What Is the Difference Between Evaporated Milk and Condensed Milk?

The Red Tea Detox

a bowl of food and a cup of coffee: evaporated milk and condensed milk: what is the difference and can you use them interchangeably

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evaporated milk and condensed milk: what’s the distinction and can you utilize them interchangeably

What is the distinction between evaporated milk and condensed milk? is a superb query; they each are available squat little cans and are stocked proper subsequent to one another on retailer cabinets, so it is easy to get confused.

We guess you’ve got discovered your self in the center of the baking aisle at the least as soon as, wishing you had introduced your grandmother’s recipe as a result of, dang, was it evaporated or condensed milk that the pie known as for? And we might additionally wager you’ve got questioned in case you can simply substitute one for the different.

You don’t must really feel like an newbie, we’ve all been there!

The main distinction between evaporated milk and condensed milk (also referred to as sweetened condensed milk) is the added sugar, however the canned milks have had a historical past of irritating bakers for many years.

Let’s take a better take a look at each:


Evaporated milk is shelf-stable cow’s milk with 60 p.c of its water content material eliminated whereas sweetened condensed milk has been modified in a course of just like evaporated milk, however then sugar is added. In each instances, stabilizers and preservatives are added to maintain the merchandise protected for shelf life.


Until the invention of pasteurization in the 1860s, milk was a well-liked product that proved tough to maintain in the dwelling for lengthy durations of time. Condensed milk gained reputation in the later half of the 19th century after it was found that boiling down milk to a lowered state would kill micro organism and lengthen shelf life.

Eagle Brand introduced it to market round the peak of the American Civil War, bringing a nutritionally dense (and protected) product to troopers and Americans at dwelling. Today, condensed milk merchandise are being utilized in baking and as substitutes for contemporary milk.

How They’re Made

Milk is clarified (heated to a managed temperature) for a time frame, killing micro organism and undesirable organisms that develop naturally in milk. Any extra water inside the milk can also be eliminated throughout this course of, forsaking solely the concentrated milk product.

For condensed milk, sugar is added to the evaporated milk, nearly a 50/50 ratio, and then cooled and canned.

As a end result, sweetened condensed milk is thick, wealthy, and off-white (nearly beige) in coloration whereas evaporated milk is comparable in texture to skim milk, and white like contemporary milk too.

a cup of coffee on a table: evaporated and condensed milk

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evaporated and condensed milk


How They’re Used

Sweetened condensed milk is utilized in desserts throughout the world. Dulce de leche, a Latin favourite, is made by boiling condensed milk for hours, and then the thick unfold is utilized in cookies, toast, or different baked items. In many Asian nations, sweetened condensed milk can also be used as a favourite to sweeten espresso drinks.

(Unsweetened) evaporated milk is a well-liked ingredient for recipes like fudge, pie, and bread, however it may possibly add richness to savory meals like tacky macaroni and queso too. It can be reconstituted by including water and used as common milk.

a chocolate cake sitting on top of a table: Filipino champorado chocolate rice pudding

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Filipino champorado chocolate rice pudding


Can You Use Evaporated and Condensed Milk Interchangeably?

Not actually, no. Since the textures are so totally different and one is good whereas the different is not, they cannot be swapped 1:1 in recipes. If you want condensed milk and solely have evaporated, you need to use it with further sugar in your recipe. But you would not need to strive it the different manner round.

Related Reading: A Handy A-Z List of Ingredient Substitutions

We counsel stocking your pantry with each varieties, so you will at all times be able to make any of the scrumptious dishes under!

Is There Such a Thing as Unsweetened Condensed Milk?

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Priscila Nuvamsa on Instagram: “Keto condensed milk for my pancakes 😋 #keto #ketodiet #ketolife #ketoislife #ketolifestyle #ketogenic #ketocondensedmilk #condensedmilk…”

Technically, that will be evaporated milk—however as established, you may’t use that as a direct alternative for sweetened condensed milk. If you desire a keto condensed milk or sugar-free condensed milk, you can also make one at dwelling utilizing an alternate sweetener. Try this Sugar-Free Condensed Milk recipe.

Evaporated Milk Recipes

Evaporated milk is nice for including creamy richness to savory dishes (and typically additionally desserts).

Nacho Queso Dip

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Chew Out Loud’s Instagram profile publish: “Homemade Nacho Cheese Dip. Nothing artificial. Creamy, cheesy yum! 💕 #cheese #yummy #delicious #appetizer #recipe #foodie #cleaneating…”

If you will have a can of evaporated milk mendacity round, we all know it’s simply calling for some shredded cheese to be melted into it. Concentrated milk marries with the melted cheese to create a easy and lovely cheese sauce, good for dunking tortilla chips. Get the Nacho Queso Dip recipe.

Homemade Bread

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Danelle @ Let’s Dish on Instagram: “My Favorite Homemade White Bread! 🍞 #linkinbio #bread”

Evaporated milk provides richness to baked items like contemporary, do-it-yourself white bread. The proteins in evaporated milk create extra construction in the bread throughout baking for thick and hearty slices. Get the Homemade Bread recipe.

Stovetop Mac ‘n’ Cheese

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Joanna Cismaru | Jo Cooks on Instagram: “Saturdays are for stovetop mac and cheese 🤤🧀 Why spend more than 20 minutes making dinner when you don’t have to? Click the link in my bio…”

Evaporated milk is used to make the creamiest stovetop mac ‘n’ cheese, borrowing the same thought to the queso recipe and utilizing the milk for further richness. Boiled pasta is folded into the magical cheese sauce for the final consolation meals with no baking required. Get the Stovetop Mac ‘n’ Cheese recipe.

Peruvian Chicken Chili

a bowl of food on a plate: Peruvian Chicken Chili recipe

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Peruvian Chicken Chili recipe


If this sounds odd, we perceive—evaporated milk (for creaminess), floor rooster, onions, garlic, cumin, allspice, peanuts, olives, parmesan, and eggs. Rest assured, although, these elements all add as much as a scrumptious one-pot meal in contrast to any chili you’ve got in all probability had earlier than. And you can also make it as much as three days forward; the flavors simply get higher as they meld in the fridge. Get our Peruvian Chicken Chili recipe.

Condensed Milk Recipes

Dessert is sweetened condensed milk’s time to shine.

No Churn Cake Batter Ice Cream

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beth department on Instagram: “#tbt to this no-churn bday cake ice cream cause we all know how i feel about bday cake & sprinkles 💁🏼💖🎉 recipe in the blog #archives!”

We can by no means get sufficient methods to make ice cream with no machine, and no-churn ice cream starring condensed milk is a basic. The solely different elements you want (till you get into fancy flavors and mix-ins, anyway) are whipping cream, vanilla, and typically a little bit salt. Try this No Churn Cake Batter Ice Cream recipe and make any day a celebration.

Homemade Dulce de Leche

a close up of food: easy dulce de leche recipe

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simple dulce de leche recipe


Dulce de leche (a Latin caramel sauce) is made by simmering cans of sweetened condensed milk at a gentle temperature for a number of hours. When you crack open the cans, a wealthy, darkish brown paste (just like the consistency of peanut butter) emerges from the as soon as plain product to unfold on cookies or toast. Our Easy Dulce de Leche recipe merely includes pouring the condensed milk right into a pan and slowly baking it in a water tub, however do that Slow Cooker Dulce de Leche recipe in case you do not need to activate  your oven. You can even make it on the stovetop, as demonstrated on this churro funnel cake recipe, however that is a little bit riskier.

Key Lime Pie

a plate of food with a fork and knife: Key Lime Pie recipe

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Key Lime Pie recipe


Pie is one in all the basic makes use of of condensed milk, leaning on its texture and sweetness for creamy treats. This basic Key lime pie requires simply lime juice, condensed milk, and egg yolks for the filling—good for easy summer season treats. Get our Key Lime Pie recipe. (Or do that Sweet Tart Lemon Pie recipe if you cannot discover Key limes. But when fall rolls round once more, hold condensed milk available for pumpkin pie too!)

Easy Mocha Fudge

Easy Mocha Fudge recipe

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Easy Mocha Fudge recipe


An iconic American dessert, fudge is a staple of boardwalks, vacation gifting, and grandma’s home (in case you’re fortunate!). Traditional fudge requires a sweet thermometer and working with tough melted sugar, however simple fudge recipes hinge on sweetened condensed milk for a foolproof deal with you can also make in any taste. Get our Easy Mocha Fudge recipe or our Peanut Butter Chocolate Fudge recipe for only a couple examples.

Banana Splits with Easy Fudge Sauce

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wholesome banana cut up recipe with frozen yogurt


Sweetened condensed milk can also be a straightforward shortcut to thick, wealthy scorching fudge sauce; simply soften it with chocolate chips and drizzle on the ice cream sundae of your selecting. Get our Banana Splits with Easy Fudge Sauce recipe.

Rice Krispies Treats

a plate of food: The Best Rice Krispies Treats recipe with Condensed Milk

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The Best Rice Krispies Treats recipe with Condensed Milk

Jessie Sheehan

Dessert maven Jessie Sheehan makes use of sweetened condensed milk for the gooiest, chewiest rice cereal treats round (she additionally folds in further mini marshmallows as a result of you may’t have too many). Get the Rice Krispies Treats recipe with Condensed Milk.

See all of our condensed milk recipes for much more candy concepts.

Recipes That Use Both

Just another excuse to maintain each sorts of canned milk available always!

Easy Lime Icebox Cake

This simple no-bake dessert depends on a creamy combo of evaporated and condensed milk for its luscious texture. The contemporary lime juice brightens it up, and the non-compulsory drizzle of olive oil on prime is a superb transfer. Get our Easy Lime Icebox Cake recipe.

Tres Leches Cake

a close up of a plate of food with a fork: tres leches cake recipe

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tres leches cake recipe


In this basic cake, coconut milk completes the trio of leches. Dark rum and coconut flakes make it style even higher. Get our Tres Leches Cake recipe.

Check out our “What’s the Difference?” web page for much more solutions to widespread kitchen questions.

The authentic model of this story was by Rachel Johnson in 2017; it has been up to date with further photos, hyperlinks, and textual content.

Video: How To Make Flourless Chocolate Cake | David Burtka (Rachael Ray Show)