Learn everything you need to know about evaporated milk and how to use it in your kitchen. Use this pantry staple to add flexibility to your kitchen repertoire.
If you have evaporated milk in your pantry and you are not sure what to do with it, you are in the right place. This pantry staple can come in very handy, especially if you run out of fresh milk.
What is evaporated milk?
Evaporated milk is exactly what the name suggests. It is milk that has been heated until 60% of the water has evaporated. It is then homogenized, heated, and sterilized as part of the canning process.
Evaporated milk is rich and creamy making it ideal to cook with. It is often used much like half-and-half... in baked goods, desserts, sauces, or your morning coffee.
Is evaporated milk healthy?
Evaporated milk contains a higher concentration of protein, calcium, and other nutrients as compared to fresh milk. Likewise, it also contains a higher concentration of fat and sugar. Used in moderation, evaporated milk can be part of a balanced diet.
Evaporated milk is much lower in fat and calories than heavy cream which makes it a healthier substitute for cream.
Evaporated milk vs. sweetened condensed milk
Evaporated milk should not be confused with sweetened condensed milk. The main difference is that evaporated milk is unsweetened and sweetened condensed milk is sweetened.
Evaporated milk can be used in both sweet and savory dishes, while sweetened condensed milk is used for sweet recipes.
How long does evaporated milk last?
A can of evaporated milk has a shelf life of 6-12 months when stored in a cool place. It can generally be used for up to 3-6 months after the expiration date printed on the can, however, the quality may be compromised.
Once opened, evaporated milk should be refrigerated and used within 3-4 days.
Can evaporated milk be frozen?
Opened, unused evaporated can be frozen, however, upon thawing, it can separate. This separation may be fine if you are using thawed milk in baked goods, for instance. It's important to note that some manufacturers, such as Carnation, do not recommend freezing its product.
Uses for evaporated milk
- When in a pinch, make milk. Just add water to the evaporated milk and stir until incorporated.
- Use evaporated milk in recipes as a substitute for cream or half-and-half. It works well as a substitute for heavy cream when the recipe uses cream in liquid form. In other words, evaporated milk does not whip well, so it can't be used as a whipped cream replacement.
- Evaporated milk adds moisture to baked goods without adding fat.
- It adds richness to soups or chowders.
- Give sauces a creamy and rich consistency with evaporated milk.
- Use evaporated milk to add richness and creaminess to drinks like coffee (hot or iced), lattes, or smoothies.
Savory recipes using evaporated milk
- Alfredo sauce with evaporated milk has the same richness we love in Alfredo pasta dishes without all the fat and calories.
- Baked Macaroni and Cheese with Ritz Cracker Topping - Evaporated milk takes the place of traditional white sauce of butter, flour, and milk. Using evaporated milk prevents the sauce from getting a grainy texture from the melted cheese.
- Spinach Alfredo Tortellini - This comforting dish comes together in just 15 minutes with alfredo sauce made with evaporated milk, fresh tortellini, and spinach.
Sweet recipes using evaporated milk
- Easy Chocolate Fudge - This recipe from Southern Plate uses evaporated milk and marshmallow cream to create a decadent treat.
- Coffee with Evaporated Milk - Never worry about running out of cream or half-and-half for your cup of joe with this easy recipe from Fluent in Coffee.
- Evaporated Milk Desserts - 22 ideas from AllRecipes for incorporating evaporated milk into delicious desserts.
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