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Homemade Buttermilk

Learn how to make homemade buttermilk in 3 easy steps!
Prep Time2 mins
Resting Time10 mins
Total Time12 mins
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Servings: 1 cup
Calories: 152kcal


  • 1 tablespoon vinegar or lemon juice *or 1 1/2 teaspoons cream of tartar
  • 1 cup milk or heavy cream (240 ml) *you will need a scant cup (just a little less, see instructions)


  • Add 1 tablespoon of vinegar or lemon juice (or 1 ½ teaspoons cream of tartar) to your measuring cup.
  • Add room temperature milk up to the 1 cup line.
  • Stir together.  Allow to sit for 10 minutes (the milk will begin to curdle slightly - this is normal).
  • Then give it one final stir before using.


  • Storage: Homemade buttermilk can be used right away or stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to a couple of weeks. Use the expiration date on the milk used to make it for a good guideline on how long to keep your homemade buttermilk. Stir the homemade buttermilk before adding it to your recipe.
  • Freezing: You can freeze in an airtight container for up to 3 months. Thaw overnight in the refrigerator. To freeze small portions, freeze in an ice-cube tray!
  • Milk - You can use any milk you need to - regular dairy milk (I prefer whole milk for richness, but low-fat also works). But you can also use almond, soy, or coconut. Make sure your milk is at room temperature which will help to thicken it.  I’ve also used heavy cream instead of milk, but it does make for a very thick buttermilk.
  • Acid- You need to add some sort of acid to make a homemade buttermilk. You can use lemon juice or vinegar (white or apple cider), but you can also use cream of tartar.
  • For a dairy free alternative: You can also use coconut milk or coconut milk if you have a dairy allergy.
  • For a vegan alternative: You can swap and use soy milk as well to make a vegan buttermilk.


Calories: 152kcal | Carbohydrates: 12g | Protein: 8g | Fat: 8g | Saturated Fat: 5g | Cholesterol: 24mg | Sodium: 105mg | Potassium: 322mg | Sugar: 12g | Vitamin A: 395IU | Calcium: 277mg | Iron: 1mg