Pinchin' Pennie$ in the Kitchen: 4 Everyday Uses for Dry Milk

(FN1713, Reviewed Aug. 2019)

Dry milk can be used in many ways, this publication shows you 4 of its everyday uses along with recipes. Making fluid skim milk, using it in recipes, substituting dry milk for water, and packing it along for a trip without refrigeration.

Lead Author
Lead Author:
Julie Garden-Robinson, Ph.D., R.D., L.R.D. Food and Nutrition Specialist
Other Authors

Nicole Vasichek, Dietetic Intern (former)

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Publication Sections
Non-fat dry milk and a measuring spoon

Nonfat dry milk has the same nutrient value as skim milk. Dry milk is versatile and has a long shelf life. It is a good source of protein, vitamins A and D, calcium and essential fats. Be sure to store dry milk in a cool place in an airtight container. Unsealed nonfat dry milk keeps for a few months. Because of its fat content, dry whole milk can be stored for only a few weeks.

1. Make fluid skim milk

When dry milk is added to water, fluid skim milk is formed. To make 1 cup of milk, add 3 tablespoons of dry milk to 1 cup of water. Beat the powder and water together with a mixer on slow speed or use a wire whisk to mix until the liquid has no lumps. For best quality, refrigerate overnight. If you do not mind added calories, you may add a spoonful of sugar and a drop or two of vanilla to enhance the flavor.

2. Use dry milk in recipes

When you add dry milk to a recipe, you also are adding valuable nutrients such as protein and calcium. You can use it in meat loaf, hamburgers, etc. Use ¼ to ½ cup per pound of meat. Try adding dry milk to mashed potatoes: Mash cooked potatoes. Add ¼ cup dry milk for each cup of potatoes, then add the cooking water from the potatoes to reach the desired consistency.

3. Substitute reconstituted dry milk for water

To get a little extra protein and calcium in your diet, try adding reconstituted milk when making hot cereal, hot chocolate, milk shakes or white sauces.

4. Pack dry milk when you are on the go

If you are planning a camping/backpacking adventure and want to bring milk along but don’t have a fridge to store it in, consider bringing dry milk. Dry milk is lightweight, doesn’t spoil and is easy to pack.

How to Make a Dry Milk Master Mix*

Milk Master Mix

  • 4 c. nonfat dry milk powder
  • 1 c. flour
  • 1 tsp. iodized salt

In a storage container with a tight lid, combine dry milk, flour and salt. Cover and store in a cool place. Stir before measuring for a recipe.

Making your own master mix saves you time and money. This Milk Master Mix combines nonfat dry milk with other common ingredients. Once the master mix is made, you get to choose which recipe to make next.

Cream of Tomato Soup

  • 1 c. Milk Master Mix
  • 1 qt. reduced-sodium tomato juice
  • ½ tsp. salt
  • c tsp. pepper
  • ½ tsp. sugar (optional)
  • ½ tsp. Worcestershire sauce (optional)

Mix all ingredients together in a cooking pan. Cook the soup over moderate heat until it is smooth and thick. Stir often.

Makes four servings. Per serving: 150 calories, 28 g carbohydrate, 0 g fat, 1 g fiber and 570 mg sodium

Vanilla Magic Pudding

  • 1 c. Milk Master Mix
  • 2 to 3 Tbsp. sugar
  • 2 c. water
  • 2 tsp. margarine or butter (optional)
  • 1 tsp. vanilla

Mix dry ingredients in a heavy saucepan. Add water slowly while stirring; add margarine. Cook over low to medium heat, stirring constantly until thickened and almost to a boil. Lower heat and simmer a few minutes. Remove from heat and stir in vanilla.

Makes four servings. Per serving: 123 calories, 19.5 g carbohydrate, 2 g fat, 0.25 g fiber, and 265 mg sodium

Try these ideas for variety:

  • Chocolate Pudding: Add 2 Tbsp. of cocoa to dry ingredients in Vanilla Magic Pudding, and use 3 to 4 Tbsp. of sugar instead of 2 to 3 Tbsp. of sugar.
  • Butterscotch Pudding: Instead of white sugar in Vanilla Magic Pudding, use 3 to 4 Tbsp. of brown sugar.

* Source: “Milk Master Mix and Magic White Sauce,” FN622, NDSU Extension Service, available at www.ag.ndsu.edu/pubs/yf/foods/fn622.pdf

Quick tip - How to make cream soup:

Combine 1¼ c. Milk Master Mix, 1¼ c. water and 1 Tbsp. margarine or butter to make the equivalent of one can of cream soup.


c. = cup

qt. = quart

Tbsp. = tablespoon

tsp. = teaspoon

g = gram

mg = milligram

Check out the recipe database and other cooking/nutrition tips at www.ag.ndsu.edu/food