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OT...Buttermilk substitute

Photo EggPhoto Egg Posts: 9,487
I'm not a big Milk fan and the taste of Buttermilk, even thinking about it, makes me cringe a little.
So many recipes are calling for Buttermilk. I guess it's one of the "in" things right now.
I normally substitute, in equal amounts, Heavy Cream.
I just don't like the sour twang of the Buttermilk.
Anyone else?
Thank you,
Darian

Galveston Texas

Comments

  • SandtreeSandtree Posts: 41
    Add a tablespoon of lemon juice or white wine vinegar per cup of double (heavy) cream. Alternatively natural or Greek yoghurt can be used instead of cream 
    London, UK

    New LBGE Owner
  • jtcBoyntonjtcBoynton Posts: 2,497
    One of the purposes of using buttermilk in recipes is to adjust the acidity.  Plain cream will not reproduce the acidity levels correctly.  Drinking straight buttermilk is quite different than using in a recipe.
    Southeast Florida - LBGE
    In cooking, often we implement steps for which we have no explanations other than ‘that’s what everybody else does’ or ‘that’s what I have been told.’  Dare to think for yourself.
     
  • Carolina QCarolina Q Posts: 14,116
    I just add a tablespoon of white vinegar and top off to 1 cup with whole milk. I rarely have heavy cream on hand and never cultured buttermilk.

    BTW, real buttermilk, the liquid formed in the process of churning butter, tastes NOTHING like the cultured stuff they sell as buttermilk in stores today. It's like milk with a hint of sweet. Quite tasty. As is homemade butter for that matter.


    I hate it when I go to the kitchen for food and all I find are ingredients!

                                                                …Unknown

    Michael 
    Central Connecticut 

  • calikingcaliking Posts: 12,837
    Buttermilk is often called for in recipes for chemistry, i.e. an acid (buttermilk) and a base (baking powder) meet up to produce gas (for leavening).

    If you don't care as much about the leavening aspect (or just use yeast or even sourdough starter instead), you may be able to replace the buttermilk.

    Another option to consider is kefir. HEB sells it, lasts longer than buttermilk, and tastes maybe more like yogurt than buttermilk. I've used it in recipes that called for buttermilk, without noticing much of a difference.

    #1 LBGE December 2012 • #2 SBGE February  2013 • #3 Mini May 2013
    A happy BGE family in Houston, TX.
  • JstrokeJstroke Posts: 2,296
    Several questions I guess are in order. Is the recipe a baking recipe? If so the previous comments are accurate in the need to produce a rise in biscuits or pancakes etc.. baking is the only scientific reason to use it. You can use any acid. If not for baking, then for battering chicken etc? This is for taste. Many people like the twang of acidity for things like fried chicken or onion rings. It is subtle but you can tell if you try it side by side with milk as the wetting agent. Mashed Potatoes? Again, just taste. I like cream in mine rather than buttermilk. 
    Columbus, Ohio--A Gasser filled with Matchlight and an Ugly Drum.
  • northGAcocknorthGAcock Posts: 13,389
    I recall from my very young years, my grandparents having buttermilk as a primary milk in their refrigerator. I use to drink it (in small amounts) and grew to tolerate it. These days I have three uses for buttermilk...my wife makes a caramel cake to die for, Original hidden valley Ranch dressing.....and thirdly, soaking okra before breading and frying. I don’t keep it on hand as a general rule...but use with no taste issues in these items. Bottom line, i’m Not with you on this one, but I certainly get where you are coming from.
    Columbia, South Carolina with a Medium, MiniMax & a 17" Blackstone

    “May the four winds blow you safely home.”
  • nolaeggheadnolaegghead Posts: 31,206
    FYI - Buttermilk is 1-2% fat.  Heavy cream is 16-36% fat.
    ______________________________________________
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    Large and Medium BGE, Kamado Joe Jr, Akorn Jr, smoker with a 5k btu AC, gas grill, fire pit, pack of angry cats, two turntables and a microphone, my friend.  Registered republican.
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  • Photo EggPhoto Egg Posts: 9,487
    FYI - Buttermilk is 1-2% fat.  Heavy cream is 16-36% fat.
    Explains why heavy cream and ice cream is soooooo good.
    Thank you,
    Darian

    Galveston Texas
  • jtcBoyntonjtcBoynton Posts: 2,497
    I just add a tablespoon of white vinegar and top off to 1 cup with whole milk. I rarely have heavy cream on hand and never cultured buttermilk.....
    Another option is to keep powdered buttermilk in your pantry with your baking supplies.
    Southeast Florida - LBGE
    In cooking, often we implement steps for which we have no explanations other than ‘that’s what everybody else does’ or ‘that’s what I have been told.’  Dare to think for yourself.
     
  • SonVoltSonVolt Posts: 1,808
    edited January 16
    Here's a good breakdown of traditional buttermilk substitutes. 

    https://www.seriouseats.com/2017/04/how-to-substitute-buttermilk.html


    Google around and it's not hard to see why buttermilk seems so frivolous—experts everywhere act like getting rid of it is no big deal. Just use milk and lemon juice! Milk and vinegar! Milk and cream of tartar! Plain yogurt! Buttermilk powder! Anything but the real deal. 


    South of Nashville  -  BGE XL  -  Alfresco 42" ALXE  -  Alfresco Versa Burner  - Sunbeam Microwave 
  • calikingcaliking Posts: 12,837
    The buttermilk that I buy has an expiration date of 2 weeks, so I'll buy it I know I'll use 2 quarts by then. Otherwise, I buy kefir,  which lasts over a month, if I just want to keep it on hand for weekend waffles, biscuits, etc. 

    #1 LBGE December 2012 • #2 SBGE February  2013 • #3 Mini May 2013
    A happy BGE family in Houston, TX.
  • SonVoltSonVolt Posts: 1,808
    caliking said:
    The buttermilk that I buy has an expiration date of 2 weeks, so I'll buy it I know I'll use 2 quarts by then. Otherwise, I buy kefir,  which lasts over a month, if I just want to keep it on hand for weekend waffles, biscuits, etc. 

    Honestly, I don't think buttermilk ever truly "expires". I've used it 3 months later without it going rancid. Stella Parks, the baker for Serious Eats seems to agree - 


    South of Nashville  -  BGE XL  -  Alfresco 42" ALXE  -  Alfresco Versa Burner  - Sunbeam Microwave 
  • calikingcaliking Posts: 12,837
    I might disagree @SonVolt. I've had buttermilk smell pretty foul some time after the expiration date, so pitched it. It may have been fine for baking,  but I didn't use it. May not apply to all brands though. 

    #1 LBGE December 2012 • #2 SBGE February  2013 • #3 Mini May 2013
    A happy BGE family in Houston, TX.
  • The_StacheThe_Stache Posts: 1,153
    living with a lactose intolerant spousal unit has allowed me to find goat yogurt also makes a good substitute for buttermilk!
    Kirkland, TN
    2 LBGE, 1 MM


  • SonVoltSonVolt Posts: 1,808
    Could be. I typically pay a little extra for the real stuff. The store brands (etc) have thickeners and all sorts of other artificial junk in them. 
    South of Nashville  -  BGE XL  -  Alfresco 42" ALXE  -  Alfresco Versa Burner  - Sunbeam Microwave 
  • jtcBoyntonjtcBoynton Posts: 2,497
    Buttermilk is a generic term.  For this discussion we should distinguish between the different products: traditional buttermilk, cultured buttermilk, and acidified buttermilk.
    Southeast Florida - LBGE
    In cooking, often we implement steps for which we have no explanations other than ‘that’s what everybody else does’ or ‘that’s what I have been told.’  Dare to think for yourself.
     
  • Photo EggPhoto Egg Posts: 9,487
    Buttermilk is a generic term.  For this discussion we should distinguish between the different products: traditional buttermilk, cultured buttermilk, and acidified buttermilk.
    For me, you guys have provided enough information.
    When added for taste it's cool to sub in Heavy Cream but it adds a higher fat content. For Baking be careful it's not there for a leavening agent.
    All good...Thank you everyone. 
    Thank you,
    Darian

    Galveston Texas
  • nolaeggheadnolaegghead Posts: 31,206
    Buttermilk is a generic term.  For this discussion we should distinguish between the different products: traditional buttermilk, cultured buttermilk, and acidified buttermilk.
    Buttermilk is the milk left over after making butter, then cultured for preservation.  It is low in fat because the fat just went into the butter.

    What you mostly buy is an approximation of that.
    ______________________________________________
    This is my signature line just so you're not confused.  Love me or hate me, I am forum Marmite.
    Large and Medium BGE, Kamado Joe Jr, Akorn Jr, smoker with a 5k btu AC, gas grill, fire pit, pack of angry cats, two turntables and a microphone, my friend.  Registered republican.
    New Orleans, LA - we know how to eat 

  • jtcBoyntonjtcBoynton Posts: 2,497
    Most of the cultured buttermilk found in the supermarkets is made from fermented milk and not associated with butter production.
    Southeast Florida - LBGE
    In cooking, often we implement steps for which we have no explanations other than ‘that’s what everybody else does’ or ‘that’s what I have been told.’  Dare to think for yourself.
     
  • nolaeggheadnolaegghead Posts: 31,206
    Most of the cultured buttermilk found in the supermarkets is made from fermented milk and not associated with butter production.
    Yep.  It tastes close enough to the real thing.

    If you like ranch dressing, you should like buttermilk.
    ______________________________________________
    This is my signature line just so you're not confused.  Love me or hate me, I am forum Marmite.
    Large and Medium BGE, Kamado Joe Jr, Akorn Jr, smoker with a 5k btu AC, gas grill, fire pit, pack of angry cats, two turntables and a microphone, my friend.  Registered republican.
    New Orleans, LA - we know how to eat 

  • StillH2OEggerStillH2OEgger Posts: 2,417
    I've heard buttermilk works well as an emollient, so there's that.
    Stillwater, MN
  • bgebrentbgebrent Posts: 19,726
    Whole milk with either lemon juice or white vinegar works as a perfect substitute in most recipes.  Troof.
    Sandy Springs & Dawsonville Ga
  • fishlessmanfishlessman Posts: 25,054
    tried the keifer yesterday, like it, gassing off today though =) beans got nothing on this kefir
  • JstrokeJstroke Posts: 2,296
    tried the keifer yesterday, like it, gassing off today though =) beans got nothing on this kefir
    Pretty cheap humor. 
    Columbus, Ohio--A Gasser filled with Matchlight and an Ugly Drum.
  • HeavyGHeavyG Posts: 6,425
    tried the keifer yesterday, like it, gassing off today though =) beans got nothing on this kefir
    Now that you tried kefir, your next step is kombucha.
    Camped out in the (757/804)
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