Clotted cream in a cute glass jar

How to make Clotted Cream

Clotted cream is rich and creamy and an essential accompaniment to British Scones. It is enjoyed across Britain with freshly baked scones and you can make it at home to enjoy for Teatime too!

What is Clotted Cream?

Believed to have originated in either Cornwall or Devon in the Southwest of England, clotted cream is now a universal treat! It is made by slowly heating and then cooling cow’s milk (heavy cream), allowing the fat and the whey to separate.

Clotted cream has a very high fat content, a minimum of 55% but usually more like 64%. This is not a diet food but is a treat that is worth the calories on perfect British Scones!

Try my recipe with for perfect British Scones! This recipe really does make the best and most authentic British Scones!

It is thought that farmers began to make clotted cream in an effort to reduce the amount of waste from their milk. It was also a way to prolong the freshness and safety of the milk in the days before pasteurization.

Clotted cream and jam on a fruit scone

How to make Clotted Cream

There are a couple of ways to make clotted cream. Using the oven is probably the most common but it can also be done in an Instant Pot, which is my preferred method.

Making clotted cream is not a quick process! You should begin the process about 3 days before you want to serve it.

I know that sounds like a long time but most of the process is hands off! You’ll spend a lot of time waiting for the cream to heat up and then more time waiting for it to chill.

The time investment is worth it, trust me!

Cream and then jam, or Jam and then cream??

The big debate is always whether you put cream on your scone first and then the jam or if you should do it the other way around.

In Cornwall, they put the jam on first then a big dollop of clotted cream. In Devon, they put the cream on and then top it with the jam.

I don’t know how much it really matters because it tastes amazing no matter what goes on first!

On my last trip to the UK, I didn’t get the chance to go to tea but a few of my friends did and they shared their photos with me! Scones with clotted cream are always served with tea!

These photos were in London. The first photo is from Marissa (@restingbakeface on Instagram) and in the photo is Carlos (@carlosmarquina910 on Instagram, Look at those fruit scones!

The second photo is from Saly (@sallybr on Instagram, I could sit there all day with a tray like that!

Thanks for the use of your photos, guys! You really are the best!

Making Clotted Cream in the oven

Most people that make homemade clotted cream do it in their oven. It is an easy but slow process and I have found a few faults with this method.

The main problem that I have seen with this method is that the cream may brown on top if your oven runs hot. Most ovens have at least one hot spot and mine is no exception. This method left me with browned cream on the back right of the pan and that portion had to be thrown away.

I thought that covering the pan with foil would help to avoid this. That experiment failed. The cream didn’t clot the way it should have and was too runny for me to use on scones.

Making Clotted Cream in the Instant Pot

I had an Instant Pot for a year before I used it for the first time. My husband bought it and I thought it was just another useless gadget that would take up half a shelf in my storage room.

Once I used it, I realized how amazingly helpful it can be! I can get several things done at once, in less time, with less hands on work.

So I decided to try using my Instant Pot for this recipe!

It was a roaring success the first time I tried it and I have to admit that I will use the Instant Pot method every time from now on!

One reason for that is that the oven method worries me because it requires that the oven be left on all night while I sleep or all day while I am potentially gone. I really don’t like to leave my oven on when I can’t monitor what is happening with it!

I also tend to use my oven A LOT – especially during the day. Having it tied up for 10 hours+ is just not convenient!

So the Instant Pot is here to stay as my preferred method!

Clotted Cream

Recipe by Tanya Ott


Prep time


Total Time




  • 32 ounces heavy cream, pasteurized is fine but NOT ULTRA-pasteurized


  • To make Clotted Cream in the Oven
  • Preheat oven to 180F/80C.
  • Pour the cream into a shallow glass or ceramic baking dish. The cream should be about 1 1/2 to 2 inches deep.
  • Place the dish in the preheated oven and bake for 12 hours. Do not stir or disturb the cream during the baking process. Remove from the oven carefully so that you don’t disturb the separated layers. Let cool to room temperature. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight.
  • Using a large spoon, turn over a corner of the top layer of thickened cream; carefully pour liquid underneath into a container to use for baking. I use this liquid in scones.
  • Scoop the clotted cream into a glass jar that has a tight-fitting lid. I stir the whole container each time I open it to make sure that it is creamy and hasn’t separated.
  • Cover and refrigerate up to 10 days. Freeze any clotted cream that you can’t use in 10 days.
  • To make Clotted Cream in the Instant Pot
  • Pour the cream into the Instant Pot. Close the lid – we’re not pressure cooking so we don’t need to vent it. Press the YOGURT button and press again until it says BOIL. It will flash a fire symbol meaning the heating element is on.
  • When the machine beeps it has reached the boiling stage. Press KEEP WARM and leave it for 10 hours. I start this in the morning so that it is ready around dinner time.
  • After 10 hours, turn the machine off and gently remove the pot without disturbing the contents. Let the pot cool at room temperature. Cover the pot with cling film and refrigerate the pot for 12 hours. Overnight is great!
  • Carefully scoop off the thickened layer of clotted cream that is on the top, leaving the thin liquid in the pot. If some of the thinner liquid gets into your clotted cream, you can just mix it in. Don’t discard the liquid! You can use it in scones or any other recipe that calls for milk.
  • Scoop the clotted cream into a glass jar that has a tight-fitting lid. I stir the whole container each time I open it to make sure that it is creamy and hasn’t separated.
  • Cover and refrigerate up to 10 days. Freeze any clotted cream that you can’t use in 10 days.


  1. I tried making clotted cream in the oven and it was overcooked with a brown crust. Not happy with the results!Your friend @lawyerjen forwarded me this recipe and I’m looking forward to trying it! Question though re: Step #8: approximately how much time does it take from when you select Yogurt until the Instant Pot beeps?

    • You’ll love this method! To answer your question, it was about 8 to 10 minutes before the Instant Pot beeped for the next step. Hope this helps!

  2. Mickey Kitterman

    Thanks Tanya, wonderful post

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