Sweetened Condensed Milk Recipe

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  • Does your recipe call for sweetened condensed milk? Are you confused about what this ingredient, if it can be substituted and of course, what is the difference between sweetened condensed milk and evaporated milk? We’ve got the answers! 

    sweetened condensed milk in a glass jar

    What is sweetened condensed milk?

    So really… what is sweetened condensed milk?

    It really isn’t that mysterious. It is sweetened cow’s milk that has been reduced (condensed) so that most of the water has been removed from the milk. Sugar is added which gives it the thick syrupy consistency. 

    A spoon coated with sweetened condensed milk

    Uses

    It is generally used in baking. Many no churn (no ice cream maker) recipes use it as well as hack caramel sauce. It can also be basted onto cakes and pastries to keep them moist and simply drizzled on breads. 

    Pour it into coffee, in fact most flavored coffee creamers are made with sweetened condensed milk.

    sweetened condensed milk pouring into a cup of coffee

    It can also make homemade candy, truffles and the most popular, fudge

    Easy Chocolate Truffles only use 4 ingredients, including sweetened condensed milk, to make a rich, decadent dessert. Roll them in chocolate sprinkles, powdered sugar or cocoa for the the finished touch! #chocolatetruffles #easytruffles www.savoryexperiments.com
    Chocolate Truffles

    I even use it in my volcano sauce for tuna

    And, of course, for Dulce de Leche Sauce, sometimes called Sweetened Condensed Milk Caramel Sauce. I use this to make my famous Dulce de Leche Bars.

    A close up of brookie bars

    Sweetened Condensed Milk Vs. Evaporated Milk

    What is the Difference Between Condensed Milk and Evaporated Milk?

    Sugar. The big difference is sugar. Sweetened condensed milk has sugar while evaporated milk is basically the same thing, but without sugar. 

    glass jar of homemade sweetened condensed milk

    Sugar Substitutes

    I have not personally tried using sugar substitutes, but from what I have heard, truvia and other sweeteners do work. So do honey, agave, molasses, brown sugar and maple syrup. Depending on which one you use, the flavor will change slightly. 

    Here is a fabulous recipe for sugar free condensed milk to give a whirl!

    Can I use a non-dairy milk? 

    Again, I have no tried this personally, but seen other post that they have successfully made sweetened condensed milk using nut milks and other non-dairy milks like almond milk and oat milk.

    How Many Cups is in A Can of Evaporated Milk? 

    Most cans are about 14 ounces, which is 1.75 cups. You’ll want to double this recipe to a total of 4 cups of milk to make about the same amount.

    cans of sweetened condensed milk

    What can I substitute for sweetened condensed milk? 

    Many of the substitutes are quite complicated and you are better off just making your own. Word to the wise, allow it to cool before you try to add it to the desired recipe. 

    The closest substitute would be heavy cream with 2 tablespoons of white sugar. 

    How to Make Sweetened Condensed Milk

    How do I Make Sweetened Condensed Milk? 

    Making it is actually quite easy. You only need milk, sugar and time. I prefer to use whole milk, but skim or 2% work as well. 

    ingredients for sweetened condensed milk- sugar and milk

    Heat milk and sugar in a heavy bottom saucepan over low heat.

    Stir over low heat until the sugar has dissolved.

    Increase heat to medium or a very low simmer with just tiny bubbles. When the bubbles start, do not stir otherwise the mixture will break.

    Continue on a low simmer for 30-40 minutes, or until the milk has cooked to a creamy color, has reduced by half and thickened. It won’t be as thick as canned, the rest of the thickening happens when it cools. If there is any foam on the top, skim it off and discard- DO NOT STIR. ALso, do not stir any sugar crystals on the wide of the saucepan.

    sweetened condensed milk in a saucepan cooking
    This was when I was moving it to a bowl- I did NOT stir while cooking!

    Remove saucepan from heat and transfer to a heat safe bowl or jar. Cool fully at room temperature.

    Storage & Freezing

    Storage – I’ve heard that you can store homemade sweetened condensed milk for up to 6 months in the fridge, but I like to use mine within 1 month.

    Freezing – You can freeze it for up to 3 months in an airtight container or plastic bag. After 3 months it starts to develop ice crystals. Allow to thaw at room temperature for a few hours before using. Do not microwave to defrost.

    sweetened condensed milk for pinterest

    Recipes the Use Sweetened Condensed Milk

    close up of sweetened condensed milk for pinterest

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    A spoon coated with sweetened condensed milk
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    5 from 3 votes

    Homemade Sweetened Condensed Milk

    Learn how to make sweetened condensed milk at home with just 2 ingredients! From there make dulce de leche, caramel sauce or even dulce bars!
    Prep Time3 mins
    Cook Time1 hr
    Cooling Time2 hrs
    Total Time3 hrs 3 mins
    Course: Condiment
    Cuisine: American
    Keyword: sweetened condensed milk
    Servings: 2 cups
    Calories: 814kcal
    Author: Jessica Formicola

    Ingredients

    Instructions

    • Heat milk and sugar in a heavy bottom saucepan over low heat.
    • Stir over low heat until the sugar has dissolved.
    • Increase heat to medium or a very low simmer with just tiny bubbles. When the bubbles start, do not stir otherwise the mixture will break.
    • Continue on a low simmer for 30-40 minutes, or until the milk has cooked to a creamy color, has reduced by half and thickened. It won’t be as thick as canned, the rest of the thickening happens when it cools. If there is any foam on the top, skim it off and discard- DO NOT STIR. ALso, do not stir any sugar crystals on the wide of the saucepan.
    • Remove saucepan from heat and transfer to a heat safe bowl or jar. Cool fully at room temperature.
    • Cover and refrigerate until cold. If kept covered, it will last for up to 1 month.
    • If you’ve tried this recipe, come back and let us know how it was in the comments and ratings.

    Nutrition

    Calories: 814kcal | Carbohydrates: 157g | Protein: 15g | Fat: 16g | Saturated Fat: 9g | Cholesterol: 49mg | Sodium: 211mg | Potassium: 644mg | Sugar: 158g | Vitamin A: 791IU | Calcium: 551mg | Iron: 1mg
    sweetened condensed milk dripping off a wooden spoon

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