Cream chargers are small, steel cylinders filled with nitrous oxide gas used in conjunction with a cream dispenser to make whipped cream. They can be found in many kitchens, both professional and home-based. But what are cream chargers used for? Top chefs and experts recommend them to have on hand for those who want to make whipped cream quickly and easily.

Cream chargers have become a popular and versatile tool in the food and drink industry since their introduction in the mid-20th century.

They allow the injection of pressurized gas, typically nitrous oxide (N2O), into liquids, creating a safe and efficient way to aerate them. These chargers have many applications but are mostly used in the food and drink industry.

In addition to their professional use, cream chargers are also gaining popularity in home kitchens.

As more and more individuals strive to create culinary delights in their homes, cream chargers have become a convenient tool to achieve professional results.

However, it is important to note that using only reputable brands such as ISI, Liss, and Mosa, SmartWhip and following the manufacturer’s guidelines is crucial for safe and easy operation.

But what are cream chargers used for?

This guide will provide a comprehensive overview of cream chargers, including how to use them, what they are used for, and the benefits they offer.

What Are Cream Chargers? 

Cream chargers are small steel cylinders filled with nitrous oxide gas. They are used in conjunction with a cream dispenser to make whipped cream.

When the cream charger is inserted into the dispenser and punctured, the nitrous oxide gas is released and mixed with the cream, aerating it and creating whipped cream.

Cream chargers are commonly found in commercial, and home kitchens and are recommended by top chefs and experts for making whipped cream quickly and easily.

ALSO READ: 5 Best Bloody Mary Recipes

What Are Cream Charges Used For?

To Make Whipped Cream 

The most well-known and common use of cream chargers is to create whipped cream. The canister’s nitrous oxide (N2O) is introduced into the cream and interacts with the fats and other stabilizing agents, resulting in a fluffy texture.

Although it is possible to whip cream manually without using N2O, using a cream charger is more efficient and convenient.

To Prepare Mousses and desserts 

Making mousses and other desserts can be challenging, as it requires a delicate balance to achieve the perfect consistency. However, using cream chargers can simplify this process.

The nitrous oxide in the canister helps to create stiff peaks, making it easier to achieve the desired texture. This can make whipping up a perfect mousse much more manageable.

To Create foams in Alcoholic cocktails 

Foams and espumas can enhance the presentation of many alcoholic cocktails. However, traditional production methods, such as shaking egg whites in a shaker, can be time-consuming and physically demanding.

Additionally, white egg foam can lack flavor and have an unpleasant smell. A cream charger can offer a faster and easier solution for adding zest, aroma, and flair to your cocktails, which is especially useful in a busy bar setting.

To Infuse sauces, syrups, alcohol, oil, and marinades 

Cream chargers can infuse alcohol, oil, sauces, syrups, and marinades with various flavors quickly.

The infusion process can be significantly accelerated by placing the desired ingredients in the container and injecting them with nitrous oxide. This method allows for the infusion of flavors that typically take weeks to happen in mere minutes.

To Make Carbonated drinks 

Cream chargers function similarly to soda streams by creating carbonated drinks. The main difference is that cream chargers use nitrous oxide (N2O), while soda streams use carbon dioxide (CO2).

However, one can be substituted for the other, and use a cream charger to make a variety of carbonated beverages, including juices made from real fruit.

Cream chargers offer a wide range of culinary possibilities for those interested in experimenting in the kitchen. You can find various recipes online for inspiration, and more advanced techniques using hydrocolloids can also be found.

It is worth noting that cream chargers can also be used as an oxidizing agent in hybrid-model rocket engines. Still, it’s a specialized use that requires specific education and training.

PRO TIP: Trying cream charges is not recommended for those without the proper knowledge.

Cream Dispenser Explosion

A French blogger got killed due to a cream disperser explosion.

How Do You Use a Cream Charger?

When using a cream charger, follow these steps:

  1. Get the charger out of its packaging.
  2. Put it into the cream dispenser.
  3. After hearing the hissing sound, attach the desired nozzle to the dispenser
  4. Shake the dispenser and release the cream.

How Long Does a Cream Charger Lasts? 

Cream chargers should be used within two weeks after opening, as cream left for too long can lose its texture and desired consistency.

It is important to note that while some may have concerns about the use of nitrous oxide in these tools, the amount used in the cylinder and the way it is utilized is not harmful.

However, it’s important to be mindful of the proper disposal of empty cylinders.

Cream Charger Abuse Theory

Whipped cream chargers, also referred to as “whippits,” “whippets,” or “hippie crack,” are steel cartridges filled with nitrous oxide (N2O) gas. When used in whipped cream cans, the nitrous oxide gas helps to create a frothy, whipped texture when dispensing the cream.

It is also commonly used as a recreational drug, which, when inhaled, can cause a feeling of euphoria, disorientation, dizziness, and sound distortion. These cartridges are widely available through various means such as online, head shops, or on the street.

Using Nitrous Oxide (N20) Can Lead to:

Using nitrous oxide can lead to the irreversible oxidation of cobalt in vitamin B12, rendering it inactive. This deficiency in vitamin B12 can result in neuropathy, characterized by symptoms such as numbness, tingling, or weakness.

Physical examination may reveal changes in gait or coordination, difficulty walking and falls. Most reports of neurologic issues caused by nitrous oxide abuse have been in “chronic” use cases.

However, it is still being determined how much or how long one needs to use nitrous oxide to develop these issues.


Q: What can I do with cream chargers?

ANS: You can make :

  • Whipped Cream 
  • Mousses and desserts
  • Foams in Alcoholic cocktails 
  • Carbonated drinks 

Q: What are cream chargers made for?

ANS: You can create flavored foams with cream chargers by mixing purees and liquids with a small amount of gelatin. The chargers can also whip custards, meringue, and cake batter, resulting in a fluffy texture. These foams can be served either hot or cold. To make cold foams, it’s recommended to chill the dispenser in ice water for around 15 minutes before serving.

Q: Are cream chargers legal?

ANS: The sale of cream chargers is restricted to individuals at least 18 years of age. This is because nitrous oxide (N2O) is a pressurized gas and can be dangerous if not handled properly. To ensure safety, age restrictions are in place for the purchase of cream chargers.


In conclusion, cream chargers, also known as nitrous oxide (N2O) canisters, are a convenient tool for various culinary applications in the kitchen. They can create whipped cream, mousses, desserts, alcoholic cocktails, infused alcohol, oils, sauces, syrups and marinades, carbonated drinks, and many more. They are easy to use and can speed up achieving the desired consistency, texture, and flavor.

It’s important to note that cream chargers should be used within two weeks of opening and disposed of properly. Also, some people may have concerns about the use of nitrous oxide in these tools, but the amount used in the cylinder and the way it is utilized are not harmful.

I hope now you know what are cream chargers used for.