Nonfat dry milk (NFDM) was first invented in 1802. It’s amazing that more than 200 years later, we are still using it in a variety of ways. According to the USDA, “Nonfat dry milk is the product obtained by the removal of only water from pasteurized skim milk.”
What are some benefits of using dry milk? Well, for starters, it’s very convenient. It has a longer shelf life than liquid milk because the moisture is removed in the drying process. Another benefit is that one cup of prepared instant NFDM provides one serving from the Dairy Group of MyPlate, 30% of the daily calcium recommendations, 10% of the vitamin A recommendations and 8 grams of protein. Nonfat dried milk can be used as a protein booster. Add it in its dried form to smoothies, puddings, or even meatloaf. The list is endless!
What is the best way to store NFDM? It’s important to store unopened packages of NFDM in a cool, clean, dry place. Once opened, store NFDM in a tightly sealed container or bag for up to five days in the refrigerator. Pay attention and mark “Best if used by” or “Best by” dates on the package.
Now that you know more about NFDM, try using it in your meals. Add to casseroles, soups, mashed potatoes to boost the calcium and protein. You can even try adding a tablespoon or two of NFDM to smoothies for a creamier results or coffee/tea as a healthier substitute for cream or creamer.
Here’s a recipe to make your own condensed cream soup. It saves money and has less sodium. Use the reconstituted mix wherever it calls for a can of condensed cream soup.
Nonfat Dry Milk
Condensed Soup Mix
Makes 8 servings
(Use instead of canned condensed cream soup. For variations, add vegetables, pasta, rice or chopped cooked meat.)
2 cups of NFDM
3/4 cup cornstarch
2 Tablespoons dried minced onion flakes
1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
1/4 cup low sodium chicken bouillon powder
1 teaspoon dried basil (optional)
1/4 teaspoons dried thyme (optional)
Combine NFDM, cornstarch, onion flakes, pepper and chicken bouillon. If desired, add basil and thyme. Mix well, place in an airtight container, and store in the refrigerator or freezer. When ready to use the mix, combine 1/3 cup of the mix with 1 1/4 cups of water in saucepan. Cook and stir until thickened.
Mary Ehret is the Penn State Extension Nutrition Links Supervisor in Luzerne, Lackawanna, Monroe, Carbon, Sullivan and Bradford counties. Reach her at 570-825-1701 or at firstname.lastname@example.org.