Easy Buttermilk substitute for cooking and baking! Learn How to Make Buttermilk with just two ingredients! Dairy-free and vegan, too!

How to Make Buttermilk - Making buttermilk substitute is easy and cost effective. With just a few simple ingredients, learn to make buttermilk substitute to use in so many recipes. // addapinch.com

Buttermilk Substitute

Buttermilk is one ingredient that I love to have on hand. I use it in so many recipes, from pancakes to biscuits to buttermilk pie! I never like being without it. But, sometimes I think I have plenty only to realize that I don’t. This is when it is great to know how to make your own! It is so easy to do and only takes two ingredients that work perfectly in baking and cooking.

What Can I Use If I Don’t Have Buttermilk?

There are a few of the popular buttermilk substitutions. Pick the best option that works for you based on what you have available.

1 cup buttermilk = 1 cup plain yogurt

1 cup buttermilk = 3/4 cup sour cream + 1/4 cup water or milk

1 cup buttermilk = 1 cup milk + 1 tablespoon lemon juice

1 cup buttermilk = 1 cup milk + 1 tablespoon distilled white vinegar

How to Make Buttermilk Substitute

The simplest way to make your own buttermilk substitute is to add lemon juice or distilled white vinegar to a cup of milk or dairy-free milk (see below). Allow the milk to sit for about 10 minutes to thicken.

How to Make Dairy-Free and Vegan

Enjoy this dairy-free version to use in so many of your recipes. This is perfect for those who have dairy allergies or who follow a vegan diet and lifestyle.

To make a dairy-free and/ or, you simply use your favorite non-dairy milk such as soy, coconut, almond, rice or oat milk in place of the milk called for in the recipe! It’s that easy!

1 cup buttermilk = 1 cup non-dairy milk (coconut, soy, rice, oat) + 1 tablespoon lemon juice

1 cup buttermilk = 1 cup non-dairy milk (coconut, soy, rice, oat) = 1 tablespoon vinegar

Can You Freeze Buttermilk?

Yes! Simply spoon any that has not been used by the tablespoon into an ice cube tray. Place the tray into the freezer until frozen well, about an hour. Remove from the freezer and dispense the frozen cubes into a freezer-safe container. Freeze for up to 3 months.

Glass measuring cup with milk and glass bowl with vinegar to make buttermilk substitute // addapinch.com

What is Buttermilk?

Traditionally, it was the leftover liquid from churning cream to make butter. This is now referred to as traditional buttermilk.

What you buy in the grocery stores is now cultured, which is produced by adding cultures to milk during the fermentation process to simulate the lactic acid that would naturally occur in the traditional kind.

My homemade substitute works the same in cooking and baking. It’s such a time saver to be able to make your own.

Uses

Adds Flavor

It adds a tangy flavor to many dishes such as salad dressings and dips.

Tenderizes

It’s great for soaking meats and vegetables to tenderize them before cooking, generally frying.

Leavens Baked Goods

It reacts with other chemical leaveners in recipes to produce gas bubbles which then helps cakes, cookies, and other baked goods to rise.

Here’s how to make my homemade substitute. I hope you find this useful!

How to Make Buttermilk - Making buttermilk substitute is easy and cost effective. With just a few simple ingredients, learn to make buttermilk substitute to use in so many recipes. // addapinch.com

How to Make Buttermilk

Easy Buttermilk substitutions for cooking and baking! Learn How to Make Buttermilk with just two ingredients! Dairy-free and vegan, too!
4.75 from 16 votes

Review Recipe

Print Recipe

Prep Time10 mins
Total Time10 mins
Servings: 1 cup
Course Drinks, how to
Cuisine American
Author: Robyn Stone | Add a Pinch

Ingredients

  • 1 cup whole milk
  • 1 tablespoon distilled white vinegar OR lemon juice

Instructions

  • Pour milk into a glass measuring cup. Add distilled white vinegar OR lemon juice and allow to sit for about 10 minutes before use. The milk will thicken. Use as you would in a recipe that calls for buttermilk.

Video

Notes

Recipe may be increased or decreased proportionately.

Dairy-Free Buttermilk:

For dairy-free buttermilk, substitute your preferred non-dairy milk (coconut, soy, almond, rice, oat, etc) in place of the whole milk called for in the recipe. 
Have you made this recipe?Tag @addapinch on Instagram or hashtag it #addapinch

Enjoy!
Robyn xo

Robyn Stone

..where I share sweet, savory and southern recipes, as well as home and garden tips and tidbits of travel.

More about me

55 Comments Leave a comment or review

  1. You really should warn everyone that this isn’t good for making Irish Soda bread. I followed your recipe and made 7 large loaves. They were heavy and flat tasting. Had to st art again with real buttermilk and made 20 more loves in my son’s restaurant for St Patrick’s Day. Sometimes there is no substitute!

    1. Thank you for letting me know it isnt good for Irish soda bread .I am making it for first time and dont know the first thing about it.I just recently tasted it for first time and thought I would try to make some.Thanks again.

    2. Obviously she hasn’t tried this substitution with every single recipe that’s out there so it’s not her fault. Maybe don’t make 7 loaves of bread from a recipe/variation you’ve never tried before. Just saying. 

  2. Hi !
    I’m wondering if there’s any substitution without cow milk (never heard this expression in English, but in French, we say “lait de vache” which translates to “cow milk”). Is there any buttermilk substitution I could make with almond milk, soy milk, etc., I thought maybe coconut milk because it’s richer? 

    Thanks! And, by the way, I love your website 🙂 

    1. Hi Audree,
      I’ve not tried buttermilk substitute made from either of those other milks, so I can’t say how they would taste. Thanks so much for your comment – so glad to hear you enjoy the site. Nice to have you here! xo

  3. I’ve always used the vinegar method. Is fresh lemon juice just as effective? Is there a difference for example using lemon is better for cakes? Thanks!

  4. Can i use almond breeze (unsweetened) instead? With the lemon juice? I’m lactose intolerant, but still want the great benefits.

    1. I’ve never tried to make buttermilk with almond milk, Mae, so I can’t say how it turns out. I do know that this Homemade Buttermilk Substitute recipe works with Lactaid milk (lactose free milk). I hope this helps! Thanks Mae!

    1. You can use this buttermilk substitute anywhere you would use buttermilk. Enjoy Charlene! Thanks!

  5. Why not use the very convenient powdered buttermilk available in the bake aisle. Long shelf life and easy to use. Great pancake recipe on label! I have used it for years in all recipes.

    1. Buttermilk is actually expensive in my country and I have never heard of powdered buttermilk before. This recipe is great for us who can’t afford or dont have access to the real thing.

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