A tasty way to add probiotic goodness to your life, kefir sour cream is super easy to make and tastes delicious!
Kefir sour cream may just my be favorite of all of the kefir goodies that I have made myself over the years. Not only is it tasty, but it is super easy to make!
Using kefir grains
The first time I made it was by accident. I was trying to make some sort of kefir ice cream (aka. Frozen kefir). To make a smoother ice cream, I wanted to add more fat content to the recipe. To achieve that, I added some kefir grains to a heavy whipping cream. The idea was to make a kefirized cream to incorporate into the recipe. (If you don’t know what kefir grains are, I explain more about them in my post about how to make kefir.)
Kefir grains will thicken milk into a delicious yogurt-like product, known as kefir. Milk kefir is, however, generally thinner than yogurt.
After leaving the kefir grains in the cream overnight, I was surprised to find an almost solid mass of kefirized cream
I loved the resulting cream, but it was very difficult to remove my kefir grains from the solid mass. (Normally, you strain the grains from the milk so that you can reuse them in your next batches.)
Using ready made kefir
After the messy, albeit delicious, first attempt a kefirizing cream, I was determined to find an easier way to make it. I decided to try using a sort of second fermentation, like people often do when making water kefir and kombucha.
Guess what? It worked! I ended up with a smooth and creamy kefir sour cream that was delicious.
The ingredients are just as simple as the recipe itself. You only need some milk kéfir and some heavy whipping cream. You can use a lighter cream, but keep in mind that the resulting product will be thinner than if you use a heavier cream. The higher the fat content, the thicker the resulting sour cream!
This may just be my easiest recipe on the blog. (Although I do have a few that are pretty simple. Have you tried my 5-minute watermelon sorbet?)
Just mix together the kefir and the whipping cream, and you should immediately notice that the cream begins to thicken. I’m not sure if it would thicken right away, in the same way, if you are using store bought milk kefir vs. homemade. That said, store-bought should work fine if you allow it time to ferment.
Mix together the ingredients fully with a spoon. You want the milk kefir to be fully incorporated into the cream mixture.
While it should thicken immediately, it probably won’t be very sour yet. You can use it immediately in place of mascarpone in recipes, but if you want something sourer, you need to ferment it more.
Fermenting the mixture
To get a sour “sour cream,” we need to allow the mixture to ferment for a while.
Fermenting is a simple process, it just takes a little time and patience. All you need to do is to cover it and leave it at room temperature for several hours or, even better, several days. The longer you allow it to ferment, the more sour it will get.
You may also notice that with time, some of the whey will separate out. (It’s a pale yellow liquid that will float on top of the cream.) You can either mix it back into the cream or pour it off to remove it. (By removing it, your cream will be slightly thicker.)
Once you are happy with the level of tartness, you can slow the fermentation process by moving your kefir sour cream to the fridge.
How to use it
The cool thing about kefir sour cream is that it is very versatile. If you use it before it gets sour, it is almost like mascarpone, and can be used for desserts!
- Try mixing it with cocoa powder and honey to make a filling similar to the chocolate mascarpone filling used in my heart-shaped chocolate ravioli.
- It can be worked into other desserts too like cheesecakes or ice cream.
It makes a great garnish. You can also use it in any recipe that would normally call for sour cream.
- I like to use it as a topping for Mexican recipes like carnitas.
- It’s delicious on baked potatoes and/or baked sweet potatoes. (Bonus recipe below the recipe card.)
How long does it keep?
Because it has been fermented, kefir sour cream will keep a long time. (It will keep much longer than the cream would have kept had it not been fermented.)
Even outside of the fridge, it generally doesn’t go bad, it just gets sourer and sourer with time. Eventually, you may find it too sour to enjoy. (It likely won’t last that long anyway, as it’s delicious!)
Easy Kefir Sour Cream
- 200 ml heavy cream (.85 cups)
- 2 Tablespoons milk kefir (30ml)
- Mix together the heavy cream with the milk kefir in a jar. The heavier the cream, the thicker your resulting sour cream will be. You can keep experimenting to get the consistency that you want with the cream you are using. If you want to end up with a thinner sour cream, you can also bring down the fat content of the cream by mixing it with some milk.
- The cream should immediately begin to thicken. At first, it won't be sour, but you could use it in place of mascarpone in recipes.
Fermenting the cream
- To sour the cream, it needs to be fermented. Cover the jar, and allow it to rest at room temperature. At first, allow it to ferment overnight.
- In the morning, taste the kefir sour cream. If you want it to be sourer, leave it out to ferment longer.
- Once you've achieved the level of sourness that you want, use it right away or store it in the fridge for later. Storing it in the fridge will slow down the fermentation process and keep it from getting sourer as quickly.
How to use itKefir sour cream is very versatile. If you use it before it gets sour, it is almost like mascarpone, and can be used for desserts. It also makes a great garnish. You can also use it in any recipe that would normally call for sour cream. It goes especially well as a garnish for Mexican recipes or served atop baked potatoes and/or baked sweet potatoes.
How long does it keep?Because it has been fermented, kefir sour cream will keep a long time. (It will keep much longer than the cream would have kept had it not been fermented.) Even outside of the fridge, it generally doesn’t go bad, it just gets sourer and sourer with time. Eventually, you may find it too sour to enjoy. (It likely won’t last that long anyway, as it’s delicious!)
Baked sweet potatoes
As a bonus, I’ll teach you how I make my baked sweet potatoes. They’re the perfect accompaniment to the sour cream.
Baked sweet potatoes are very simple to make. All you have to do is to clean the potatoes and prick them with a fork to help let steam escape and prevent them from exploding.
Place them on the wire rack of the oven, above a lined tray to catch any drips, and turn the heat up to around 400ºF (200ºC).
After around 30 minutes, start checking on the sweet potatoes to see if they are starting to soften. When they do begin to soften, turn off the heat of the oven. Leave the sweet potatoes in the oven to finish cooking while you finish up the rest of your meal.
Once ready, slice the sweet potato open. Serve it topped with your homemade kefir sour cream.
Estaba a punto de hacer la crema utilizando los nódulos de kéfir. Menos mal que me ha dado por buscar y gracias a ti he descubierto que es mejor fermentar la nata solo con la leche kefirada, sin nódulos. ¡Muchísimas gracias!
Tracy Ariza, DDS
De nada! Sí, sale muy bien sin la necesidad de añadirlos directamente a la nata. Espero que te salga bien!
Awesome info. Thanks.
Muchas gracias por tus consejos, son muy interesantes, me interesa mucho cuando hablas de Kéfir, soy fermentista de Kéfir y pruebo todas las recetas que pones y encuentro en internet. Muchas gracia.
Tracy Ariza, DDS
Me alegra que te haya gustado. A ver si me animo a compartir más ya que se puede hacer muchas cosas con el kéfir. Los quesos de kéfir también están muy buenos. 😉
I am going to start my first production tonight. I got your advices. Thanks a lot.
Doing a second ferment with a lid on the jar(and the grains out of the kefir milk) makes the kefir less sour.
Thanks for your tip.
That’s an interesting observation!
That’s sort of how I make my regular kefir. I usually strain the kefir, and then put it in a jar with a lid in the fridge. It does get bubbly, so I guess it does do a bit of a second fermentation, and I love the way it tastes. 🙂
I meant to say that this advice was for Gaye, for regular kefir milk. It definitely helps it to not be too sour. You then put it in the fridge after the second ferment.
Ha, OK. I get it now. 🙂
i am so pleased I came across your blog. That is a great way to use up my milk kefir. Definitely going to make to today. I find drinking the milk kefir far too sour, and always add blended mixed berries, almonds and chai seeds to make it sweeter. Do you have any other suggestions to add to the kefir to make it more pleasant to drink. Thanking you. Gaye
Thanks for your comment, Gaye! I’m glad you are here!
To get my son to drink it, I add it into smoothies. For him bananas are enough to sweeten it up, so I often make him smoothies with strawberries, bananas, kefir and spinach. That’s about the only way to get him to eat something like spinach. 😉
If you find your kefir is too sour, though, maybe you could try fermenting it less time, or using less/smaller grains for the same amount of milk. Are you making your own milk kefir with kefir grains?
Are you using milk kefir or kefir grains in the heavy cream?
I’m using the milk kefir that I obtained using the grains. You can use the kefir grains in the cream directly, but it’s hard to get them out of the cream once it thickens.