5 Ways To Thicken Sour Cream

Why would you want to thicken sour cream?

Sour cream has been known for a long time as an important ingredient in Eastern and Central Europe cuisines. Now it’s famous in Western countries as well and appear in many dishes many home kitchens or restaurants. 

Although sour cream doesn’t have a wide variety of health benefits but without it, some dishes can not be completed. It is often used as a garnish or topping for chili, soup or stews and sour cream dips work really well for potato chips, fruit and vegetable platters or even match with cookies, scones and cakes. 

Normally, sour cream is quite thick but sometimes it’s runny because of too much liquid and this disappoints you a lot.

Can you thicken sour cream?

Just set this fear and sadness a side since we will provide you several simple ways to thicken your failed sour cream. 

With only some available kitchen tools and ingredients, you can salvage the runny sour cream and change the consistency as you desire.

Tips to thicken sour cream

  • Don’t add too much gelatin to the sour cream since it can create a gummy consistency
  • If you don’t have gelatin on hand, you can substitute with pectin or agar-agar powder to thicken sour cream with the same amount and technique
  • Don’t forget to stir the mixture of sour cream and gelatin constantly while heating to prevent it from burning or scalding
  • If you use sour cream as salad dressing, you can add a bit vinegar to the runny cream since vinegar can help thicken it as well, however it will leave the special vinegar taste which turns out to be okay in a salad dressing, not other dishes

Things you’ll need

  • A stove top
  • A pot, a bowl
  • Cheesecloth
  • A fine mesh strainer
  • A spoon
  • Gelatin
  • A food-safe container

How to thicken sour cream

  1. Fold cheesecloth in several layers and arrange it so that it covers the entire inside of the fine mesh strainer
  2. Spoon the sour cream into the strainer, ensuring that it only touches parts covered by cheesecloth. Fill the strainer to the brim
  3. Place the mesh strainer so it sits on the rim of a bowl, with the mesh hanging into the bowl
  4. Cover the bowl and sour cream-filled strainer with plastic wrap and store it in the refrigerator for three to 24 hours (the longer it rests, the thicker the sour cream will be)
  5. Transfer the strained sour cream into a food storage container, cover it with a lid and store it in the  refrigerator (discard the liquid that has collected at the bottom of the bowl)

 How to thicken sour cream by adding gelatin

  1. Pour the runny sour cream into a pot and add 1 tbsp. of unflavored gelatin powder for every 2 cups of sour cream.
  2. Stir thoroughly to combine the gelatin and sour cream
  3. Heat the mixture over low heat until the temperature reads 140 F  (check by a candy thermometer)
  4. Let the sour cream cool before transferring it to a sealed food-safe storage container and keeping it in the refrigerator

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