Light and creamy Chantilly cream frosting is such a delicious and elegant topping for cakes, cupcakes and more. If you’ve ever found traditional buttercream frosting to be too rich and sweet, you have to try this recipe!

piping chantilly cream frosting onto cupcakes

I have to be honest and let you all know that I am a very dedicated frosting person. Those folks that eat around the frosting and leave it behind on their plate, or complain that it’s too sweet? That is not me at all.

That being said, sometimes you want something a little lighter, and that’s where this chantilly cream frosting comes in to save the day. It’s basically a fancy whipped cream, with a light flavor and soft, silky texture. It’s the perfect topping for many desserts, especially it you want to add a touch of elegance.

Table of Contents

spreading chantilly cream frosting on a cake

What is chantilly cream?

Chantilly cream frosting is a light and creamy topping made from heavy cream, powdered sugar, and vanilla extract. The difference between this frosting and sweetened whipped cream, is that it’s more heavily flavored (but still plenty light!). I’ve also added cream cheese, which makes it more substantial and “stabilizes” the frosting so it will hold up on a cake for a longer period.

Use this chantilly frosting recipe just as you would any other frosting! It is perfect for topping all kinds of cake and cupcakes, and pipes decorations beautifully, so feel free to use a piping bag.

(The word “chantilly” is also the name of a delicate silk lace made in the town of Chantilly, France. Perhaps one inspired the other? What a fun history desserts sometimes have!)

Ingredients you’ll need

chantilly cream frosting ingredients
  • Full-fat cream cheese (mascarpone cheese would be a delicious variation)
  • Heavy cream or heavy whipping cream (they are essentially the same thing)
  • Powdered/confectioners sugar
  • Vanilla extract (you can also use vanilla bean paste or whole vanilla beans)
  • Salt

How to make chantilly cream frosting

  1. Beat cream cheese with sugar, vanilla and salt. Use an electric mixer (I prefer my stand mixer with whisk attachment) to beat ingredients until smooth. The mixture will be very thick, and you’ll have to scrape down the mixer bowl a few times with a rubber spatula.whisking cream cheese, sugar, vanilla and salt
  2. Add heavy cream. Pour in a third of the cream and mix on low speed till combined, then repeat until all of the cream has been added. adding heavy cream to mixing bowl
  3. Whip to medium peaks. Increase to medium high speed and beat for about a minute until thickened and holds medium peaks. I prefer this frosting to still have a bit of softness to it, but if you’d like it to be firmer, beat it for a bit longer till it holds stiff peaks. whipped chantilly cream frosting in bowl with whisk attachment
  4. Use how you like! Use immediately for the best texture and easiest spreading and piping (see below for some uses and suggestions). Frosted desserts and any leftovers should be stored in the fridge.
beautiful whipped chantilly cream frosting in a bowl

Recipe tips

  • Use room temperature cream cheese. This way your frosting will be silky smooth without any lumps. Take it out of the fridge an hour early, or see my tips below if you’re short on time.
  • Do not over whip! To achieve the perfect texture, stop beating the chantilly cream when it holds its shape but it’s still soft and peaks flop over on top. If you continue whipping the texture will become lumpy and grainy.
  • If you do overwhip, it’s okay, you can fix it! Mix 1 tablespoon of additional heavy cream into the frosting on low speed to loosen it back up again.
  • What are “medium peaks”? “Peaks” refer to the stiffness of whipped cream, egg whites, or other mixtures that have been whipped to incorporate air. “Soft peaks” barely hold their shape and the peaks flop over easily when you lift the whisk out. “Medium peaks” hold their shape but the tops of the peaks curl over on top of themselves. “Stiff peaks” are firm and stand straight up off the whisk or beater.
  • How to store this frosting. Desserts frosted with chantilly cream should be stored in the fridge until serving. If you’ve used it on a larger dessert like a layer cake, I typically let it sit at room temperature for about 30 minutes to let it soften just a bit.
  • Make it in advance? This frosting is easiest to use when it’s freshly whipped, but it is possible to make it ahead of time. Store it in the fridge in an airtight container for up to 3 days. When ready to use, it’s best to beat it with an electric mixer for a few minutes to return it to medium peaks.
piling chantilly cream frosting on a layer cake

baking tip:How to quickly bring cream cheese to room temperature

Cold cream cheese can result in a lumpy batter or frosting. Letting the cream cheese rest at room temperature for about 60 minutes is ideal, but in case you forget to pull it out of the fridge on time, here are a few ways to speed things up.

  • Cut cream cheese into small cubes and spread out on the packaging or a plate. Let sit at room temperature for about 15-20 minutes.
  • Remove cream cheese from any paper packaging but keep it in the foil packaging. Place in a bowl and cover with warm water. Let sit for about 10 minutes.
  • Remove cream cheese completely from all packaging. Microwave in 10 second bursts, flipping it after each burst, for about 30-40 seconds total.

Uses and serving suggestions

The uses for this chantilly cream frosting are endless! You can use it as a topping for layer cakes, sheet cakes, cupcakes, angel food cake, pavlovas, strawberry shortcake and more. My favorite way to use chantilly cream is in the summertime when I want to serve a cake with fresh berries or fruit. 

For flavor variations, consider adding vanilla bean paste, almond extract, coconut extract, lemon or lime zest, powdered freeze dried strawberries or raspberries, cocoa powder, or a liqueur such as rum and amaretto.

Get the recipe

piping chantilly cream frosting onto cupcakes

Chantilly Cream Frosting

Servings: 12 servings
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 15 minutes


  • 8 oz (226 grams) full-fat cream cheese , cubed and softened
  • 1 cup (114 grams) powdered sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 2 ½ cups (568 grams) heavy cream


  • Add cream cheese, powdered sugar, vanilla extract, and salt to a bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment. Beat on medium high speed for 3-4 minutes, stopping to scrape down the bowl and whisk as needed, until smooth (it will be very thick).
  • Add the heavy cream to the mixing bowl in 3 additions, mixing on medium low speed until combined. Then scrape down the bowl and mix on medium high speed for about 1 minute until thick and frosting holds medium peaks.
  • Use this frosting on cakes, cupcakes, etc. Leftovers should always be stored in the fridge.
Calories: 275kcal, Carbohydrates: 12g, Protein: 3g, Fat: 24g, Saturated Fat: 15g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g, Monounsaturated Fat: 6g, Cholesterol: 75mg, Sodium: 121mg, Potassium: 73mg, Sugar: 12g, Vitamin A: 983IU, Vitamin C: 0.3mg, Calcium: 51mg, Iron: 0.1mg
Cuisine: American
Course: Dessert
Author: Annalise Sandberg
Have you tried this recipe?I’d love to hear about it! Leave a rating and review below, or take a photo and tag it on Instagram @completelydelicious with #completelydelicious.