How to Make Natural Cream

Alessandro Paiva/


Cream is the yellowish fat that rises to the top of fresh, whole milk. It can be separated from the milk with the use of a centrifuge or milk separator or, to a lesser degree, by allowing the milk to rest and removing the cream from the milk. Milk purchased in the store has been homogenized, a process that mechanically forces large fat globules through a small opening, breaking them down to uniform size and distributing them evenly throughout the milk. Homogenized milk cannot be used to make cream. To get fresh cream from milk, you will need fresh milk from a cow.

Step 1

Fill a spigot jar (a jar with a pouring spigot at the bottom, often sold for iced tea or other summer beverages) with fresh, unprocessed milk. You can buy fresh or raw milk directly from farmers in some areas. There may be restrictions on selling raw milk in your area. See Tips & Warnings for more details. Also, see Resources for a list of farmers who sell raw milk.

Step 2

Cover the milk and allow it to set for 24 hours in a cool area. Refrigeration is best, as it prevents the growth of bacteria. As the milk rests, the fatty cream will rise to the top, creating a thick layer of cream.

Step 3

Open the spigot and slowly pour the milk from the bottom of the container. Watch carefully as the level of the cream drops and nears the spigot. Once the milk is siphoned into another container, you will be left with fresh cream.

Step 4

Use cream as a flavoring for coffee, to make whipped cream for desserts or to make butter. Store unused cream and milk in the refrigerator.

Tips and Warnings

  • Use or purchase raw milk at your own risk. The USDA issues warnings that raw milk may contain human pathogens and poses risks of gastrointestinal illness. The USDA does not endorse the sale or consumption of raw milk and has deemed it an unsafe practice, but the sale of raw milk is not prohibited in all areas.

Things You'll Need

  • Fresh, unprocessed milk
  • Spigot jar
  • Pitcher or glass jar


  • Homogenization
  • FDA Raw Milk Position Statement
  • Food Renegade Separating Cream

Who Can Help

  • Sources of Raw Milk by State
Keywords: make, cream, separate, raw, milk

About this Author

Nannette Richford is an avid gardener, teacher and nature enthusiast with 4 years experience in online writing and a lifetime of personal journals. She is published on various sites, including Associated Content. Richford holds a Bachelor of Science in secondary education from the University of Maine Orono and certifications in 7-12 English, K-8 General Elementary and Birth to age 5.

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