top of page

How To Make Buttermilk Substitute (5 options)

Updated: Feb 26, 2023


Need buttermilk but forgot to buy it? Or maybe you just need a little and don’t want to purchase a whole container? Learn how to make Buttermilk Substitute with ingredients you probably have in your kitchen right now. Five options, ready in minutes! Buttermilk! It is an essential ingredient in many baked goods, but if you’re anything like me, it is not an ingredient that you have on hand at all times. The good news is, you can make a Buttermilk Substitute at home with ingredients you probably already have in your kitchen. I’m sharing FIVE DIFFERENT OPTIONS for How to Make Buttermilk Substitute. What is buttermilk? Store bought buttermilk is a slightly sour milk that comes from a combination of milk and lactic acid. It is thicker than plain milk, with a subtle tang. In recipes that call for buttermilk, it is not recommended to replace buttermilk with plain milk, because the absence of acid will not produce the same end result. But using an acidic ingredient combined with plain milk will create a substitute with properties closer to that of buttermilk. Note: Buttermilk is not plain milk that is going bad. If you have regular milk that smells sour, or is thick and curdled, do not use it. Why is buttermilk used in baking? The extra acid in buttermilk tenderizes gluten, helping to create baked goods that are light and fluffy. Buttermilk also helps with leavening. When combined with baking soda, the acid in buttermilk helps to create a high rise. Buttermilk can also impart a subtle tangy flavor that can take a recipe from good to great. How to make buttermilk substitute: Ihave five different ways you can create a Buttermilk Substitute. These work in a pinch if you need buttermilk for a recipe and don’t have any on hand, or if you have a recipe that calls for a small amount of buttermilk and you don’t want to buy a whole container. Milk and Lemon Juice: Measure out a scant cup of whole or 2% milk and add 1 tablespoon of lemon juice. Stir, then allow it to sit at room temperature for 10 minutes. The acid from the lemon juice will curdle the milk slightly.

Milk and White Vinegar: Measure out a scant cup of whole or 2% milk and add 1 tablespoon of white vinegar. Stir, then allow it to sit at room temperature for 10 minutes. The acid from the vinegar will curdle the milk slightly.

Milk and Plain Yogurt: Whisk milk into plain yogurt until you get the consistency of buttermilk (thickened milk). The measurements are around ¾ cup yogurt plus ¼ cup milk, but will vary slightly based on how thick your yogurt is.


Milk and Sour Cream: Whisk milk into sour cream until you get the consistency of buttermilk (thickened milk). The measurements are around ¾ cup sour cream plus ¼ cup milk, but will vary slightly based on how thick your sour cream is. Milk and Kefir: Kefir is a fermented milk drink, similar to a drinkable yogurt. Kefir is already fairly similar in consistency to buttermilk, but I thin it out just a bit by whisking in a splash of milk.




Recipes using buttermilk substitute If a recipe relies heavily on buttermilk for flavor, texture, and rise (like these Buttermilk Biscuits), it is probably best to buy actual buttermilk, but I have used buttermilk substitutes many times in various recipe with success. The end result might be a bit different than if using actual buttermilk, but this is as close as you’re going to get as far as substitutions go. Tip: The less buttermilk there is in a recipe, the easier it is to substitute. If a recipe calls for a small amount of buttermilk, it is likely that you won’t notice any difference in making this substitution. If the buttermilk is a key player in a recipe, I usually try to use the real deal. How To Make Buttermilk Substitute Make buttermilk in minutes with ingredients you already have. Five different options! Course Dessert Cuisine American Prep Time 5 minutes Total Time 5 minutes Servings 1 cup (approx) Calories 13kcal Author Allison - Celebrating Sweets Ingredients Option 1:

  • 1 scant cup whole or 2% milk

  • 1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice

Option 2:

  • 1 scant cup whole or 2% milk

  • 1 tablespoon white vinegar

Option 3:

  • approx 3/4 cup plain yogurt

  • approx 1/4 cup whole or 2% milk

Option 4:

  • approx 3/4 cup sour cream

  • approx 1/4 cup whole or 2% milk

Option 5:

  • 1 scant cup plain kefir

  • 1 tablespoon whole or 2% milk more or less, to thin

Instructions Option 1 or 2:

  • Stir lemon juice or vinegar into milk and set at room temperature for 10 minutes. Milk will begin to curdle slightly.

Option 3 or 4:

  • Whisk milk into yogurt or sour cream until you get the consistency of buttermilk (thick milk). Adjust quantity of milk based on how thick your yogurt or sour cream are. Use immediately.

Option 5:

  • Whisk milk into kefir to thin it out to the consistency of buttermilk. This typically only takes about 1 tablespoon of milk per cup of kefir. Adjust depending on the consistency of kefir. Use immediately.

Notes If a recipe relies heavily on buttermilk for flavor, texture, and rise, it is probably best to buy actual buttermilk. That being said, these buttermilk substitutes can be used in many recipes with success. Nutrition Calories: 13kcal | Carbohydrates: 1g | Cholesterol: 1mg | Sodium: 7mg | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin C: 5.8mg | Calcium: 17mg

5 views0 comments

Recent Posts

See All
bottom of page