Why You Should Always Buy Both Canned Milks

Why You Should Always Buy Both Canned Milks
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Canned milk is minefield. Even if you know the difference between sweetened condensed milk and evaporated milk, it is startlingly easy to purchase the wrong one. Don’t get me wrong: I love them both. Sweetened condensed milk makes an excellent caramel sauce (in your slow cooker or Instant Pot), an easy batch of fudge, a super simple soft serve, and a slew of other tasty treats; while evaporated milk excels in all sorts of cheesy situations, like nacho cheese sauce, and this stove-top macaroni.

You can use either to make pumpkin pie, but that’s kind of where the crossover ends. To prevent having to make two trips to the store due to a milk mix up, follow Daniel Lavery’s advice and just buy both:

Whenever a recipe calls for a can of condensed milk, buy a can of evaporated milk along with it (and vice versa), so that no matter what you’re cooking, you’ve got one of each. They’re always right next to each other in the same aisle, no matter which grocery store you go to, so it’s no extra trouble. They both last forever, and the difference is pretty clear once you open the can (the condensed stuff having the consistency of wallpaper-paste and the evaporated stuff having the consistency of light cream), so the only real problem is the risk of coming home with the wrong one and not the other, which I have just handily eliminated at no additional cost to you, the thrifty consumer. No more tearing your hair out in the parking lot upon realising you’ve evaporated what you ought to have condensed (or vice versa); you can merely laugh lightly if you select the wrong can and set it aside for cheese sauce (if evaporated) or dessert topping (if condensed).

Much like always buying lemons, this elegant piece of advice — which Lavery’s newsletter, The Chatner, is full of — is perfect for the spacey, forgetful babes who have better things to do with their time than read labels. Both of these cans of dairy are so cheap, there is literally no downside to just grabbing one of each, each and every time. (And, while you’re there, you might as well grab some canned potatoes, another Lavery favourite that cooks up beautifully in the air fryer.)

 

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