How to Make Buttermilk with Milk and Vinegar

Buttermilk made with Milk and Vinegar

You might have used or read about buttermilk in various cake recipes. It is a widely used ingredient for making cakes, pancakes, and marinade for meat. Buttermilk is readily available at grocery stores but is also super easy to make at home. In fact, it only requires two ingredients. Keep reading to learn how to make buttermilk with milk and vinegar.


Table of Contents

What is buttermilk?

Buttermilk is a fermented dairy product that is made from cow’s milk. The milk is first allowed to sour, and then it is combined with a culture of bacteria. This combination causes the milk to thicken and become slightly acidic.

Buttermilk has been around for centuries, and it was originally used as a way to preserve milk. Nowadays, it is often used in baking or as a drink. It can also be used in place of milk in many recipes.

Buttermilk is high in calcium and other nutrients and can help you stay hydrated. It also contains probiotics, which are beneficial for your gut health.


Can you make buttermilk with milk and vinegar?

If you have ever added vinegar to milk, you will know that the milk will split instantly! Although you can find buttermilk in stores, making it at home is super easy, and you don’t need a lot of ingredients. Plus, it is preservative-free. You can use any milk for this recipe, including whole, low-fat, or non-dairy milk. The vinegar helps to thicken the milk and create a slightly tangy flavor.

So, the answer is yes, and you can easily make buttermilk by using just two ingredients, i.e., milk and vinegar.


Different ways of making buttermilk

Here are a few easy ways to make buttermilk at home:

  • Milk and acid: The traditional way of making buttermilk is by using whole milk and adding an acid like vinegar. This causes the milk to curdle and thicken, creating buttermilk. Simply combine 1 cup of milk with 1 tablespoon of vinegar. Let the mixture sit for 10 minutes, then whisk it until it’s smooth.
  • Milk and lemon juice: By replacing vinegar with lemon juice (which also contains citric acid), you can make buttermilk with lemon juice and milk. The process is the same.
  • The yogurt method: The yogurt method is a simple way to make buttermilk at home. All you need is milk and plain yogurt. Mix the two ingredients. The bacteria in the yogurt will culture the milk, resulting in homemade buttermilk.


How to use buttermilk

heart shaped waffle maker

Buttermilk is a very versatile ingredient and therefore has a number of uses. When it comes to cooking, here are a few  ways you can use buttermilk to add texture and flavor to your dish:

  • Baking: You can use it for baking to add moisture and flavor. You can find cake and cookie recipes that use buttermilk.
  • As a beverage: it can be drunk on its own as a refreshing beverage. Buttermilk is also thought to have health benefits, such as aiding digestion, boosting immunity, and helping to reduce inflammation.
  • Bread/pancakes/waffles: Buttermilk can be used in quick bread and pancakes for a lighter, fluffier texture. It also gives baked goods a subtle tangy flavor.
  • As a marinade: Use buttermilk as a marinade for grilled or roasted meats. The acidity in buttermilk tenderizes the meat and helps to keep it moist during cooking.
  • Soups/stews/sauces: You can also add buttermilk to soups and sauces for an extra boost of flavor.

How to store buttermilk

Pour buttermilk into a clean glass jar with a lid to store it. Secure the lid on the jar and place it in the refrigerator. Be sure to label the jar with the date so you know when it was stored. The buttermilk will last for up to two weeks in the refrigerator. When ready to use it, shake the jar well before using it.


How to make buttermilk with milk and vinegar

buttermilk made with milk and vinegar

  • Preparation time: 10 minutes
  • Cooking time: 20 minutes
  • Total time: 30 minutes
  • Servings: 2



  • 1 cup whole milk at room temperature
  • 1 tbsp. white vinegar



  1. Pour milk into a large pot. If the milk is cold, wait until it reaches room temperature, or you can heat t a bit to warm the milk as well.
  2. Add vinegar and stir gently using a rubber spatula or a wooden spoon. Mix thoroughly.
  3. Allow the mixture to rest for 5 minutes until the milk curdles.
  4. Pass the curdled milk through a fine mesh sieve lined with cheesecloth. The leftover liquid is your buttermilk. Store it for later use.


You Might Also Like:

Written by Laurie Graves

Laurie is a 50-something wife and boy mom, who loves to share easy recipes, DIY home ideas, and food hacks. She truly believes that with a little inspiration, anyone can make their home and meals feel special.