Homemade sweetened condensed milk

Making homemade sweetened condensed milk is a simple process that requires just a few ingredients and a little bit of time. By making it yourself, you can customize the sweetness level and ensure that you’re using high-quality ingredients. Here’s a basic recipe to make sweetened condensed milk at home:


  • 4 cups (1 liter) whole milk
  • 1 cup (200 grams) granulated sugar
    • 2 tablespoons (28 grams) unsalted butter
    • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract (optional)


    1. Combine Milk and Sugar: In a heavy-bottomed saucepan, pour the whole milk and add the granulated sugar. Stir well to combine.
    2. Heat the Mixture: Place the saucepan over medium heat and bring the milk and sugar mixture to a gentle simmer. Stir constantly to dissolve the sugar and prevent the milk from scorching on the bottom of the pan.
    3. Reduce and Thicken: Once the mixture comes to a simmer, reduce the heat to low. Let it simmer gently, stirring occasionally, for about 1 to 1 1/2 hours, or until the volume is reduced by about half and the mixture has thickened to a creamy consistency. Be patient as this process takes time.
    4. Add Butter and Vanilla: Once the mixture has thickened, remove the saucepan from the heat. Stir in the unsalted butter until it’s completely melted and incorporated into the mixture. If desired, add the vanilla extract for extra flavor.
    5. Cool and Store: Allow the homemade sweetened condensed milk to cool completely in the saucepan. Once cooled, transfer it to a clean, airtight container and store it in the refrigerator. It will continue to thicken as it cools.

    Tips for Success:

    • Stirring: It’s important to stir the milk and sugar mixture frequently, especially as it begins to thicken, to prevent it from sticking to the bottom of the pan and burning.
    • Consistency: The sweetened condensed milk is ready when it has reduced by about half and has a thick, creamy consistency similar to that of store-bought sweetened condensed milk.
    • Storage: Store the homemade sweetened condensed milk in the refrigerator in an airtight container. It will keep for up to 2 weeks. Make sure to give it a good stir before using it, as it may thicken further as it chills.

     Homemade sweetened condensed milk can be used in a variety of recipes, such as:

    • Desserts like fudge, ice cream, and pies
    • Baked goods like cookies, cakes, and bars
    • Beverages like coffee, tea, and hot chocolate

    By making your own sweetened condensed milk at home, you can enjoy the convenience of this essential ingredient while controlling the quality of the ingredients and customizing it to your taste preferences.

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