Chill your coconut cream or coconut milk in the refrigerator overnight (see notes for top brands!), being sure not to shake or tip the can to encourage separation of the cream and liquid. See notes for more insight / troubleshooting.
The next day, chill a large mixing bowl 10 minutes before whipping.
Remove the coconut cream or milk from the fridge without tipping or shaking and remove the lid. Scrape out the top, thickened cream and leave the liquid behind (reserve for use in smoothies).
Note: if your coconut milk didn't harden, you probably just got a dud can without the right fat content. In that case, you can try to salvage it with a bit of tapioca flour - 1 to 4 Tbsp (amount as original recipe is written // adjust if altering batch size)- during the whipping process. That has worked for me several times.
Place hardened cream in your chilled mixing bowl. Beat for 30 seconds with a mixer until creamy. Then add vanilla (optional) and powdered sugar (or stevia) and mix until creamy and smooth - about 1 minute. Avoid overwhipping because it can cause separation. Taste and adjust sweetness as needed.
Use immediately or refrigerate - it will harden and set in the fridge the longer it's chilled. Will keep for up to 1 - 2 weeks!
*Using coconut cream yields more coconut whipped cream than using full fat coconut milk, because it contains more cream and less liquid. *Finding a good brand with consistent firmness is key! My go to's are: Savoy Coconut Cream, Aroy-D Coconut Milk, 365 Whole FoodsFull Fat Coconut Milk, and Nature's Charm Coconut Whipping Cream (in a can). Coconut milks that didn't work as well for me are: Trader Joe's Coconut Cream and Coconut Milk, Field Day, Thai Kitchen, and Native Forest. *This is not my original recipe or concept, rather one I've adapted from other recipe developers. *Nutrition information is a rough estimate calculated with the lesser amount of powdered sugar. *Recipe makes ~1 1/2 cups coconut whipped cream.