Culinary Tip: Non-dairy Substitutions for Buttermilk and Yogurt

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Today I’m visiting a new meme called Weekend Cooking. It is a fun mixture of recipes and books, two of my favorite things.




Experienced bakers often substitute ingredients without even thinking about it. For the beginner, however, figuring out what to substitute for common dairy ingredients can be daunting. Here is a simple, well-known substitution for buttermilk or yogurt in a recipe.

1 Tablespoon for 1 Cup

To replace one cup buttermilk or one cup yogurt, add one Tablespoon of vinegar (I prefer cider vinegar) or on Tablespoon of fresh lemon juice to a measuring cup. Fill with your favorite non-dairy milk such as soy, rice or almond milk to the one cup line.

Stir the resulting curdled (clumpy) non-dairy milk and add to the other ingredients as described in the recipe.

The proportions remain the same for any amount needed. For example, if a quick bread recipe calls for 1/4 cup of yogurt, add 1/4 Tablespoon vinegar or lemon juice to the measuring cup and then fill with non-dairy milk to the 1/4 cup line.

Look in your favorite grocery or health food store for plain non-dairy yogurt to substitute for dairy yogurt, as well.

Heads Up

Whenever you see buttermilk, yogurt, or sour milk in a recipe, be sure to read the leavening ingredients carefully. Usually recipes with acid ingredients like these will call for baking soda rather than baking powder.


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