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Apr 1, 2011 11:45 AM

Lacto Vegetarian Cake: Replacing sweetened condensed milk with coconut milk or coconut cream

So I am planning on making a lacto vegetarian cake for my best friend's birthday on monday, however even though I know she is not vegan I was wondering if there might be a way for me to substitute sweetened condensed milk with coconut milk or coconut cream.
How would it change the flavor/texture of the cake? Would I need to use a thickener?
Have any of you attempted this before and if so what are your results?

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  1. Hi,

    Subbing coconut milk or cream on a 1:1 ratio for the milk or other liquid in a cake batter recipe works great. But I guess with your recipe calling for condensed milk, you may want to just try adding a tad less liquid or maybe some kind of thickener (cornstarch?) or watch baking time to make sure it's set in the middle. But I doubt it will affect it too much and I'd probably go with the 1:1 ratio. Cake batters are pretty forgiving of minor substitutions in vegan baking. So long as you aren't replacing half the ingredients, most people I've shared my plethora of vegan cookies, cakes, and muffins with can't tell the difference.

    You can taste the coconut a bit in recipes with little other flavor--I definitely taste it in white cakes or vanilla ice cream for instance. But when subbing coconut in a chocolate or fruit cake, I don't taste it as much. It's still subtle and most people don't notice. Coconut is probably the creamiest vegan substitute I've found thus far (aside from vegan creamer which isn't at all "natural").

    You could always go with a more traditional vegan baking substitute like almond or soy milk if you're still worried about the coconut, but I don't see why these would be much different. Good luck, and hope it turns out great!

    1. SC milk is extremely sweet. The sugar may be important texturally as well as flavour-wise. I would not make this sub, personally. I might sub coconut milk for regular milk or even evaporated milk but not SC milk.
      How comfortable are you with the original recipe? Maybe if you post it we can see how integral the sc milk might be.