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Have you ever made you own buttermilk? I purchase buttermilk for 1 recipe ( they only have it by the 1 liter container) - and the rest of it just sits in the frig - until it has passed its expiry date - and then it goes down the drain....its too pricey to do that.....If you have done your own buttermilk for a recipe - was it as good as the store bought stuff? Thanks for any replies...

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  1. Be advised that buttermilk is one product that is safe well past its expiration date.

    1. You can substitute a mixture of yoghurt (or sour cream) and milk -- 2 parts yoghurt, 1 part milk.

      2 Replies
      1. re: masha

        I've found yogurt and milk, in masha's proportions, to be a perfectly acceptable substitute for buttermilk in baking recipes. I almost always have yogurt on hand and almost never have buttermilk.

        1. re: mandycat

          And you can get yoghurt in 6 oz containers so if you only need 1/2 or 1 cup of buttermilk, you'll have little leftover (although using up leftover yoghurt is awfully easy).

      2. My mom got me hooked on using powdered buttermilk--I highly recommend!

        1. I mix a little lemon juice with milk ALL THE TIME for "buttermilk" pancakes (they're not really buttermilk, but acidulated milk at that point!) You can use white vinegar, too, but the light lemon flavor is really gorgeous in pancakes.

          Works perfectly fine.

          2 Replies
          1. re: sunshine842

            +1. While I love to drink buttermilk, usually forget it's in the fridge. I always do the milk/lemon juice thing and let it stand 10-15 minutes to thicken (also have successfully even used skim milk for this sub.).

            1. re: pine time

              Yeppers. This is a perfect use for bottled Real Lemon. I usually don't let it set that long but it cant hurt.

          2. I use buttermilk only for baking powder biscuits and find that the powdered buttermilk (brand name SACO) works wonderfully for this purpose---best biscuits I have ever made, using their recipe. If you keep it tightly covered in a jar it will last on the shelf for a year.

            8 Replies
            1. re: Querencia

              Thank you so much for all of you who answered. I have buttermilk powder in my cupboard...I'm going to try that ...and I will try adding the lemon juice to milk.....Thanks again - very much appreciated ..

              1. re: eaglelake

                Don't forget to store the buttermilk powder in the fridge after you open it. :)

                1. re: kattyeyes

                  Why is it necessary to store it in the refigerator?

                  1. re: c oliver

                    because the fats in the mix are then exposed to the air, and they'll go rancid quickly out of the fridge.

                    (buttermilk powder has a pleasantly sour smell when it's fresh...when it's gone rancid it plain stinks)

                    1. re: sunshine842

                      So is the same true for powdered regular milk - not the nonfat kind?

                      When I need buttermilk, I just buy it and drink whatever doesn't go into the recipe.

                      1. re: c oliver

                        I have found buttermilk powder on shelves in the dry goods section as well as in the refrigerated section, but the container says to refrigerate once opened. I assume the manufacturers of the product know how to best treat the product to keep it usable for the longest amount of time, so I refrigerate it as directed and it lasts quite a long time.

                        With two kids underfoot, I don't have the luxury of running to the store whenever I need an ingredient, and love to have the powdered stuff available when we need it for pancakes, biscuits, or bread. I don't always plan that type of cooking well enough in advance to work it into my weekly shopping run.

                        1. re: c oliver

                          not ignoring you -- I couldn't tell you the last time I bought powdered milk, so I don't know!

                          I know that even the UHT milk that I buy here in Europe *will* go bad shortly after its expiration date (even when it's not opened, but stored in a cool basement)...so I'd guess that half-fat or full-fat powdered milk would go south after a while, too. I've had powdered buttermilk go off when I kept it in the cabinet thinking "what? It's powdered. It won't go bad!"

                          I'm wondering if maybe it might have absorbed some of the humidity from the air, which was just enough to reconstitute the dried fats enough to allow them to go funky.

                          1. re: sunshine842

                            I used to keep powdered buttermilk on the shelf, but found that it absorbed moisture and clumped if I did not take extra care to keep it well sealed. Now I keep the SACO canister in the fridge, inside a zip as further protection against moisture.

                            I keep the full-fat Nido powdered milk in a cabinet without it going bad. It comes in metal can with a plastic lid.

              2. i've never understood why buttermilk is sold in quarts rather that pints, given the relatively small amounts most recipes require. but it does freeze beautifully. i put it it 1-cup containers.

                of course, here in new england, we're lucky to have kate's homemade butter, which bottles their buttermilk as well. it's amazing the difference between real buttermilk -- the by-product of butter making -- and the cultured buttermilk -- in which lactic acid bacteria is added to reduced fat milk. if you can get the real stuff, do it, then freeze the what's left.

                6 Replies
                1. re: wonderwoman

                  Kate's Buttermilk is a miracle of nature and has changed how I think about buttermilk. Just love the stuff.

                  1. re: wonderwoman

                    What is the difference? In other words, what does the by-product of butter making taste like? I read some place that 'real butter milk' was sour because farmers usually let cream accumulate over several days before they had enough to churn. By that time it had soured somewhat, giving flavor to both the butter and the leftovers.

                    1. re: wonderwoman

                      I agree 100% why only quart containers instead of pints.

                      1. re: wonderwoman

                        Like some other posters, I always have a canister of Saco powdered buttermilk in my fridge, but I was pretty excited to find that my local market now has two (!) brands of buttermilk in half-pint (= 1 cup) carttons, for around 60 cents each.

                        1. re: Caitlin McGrath

                          Might be nice if you can post where your local market is?

                          1. re: LUV_TO_EAT

                            Sure, it's Berkeley Bowl, in Berkeley, CA. One brand available was Berkeley Farms (not just available in Berkeley, but throughout the SF Bay Area, though I don't know how many stores carry the buttermilk in half pints), and I don't recall the other; I'll try to look next I'm there.


                      2. Just watched "Martha Bakes" in which she made buttermilk from 2 C whole milk plus 1/4 C white vinegar. Stir and let sit. Seems to work.

                        1. Just mix 1 cup of commercial "cultured" buttermilk (it must say "cultured" to make sure it has live starter bacteria) with 3 cups of milk. Place in covered container for 24 to 36 hours at room temperature (70F to 80F). Taste after 24 hours to see if it is tart enough for your tastes. If not let it continue to incubate for up to 36 hours. Don't place in a heated yogurt maker, the heat is too much for buttermilk and the result will be broken with watery areas. It keeps in the fridge for up to 1 month.

                          I also use diluted yogurt as a substitute for buttermilk in recipes.

                          1. I have frozen buttermilk in 1 cup containers. It is fine when it comes to baking.

                            1. another vote for powdered! i used to buy Saco until i discovered the one from Bob's Red Mill - i've found it doesn't clump as much. as soon as i open the bag i transfer it to a glass or plastic container and store it in the fridge...i have some in there at all times.

                              2 Replies
                              1. re: goodhealthgourmet

                                Found this online. Would this dried buttermilk be cultured? Can it be used to make crème fraiche by adding it to whipping cream?

                                1. re: LUV_TO_EAT

                                  it is cultured. if you've used buttermilk before to make crème fraiche, you should be able to replicate it by just reconstituting the BRM powder and proceeding as usual...