When I went dairy-free, coconut saved me in the form of coconut oil, coconut milk and even coconut flour. I love making coconut milk ice cream, using coconut oil as a cooking oil, or to make fudge, and making coconut whipped cream.

Coconut whipped cream is an incredibly satisfying, lip-licking treat. You can use it to top dairy-free hot chocolate, serve with fresh strawberries, use on top of homemade bubble tea, or serve with a variety of desserts.

I’m a fan.

Here’s how to make it:  

canned coconut milk

Get a can of full-fat coconut milk. There are some great brands out there, but beware that there is some variation in how much cream is in each can. I've found Thai Kitchen's coconut milk to be reliably full of coconut "cream." Put in the refrigerator for at least a couple hours or overnight. This chilling process helps separate the solid cream from the more watery part of the coconut milk. 

scoop out the solid coconut cream

Scoop out all of the solid coconut cream on the top of the can ...

put the coconut cream in a bowl

... and place in a bowl. 

Coconut Whipped Cream

Using a hand blender or a large whisk, and beat for about 20 seconds, until fluffy. Don't overbeat as that will make it too warm and start to melt the coconut milk. 

add vanilla extract to whipped coconut creme

Add 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract, and 1-4 tablespoons of sweetener of choice (I used coconut sugar). Whip again for about 10 seconds, until combined. 

Finished coconut whipped cream

Serve right away, or keep chilled. Enjoy within a couple of hours. 

I'm also on Pinterest, Facebook, Google +, and Twitter, talking about the joy of real food. I'd love to see you there! 

Related on MNN:

The opinions expressed by MNN Bloggers and those providing comments are theirs alone, and do not reflect the opinions of MNN.com. While we have reviewed their content to make sure it complies with our Terms and Conditions, MNN is not responsible for the accuracy of any of their information.