While powdered milk has its benefits -- it has a long shelf life, it's easy to transport and it comes in non-fat, whole and buttermilk form -- it's not generally a staple in most pantries. So if you're someone who loves to get your hands dirty in the kitchen, keep your eye out for recipes that call for this ingredient. Luckily there are plenty of substitutions.
If a recipe contains liquids along with milk powder, fresh milk is the best alternative and will create the most authentic result with a comparable taste. For every 1/4 cup of milk powder called for, add 1 cup of fresh milk. That cup not only substitutes the milk powder, but also a cup of another liquid in the recipe, whether it's juice or water.
Liquid Non-Dairy Milks
Use coconut milk, hemp milk, almond milk or any other non-dairy milk in lieu of powdered milk. You can do this with a recipe that calls for reconstitution of the milk powder or uses other liquids. The ratio for using non-dairy milk is the same as substituting regular milk, so replace 1/4 cup of powdered milk with 1 cup of non-lactose milk. However, as with the substitution of regular milk, remove a cup of liquid called for in the recipe.
Other Powdered Milks
In recipes that include powered milk and have no liquids, you need another form of powder. It doesn't need to be lactose based; one of the best substitutions is coconut milk powder. The proportions of the powder substitution should be equal: 1 cup coconut milk powder equals 1 cup powdered milk.
You can substitute coffee creamer in recipes that have no liquids. If liquids are called for you can use water or a mild juice if you don't have dairy alternatives on hand or you're lactose intolerant. If baking, add 1 tablespoon of mayonnaise to the water or juice.
Based in Kingston, Canada, Samantha Lowe has been writing for publication since 2006. She has written articles for the "Mars' Hill" newspaper and copy for various design projects. Her design and copy for the "Mars' Hill" won the Associated Collegiate Press Pacemaker award in 2008. Lowe holds an Honors BA from Trinity Western University, and a MSc in Occupational Therapy from Queen's University where she is currently doing her PhD.