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7 Ways with Sour Cream

- Jennifer Causey
Jennifer Causey

It's far more than just a chili or taco topper.

Sour cream, long relegated to being a mere topping option on chili night, is so often underrated in terms of its versatility in the kitchen. It adds a crave-worthy tang and creaminess to your favorite recipes as well as an added bonus of moistness to your baked goods. If you’ve got a surplus of sour cream on hand that you’re trying to finish up or are just looking for new ways to make use of this handy ingredient, here are seven effortless ways—both savory and sweet—to incorporate it into your cooking.

1. Ranch Turkey Burgers


Sour cream serves two crucial purposes in this recipe. It makes a worthy addition in the sauce, providing just the right texture along with a hint of tang. Not to mention, an additional dollop of it in the patty mixture helps keeps the burgers moist.

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- Photographer: Mark Driskill; Prop Styling: Kay E. Clarke; Food Styling: Torie Cox
Photographer: Mark Driskill; Prop Styling: Kay E. Clarke; Food Styling: Torie Cox

2. Sour Cream Ice Cream


It’s only five ingredients and requires no stovetop time, so what is stopping you? This ice cream is insanely rich and smooth because sour cream adds a delicate “something-special” factor to the concoction without overpowering the sweetness of this simple treat.

- Photographer Victor Protasio, Prop Stylist Mindi Shapiro, Food Stylist Anna Hampton
Photographer Victor Protasio, Prop Stylist Mindi Shapiro, Food Stylist Anna Hampton

3. Cheesy Jalapeño-Sour Cream Corn Muffins


Do your corn muffins dry out if you make them too far in advance? Sour cream fixes that: It makes the muffins incredibly soft and tender. Serve these with a hearty chili—they only take 10 minutes of prep time, so you have all the time in the world to focus on your main dish.

- Photo: Brian Woodcock; Styling: Heather Chadduck Hillegas
Photo: Brian Woodcock; Styling: Heather Chadduck Hillegas

4. Sour Cream Doughnuts


You’ve picked them up at your favorite coffee and doughnut shop before, but nothing can beat homemade. These baked doughnuts taste incredibly rich and have a perfect tenderness thanks to the sour cream.

- Photo: Tara Donne; Styling: Alistair Turnbull
Photo: Tara Donne; Styling: Alistair Turnbull

5. Salmon with Potatoes and Horseradish Sauce


Salmon with a lucious sour cream sauce already sound great, but the addition of dill and horseradish adds a fresh pungency that takes this beautiful main dish to the next level. This impressive meal comes together in a snap—serve with steamed veggies and potatoes to round it out.

- Photo: Romulo Yanes; Food Styling: Torie Cox; Prop Styling: Claire Spollen
Photo: Romulo Yanes; Food Styling: Torie Cox; Prop Styling: Claire Spollen

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6. Blueberry-Sour Cream Muffins


We’ve taken a classic blueberry muffin and perfected it: A crisp and crumbly oat streusel topping meets a fluffy, sour cream-enriched muffin. Make a batch of these on Sunday afternoon for a breakfast you’ll look forward to every day of the week.

- Photo: Iain Bagwell Styling: Heather Chadduck Hillegas
Photo: Iain Bagwell Styling: Heather Chadduck Hillegas

7. Shredded Chicken Tacos with Mango Salsa


While these sweet-and-sour tacos are topped with Mexican crema in the recipe, sour cream makes a worthwhile replacement if that’s what you have on hand. Don’t skimp on the salsa—it’s a fantastic balance of zesty, spicy, and sweet.

- Photo: Justin Walker; Styling: Carla Gonzalez-Hart
Photo: Justin Walker; Styling: Carla Gonzalez-Hart
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