Homemade Crème Fraîche

Homemade Creme Fraiche Crisp and tangy, Crème Fraîche is a decadent treat that can be made with just 2 ingredients and minimal effort.  Crème Fraîche tastes similar to sour cream (but better), and it’s often waaaay overpriced in grocery stores.  I genuinely get angry when I see a small tub selling for $4, $5, $6, or even $7.  Why?  Because it is so darn easy to make at home, and I usually have the ingredients sitting in my fridge leftover from other recipes.  First, you’ll need heavy cream.  I always have a cup or two of heavy cream left over after making ice cream or scones.  The second ingredient is buttermilk.  I usually have buttermilk on hand to whip of some Sunday morning pancakes.  Mix the two, wait several hours, and BAM… Crème Fraîche.  The finished product has the most delightfully clean cream flavor, and the perfect amount of tang.  Spoon this cream over tacos, nachos or chili.  It also works well with Indian curries.  You can really utilize Crème Fraîche in any way you would use sour cream.  So delicious.  So easy.  Continue reading for the recipe.

Pouring-Buttermilk Creme Fraiche Waiting Paper Towel-Finished

5.0 from 1 reviews
Homemade Crème Fraîche
Recipe type: Condiment
Serves: 2 cups
  • 2 cups heavy cream (not ultra-pasteurized)
  • 4 tablespoons buttermilk
  1. Add heavy cream and buttermilk to a glass jar that has a tight fitting lid, and whisk to combine. Cover the jar with a paper towel, and secure with a rubber band, string or canning ring.
  2. Let sit at room temperature for 12 - 24 hours. Completion time will vary based on the temperature of your kitchen, and personal taste. Check for consistency at 12 hours. Simply dip a spoon in the mixture, then pull it out to see how thick it is. The Crème Fraîche should be thick and creamy, but not completely solid.
  3. Once you've achieved the desired consistency, remove the paper towel and clamp on the lid. Store the Crème Fraîche in the refrigerator for 2 to 3 weeks. Sometimes longer!

Related recipes and articles:

Salmon, Asparagus, Watercress Salad with Crème Fraîche Dressing

Strawberry Rhubarb Crème Fraîche Crumble Pie

Black Bean Soup with Meyer Lemon Crème Fraîche

Crème Fraîche Ice Cream

Bittersweet Chocolate Tartlets with Flaky Spelt Crust + Crème Fraîche


  1. says

    So easy and yet I’ve never done it. But I need to. Next time I have leftover buttermilk, this is happening! I made kombucha, bread, kefir, pickles; fermented anything is wonderful and need to add this to my list of things!

    • Brandon Matzek says

      Yeah, you totally need to try this. So simple. I remember your vats of kombucha! They were very impressive 😉

  2. candide says

    for people who don’t usually keep fresh buttermilk on hand, you can freeze it in an ice-cube tray, then store the cubes in a plastic bag so they’re always available for making creme fraiche. i’ve done it this way for many years.

    • Brandon Matzek says

      Hi Darlene, it will last 2 to 3 weeks. Maybe even longer! I like to give it a quick mix each time I use it too.

  3. says

    I’ve made it and I guess can chalk things up to lazy for not keeping at it and end up using the plain Greek yogurt always have on hand. And when it comes to buttermilk I end up reconstituting the dry stuff because a quart is so much to purchase then toss. Love your tutorial. Nice job!

    • Brandon Matzek says

      Thanks Kelly! Someone just suggested freezing buttermilk in an ice cube tray. I’m definitely going to give that a try. But usually I make this when I already have the ingredients on hand.

  4. Sharon Mervin says

    In my “gourmet” market (McCaffreys in Yardley, PA), the only heavy cream that is not ultra-pasteurized is Trickling Springs. 16 ounces costs $5.99. At the dairy where I purchase raw milk, their heavy cream is of higher quality and would not be pasteurized at all, so their price is even higher. Anybody know of a chain market that sells pasteurized heavy cream. I love creme fraiche.

    • Brandon Matzek says

      Hi Sharon! I know the heavy cream at Trader Joe’s works well. I believe it is $2.99 for 16 oz. You can also cut this recipe in half if you only have a cup of heavy cream.

  5. says

    Thanks so much for this recipe Brandon!!! I spent a fortune on creme fraiche normally (I love the stuff) so it’ll be fantastic to be able to make my own. Genius!

  6. says

    This is great!!! I have written before about how inconvenient it is to have to buy a quart of buttermilk when most recipes call for so much less. I’m always on the lookout for great things to do with the excess. My favorite has been buttermilk ice cream but now I”m so sick of it! And who doesn’t love Crème Fraîche? On everything! I do. I’ll be doing this ’cause I too am sick of the paying such a price! Thanks!

  7. says

    I LOVE this blog! Just mixed up a batch of creme fraiche. Will have over fresh strawberries with cinnamon & a hit of vanilla & honey. Yummmmmmm…Thanks, Brandon!

  8. Kitty says

    I tried this with fresh Jersey raw cream but every time I try it, it gets like egg yolks and just rolls off the spoon without leaving any trace on the spoon. What am I doing wrong?

    • Brandon Matzek says

      Hi Kitty, I have not encountered this issue, but I searched around and found this: http://food52.com/hotline/17069-homemade-raw-creme-fraiche

      “Raw milk is a soup of bacteria. Different bacteria thrive at different temperatures. It sounds to me like your culturing process failed but other bacteria took over after refrigeration…

      Commercial producers of fermented milks begin with pasteurized milk, introduce specific cultures then control time and temperature to receive consistent — and safe — results.”

  9. David Rule says

    Hi Brandon

    I used pasteurized Jersey cream from a local dairy and it goes solid like regular sour cream. I can get a nice consistency by adding more Jersey cream but within an hour its fairly solid again. It tastes great but I cant get it to stop going so solid. The cream I use is very high fat and likely to be above to 35 – 40% that most heavy whipping creams are. Have you encountered this? Should I add milk or something to keep it from setting?


  10. noelia says

    Thanks for this post! However, why is this Creme Fraiche and not Sour Cream? What’s the difference in making the two?

    • Brandon Matzek says

      Commercially, Creme Fraiche has a higher fat content; however when making at home, they are practically the same.


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