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How To Make Homemade Creme Fraiche How To Make Homemade Creme Fraiche

Food and Cooking

How To Make Homemade Creme Fraiche

Written by: Tamma Jaynes

Learn how to make homemade creme fraiche with this simple recipe. Perfect for food and cooking enthusiasts looking to elevate their dishes.

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Making homemade creme fraiche is a delightful culinary endeavor that elevates the flavor and texture of various dishes. This rich and velvety dairy product adds a luxurious touch to both sweet and savory recipes, making it a versatile staple in the kitchen. Whether you're a seasoned chef or an enthusiastic home cook, mastering the art of creating creme fraiche from scratch can enhance your culinary repertoire and impress your taste buds.

Creme fraiche, originating from France, is often likened to sour cream due to its creamy texture and tangy flavor. However, creme fraiche boasts a higher fat content, lending it a luscious and indulgent quality. Its subtle tanginess and smooth consistency make it a perfect accompaniment to fresh fruits, a decadent topping for desserts, or a luxurious addition to savory sauces and soups.

By crafting your own creme fraiche, you have the opportunity to customize its flavor profile to suit your preferences. Whether you prefer a slightly more tangy or milder taste, homemade creme fraiche allows you to tailor the end result to your liking. Additionally, the satisfaction of creating a gourmet ingredient from simple components such as cream and culture imparts a sense of accomplishment and culinary prowess.

The process of making creme fraiche is a delightful fusion of science and art. It involves the fermentation of cream with the aid of beneficial bacteria, resulting in a product that not only tantalizes the taste buds but also promotes gut health. As you embark on this culinary journey, you'll witness the magical transformation of cream into a luxurious, velvety concoction, brimming with probiotics and a depth of flavor that surpasses store-bought alternatives.

In the subsequent sections, we will delve into the essential ingredients and equipment required for crafting homemade creme fraiche, followed by detailed instructions to guide you through the process. Additionally, we will explore the best practices for storing and utilizing this delectable creation in your culinary endeavors. So, roll up your sleeves, gather your ingredients, and let's embark on a delightful journey to create homemade creme fraiche that will elevate your culinary creations to new heights.



Crafting homemade creme fraiche requires just two simple yet essential ingredients: heavy cream and buttermilk. The quality of these components significantly influences the flavor and texture of the final product. When selecting heavy cream, opt for a high-quality, preferably organic variety, as it serves as the primary base of the creme fraiche. The richness and freshness of the cream will impart a decadent and creamy consistency to the finished product.

The second key ingredient, buttermilk, acts as the culture that kick-starts the fermentation process, transforming the cream into creme fraiche. Buttermilk contains beneficial bacteria that initiate the fermentation, resulting in the development of creme fraiche's signature tangy flavor and velvety texture. When choosing buttermilk, ensure it is cultured buttermilk, as this type contains live cultures necessary for the fermentation process.

Here's a breakdown of the ingredients required to make homemade creme fraiche:

  • Heavy Cream: Look for high-quality, organic heavy cream to achieve a rich and creamy creme fraiche.
  • Cultured Buttermilk: Ensure the buttermilk is cultured, as it contains live bacteria essential for the fermentation process.

By combining these two simple yet crucial ingredients, you set the stage for the alchemical process that will yield a luxurious and flavorful creme fraiche. With these components in hand, you are ready to embark on the journey of crafting your own creme fraiche, elevating your culinary creations with a touch of homemade decadence.



Crafting homemade creme fraiche requires minimal but essential equipment to facilitate the fermentation process and ensure optimal results. The following tools are indispensable for creating this luxurious dairy product:

  1. Glass Jar: Select a clean and dry glass jar with a capacity of at least one quart. The transparency of the jar allows you to monitor the fermentation process, ensuring that the creme fraiche develops the desired texture and flavor. Additionally, glass is non-reactive, preserving the purity of the ingredients and preventing any undesirable flavors from leaching into the creme fraiche.

  2. Whisk or Spoon: A whisk or spoon is necessary for thoroughly combining the heavy cream and buttermilk. Ensure that the utensil is clean and dry to maintain the pristine quality of the ingredients.

  3. Cheesecloth or Paper Towels: To cover the glass jar during the fermentation period, use a piece of cheesecloth or a few layers of paper towels secured with a rubber band or string. This covering allows air to circulate while preventing contaminants from entering the jar, creating an ideal environment for the fermentation process.

  4. Rubber Band or String: A rubber band or string is essential for securing the cheesecloth or paper towels over the mouth of the glass jar. This simple yet crucial tool helps maintain a clean and breathable environment within the jar, promoting the growth of beneficial bacteria during the fermentation process.

  5. Labels and Marker: While not directly involved in the fermentation process, labels and a marker are valuable for clearly dating the creme fraiche and noting any additional flavorings or customizations. This ensures that you can track the aging process and identify the specific batch of creme fraiche, especially if you experiment with different variations.

  6. Refrigerator: Although not used during the initial fermentation, a refrigerator is essential for storing the creme fraiche once it has reached the desired consistency. Proper refrigeration preserves the freshness and flavor of the creme fraiche, allowing you to enjoy it over an extended period.

By assembling these basic yet indispensable tools, you are well-equipped to embark on the delightful journey of creating homemade creme fraiche. With the right equipment at your disposal, you can facilitate the fermentation process and achieve a delectable and velvety creme fraiche that will elevate your culinary creations to new heights.



  1. Prepare the Glass Jar: Ensure the glass jar is clean and dry. Sterilize it by washing it with hot, soapy water and allowing it to air dry completely. This step is crucial to prevent any unwanted bacteria from interfering with the fermentation process.

  2. Combine the Ingredients: In the clean glass jar, pour in the heavy cream, ensuring that it fills no more than three-quarters of the jar to allow space for the fermentation process. Add the cultured buttermilk to the cream.

  3. Mix Thoroughly: Use a clean whisk or spoon to thoroughly combine the heavy cream and buttermilk. Ensure that the mixture is well blended to evenly distribute the beneficial bacteria from the buttermilk throughout the cream.

  4. Cover the Jar: Place a piece of cheesecloth or a few layers of paper towels over the mouth of the glass jar. Secure the covering with a rubber band or string to allow air to circulate while preventing contaminants from entering the jar.

  5. Fermentation: Position the covered jar in a warm, draft-free area, ideally with a temperature range of 70-75°F (21-24°C). Allow the mixture to ferment undisturbed for 12 to 24 hours, depending on the desired level of tanginess and thickness. During this period, the beneficial bacteria in the buttermilk will work their magic, transforming the cream into creme fraiche.

  6. Check for Consistency: After the initial fermentation period, check the creme fraiche for the desired consistency and flavor. It should have thickened and developed a pleasantly tangy taste. If a thicker consistency is preferred, allow the creme fraiche to ferment for an additional 6 to 12 hours, tasting periodically to achieve the desired flavor profile.

  7. Refrigerate: Once the creme fraiche has reached the desired consistency and flavor, remove the covering and seal the glass jar with a lid. Refrigerate the creme fraiche for at least 4 hours to halt the fermentation process and chill it to the ideal serving temperature.

  8. Enjoy: Your homemade creme fraiche is now ready to elevate a myriad of culinary creations. Whether dolloped on fresh berries, swirled into soups, or used to enrich sauces, your homemade creme fraiche adds a luxurious touch to every dish it graces.

By following these simple yet precise instructions, you can craft a velvety and tangy creme fraiche that reflects your culinary prowess and elevates your gastronomic creations.


Storing and Using Creme Fraiche

Once you have successfully crafted your homemade creme fraiche, proper storage and creative utilization are essential to fully appreciate its luxurious texture and tangy flavor. Here's a detailed guide on storing and incorporating this delectable creation into your culinary endeavors.

Storing Creme Fraiche

After refrigerating the creme fraiche for at least 4 hours to halt the fermentation process and chill it to the ideal serving temperature, it's crucial to store it properly to maintain its freshness and flavor. Transfer the creme fraiche to an airtight container, ensuring that it is sealed securely to prevent any absorption of odors from the refrigerator. Properly stored, homemade creme fraiche can be refrigerated for up to two weeks, allowing you to savor its velvety richness over an extended period.

Using Creme Fraiche in Culinary Creations

Homemade creme fraiche serves as a versatile and indulgent addition to a myriad of dishes, enhancing both sweet and savory creations with its creamy texture and subtle tanginess. Here are some delightful ways to incorporate creme fraiche into your culinary repertoire:

Sweet Creations

  • Decadent Toppings: Drizzle a dollop of creme fraiche over fresh berries, stone fruits, or poached pears for a luxurious and tangy topping that complements the natural sweetness of the fruits.
  • Dessert Enhancements: Swirl creme fraiche into fruit compotes, custards, or puddings to add a velvety richness and a delightful tang, elevating the flavor and texture of your desserts.

Savory Delights

  • Sauces and Dips: Incorporate creme fraiche into savory sauces and dips, such as mushroom stroganoff, creamy herb dressings, or tangy chipotle dips, to impart a luscious creaminess and a subtle tangy undertone.
  • Soup Enrichment: Add a dollop of creme fraiche to creamy soups, such as butternut squash or potato leek soup, just before serving to enhance their richness and add a delightful tangy finish.

Culinary Complements

  • Baking Marvels: Utilize creme fraiche in baking recipes to impart moisture and a tender crumb to cakes, muffins, and scones, while adding a subtle tang that complements the sweetness of the baked goods.
  • Gourmet Garnishes: Use creme fraiche as a luxurious garnish for savory tarts, blinis, or canapés, adding a velvety finish and a touch of tang to elevate the presentation and flavor of your culinary creations.

By incorporating homemade creme fraiche into your culinary repertoire, you can elevate a myriad of dishes with its luxurious texture and subtle tanginess, adding a touch of gourmet indulgence to every creation.

With these storage tips and creative culinary uses, you can fully appreciate the velvety richness and delightful tang of your homemade creme fraiche, transforming ordinary dishes into extraordinary culinary masterpieces.



In conclusion, the art of crafting homemade creme fraiche is a delightful culinary journey that culminates in a luxurious and versatile dairy creation. By combining high-quality heavy cream and cultured buttermilk, you can orchestrate a transformation that yields a velvety, tangy delicacy capable of elevating a myriad of culinary creations. The process of fermenting the cream with beneficial bacteria not only imparts a delightful tanginess and creamy texture but also imbues the creme fraiche with probiotics, promoting gut health and adding a layer of nutritional value to its indulgent profile.

The versatility of homemade creme fraiche extends beyond its decadent texture and tangy flavor, as it serves as a canvas for culinary creativity. Whether adorning fresh fruits with a dollop of tangy richness, enriching savory sauces with a velvety finish, or infusing baked goods with moisture and a subtle tang, creme fraiche adds a touch of gourmet indulgence to every dish it graces. Its adaptability in both sweet and savory applications makes it a valuable asset in the culinary repertoire of both home cooks and professional chefs.

Furthermore, the satisfaction of creating creme fraiche from scratch, tailored to your preferred level of tanginess and thickness, imparts a sense of culinary accomplishment and fosters a deeper connection to the ingredients and processes involved in the creation of gourmet delicacies. The alchemical transformation of simple components into a luxurious and probiotic-rich creation is a testament to the artistry and science inherent in the culinary world.

As you savor the velvety richness and subtle tang of your homemade creme fraiche, whether drizzled over fresh berries, swirled into soups, or adorning a decadent dessert, you are not only indulging in a gourmet delight but also savoring the fruits of your culinary prowess. The journey of crafting homemade creme fraiche transcends the realm of mere cooking; it embodies the art of transformation, creativity, and the celebration of wholesome, indulgent flavors.

In essence, the process of making creme fraiche from scratch is a testament to the transformative power of culinary artistry, the celebration of natural ingredients, and the joy of savoring homemade indulgences. So, as you embark on this delightful journey of crafting creme fraiche, may each velvety spoonful and tangy dollop remind you of the artistry and creativity that thrive in the heart of every culinary creation.

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