Coconut Cream vs Cream of Coconut (Everything You Need To Know)

coconut cream and whole coconuts

Don’t let their similar names fool you, coconut cream and cream of coconut are different ingredients. And if you are wondering about their differences and how to best use them, you will find the answers to all your questions in this article.

Coconut cream and cream of coconut have numerous differences and similarities. And knowing those will ensure you use the best one for your recipe.

Cream of Coconut and Coconut Cream Differences, Similarities, and Uses

pina colada with coconut

Coconut cream and cream of coconut are both popular ingredients used in all types of recipes.

But they are not the same thing.

So what is the difference between cream of coconut and coconut cream?

Coconut cream is much thicker and offers a flavor of coconut without being sweet. Cream of coconut is thinner in consistency and is much sweeter than coconut cream.

Be sure you read on to learn everything you need to know about cream of coconut and coconut cream.

Related: Coconut Cream vs Coconut Milk

Coconut Cream

jar of coconut cream and whole coconut

Coconut cream is a creamy, thick product produced from coconut milk. Coconut milk is first chilled which allows the cream to rise to the top.

the cream is then skimmed off the top of the coconut milk.

Coconut cream provides a delicious coconut flavor. It is not that sweet and can be found in most grocery stores.

Related: Coconut Cream Substitutes

Coconut Cream Uses

waffles with vegan coconut whipped cream and fruit

Coconut cream can be used in many types of cooking. It can be found in desserts, beverages and dinner recipes. Coconut cream is a popular ingredient in Southeast Asian cuisine and many other cooking styles from around the world where coconuts are grown.

Related: Coconut Cream vs Coconut Butter

Here are some coconut cream use ideas to get you started.

  • Curry
  • Vegan whipped cream
  • Mix with pudding
  • Cake
  • Cookies
  • Vegan ice cream
  • Creamy chicken
  • Fruit parfaits
  • Chicken marsala
  • Berries and cream
  • Coconut puree
  • Peanut sauce
  • Thai coconut soup
  • Coconut cream meatballs

Cream of Coconut

jar of cream of coconut and whole coconut

Thinner than coconut cream, cream of coconut has a syrupy consistency. Cream of coconut has a very sweet flavor and is produced by adding sugar to coconut cream.

Cream of coconut is more similar to sweetened condensed milk than it is to coconut cream. In fact, cream of coconut is best used in recipes the same way sweetened condensed milk is used.

Related: Cream of Coconut vs Coconut Milk

Cream of Coconut Uses

coconut ice cream

As noted above, cream of coconut is not the same as coconut cream. It is much sweeter and that sweetness will be imparted in your recipe.

Cream of coconut does have many uses, but you should not directly substitute coconut cream with cream of coconut or your final recipe will turn out too sweet.

Here are some cream of coconut use ideas to get you started.

Cream of Coconut vs Coconut Cream FAQ

coconut and shrimp curry

Is there a difference between coconut cream and cream of coconut?

Yes there is a difference between coconut cream and cream of coconut. Coconut cream is an unsweetened cream produced from coconut milk. Cream of coconut is a sweet coconut ingredient produced by adding sugar to coconut cream.

Can I use coconut cream instead of cream of coconut?

It is possible to use coconut cream in place of cream of coconut. Because coconut cream is unsweetened, you will need to add another sweetener to your recipe to compensate for the lack of sweetness in your coconut cream.

Can I use coconut cream instead of cream of coconut for pina colada?

Yes, coconut cream can be used when making pina coladas. If your recipe calls for cream of coconut, you will want to add another sweetener to make up for coconut cream’s lack of sweetness.

Written by Liv

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