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How much milk do you buy/use? (and how do you use it all up?)

We used to use a full gallon every week because DH was a big cereal eater. He changed to grits (made with water and butter) and I have trouble using the smaller bottle before it goes sour. I even tried buying the baby-sized bottles but they only do three bowls of cereal and they're gone so I'd need two, and that costs almost as much as a full gallon! So I've gone back to the regular-sized one, which leaves a lot of sour or nearly sour milk at the end of the week... what else can I do with it aside from making pancakes or throwing it out? I could make enough to feed an army!

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  1. Milkman delivers three pints, three times a week. It really just gets used on cereal and in tea/coffee.

    3 Replies
    1. re: Harters

      you still have home delivery? wow, im stunned.

      1. re: KaimukiMan

        Still very common here, although in decline. It's only a couple of years back they delivered six days a week. Now down to three.

        Even more unusual, is that it's still sold in pints.

        1. re: KaimukiMan

          When I lived in Salem, MA, there was a dairy that delivered. The last time I checked, they still do.

      2. I use/buy very little milk, but if I found myself with a lot extra, I might make ricotta.

        1 Reply
        1. re: babette feasts

          I second the ricotta suggestion. I buy a half gallon of milk at a time and I usually use it up just before the expiration date. If I notice that it's coming soon, I drink a glass of Ovaltine (my favorite chocolate milk) and put the rest in a pan for ricotta. The ratio is 1 cup of buttermilk to 4 cups of milk, but that can be cut down. Keep portioned amounts of buttermilk in the freezer for this occasion and you'll never have milk go bad again. That is if your willing to put together a last minute lasagna or pizza or something to use that ricotta.

        2. I buy a litre and it lasts a week.

          1 Reply
          1. re: Peg

            you can freeze milk easily. Try dividing it and freezing half. Just remember to take it out a day or two ahead of time to defrost.

          2. I live alone and I go through about 2 gallons a week.

            2 Replies
            1. re: Novelli

              Novelli, you sound like me... I've been known to personally drink three gallons a week!

              1. re: Novelli

                I have my daugjter half the time but we go through 2 gallons of skim a week. Just the thing after a long day at work. I freeze milk for camPing and woild do the same in the unlikely event I had too much.

              2. In the US, we went through a little over 2 gallons a week (for only 3 of us!) -- cereal, coffee, and we were big milk drinkers.

                In Europe, it's still over 2 litres a week - cereal and coffee hasn't changed much, but we now eat more cheese and yogurt than milk.

                1. I don't use fresh milk, keep powdered in the cupboard for recipes. not sure where you shop, but milk should be available in pints, quarts, and gallons. bottles? surely you mean cartons?

                  4 Replies
                  1. re: KaimukiMan

                    We have quarts, half gallons, and gallons in cartons, but it can be a challenge to find milk in pints. Most stores around here sell 12 ounce bottles intended for single serve "on-the-go" consumption. Occasionally I find 14 oz bottles. I only use milk when baking, and the 12 ounce size is usually enough.

                    1. re: KaimukiMan

                      Not necessarily cartons: Crescent Ridge, the dairy that delivers to us here in Boston, uses proper glass bottles.

                      1. re: KaimukiMan

                        Not cardboard cartons, plastic bottles... I did a careful look at the milk the other day and yes, they have those three sizes, plus a super-tiny individual portion bottle that costs nearly as much as the pint.

                        1. re: KaimukiMan

                          here in California there's a huge dairy - Alta Dena - that sells its milk in plastic bottles at the supermarket, and some of the organic milks are sold in glass bottles, even in the stores (as opposed to home delivery).

                        2. A quart every two weeks. Most of it goes to make yogurt and whatever remains is used to cream my tea or coffee.

                          1. I need to buy a cow or stock in a dairy farm!! We go though at least 2 gallons of 2% a week for my 3 year old and a 1/2 gallon of Skim Plus for the husband and me. I find our milk lasts quite a while within reason. What type are you buying?

                            1. Milkman delivers a half-gallon of 2% and a half-gallon of 1% (plus a pint of half and half) every Tuesday. The 1% is immediately turned into homemade yogurt, which is the main thing we have for breakfast. The 2% gets used for cereal, recipes, drinking, etc. Half-and-half gets used for coffee mostly.

                              1. I buy a liter of whole milk or the natural fat % milk (3,5% to 4,5 % depending on the season) i normally only use milk in cooking/baking or coffee/tea

                                1. One word: Parmalat.

                                  I use milk maybe once a month. I keep a couple of Parmalat liters and mini-milks (juice box size) in the cupboard for when I need it. That way I can use whatever the recipe calls for and not waste it. Even after you open it, Parmalat tends to stay good in the fridge for weeks anyway.

                                  1. We use a half gallon or so per week of whole milk in coffee, black tea and cereal( cook hot cereal in half milk half water). I but an extra gallon every few weeks to make ricotta.

                                    1. I buy and consume, mostly drink, a gallon every other day.

                                      1. Oberwise delivers 2 gallons a week to us. 1 gallon whole milk, 1/2 gallon 2%, 1/2 gallon chocolate milk.

                                        I have a 2 year old, a 3 year old, and a husband who loves milk. I think I may use 3 cups total in a week myself. ;)

                                        1. There's just two of us, and I only drink 4 oz of 1% or so a day, in coffee or tea, or maybe the same measure in an occasional bowl of cereal. Mrbushy drinks upwards of two+ gallons a week, mainly in the form of chocolate milk. He's got a bad milk addiction, as well as potato chips. Oddly, his weight and cholesterol are fine, but the diary budget is out of control.

                                          All I know is, whenever I want some milk, generally there isn't any left.

                                          1. I buy non-fat Lactaid half gallons for my coffee, and it seems to stay fresh for a long time, and it seems creamier than other ff milk. My son doesn't like the taste of it to drink, so I usually have a half gallon of 2% milk for drinking and cereal.

                                            3 Replies
                                            1. re: roxlet

                                              Lactaid is excellent for baking. In fact, it's better than regular milk. I buy whole milk, though, to fatten up my skinny 14 year old son. He's had it all his life, so he doesn't complain about the sweet taste. I only drink milk in other things, so I don't care. It's just a wetting (cereal) and whitening (coffee, tea) agent for me.

                                              1. re: Isolda

                                                Why is it better than regular milk? I usually use it for baking only in a pinch.

                                                1. re: roxlet

                                                  I find it makes the crumb of certain cakes more tender. Its sweetness also improves the flavor. I don't drink milk except in tea and coffee, so I can't vouch for its taste alone.

                                            2. we were buying a half-gallon every week or two, but cut down to a smaller size since we only really use it for omelets, some cooking, and an occasional glass here and there.

                                              1. I'm just about on pace to go through 2 gallons by myself this week (and I'm lactose intolerant!). Most of it goes down around exercise times. After that...

                                                Soups, sauces, rice pudding, pancake/quickbreads, with eggs, with fruits... It's milk/dairy. It just about goes with everything.

                                                One thing I'm confused by - Are you buying fresh milk? I just find it strange that the expiration is up so soon. Even regular milk (regular pasteurized) seems to last a couple of weeks.

                                                1. There's a rule in our house: anytime you go to the store, pick up a gallon of whole milk The two guys (51 & 15) go through at least at gallon and a half per day. I buy a half gallon of skim for myself that lasts a week and a half.

                                                  1. We go through 3 liters of milk per week...because my husband likes his milk with coffee in it. :D And I like to bake.

                                                    1. You can't get it in quarts? When DH travels, I only use milk on cereal and in tea or coffee, so a gallon would spoil. If I know he's going to be away, I just buy a quart for the week.

                                                      Are you having it delivered, or can you go to a different market to find smaller quantities?

                                                      1 Reply
                                                      1. re: Isolda

                                                        I live in Ontario (Canada--am specifying because not all of Canada gets milk like this) and we can purchase our milk in the bigger bag that contains three smaller bags in it. Each small bag is a liter. If the milk spoils, it would spoil in the opened bag first. This way, the unopened bags are still fresh and unspoiled even if we don't drink it right away. I estimate we've had some for up to a week and a half or two weeks because of those smaller bags. We finish our milk pretty quickly though.

                                                      2. i'm just trying to figure out how/why it spoils on you before you finish it! i don't eat cereal and i don't drink milk straight, so the only real use my milk gets is an ounce or two in my morning coffee...and i always manage to finish the carton before it goes off. and it's skim milk, which is notorious for spoiling before higher fat varieties.

                                                        but if you need ways to use it up, i second the suggestion for ricotta...or yogurt (i buy separate cartons for that).

                                                        1. When DS is around, we can make it thru a full gallon in a week (big cereal eater like DH). I'm not a big milk drinker myself but I make pudding when it's starting to go bad and it lasts longer (the pudding, not the milk).

                                                          1 Reply
                                                          1. re: JerryMe

                                                            ooh, pudding is a good call...and on that note, rice pudding too :)

                                                          2. We (two of us) buy it (2%) in gallons and mostly only use it for morning cappuccino, but even so seldom have it go bad; in fact, I'm astonished how much of the stuff we go through, considering its limited use. BTW, contrary to popular opinion, unless I'm badly misinformed (or things have changed) the date on milk products is a sell by not a use by date. Generally the milk should be fine for 7 days or so past the date stamped, tho I do find that this varies seasonally--it seems to me it goes bad quicker in the Spring. I wonder if anyone else has noticed this? Of course if your refrigerator's temperature is set on the high side the milk will spoil sooner.

                                                            We also keep liter cartons of Parmlat on hand to save ourselves from milk runs when we run out unexpectedly.

                                                            I'm not too keen on freezing milk myself. While it remains wholesome, I find it acquires a "chalky" taste.

                                                            1. I buy a 2ltr container of whole milk from Lidl in England, for £1

                                                              I find it stays sweet up to 10 days after sell by date.

                                                              A glass or two and the rest on cereals (Lidl of course)

                                                              1 Reply
                                                              1. re: Naguere

                                                                I keep UHT on hand for cooking and for my Nespresso machine -- for whatever reason, it foams up WAY better than fresh milk.

                                                                I buy the 1-litre bottles...At Lidl.

                                                              2. Well, it looks as though I am the odd duck here, because my family of five drinks four gallons of milk a week, and I hardly drink any! Dh and one of my dc go through 2 1/2 gallons of skim on their own, while my other two dc drink a gallon and a half of 1%. They just love milk - prefer it to soda - while I don't care for it at all, except in coffee and tea.

                                                                1. 1. I consume 3 half-gallons a month or thereabouts. I currently buy low-temp pasteurized, non-homogenized milk from a local source that is (hallelujah!) available at my local Whole Foods. I basically only drink it in my daily cups of tea.

                                                                  2. My grandfather lived alone after my grandmother died and he still bought milk by the gallon. He told a story from his big-rig trucker days (this would have been the 1950s) when a fellow trucker showed him a cave full of vats of milk being constantly agitated -- to be made into powdered milk and given away with other government commodities. The fellow tapped off a tin mug full of milk and gave it to him to drink, and it was sweet and fresh-tasting, despite being many weeks old. The moral of the story? Agitation is your friend. I haven't had a carton of milk go bad in years. Grandpa taught me to give it a good hard shake every time I use it, and it lasts ages.

                                                                  2 Replies
                                                                  1. re: LauraGrace

                                                                    re: #2 -- interesting. I wonder why.

                                                                    1. re: sunshine842

                                                                      I wish I knew! All I know is that, if I don't shake my milk, it goes bad in a flash, but if I do, it stays fresh for a looooong time.