Versatility Is Homemade Cooking Cream

Homemade cooking cream is a versatile cream cheese based sauce that can be used to flavor appetizers, meats, fish, or vegetables. It’s easy and quick to make, too.

I *love* having really versatile items in my fridge. Give me a tomato, a red onion and some cheddar cheese; I’ll give you one hundred dinner ideas (other ingredients required, of course!).

That’s why I adore this recipe. I call it Homemade Cooking Cream because it can be used in all the ways you might use Philly Cooking Cream. But, you don’t have to buy an extra product AND you can season it up any way you like.

What *is* cooking cream?

It’s kind of like slightly thinned cream cheese that is soft, even when it’s cold.

It’s sold next to the cream cheese in the refrigerated area of the grocery store. There’s a plain “original” version and several different seasoned varieties (e.g., savory garlic, Italian cheese and herb). You keep it in the fridge and then add a dollop to veggies, pasta and more to create a quick creamy sauce.

Here I’ve made my own basic cooking cream and seasoned it with toasted then crushed cumin and coriander seeds, a lot of black pepper and a burst of lime. This combination of flavors has several great uses:


Serve it as a dip for fresh veggies or pita wedges (an alternative to hummus or serve it alongside hummus). If doing so, crumble in some feta cheese for some extra tang, salt and general snazziness.

  • Toss with hot cooked veggies to create a lightly seasoned sauce. To get an idea of amounts, I use 3 tbsp cooking cream to one head of steamed cauliflower.
  • Use it instead of sour cream in tacos or thin it with a bit of milk or water to use as a dressing for taco salad.
  • Spread it in a pita, add feta cheese, tomato, onions and chunks of hot cooked chicken.
  • Or, my favourite, toss a bit of homemade cooking cream with hot egg noodles and then add some fresh garnishes like grape tomatoes and parsley (toss a bit of the pasta cooking liquid with the noodles and cooking cream to thin the sauce, if desired)

Homemade Cooking Cream - A versatile recipe that can be used as a sauce, a condiment, or a dip.

You can even use this homemade cooking cream warmed up over baked fish. My recipe on how to cook fish from frozen will really help you quicken up the cooking time.

How to cook fish from frozen

Here’s another plan: Whip up a batch of homemade cooking cream as the weekend approaches. You’ll have it on hand as an appetizer for company or as a quick snack for the family. Any leftovers get incorporated into Monday and Tuesday dinners, bringing some easy flavor to your week.

Now all you need is the recipe!

Homemade Cooking Cream with Toasted Cumin, Coriander and Lime



Homemade Cooking Cream

  • Author: Christine Pittman
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Total Time: 10 minutes
  • Yield: 1 and 1/2 cups


This is a versatile sauce recipe that can be used as a condiment, a dip, or a flavorful sauce over meats, fish, or vegetables.


  • 1/2 tsp cumin seeds
  • 1/2 tsp coriander seeds
  • 1/2 tsp whole peppercorns
  • 3/4 cup sour cream
  • 3/4 cup cream cheese, softened
  • 1/2 tsp kosher salt
  • 2 tsp fresh squeezed lime juice


  1. Spatter the cumin and coriander seeds into a heavy bottomed dry pan set over medium-low heat. Tossing the pan occasionally, toast the seeds until their fragrance is warm and intoxicating, about 5 minutes. Pour the toasted seeds and the peppercorns into a spice grinder or use a mortar and pestle. Grind coarsely.
  2. In a medium bowl mix the spices with the remaining ingredients. It’s easiest to use a fork to smooth the cream cheese into the other ingredients. Grab a cracker and taste for seasoning. You may want a touch more salt or lime juice.

Now get creative and start cooking with your cooking cream.

Oh, and don’t forget to let me know how you’ve use it. It’s so versatile I know you’ll think of something totally drool-worthy!

6 Responses to “Versatility Is Homemade Cooking Cream”

  1. Everyday Mom — January 6, 2014 @ 9:22 pm (#)

    This was a tasty little cream sauce with very little ingredients. I loved the ease and simplicity of it. I made it with the egg noodles/tomatoes/parsley. It worked well with about 8 ounces of egg noodles. It was a rich dish, so I would make it as a side. I really enjoyed this type of sauce so much more than those premade little pasta salads you often get at restaurants or grocery stores that taste mayonnais-ey, Cream cheese and sour cream are always a winner with me, especially when the seasonings are added. I would make this again!

  2. Ursula — May 2, 2012 @ 3:45 pm (#)

    I never thought with just a few ingredients from the fridge would make a tasty recipe. Where did you get this idea from? Thank you very much for sharing this wonderful recipe!

  3. Katie — May 2, 2012 @ 1:58 pm (#)

    this cream sounds awesome–never thought to make a cooking cream of sorts!

  4. Paula — May 2, 2012 @ 1:10 pm (#)

    What a lovely recipe for home-made cooking cream. Sounds delicious and that pasta dish looks amazing.

  5. Mike Pittman — May 2, 2012 @ 9:09 am (#)

    Love veggie dips and pasta sauces, gonna have to try. Nice!

    • Christine — May 2, 2012 @ 11:08 am (#)

      Thanks Mike! I think you guys would really like it with the sour cream and cream cheese combined with grated parmesan, lots of garlic, salt and black pepper.

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