13 Best Substitutes For Milk In Mac And Cheese (+PHOTOS)

substitutes for milk in mac and cheese
16 min reading time

Since I was a kid, my favorite food has been mac and cheese. My mom would always make it for me and my brother, and we would always eat it up. But recently, I’ve been trying to cut out dairy from my diet, so I needed substitutes for milk in mac and cheese.

If you are looking for a delicious and healthy alternative to traditional mac and cheese like me, then keep reading!

What Is Mac and Cheese?

Mac and cheese is a classic comfort food that consists of pasta smothered in a creamy cheese sauce. While the dish can be made with any type of cheese, cheddar is the most common choice.

In addition to the cheese, the sauce typically includes milk, butter, and flour. The result is a rich and hearty dish that is sure to please anyone who loves cheese.

While mac and cheese are typically served as a side dish, it can also be enjoyed as a main course. Add some chopped ham or bacon to the mix for a heartier meal, or top it with breadcrumbs for a crunchy twist.

No matter how you enjoy it, mac and cheese are sure to hit the spot.

What Does Milk Do For Mac And Cheese?

If you’re like most people, you probably grew up eating lots of mac and cheese. And what’s not to love about this classic dish? It’s creamy, comforting, and can be made in just a few minutes. But have you ever wondered what milk does for mac and cheese?

Simply put, milk adds creaminess and body to the dish. When combined with cheese, it forms a smooth sauce that clings to the pasta. Milk also helps to highlight the flavor of the cheese and balance out the saltiness. And finally, milk adds nutrients like calcium and protein to the dish. So next time you’re making mac and cheese, don’t skimp on the milk!

15 Best Substitutes For Milk In Mac And Cheese

Since I was a kid, my favorite food has been mac and cheese. My mom would always make it for me and my brother, and we would always eat it up. But recently, I’ve been trying to cut out dairy from my diet, so I needed a substitute for milk in mac and cheese.

If you are looking for some delicious and healthy substitutes for milk in mac and cheese like me, then keep reading!

1. Cream Cheese

Cream Cheese: substitutes for milk in mac and cheese

If you love mac and cheese but are looking for a dairy-free option, cream cheese is a great substitutes for milk in mac and cheese.

It has a light, slightly sweet taste similar to that of milk. While you may not get the same creamy consistency as traditional mac and cheese, but the flavor will be just as delicious.

The primary difference between these two types of cheese is the consistency. Cream cheese is much thicker and spreadable, which is what gives it that extra creaminess that will make your mac and cheese dish even more creamy. Simply replace the milk in your recipe with an equal amount of cream cheese.

In addition to being dairy-free, cream cheese is also lower in fat and calories than milk. So if you’re looking for a healthier option, cream cheese is a great choice.

Give it a try the next time you make mac and cheese!

2. Sour Cream

Sour Cream: substitutes for milk in mac and cheese

Sour cream is another excellent alternative to milk, if you are looking for similar textures, but with a more distinct flavor.

It is a stronger consistency than milk and slightly thicker than the consistency in cream. It has an amazing tangy, somewhat sweet flavor that is an interesting flavor to cheese and mac.

Simply replace the milk in your recipe with an equal amount of sour cream and the sauce is made in exactly the same way.

The fat content in sour cream will give your mac and cheese a creamy texture and rich flavor. Make sure to use full-fat sour cream for the best results.

This cream cheese alternative has a more distinct flavor than traditional cream cheese, with both less sweetness and neutrality. You may need to add other ingredients to taste to make it comparable.

3. Almond Milk

Image with Almond Milk.

Almond milk is another accessible dairy-free milk that can be an ideal milk substitute for mac and cheese. Similar to coconut milk and every other kind of milk, animal or plant-based, it has a distinct almond or nutty taste. It is something that you will may either enjoy or not however, before you make your final choice you must try it with mac and cheese!

Almond milk is available in both sweetened and unsweetened varieties and the one you pick is up to you.

Personally, we prefer the sweetened versions when we make mac and cheese dishes as it is similar to the sweetness of milk more – however it’s entirely dependent on your personal preference!

Almond milk is thinner than milk, which means it will not make a rich and creamy sauce. To overcome this, include an additional the roux (flour and butter mix) as well as cheese.

4. Soy Milk

Image with Soy Milk.

Soy milk was among the first non-dairy milk alternatives which work well to substitute milk in mac and cheese.

Soymilk has a distinct flavor that a lot of people dislike, but when you balance it with other ingredients, it can please any palate. You could also choose an aromatic and fragrant cheese, which will give an extremely complex flavor profile.

It is vital to choose non-flavored Soymilk that is unflavored for pasta and cheese. The soy milk brands that are flavorful are a bit strong and can ruin your pasta dish. Vanilla, for instance, is an illustration of these smoky flavors and, if you use it the mac and cheese will develop a sweet flavor. This is not my favorite flavor.

It’s a dense substance than almond milk due to the fact that thickeners are already in use to try to duplicate milk’s volume and extend the shelf life of the product. This will result in a smoother mac and cheese.

Replace the milk with soy milk in 1:1 ratio.

5. Roux

Roux: substitutes for milk in mac and cheese

The next time you make mac and cheese, consider using roux as a milk substitute. Roux is a mixture of flour and fat. It is used to thicken sauces and soups. When added to milk, it gives the milk a creamy texture that is perfect for making mac and cheese.

Plus, it’s easy to make your own roux at home. Simply whisk together equal parts flour and butter, and cook over low heat until the mixture is thick and bubbly. Then, add it to your milk mixture in place of the milk called for in your recipe. You may find that you like the flavor of roux-based mac and cheese even better than the traditional version.

Give it a try next time you’re in the mood for this classic comfort food.

6. Butter

Butter: substitutes for milk in mac and cheese

Who knew that butter could be such a versatile ingredient? Not only is it delicious on toast, but it also makes an excellent milk substitute in mac and cheese. Just add a few tablespoons to your favorite recipe, and you’ll get the same creamy texture without all the lactose. Plus, butter is a great source of healthy fats and vitamin A. So go ahead and indulge in that extra helping of mac and cheese – your body will thank you for it!

7. Vegetable broth

Vegetable broth: substitutes for milk in mac and cheese

Vegetable broth makes an excellent substitute for milk in mac and cheese. Just use a ratio of 1:1, substituting an equal amount of broth for milk. chicken broth works well with cheddar cheese, while beef broth pairs nicely with Gruyere.

Not only does broth add flavor to the dish, but it also helps to thin out the sauce so that it coats the pasta evenly.

8. Powdered Milk

Image with Powdered Milk.

Cheese lovers rejoice – there’s a new way to make your mac and cheese even better! Just add powdered milk. Yep, that’s right – powdered milk makes an excellent substitute for regular milk in mac and cheese recipes. Not only does it give the cheese a richer flavor, but it also helps to thicken the sauce and prevent it from separating.

Powdered milk is prepared by mixing the powder of milk with regular water. It could be used later to make the sauce. It generally creates creamier milk that is also sweeter than normal milk. The sweetness is balanced by the regular amounts of salt in the recipe.

Powdered milk is an excellent substitute due to its durability. It’s the perfect milk substitute if you suddenly run out of fresh milk.

Just by storing a container filled with powdered milk inside your pantry and you will be able to save yourself a lot of anxiety.

9. Heavy Cream

Heavy Cream: substitutes for milk in mac and cheese
Source: imagesvc.meredithcorp.io

Heavy cream is higher in fat than both whole milk and skim milk, which means it can add a delicious richness to your mac and cheese. In addition, heavy cream has a lower water content than other types of milk, so it can help to prevent your dish from becoming watery.

It has a lot more fat than milk, so of course, you’ll probably need to use more liquid heavy cream due to its higher fat content. I would suggest you gradually add a tiny amount of heavy cream each moment while gently stirring until you have reached the proper consistency. You can also add water to make it thinner.

So if you want to take your mac and cheese to the next level, consider using heavy cream instead of milk. You might just find that it’s the best-tasting option of all.

10. Yogurt

Yogurt: substitutes for milk in mac and cheese

Yogurt can be a great dairy alternative to milk. This substitution will not only reduce the fat content of the dish but also add a touch of tanginess.

The key to making a successful yogurt-based mac and cheese is to use high-quality yogurt. Look for a yogurt that is thick and creamy, without any added sugars.

Whole milk yogurt works best, but you can also use low-fat or non-fat yogurt if you are watching your calorie intake. Once you have found the perfect yogurt, simply follow your favorite recipe for mac and cheese. The end result will be a delicious and healthy version of this classic dish.

If you are using yogurt to cook your meals, you’ll prefer the lowest heat setting, and gradually introduce the yogurt slowly. If you replace dairy with yogurt make sure to keep the ratio of measurements at 1:1 ratio.

11. Half and Half

Half and Half: substitutes for milk in mac and cheese
Source: insanelygoodrecipes.com

Half and half is a mix of milk and cream that is often used as a coffee creamer. It has a higher fat content than milk, which means that it can help to make your mac and cheese extra creamy and rich.

And because it already contains a mixture of milk and cream, you won’t need to add anything else to thin it out. Simply swap out the milk in your recipe for an equal amount of half and half, and you’ll be well on your way to the creamiest mac and cheese ever.

12. Coconut Milk/Cream

Coconut Cream: substitutes for milk in mac and cheese

If you’re looking for a dairy-free option, coconut cream makes one of the best substitutes for milk in mac and cheese.

Coconut milk is characterized by a distinct coconut taste, and it is only a little bit reflected in the coocked mac and cheese. You will definitely notice a change however it will not smack you in the face.

If you’re not a fan of coconut flavor then you can dilute it by adding water or strong aromas such as herbs and garlic. It is also common to employ coconut cream in place of coconut milk. This makes for an even creamier sauce.

Just add it to your pasta along with some cheese and spices, and you’re good to go. You’ll never even miss the milk! And who knows, you might even discover that you like your mac and cheese with a little bit of a tropical twist.

13. Rice Milk

Image with Rice Milk.

Rice milk has a remarkably similar flavor to cow’s milk! It is hard to be able to tell the difference between macaroni or cheese, nor will your guests.

The consistency is where the main distinction is. Rice milk is more smooth and it has an almost water-like consistency.

It can be fixed by adding more roux (the melting butter and flour to thicken the sauce) or adding additional cheese into the dish. The cheese helps to hold the sauce, while providing the creamy.

14. Shredded Cheese

Shredded Cheese: substitutes for milk in mac and cheese

Shredded cheese can actually be used as a milk substitute in mac and cheese. Just mix the shredded cheese with some water to create a cheesy sauce, then add it to your pasta.

So next time you’re in a pinch, don’t hesitate to grab that shredded cheese from the fridge. It might just be the key to the perfect mac and cheese.

15. Oil

oil: substitutes for milk in mac and cheese

Can you use oil as a milk substitute in mac and cheese? The answer is yes! Oil can be used as a milk substitute in macaroni and cheese. It will add creaminess and fat to the dish, making it richer and more delicious.

You can use half of the milk that you normally employ in your macaroni or make use of oil instead to make the silky smooth cheese sauce for your mac.

Just be sure to use light oil, such as olive oil or vegetable oil, olive oil and avocado oil also work well, so that your mac and cheese doesn’t end up greasy.

So next time you’re in a pinch, reach for the oil instead of the milk. Your taste buds will thank you! Olive oil and avocado oil work well.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

What is a good substitute for butter in mac and cheese?

If you’re looking for a substitute for butter in your mac and cheese, there are quite a few options available. You could use margarine, cream cheese, or even mayonnaise. Each of these will give the dish a different flavor, so it’s really up to you to decide which you prefer. Personally, I think that margarine gives the best flavor and texture when used in mac and cheese.

Do these substitutes work with any variation of mac and cheese?

Yes! You can use any of these substitutes to make a variation of mac and cheese that fits your dietary needs. For example, if you’re vegan, you can use the vegan cheese substitution, and if you’re gluten-free, you can use the gluten-free substitution. Be creative and have fun with it!

Are these substitutes nutritious?

Yes! All of these substitutes are nutritious and can be enjoyed as part of a healthy diet. For example, cauliflower is a great substitute for potatoes because it has a similar texture and flavor but is much lower in calories and carbohydrates.

Almond milk is a great substitute for cow’s milk because it is lower in fat and calories but still provides plenty of protein and nutrients. Thanks for asking!

How do you make boxed mac and cheese without milk?

There are plenty of ways to make boxed mac and cheese without milk! Some people use water, others use butter, and still others use vegan milk substitutes like almond or soy milk.

The easiest way to make DAIRY-FREE mac and cheese is to simply replace the milk called for on the box with an equal amount of water. That’s it! Just boil the noodles and mix in the sauce packet with water instead of milk. However, this will obviously result in a less creamy final product.

Can I substitute water for milk in mac and cheese?

Yes. You can definitely sub water for milk in mac and cheese. In fact, I often do this when I’m making a vegan version of mac and cheese.

Simply replace the milk with an equal amount of water, and then follow the recipe as usual. If you need to thin the sauce out a bit, you can add a touch of non-dairy milk or broth until it reaches the desired consistency. Enjoy!

Can you use water instead of milk for kraft?

Yes, you can use water instead of milk for Kraft, but the results may not be as good. Milk is high in fat and protein, both of which are necessary for making a good cheese sauce. Water doesn’t have either of those nutrients, so the sauce may not be as thick or creamy.

How can I make kraft mac and cheese better?

There are a few things you can do to make Kraft Mac and Cheese better:

– Use real cheese instead of the Kraft singles. They have a much better flavor.
– Add some broccoli, onions, or other vegetables to the mix.
– Cook it in the oven instead of boiling it on the stove top. This will give it a nice crispy crust.

Can you make mac and cheese with just water?

Short answer: yes.Long answer:Technically, you can make mac and cheese with just water. However, it won’t taste very good. The typical ratio for mac and cheese is 1 part noodles to 2 parts sauce. If you use water as your sauce, you’ll end up with bland, flavorless noodles.

Can you use mayo instead of milk in mac and cheese?

Yes, you can use mayo instead of milk in mac and cheese. Mayo is made from eggs, oil, and vinegar, so it has a creamy texture and a slightly tangy flavor. It can be used as a 1:1 substitution for milk in most recipes.

Is mayo a good substitute for milk?

If you’re looking for a mayo substitute that is similar in texture and taste, then yes, mayonnaise can be a good swap for milk. The fat content in mayo helps to create a rich, creamy texture, while the acidity gives it a tangy flavor. Keep in mind that mayo is also much higher in calories than milk, so use it sparingly.

Can you put mayo in kraft mac and cheese?

Yes, you can put mayo in Kraft Mac and Cheese. Mayo is made from eggs, oil, and vinegar, so it’s a natural fit for this dish. It will add flavor and creaminess to the cheese sauce. Give it a try!

How do you make mac and cheese more creamy?

There are a few different things you can do to make your mac and cheese more creamy. One option is to add more milk or cream to the recipe. Another possibility is to use a higher fat content cheese. You could also try mixing in some sour cream, yogurt, or even mayonnaise. If you want a truly decadent dish, you could even mix in some melted butter. Experiment and see what you like best!

So, there you have it. A few substitutes for milk in mac and cheese that will make the dish just as delicious. Have you tried any of these methods before? Let us know in the comments below!

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