses looking for the next great idea.
Cassie Marshall
Follow Us
Latest posts by Cassie Marshall (see all)