Evaporated Milk vs Condensed Milk – What’s The Difference?

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evaporated milk vs condensed milk

Many people are confused about condensed milk and evaporated milk, especially when they are at a grocery store to choose ingredients for their recipes. Unfortunately, the cans of both condensed and evaporated milk are nearly identical. Even though the differences between these are minor, they can significantly impact your recipes.

Therefore, to make things clearer and easier for you, we are here to provide you a detailed guide on evaporated milk vs condensed milk that you must know.

So, here we go:

What are the differences between evaporated milk and condensed milk?

Both evaporated milk and condensed milk are concentrated milk from which about 60% of water is removed. However, the sugar content in these two forms of milk differentiates them from each other. Condensed milk is also known as sweetened condensed milk and is always sweetened just like its name depicts. On the other hand, evaporated milk is an unsweetened form of concentrated milk.

Condensed milk is commonly used as a sweetener in coffee or tea and it is also frequently used in desserts and baked goods. Evaporated milk is suitable to use in both savory and sweet recipes.

Evaporated milk vs condensed milk – which is thicker?

Evaporated milk comes with a light cream consistency and a tint that may range from pale amber to ivory. While, on the other hand, condensed milk or sweetened condensed milk has 40 to 45% sugar content before it is canned. This causes the condensed milk to be thicker, stickier, and intensely sweet compared to evaporated milk. 

How to make evaporated milk at home?

Evaporated milk is a form of concentrated milk of which 60% of water content is removed. Here is a simple recipe you can follow to make evaporated milk at home. Remember the fact that preparing evaporated milk with the traditional method will take hours.

For this, you have to simmer milk in a heavy-bottomed saucepan. Keep it over the low stove. Keep stirring the milk often until it is reduced to 1/3rd of its actual volume. Based on the amount of milk you are using; the process will take up to an hour or even more to turn into evaporated milk.

Important tip:

To make evaporated milk at home, it is essential to use regular milk with at least 3% fat in it.

How to make condensed milk at home?

Here are some simple steps you need to follow to make condensed milk at home:

  1. Prepare a deep-bottomed saucepan to make condensed milk at home.
  2. Add powdered sugar and full-fat milk simultaneously in the pan and mix them well.
  3. Lower the flame and simmer it for up to 30 minutes until the milk is thickened and reduced by half.
  4. If the foam is rising, then remove it using a spoon. Keep stirring the milk continuously to avoid burn.
  5. Once the milk is thickened, turn the flame off. Let the milk cool at room temperature.

Transfer it into a jar with a proper lid. This condensed milk can be used for approximately a week.

Can you make evaporated milk into condensed milk?

Yes, you can make evaporated milk into condensed milk. Combine a 12-oz evaporated milk can with 1-1/2 cups of sugar in a deep-bottomed saucepan. Bring it to a boil over medium heat while stirring constantly.

Keep cooking the mixture until sugar is properly dissolved and the milk becomes thicker. Allow it to cool at room temperature and refrigerate for multiple uses.

What are the best substitutes for evaporated milk and condensed milk?

In some cases, regular milk you have in your fridge can be a good substitute for evaporated and condensed milk. However, there can be multiple reasons to use any evaporated and condensed milk substitute. Here are some of the best substitutes of evaporated and condensed milk to consider:

For condensed milk:

  • Coconut milk
  • Canned coconut cream
  • Heavy cream
  • Whole milk with sugar
  • Almond milk with sugar
  • Powdered milk.

For evaporated milk:

  • Whole milk
  • Cream
  • Soy milk
  • Oat milk
  • Nuts milk
  • Coconut milk
  • Flux milk

Evaporated milk vs. condensed milk for coffee?

Both evaporated milk and condensed milk work amazing for coffee. Condensed milk can be used as a sweetener in coffee while evaporated milk can be used as an effective substitute for heavy cream.

Both evaporated and condensed milk will add thickness and creaminess to your coffee. The only difference is the taste of your coffee since there is sugar content in condensed milk. Choose condensed milk over evaporated milk if you prefer sweetened coffee and vise versa.

Evaporated milk vs. condensed milk for baking?

Sweetened condensed milk and evaporated milk are very similar and both can be used for baking. In some cases, evaporated milk can be used as a substitute for condensed milk but not vice versa. Evaporated milk is a more common choice for baking as it adds creaminess and texture to the recipes without affecting the sweetness of the ingredients. People tend to control the sweetness of the baking using sugar or other sweeteners.

Evaporated milk vs. condensed milk for pumpkin pie?

Both evaporated milk and condensed milk can be used as thickeners when you bake a pumpkin pie. However, the resulted pumpkin pie will have a different taste. Condensed milk makes the pumpkin pie sweeter, at the same time make it a creamier and denser texture. Evaporated milk, on the other hand, makes the pumpkin pie airier and lighter in texture.

Evaporated milk vs. condensed milk for fudge?

Whether to use evaporated milk or condensed milk for fudge, it depends on how you want to control the creaminess and sweetness of your fudge. Some people prefer to use evaporated milk because they can easily control the sweetness of the fudge, especially if they want it to be creamier but not too sweet. If you want to skip the steps of controlling the amount of sugar cooked in the evaporated milk, the sweetened condensed milk should be your option.

Evaporated milk vs. condensed milk for ice cream?

Due to the sugar content available and creamier texture, condensed milk is always an amazing and preferable option to try out with any ice cream recipe. This is the best way to add taste and texture to your ice cream.

Evaporated milk vs. condensed milk – Which one is healthier?

Evaporate milk is a healthier choice compared to the sweetened condensed milk which is rich in sugar content. 100g of condensed milk contains ~50g of sugar. This means that 50% of the condensed milk is composed of sugar. Sweetened condensed milk is high in calories and sugar content which is unsuitable for people with diabetes and obese patients.

So, that’s all that you need to know about evaporated milk vs. condensed milk. Make sure to share this guide with your friends and family in order to help them make a better choice.


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