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How to Substitute Soy Milk for Milk in Baking

by Susan Lundman

Made from pressing ground and cooked soybeans, soy milk substitutes for cow's milk in baked dishes from breads to egg custards to cookies and cakes. It has a texture more similar to whole milk than low-fat or fat-free milk and so works well in coffee and on cereal as well, where you can taste and feel its rich texture. Because soy milk is cholesterol-free and low in fat and sodium, it helps make your baked goods a bit more healthy.

Substitute an equal amount of soy milk for the amount of dairy milk called for in recipes for egg custards, quick breads, cakes, cookies and sauces used in baking. Use unsweetened soy milk rather than any of the flavored or sweetened varieties available for savory recipes and be cautious when using flavored or sweetened varieties in desserts to avoid too much sweetness.

Use regular, whole soy milk and not non-fat or low-fat types in custards and quiches to make the dishes more firm. Use lighter-colored versions if you need custards to stay light in color.

Add 1 or 2 tablespoons more cornstarch than required by the recipe to cooked puddings and custards recipes if a 1-to-1 ratio of soy milk leaves the desserts too runny. Some brands of soy milks contain thickeners that make puddings too thick, while other brands may require adding extra thickening agents.

Items you will need
  • Cornstarch

Tips

  • If a recipe calls for warm milk to be added to ingredients before baking, treat soy milk as you would dairy milk and heat it slowly so it doesn't scorch or form a skin.
  • Treat soy milk as you would perishable dairy products, keeping it in the refrigerator and using it within five to seven days.

Warning

  • Soy milk may curdle if you mix it with acidic ingredients like tomatoes or wine, which are used in recipes for such dishes as beef bourguignon and baked pasta.

About the Author

Susan Lundman began writing about her passions of cooking, gardening, entertaining and recreation after working for a nonprofit agency, writing grants and researching child development issues. She has written professionally for six years since then. Lundman received her M.A. from Stanford University.

Photo Credits

  • Jupiterimages/Creatas/Getty Images