Creamy Perfection: unraveling Half-and-Half Coffee Creamer

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Ah, coffee. Everyone’s number one go-to energy booster. Well, aside from energy drinks. But with great coffee, comes an even greater taste. A taste that a great number of people don’t necessarily agree with.

When this happens, they usually turn to milk, creamers, or… half-and-half?

What’s that?

Half-and-half is a mixture of milk and cream. As the name suggests, it uses half of each. Putting half-and-half in coffee adds a certain richness to the flavor of your coffee that sits perfectly between sweet and creamy. Aside from the taste, half-and-half also contains beneficial vitamins and minerals.

Compared to other types of creamers that are heavily processed, half-and-half contains fewer calories and more health benefits. It also has less sugar compared to whole milk. However, it still contains a substantial amount of calories (320) and cholesterol that are counter-productive if you’re trying to lose weight.

It was invented by William Boutwell between the 1950s to 1960s. Since then, many brands have started making their own half-and-half creamer.

Half-and-half is mostly used to add flavor to coffees. However, the product can also be used for recipes like sauces and soups.

For a deeper dive on half-and-half, keep reading.

Benefits of Using Half-and-Half

Half-and-half is used to flavor one’s coffee, but adding flavor isn’t the only benefit the product gives.

Here are the benefits of Half-and-half:

  • The sugar content in half-and-half creamer is comparitively lower than most coffee creamers. It’s sugar is often around 1g, meanwhile the sugar in coffee creamers usully reach up to 5g.
  • Half-and-half’s fat content is much lower than that of heavy cream, plus fat free half-and-half creamers are also available on the market.
  • Half-and-half creamers also contain a number of vital nutrients. For example, it has a high content of Vitamin A, which can help with your brain growth and the nervous system.

Does Half-and-Half Contain Calories?

Half-and-half contains calories. In fact, a serving size of one cup is about 315 calories.

It’s a high number, but if you compare it to the calorie count of a normal coffee creamer per cup, which is around 468 calories, it’s definitely the better one of the two. . Especially if you’re someone who is extremely conscious about the number of calories you put in your body.

However, if you still think it’s a bit too high, then it’s probably important to note that it’s well below the recommended daily calorie intake, which is 2,000 calories for women and 2,500 for men. And 315 calories a cup, when you divide that into tablespoons, is only around 20 calories. Not too high now, is it?   

What is Healthier: Heavy Cream or Half-and-Half?

Half-and-Half is definitely the healthier option between the two, as it contains almost all of the vitamins as heavy cream but has a much lower calorie count and fat content.

Heavy cream is the high-fat layer that is formed on top of milk, and it contains large amounts of butterfat. Half-and-half, on the other hand, is just half milk and half heavy cream and is often used as a substitute for milk.

To get a clearer picture of its differences, here’s a table comparing the two.

Calories (Per tbs.) Fat (Per tbs.) Carbs (Per tbs.)Fiber (Per tbs.)Protein (Per tbs.)
Heavy Cream 52 calories5.6g0.4g0g0.3g
Half-and-Half19 calories1.7g0.6g0g0.4g

As the table shows, when it comes to calories and fat, half-and-half has the upper hand. However, protein-wise, there’s not much difference. Although half-and-half is still above heavy cream, it’s not really that much.

If you’re looking to half-and-half for your proteins, you might wanna reconsider. But, if you’re just looking to it for the flavor and creaminess it offers, then why not?

Is Half-and-Half Okay For Keto?

half-and-half poured into coffee

Half-and-half has a carbohydrate count of 0.6g per tablespoon, so yes. Half-and-half should be okay for a keto diet.

While there are no set standards for what a keto diet should contain, it is generally perceived that someone who is doing keto should consume at least 40g of carbs and 165g of fat.

The carb and fat content of Half-and-half are well below those numbers, and unless you’re adding an insane amount half-and-half to your coffee, it really shouldn’t affect your keto diet that much.  

Is Half and Half Bad For You?

Half and Half is not bad for you. It contains fewer fats, additives, and sugar than regular creamers. In terms of taste, it can still sweeten your coffee effectively. However, even though it’s a healthier option, you should still moderate your consumption of it.

With that said, consuming an entire gallon of half-and-half isn’t advisable. Too much of anything is bad, and that goes the same for this product. It is also important to note that adding half-and-half to your coffee doesn’t mean it’ll lessen the caffeine in the drink.

The daily caffeine intake set by FDA is 400mg, and if you drink cups after cups of coffee, you’ll still reach that limit regardless of whatever you put in your coffee.

Drinking too much coffee has its own side effects and if you’re interested in reading about them, you can read this article I wrote to know more.

Is Half-and-Half Okay for Diabetics?

Half-and-half is okay for diabetics as long as they stay within their recommended daily carbs and calorie intake.   

The CDC suggests that if you’re a person with diabetes, half of your calories should come from carbs. As an example, if your normal calorie intake is 1,800 calories, 900 of that should come from your carbs.

Half-and-half has 19 calories per tablespoon, which shouldn’t affect diabetics too much if they’re only consuming it in small amounts. With all that said, if you’re diabetic, you should still probably consult your doctor just to be sure.

While all the facts presented lead to the conclusion that it’s safe to have half-and-half as a diabetic, it’s still much safer to ask your doctor about it before consuming it. Especially if you’re not really confident about it. Better to be safe than sorry.

How to Make Half-and-Half at Home?

Another great thing about half-and-half is that it’s simple enough to make on your own!

The only ingredients you need are;

  • 1/2 cup Whole Milk
  • 1/2 cup Light Cream


Take both the creams and mix them together with a whisk or a hand blender until you get an even, thin, rich texture. It’s that simple! Ingredients can differ as per choice.

Here’s a video by WikiHow you can follow along as you make your own half-and-half:

This video shows how to make half and half using several different methods and ingredients!

Half-and-Half Coffee Creamer Brands

If you don’t want to make it on your own and you’d prefer it to be packed and ready, here are popular brands that sell half-and-half coffee creamers.

There are also other brands out there but these are the ones I think are great.

Keep in mind that the nutrition content may vary for different brands so it’s probably best for you to read it first before making any purchases.

Overview / Summary

coffee and beans

Half-and-half is made up of half milk and half cream. It is often used by people to add flavor to their coffee, but it can also be added to other recipes like sauces and soups.

It is a healthier alternative to heavy cream, but it still contains calories and fat. It is Keto-friendly and, in small amounts, can be consumed by diabetics. It is easy to make in the comforts of your own home but can be bought in stores as well.

If this sounds like something that might suit you, then it wouldn’t hurt for you to give it a shot. That said, if you do find that it’s not to your taste, you can stick to heavy cream or milk.

Personally, I find it great to add to my coffee as it adds a certain richness that I just can’t get with my normal coffee creamer. I guess it all depends on personal taste and preference.