honey honey bee myths

Don’t be confused: whipped honey is crystallized, not whipped

Whipped honey is not whipped and does not contain added air. DepositPhotos.

Butter, egg whites, and batter can all be whipped, but creamed honey is nothing like that—read this article on “whipped honey” to learn more!

Inside: It’s a mystery why carefully crystallized honey is called whipped. Perhaps it’s the color, but no air has been added to the honey.

The wrong use of a culinary term

The truth is that creamed honey is not whipped—not at all. The popular term “whipped honey” is an unfortunate misnomer for a product that contains pure honey with no added air.

Whipping is a culinary term for incorporating air into a food item. We can whip cream. We can whip butter. And we can whip egg whites and batter. Whipping mechanically inserts air bubbles into the substance, making it light and fluffy. Creamed honey is anything but light and fluffy. It spreads well but is heavy and dense.

Whipped honey does not contain added air

Far from whipping air into your creamed honey, you should carefully avoid any incorporation of air whatsoever. In practice, after the starter crystals have been stirred into the honey, it is left to sit undisturbed so any air bubbles come to the surface and dissipate.

The name probably derived from the fact that creamed honey has a lighter color than the honey had before it crystallized, so it looks like air was incorporated. The light color results from the way crystals reflect light.

See the Betterbee website for more

Here is an excerpt from the Betterbee website about making creamed honey (emphasis added):

Before we explain how to make creamed honey, it is important to understand what it actually is and what it is not. Creamed honey is not whipped honey. There shouldn’t be any air in your creamed honey. Creamed honey is controlled granulation of honey which results in extremely small sugar crystals . . .Take care not to mix in air . . . allow any small amounts of air to rise to the surface.

Betterbee

It is easy to see that calling the product “whipped” is both wrong and confusing and gives the consumer an incorrect impression of the product. Some customers even want to know why creamed honey is so expensive if it is full of air—a good question based on a bad name.

Label your honey properly so you don’t misrepresent your high-quality product. One poorly chosen word can cause lots of confusion.

Rusty
Honey Bee Suite

About Me

I backed my love of bee science with a bachelor’s degree in Agronomic Crops and a master’s in Environmental Studies. I write extensively about bees, including a current column in American Bee Journal and past columns in Two Million Blossoms and Bee Craft. I’ve endured multiple courses in melittology and made extensive identifications of North American bees for iNaturalist and other organizations. My master beekeeper certificate issued from U Montana. I’m also an English nerd. More here.


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5 Comments

  • You spreading misinformation. Their are honeys sold out there that is as you describe. A whipped honey is exactly as described. Whipped. I am the production manager at Miller Honey out of Utah. Our creamed honey does have air whipped into it. Giving it a smooth and creamy spreadable texture. Not foamy. Just thought I would give you a heads up.

    • Commercial honey producers have modified the Dyce process by using paddles to stir the honey mixture while holding the mixture at a constant temperature. This is where it gets the name “whipped.” But this type of honey is still seeded to produce crystals of uniform size and shape.

      The “whipped” label is confusing to consumers who often believe that whipped honey is purely liquid honey that has been beaten, much like whipped cream, which is just not true. That is why the term “whipped” is not as good as “creamed.” Your so-called whipped honey has certainly been crystallized—probably by some form of the Dyce process—and then stirred with air. But I’m sure your honey won’t deflate after it sits for awhile—something it would do if not crystallized before it was stirred. Remember, honey gets sold to non-beekeepers, and they are the ones who need to understand that your product will hold up over time—and not liquify in a few hours or days.

  • I would like to say that I appreciate all the work that you put into your site and the helpful information you provide.

    Whipped honey and creamed honey are two products with two different textures. Creamed honey is indeed crystalized, ideally with the smallest crystals possible so that it has that lovely velvety texture and light taste. Whipped honey is more than mixing it around for a few minutes to speed up the crystalization process. I think you said creaming is done with large paddles by commercial producers. Whipping honey is just like whipping cream or egg whites, etc. It’s done for 20-30 minutes and has a different color and texture than creamed.

    There may or may not be any minute crystals in it, and it lasts at room temperature for several weeks. It will start to crystalize at some point, but it can take longer to do so than liquid honey stored at the same temperature and conditions.

    I would imagine if someone starts with crystalized honey and moves it around, trying to whip it, it would just be a shortcut to creamed. I don’t know that the texture would be as good as either the true creamed that does it’s thing sitting in a tub of honey seeded with the desired crystals or as delicate as liquid honey whipped to incorporate the air.

    I am hoping to make some whipped honey this afternoon .

    • Serena,

      I totally disagree. “Whipped” honey is not whipped at all, but is crystallized with very tiny crystals, making it smooth and velvety. The container of “whipped” honey should weigh just as much as did before the process. To actually whip something means you incorporate air, and you don’t want to do that to honey. Air oxidizes the honey, and thereby destroys its more valued properties, including nutritional ones, its shelf stability, and its flavor. Whenever possible, you should keep all excess air out of honey, which is why it should always be covered tightly and not be allowed to sit in a open container. Save whipping for dairy products.

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