Mmmm...emulsifiers.

Cool Whip Original – So Many Emulsifiers

I like whipped cream. It’s so damned simple. I own a whipping siphon and all you have to do is pour some liquid whipping cream and fine sugar into it, shake it a few times and BAM!, the nitrogen does all the work of making the cream. There are some of you however that insist on eating Cool Whip and in case you’re curious, here’s the ingredient list.

  • Water
  • Hydrogenated Vegetable Oil:
    – Coconut oil
    – Palm kernel oil
  • High-fructose corn syrup
  • Corn syrup
  • Skim milk
  • Light cream
  • Sodium caseinate
  • Natural flavor
  • Artifical flavor
  • Xanthan gum
  • Guar gum
  • Polysorbate 60
  • Sorbitan monostearate
  • Sodium polyphosphate
  • Beta-carotene (color)

All of these ingredients are generally recognized as safe and one thing we are not, here at FlavorSci, is alarmist. We are in favor of flavor and homemade whipped cream is so fresh, delicious and simple. Here’s a list of what you are putting in your mouth when you eat Cool Whip.

Hydrogenated vegetable oil in Cool Whip consists of Coconut oil and Palm Kernel oil. They are used primarily to keep fat solid at room temperature. As such they are heavily saturated. It’s important to note that Palm Kernel oil is NOT Palm oil but it is more saturated than Palm oil. It’s also cheaper than most other oils.

High fructose corn syrup. OK, mostly our issue with this is that it seems to be used in everything instead of just plain old sugar and a dissection of the science behind HFCS is beyond the scope of this article, but trust us, it’s coming.

Sodium caseinate, or more to the point caseinate, is found in mammalian milk and is used in paint and glue. We only point that out as a “Hmmmm isn’t that an interesting point?”. Caseinate is a coagulant and as such is used in cheese making and presumably, as a clotting agent in Cool Whip.

“Natural Flavor” and “Artificial Flavor” are not expanded upon in the ingredient list so we can’t comment.

Xanthan gum and guar gum are thickeners used to thicken the viscosity of liquids and they are natural and common.

Polysorbate 60 is an emulsifier. Emulsifiers are everywhere in cooking. What they do is to bond two things together that normally don’t. A good example is using mustard in making a vinaigrette. Water and oil don’t bind to each other but water and oil do bind to mustard, or more accurately the chemicals in the mucilage surrounding the seed hull so the less processed the mustard the better.

Sorbitan monostearate is an emulsifier, sometimes referred to as synthetic wax. It’s also used to create synthetic fibers, metal machining fluid, and brighteners in the leather industry, and as an emulsifier in coatings, pesticides and various applications in the plastics, food and cosmetic industries.

We can’t figure out why Sodium polyphosphate is used in Cool Whip but there has been at least one article published on the National Institutes of Health page detailing reasons why you shouldn’t ingest it in regards to people with weak kidney function. ( See end sources )

Beta carotene is natural, found in carrots and is used for color.

What stands out about the ingredient list is just how many things are used in Cool Whip to make it solid and presumably give it an agreeable mouth feel.

Just say no.

You can buy an Amazon recommended whipping siphon for only 37.00! ( no, we aren’t an affiliate and don’t make money on click through purchases ).

If you want whipped cream, just do this…..

Pour in …
2 cups of chilled heavy cream
2 tablespoons of powdered sugar ( or ultra fine sugar )
1 teaspoon of vanilla extract ( optional )

That’s it. It tastes a hell of a lot better and it’s solid because of aeration between nitrogen + fat.
Science.
And it’s good in your fridge for ten days.
Do your taste buds a favor.

Sources:
NIH: Phosphate additives in food – a health risk. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3278747/