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Home arrow Nutrition arrow Healthy Eating arrow Is Evaporated Milk Healthy? Benefits and Nutrition

Is Evaporated Milk Healthy? Benefits and Nutrition

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Written by Edibel Quintero, RD
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Fact checked by Rosmy Barrios, MD
Last update: March 28, 2023
9 min read 998 Views 0 Comments
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Evaporated milk is a condensed and concentrated form of cow’s milk. It is nutritionally dense and high in calories, but are there any advantages to adding it to your diet? We take a close look at where and when evaporated milk may be a suitable choice for you.

is evaporated milk healthy

Evaporated milk can be used in baking and cooking. In this article, we will take a look at whether evaporated milk is healthy, the benefits of drinking it, and its nutritional value. Take a look now to learn more.

Is Evaporated Milk Healthy?

Yes and no, it depends on how you use it. Evaporated milk can be a healthy choice, however, it will lead to weight gain.

It is a nutritionally dense product, has a high concentration of milk proteins, and is often fortified with vitamin D, making it a good choice for anyone trying to get more minerals in their diet.

Evaporated milk has many essential vitamins and minerals, including vitamin A, vitamin D, calcium, and phosphorus. As it does not usually contain added sugar, and the milk proteins remain intact through the homogenizing process, it is often recommended in diets for people trying to gain weight healthily. This is because the high protein content can result in weight gain.

People who are underweight are at risk of infections and other conditions like dementia. For this reason, they may need to gain weight. While weight gain is often associated with poor eating habits, nutritional plans can be formulated to help you do it in a healthy way, and evaporated milk is an excellent addition to this kind of diet.

What Is Evaporated Milk?

Evaporated milk is a canned dairy product. It is made by removing about 60% of the water from regular milk and then homogenizing it. Although more than half of the water is removed, it remains a nutritionally dense product.

It has a creamier texture than regular milk and is slightly caramelized in color and flavor. Products referred to as sweetened condensed milk tend to have more added sugar than the evaporated kind, too. Due to the processing of evaporated milk, it has a much longer shelf life than regular fresh milk.

How Is Evaporated Milk Made?

Evaporated milk is made by removing more than half of the water in regular cow’s milk and then homogenizing what is left. This process mixes the milk fats into the milk in a uniform way to ensure it doesn’t separate. From here, it is sterilized to avoid the growth of harmful bacteria and other microorganisms and then canned.

What Is Evaporated Milk Used for?

Evaporated milk is commonly found in the baking aisle of supermarkets, but it has many uses outside of baking. It can be used to prepare sauces and soups, which call for a creamy texture, and may be used to make mashed potatoes.

It is used in baking and dessert-making, and some recipes specifically require the use of evaporated milk, like tres leches. It is also used in coffee and tea. People generally use it to replace half-and-half or heavy cream.

5 Health Benefits of Evaporated Milk

Cooking with and drinking evaporated milk may have many benefits for your health. We have explored some of these in detail below.

#1 Source of nutrients

Evaporated milk is an excellent source of nutrients. Like cow’s milk, it has lots of calcium, containing more than half the DV of the nutrient, along with magnesium, zinc, and phosphorus. On top of this, these canned dairy products are often fortified with vitamin D and sometimes also with vitamin A.

For anyone looking to increase their nutritional intake for weight gain or other health reasons, evaporated milk could be a good choice to add to their diet. Indeed, the mineral intake from it is thought to promote healthy bones and teeth, reducing the risk of osteoporosis in later life.

#2 Calorie-dense

Whole evaporated milk contains more fat than whole cow’s milk. This means that evaporated milk is an incredibly calorie-dense product. It is much more calorie-dense than regular cow’s milk.

This is excellent for people who are looking to gain weight healthily. It means that they can consume evaporated milk in their food instead of regular cow’s milk. Evaporated milk does not contain added sugar, which has been linked to the development of heart disease and type 2 diabetes when consumed in excess, so it is a healthy product for weight gain.

#3 Source of protein

As a concentrated dose of fresh milk evaporated milk is a significant source of milk proteins. Protein is important in the body and plays a key role in muscle growth, maintenance, and repair.

Milk contains two kinds of proteins – casein, and whey. Casein is known to increase the absorption of minerals in the body and may promote lower blood pressure, whereas whey protein has been found to improve mood when stressed, decrease blood pressure, and is an excellent protein for muscle building and repair.

#4 Long shelf-life

An unopened can of evaporated milk can last up to 2 years in your pantry, though it will only last 2 weeks once opened and refrigerated. For this reason, it is an excellent ingredient to stock.

It is nutritionally dense and will last a long time, meaning you can buy a few cans to have on hand whenever you need them.

#5 Variety of uses

Evaporated milk has many culinary uses in both sweet and savory dishes. It can be used in baking and dessert production, to make soups and sauces, and even as a replacement for half-and-half in coffee or tea. On top of this, there are many different varieties of it, including both unsweetened and sweetened evaporated milk, which can be used to enhance flavor.

3 Disadvantages of Evaporated Milk

While evaporated milk is an excellent choice for some people, for others, it may be an unsuitable addition to their diets. Below, we have examined some of its drawbacks.

#1 Not suitable for those with lactose intolerance

Evaporated milk is unsuitable for those with lactose intolerance. Lactose intolerance is one of the most prevalent food allergies and is caused by a lack of the enzyme lactase. This means the person’s body cannot digest lactose. Ingestion of lactose in those who are intolerant can result in bloating, gas, abdominal pain, and diarrhea.

Evaporated milk actually has more lactose per gram than fresh milk because it is a more concentrated solution. While some people with an intolerance may be able to tolerate up to 15g of the carbohydrate (which is around 1–2 cups of milk), evaporated milk contains more than double this amount of lactose, making it wholly unsuitable for them.

Additionally, this kind of milk is also unsuitable for anyone with a cow’s milk allergy as it still contains milk proteins.

#2 High in fat

While we have praised evaporated milk for being an excellent way to gain weight, it does have a higher fat content than fresh milk and may be unsuitable for some people’s diets. For people trying to lose weight quickly, evaporated milk is best avoided, and low-fat dairy products are better options.

#3 Some varieties may contain added sugar or sweeteners

While many unsweetened condensed milk varieties will not contain added sugar, sweetened products will. Added sugar consumption has been linked to the development of many chronic conditions, including obesity, cardiovascular diseases, and type 2 diabetes.

It is important when using evaporated milk in your recipes to ensure that the product you choose doesn’t contain any added sugar or other additives that could harm your health.

Nutrition Facts of Evaporated Milk

Evaporated milk contains many vitamins, minerals, and other nutrients with a variety of health benefits. We have taken a closer look at the nutritional facts of it below to help you get to know this canned product a little better.

Nutritional value (per 100g)

Calories/ Nutrient (per 100g)Amount
Calories (kcal)134
Net Carbs (g)10
Fiber (g)0
Sugar (g)10
Fats (Total)7.56
Protein (g)6.81
Cholesterol (mg)29

Source: https://fdc.nal.usda.gov/fdc-app.html#/food-details/172194/nutrients 

High in calories

Evaporated milk is more calorie-dense than fresh milk, with 134 calories per 100g. This is because to produce evaporated milk, more than half of the water is removed from regular milk, making it a much more concentrated solution. This is worth keeping in mind if you choose to cook with or drink it.

Moderate amount of proteins

With 6.81g of protein per 100g, evaporated milk has more protein than regular milk. This means that if you want to increase your protein intake, you could consider adding evaporated milk to your hot beverages, like coffee and tea, rather than fresh cow’s milk. In addition, evaporated milk may be a healthier option than some creamers, as it contains no added sugar but still has that creamy texture.

Moderate amount of fats

Evaporated milk contains 7.56g of fat per 100g. This moderate fat content makes it an excellent choice if you are trying to gain weight. Though it may seem like a good option for high-fat diets, like the high-fat, low-carb ketogenic diet, it is not suitable, as it contains a relatively high-carb value too.

Moderate amount of carbs

As evaporated milk is a concentrated version of fresh cow’s milk, it has a much higher carb content. With 10g of carbs per 100g, it is not a good choice if you are trying to lose or maintain weight.

Rich in vitamins and minerals

Choosing to drink evaporated milk could increase your vitamin and mineral intake. It contains more than half your DV of calcium, which is great for bone health, along with zinc and phosphorus. In addition, many products are fortified with vitamins A and D.

Evaporated Milk vs. Milk

Calories/Nutrient (per 100g)Evaporated milkMilk 
Calories (kcal)13461
Net Carbs (g)104.8
Fiber (g)00
Sugar (g)105.05
Fats (Total)7.563.25
Protein (g)6.813.15
Cholesterol (mg)2910

Source: https://fdc.nal.usda.gov/fdc-app.html#/food-details/172194/nutrients and https://fdc.nal.usda.gov/fdc-app.html#/food-details/171265/nutrients 

Healthy Recipe With Evaporated Milk

If you are looking for a healthy recipe that uses evaporated milk, a popular dish is mashed potatoes. While many people add milk and butter to their mashed potatoes, some people swear by the addition of evaporated milk. Below, we have given you the ingredients and directions to make this creamier version of an old favorite.

Ingredients

  • 6–7 potatoes, peeled and chopped
  • One can of evaporated milk
  • Salt, to taste
  • Pepper, to taste

Directions

  1. Bring potatoes to a boil and simmer until tender enough to mash.
  2. Place the boiled potatoes, evaporated milk, salt, and pepper in a bowl and mash until smooth.
  3. Serve as a side dish or as part of a main course.

Note: This recipe serves 6, but more or fewer potatoes can be used to meet your requirements.

FAQs

How much evaporated milk equals 1 cup of whole milk?

Half a cup of evaporated milk, plus half a cup of water, is the equivalent of 1 cup of whole milk. However, this substitution is only for cooking with and not drinking evaporated milk. For drinking, add to taste, but be aware that it contains more calories than fresh milk.

Can I substitute evaporated milk for milk?

Yes, you can substitute evaporated milk for milk in a recipe. The best substitution is to use ¾ of a cup of whole milk and ¼ cup of half-and-half. However, this could increase the liquid content of the recipe and will need to be factored into your baking or cooking time.

Is evaporated milk good for diabetes?

Evaporated milk may not be a good food option for people with diabetes, as it has a relatively high carb content. People with diabetes need to limit their intake of simple carbohydrates and should opt for low-fat dairy products to keep their blood sugar levels within the optimal range.

Is evaporated milk good or bad for weight loss?

For weight loss, it is recommended that you avoid evaporated milk. This is because it contains more fat and more carbs than the same amount of fresh milk. It is, however, an excellent choice if you want to gain weight.

A Word From a Nutritionist

Evaporated milk products are canned, highly concentrated milk often used in baking and cooking where a creamier and slightly sweeter texture and flavor is desired. The process of making evaporated milk removes more than half of its water content.

It is a nutritionally dense, high-calorie food product that is particularly useful for people who are trying to gain weight or increase their mineral intake. For those trying to lose weight, however, it should be totally avoided, as it is not good for weight loss.

In terms of nutritional value, evaporated milk is a healthy choice. It contains lots of protein, calcium, magnesium, and other essential nutrients, and it does not contain added sugar or other harmful additives.

If you choose to consume evaporated milk, it is important that you remember it contains more fat and protein compared with the same amount of fresh milk.

Conclusion

Evaporated milk is a healthy choice. It contains lots of protein and other essential nutrients and is a recommended food product for people who are trying to gain weight healthily. It is not suitable for people trying to lose weight and should be avoided on the keto diet.

Written by Edibel Quintero, RD
Edibel Quintero is a medical doctor who graduated in 2013 from the University of Zulia and has been working in her profession since then. She specializes in obesity and nutrition, physical rehabilitation, sports massage and post-operative rehabilitation. Edibel’s goal is to help people live healthier lives by educating them about food, exercise, mental wellness and other lifestyle choices that can improve their quality of life.
The article was fact checked by Rosmy Barrios, MD
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HR_author_photo_Edibel
Written by Edibel Quintero, RD
HR_author_photo_Rosmy
Fact checked by Rosmy Barrios, MD
Last update: March 28, 2023
9 min read 998 Views 0 Comments
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