Product Review: Truwhip (whipped cream it ain’t, but it’s worth a look!)
Okay, the caveat right out of the gate: this is not a “healthy” food, this is a “not so scary form of something we usually get full of chemical scariness” food, and one which doesn’t even really qualify as “food” but more like “edible substance. Michael Pollan would absolutely not approve.
I know, with an endorsement like that, you really want to keep reading, right? I’m talking about “Truwhip,” the organic shorter-ingredient-list version of Cool Whip, that really easy to use “non-dairy whipped topping” that pops up all over the place.
The good news: its ingredient list is way less scary than Cool Whip. And it tastes and feels a heckuva lot like Cool Whip. So if you use Cool Whip a lot and want something less creepy and chemical, or are a vegan and want a non-dairy alternative, this is absolutely your product. [EDIT: The Fat Dietitian in the comments alerts me that it is NOT vegan, and contains a milk protein. Sorry about that.]
The not-as-good news: it tastes and feels a heckuva lot like Cool Whip. And being neither vegan nor overly concerned with my fat intake, I’d invariably rather just eat whipped cream, even the stuff out of a canister (which you can also get organic now). There is no substitute for real whipped cream. But honestly, if I were in a situation where I needed the particular qualities of Cool Whip (something virtually impossible to replicate in a DIY kind of way, which is sort of rare–instant pudding seems to be in that category as well), it’s really nice to know there’s an alternative out there.
I did three different “tests” of the product: first, of course, the “on a spoon out of the tub” test. That’s where I discovered it tastes and feels a lot like Cool Whip, both frozen and thawed. Overly sweet, not too much flavor, and kind of disintegrates in your mouth fairly quickly.
Second, I tried a recipe I’d found online, one intended for Cool Whip—or rather, an adaptation, since I didn’t have the actual ingredients: I melted half a cup of semisweet chocolate chips in a little half and half, stirred in a cup of Truwhip, and chilled till set. (I may try this again with a little instant coffee and maybe cinnamon in there as well.) The result: a chocolate-mousse kind of thing that was a lot like the inside of a Three Musketeers bar. Only better. Actually, quite good. I found it a little too sweet and insubstantial, but honestly it was pretty yummy. If I were a vegan who wanted chocolate mousse, I’d get me some vegan chocolate chips and have at it, and feel very decadent about it.
Third, I went to the Truwhip website and tried an adaptation of one of their recipes, the Chocolate Whip Freezer Pie. (Or rather, Chocolate Whip Freezer Mousse, since I wanted to make a smaller amount and didn’t have a pie crust anyway. And I didn’t bother to freeze it.) This one was, truly, absolutely delicious. It would probably be even better with whipped cream instead of Truwhip, but that would be even more decadently evil. And the cream cheese makes it non-vegan–is there a vegan cream cheese?–which destroys the main rationale for choosing the Truwhip version over real whipped cream (aside from saturated fat and calorie count, that is). But it’s worth reproducing my version of the adapted recipe:
Truwhip Chocolate Mousse
- Melt 2/3 cup chocolate chips and ¼ cup milk together in a microwave-safe medium-sized bowl in the microwave for maybe 20-30 seconds. Watch carefully so nothing bubbles or burns.
- Add a sprinkle of cinnamon and ½ tsp instant espresso powder (optional) and stir till smooth.
- Add 4 oz (half a block) softened cream cheese, cut into small pieces. Whisk till smooth and incorporated.
- Add 1 tub Truwhip whipped topping (okay, or Cool Whip if you don’t mind potentially toxic chemicals in your dessert), thawed (a little over 2 cups), and fold in till incorporated
- Transfer to pie crust, nice bowl, or other container and refrigerate or freeze.
Delicious, actually. Delicious enough that I may very well go buy more of this stuff in order to make this recipe again. And in a pinch, like “oh crud, I was supposed to bring dessert for that dinner party we leave for in 20 minutes,” it’s quick and requires only one bowl.
So, to summarize my impressions of Truwhip: Whipped cream it ain’t–lacks the rich taste and lovely mouth-feel. Cool Whip it ain’t either–lacks the unpronouncable ingredient list and potentially scary chemical components. Whether you’ll use or enjoy this product depends entirely on whether you actually eat Cool Whip–if you do, I’d suggest making the switch immediately. If not…honestly, there’s no real reason to go here except for speed or fat avoidance…In any case, I’m glad this product is out there.
(Disclaimer: Truwhip sent me a coupon for a free tub so that I could write a review. As you can see above, I do not feel obliged due to the freebeeness to write an undeservedly glowing review–these are my honest impressions of the product.)