14 Unthinkable Whole Milk Substitutes for Elegant Baking

Nothing is more aggravating than going down the list of ingredients for a dinner you’re about to make and realizing you’re missing one. With certain materials, it may be necessary to leave the endeavor totally and try again another day. However, if you are running low on whole milk or are completely out, you do not have to give up.

Fortunately, whether your container is empty or you choose a dairy-free alternative, there are several milk replacements available for baking recipes. The greatest thing is that you probably already have some on hand.

  1. Half-and-Half
  2. Light Cream
  3. Powdered Milk
  4. Sweetened Condensed Milk
  5. Yogurt
  6. Sour Cream
  7. Evaporated Milk
  8. Heavy Cream
  9. Skim Milk

If you’re really desperate and haven’t found any viable replacements from the list above, keep reading for a thorough list of whole milk substitutions for baking.

But first, we’d want to understand why whole milk is so popular in baking.

What Is Whole Milk?

Whole milk is cow’s milk that has not been tampered with nutritionally. In terms of nutrition, the milk is removed from the cow in its natural condition before being treated for food quality and safety.


Whole milk is a dairy product that contains roughly 3.5% fat. This milk is widely used in baked goods, pancakes, muffins, and bread recipes.

Because of food safety techniques such as pasteurization, this sort of milk is not categorized as raw milk and is totally safe to ingest within the milk manufacturer’s suggested shelf life.

Whole milk’s fat content and other nutritional indicators are not altered, which means nothing is eliminated or the milk is fortified with extra nutrients.

14 Best Substitute For Whole Milk

Milk is not created equal. Each kind has a different quantity of fat, which affects the color, texture, and taste of your food. As a consequence, it’s critical to examine the relative fat content of the milk replacement you’re using.

Whole milk is nearly always a required component of your favorite recipes, whether you bake bread or cakes.

It’s great for boosting the taste and texture of a variety of baked goods. If you run out of whole milk, there are many of milk substitutes to suit your baking needs.



If you have half-and-half on hand, it works great as a cup-for-cup substitute. Because half-and-half is made up of 50% heavy cream and 50% whole milk, it achieves comparable outcomes to milk while adding a lovely richness to baked goods.

With a little water, half and half may be used in place of full milk. Combine 34 cups half & half and 14 cup water for each cup of whole milk replaced.

Light Cream

Light cream may also be substituted for full milk. This alternative is very creamy and adds a feeling of richness to recipes that call for whole milk.

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Because of the greater dairy fat content, light cream has a greatly enhanced richness.

Powdered Milk


Powdered milk, also known as dry milk, is the dry component of milk that remains after all of the liquid has been removed. One of the major advantages of powdered milk is its lengthy shelf life.

This milk may be used to add creaminess to savory stews and sauces. It may also be used to boost the protein level of milkshakes and smoothies. You might even mix it with homemade hot cocoa powder to give as a Christmas gift to friends.

Best of all, using powdered milk into baking is simple. Follow the package instructions to reconstitute and make the quantity of milk needed for your recipe.

Also, bear in mind that powdered milk comes in a variety of milkfat concentrations. As a result, constantly check the fat level of the milk powder you use.

When using powdered milk in a recipe, the milk may be reconstituted and utilized just like full milk. In addition, you may combine the milk powder with the other dry ingredients and use water for the milk.

Sweetened Condensed Milk


If you’re making anything sweet, you may use sweetened condensed milk for regular milk.

Remember that since it is already heavily sweetened, you will almost certainly need to modify the sugar quantity of your recipe proportionally.



Yogurt is a great milk alternative because it provides moisture to baked goods and enhances their texture. Substitute an equivalent amount of yogurt, but bear in mind the kind of yogurt you’re using.

Because Greek yogurt is substantially thicker and has more fat, plain yogurt is your best bet.

In general, avoid flavored yogurts. You want to draw attention to your other components rather than your wholemilk alternative.

Sour Cream


Sour cream, like yogurt, is a whole milk substitute with the additional benefit of tenderizing baked goods such as muffins, bread, and cake.

When deciding whether to use Buttermilk, Sour Cream, or Milk for baking, there is some science to consider.

However, keep in mind that sour cream will add a small tanginess to anything you’re making.

Evaporated Milk


The Cooking Milk is another name for evaporated milk. It is actual milk that has been gently heated to remove about half of the water, resulting in concentrated milk that is richer and creamier than whole milk and serves as an excellent alternative.

The benefit of utilizing evaporated milk is its ease of storage in your cupboard for when you need it.

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Because most of the moisture is removed during the canning process, you must put liquid back into evaporated milk to make it a suitable alternative for ordinary milk.

For each cup of milk in your recipe, use a half-cup of this sort of milk blended with a half-cup of water.

Heavy Cream

Heavy cream is a good alternative for full milk in recipes. Because of the 36% higher fat level, it is creamier and thicker than light milk.

In meals that call for extra indulgence, such as chocolate desserts, replace milk with heavy cream. If you want to lighten up other recipes, mix heavy cream with water.

While heavy cream may be used in most recipes that call for whole milk, it shines in more opulent dishes.

Skim Milk

Skim milk, often known as nonfat milk, has the same nutritional value as 1% milk but has less fat. Recipes without fat lack smoothness. This option also has a thinner consistency, which may need to be adjusted before to dish inclusion.

If you’re looking for a similar dairy taste, skim milk will serve. Otherwise, half-and-half will be necessary to obtain the creaminess and richness of whole milk.

Coconut Milk


For people who cannot drink dairy owing to dietary limitations, coconut milk is a popular non-dairy option. This milk is much thinner than whole milk and has a little coconut taste.

This milk replacement is prepared from grated internal coconut flesh. There are several options, including canned and packaged coconut milk. Choose canned for a creamier, thicker consistency similar to whole milk.

Soy Milk


Because of the inherited heritage of soy milk in East Asian nations and the abundance of soybean production in the United States, soy milk was among the first commercially accessible non-dairy milk in the United States. It is still a good baking choice today.

It has a more neutral taste than rice milk, making it perfect for baking. It is also suitable for thick, sweet, and savory sauces.

Soy milk has about as much protein as dairy milk, has less fat and no cholesterol, and is a good source of calcium since most soy milk is fortified. Vegans should seek for vitamin B12 fortified products.

Oat Milk


Oat milk is a great nondairy alternative to whole milk. It has a more delicate flavor than coconut milk, making it a better flavor complement. In addition, oat milk has a creamy texture that is comparable to whole milk.

This whole milk replacement is widely accessible due to its growing popularity. It is more expensive than the vast majority of other whole milk alternatives. You can prepare your own version quickly by combining water and oats in a blender and filtering.

Almond Milk


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In baking recipes, almond milk may be substituted for ordinary milk, although the texture will be different.

Almond milk is a nondairy milk alternative, therefore its fat level is minimal and much less rich. At the same time, the flavor might gradually modify the flavor of whatever you’re preparing.


In a pinch, you may substitute water for milk, especially if the meal only requires a tiny amount.

Add a spoonful of butter per cup of water to compensate for the loss of taste and richness.

Whole Milk Substitute Related FAQs

What is the best non-dairy milk alternative?

Lactose-intolerant and lactose-loving bakers alike have embraced alternative milks such as almond, soy, oat, or coconut milk. Keep in mind that each will provide a particular taste to your baking.

The subtle nutty taste of almond milk compliments the majority of baked items. The coconut taste of coconut milk would go nicely with a luscious chocolate dessert. However, some people may find the flavor overbearing, so stick to unflavored and plain sugar-free options.

Coconut milk, almond milk, soy milk, and most nut milks may be substituted cup for cup. Oat milk has more starch than ordinary milk, which may affect the texture of croissants and other baked goods.

Nondairy choices differ in terms of fat, protein, and carbohydrate levels, so finding the perfect mix may involve some trial and error.

What is the effect of using a whole milk substitute?

Milk contributes significantly to the ultimate result of baked products. First, milk adds moisture to a recipe by combining nicely with dry components. It also has an impact on the final texture of the baked item.

The fat content of milk improves the taste of your baked products.

You may still prepare that delicious dish by substituting milk, baking a cake or muffins, creating a loaf of banana bread, or cooking pancakes. Some replacements may result in a richer end product owing to a greater fat content, or a cake or muffin with more moisture than usual.

You’ll be able to create something tasty if you use these replacements appropriately.

What can you best substitute for whole milk in baking?

In baking, you may substitute any of the following choices for whole milk. For a richer, denser baked good, use heavy cream; for a lighter dish, use sour cream or 1% cream.

Nondairy milk alternatives may also be used in a 1:1 ratio to make bread.

Can skim milk be added to make whole milk?

Combine the cream and skim milk to form full milk. The fat content is what differentiates skim milk from full milk. Skim milk’s fat content may be increased by adding cream.

Using one and a half teaspoons of skim milk for every cup of full milk yields a texture similar to whole milk.


What can I use instead of whole milk in baking?

Milk hydrates the dry ingredients and provides flavor in most recipes, and there are lots of replacements that may accomplish the same without harming the final product.
It’s half and half.
The cream is thick.
Nondairy milks such as soy and almond.
The sour cream.
Milk that has been evaporated.
Coconut milk in a can.

What to use if a recipe calls for whole milk?

5⁄8 cup skim milk + 3⁄8 cup half-and-half.
2⁄3 cup 1% milk + 1⁄3 cup half-and-half.
3⁄4 cup 2% milk + 1⁄4 cup half-and-half.
7⁄8 cup skim milk + 1⁄8 cup heavy cream.

Can I use evaporated milk instead of whole milk in baking?

Evaporated milk is created by gently boiling milk to evaporate about half of its water, resulting in a light golden color and somewhat sweet taste. Nestlé claims that Carnation evaporated milk may be replaced with ordinary whole milk in a 1:1 ratio.

What milk alternative is closest to whole milk?

If you’re searching for something that tastes like whole milk, consider oat milk or soy milk. Oat milk is thick and creamy, with a mild taste that is similar to that of cow milk. Soy milk comes in second.

What is the purpose of whole milk in baking?

Milk has more protein and sugar (lactose) than water, which gives baked foods more sweetness and a darker color. Whole milk provides fat, which results in a richer flavor and softer crumb.

Can I use 1% instead of whole milk for baking?

If a baking recipe asks for whole milk, you may be able to use skim, 1%, or 2% fat milk. When making pudding, custard, or sauce, use caution when replacing skim milk. The dairy fat adds texture and taste to these dishes.

Can I add butter to 2% milk to make whole milk?

Simply adding butter to skim milk transforms it into full milk. 1 tablespoon (14 grams) of butter equals 1 cup (240 mL) skim milk. So, to produce 1 cup (240 mL) of whole milk, you would need to add 1 tablespoon (14 grams) of butter.

What should you substitute when the recipe calls for 1 cup of whole milk but you only have a carton of non fat?

Oat milk and coconut milk, both available in cartons at your local grocery store, may also be used as dairy-free substitutes for milk. Replace milk with a cup for cup substitution. Oat milk or coconut milk have a nice, rich texture and mouthfeel that will complement your baked items.

What is a substitute for 1 2 cup whole milk in baking?

a mixture of half and half

With the addition of a little water, half and half may simply be substituted for whole milk. For every cup of whole milk substituted, combine 34 cup half & half and 14 cup water.

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