6 Ways to Use Goat’s Milk–Beyond Just Drinking It
From ice cream to skin care, try these unique goat’s milk ideas
Goat’s milk is tasty, healthy, and easy to pasteurize at home. And while it’s great on its own or in cereal or coffee, goat’s milk can be used to make a variety of other delicious foods, from savory cheese to sweet caramel sauce. You can even consider adding goat’s milk to your regular skin routine and use it to care for baby animals.
As you experiment with goat’s milk, keep in mind:
- Goat’s milk has a higher fat content than cow’s milk, so it’s richer (and to some, tastier).
- Different breeds produce different flavors. For example, Nigerian dwarf goats produce a milder tasting milk compared to larger breeds typically used for commercial dairy farming.
Ready to get creative with goat’s milk? Here are six ideas to inspire you.
1. Make Goat Cheese
You can make goat cheese, or chevre, right in your own kitchen; you don’t even need special equipment. The process involves heating goat’s milk on the stove until it hits 180 degrees Fahrenheit, then removing it from the heat, adding lemon juice, and letting it curdle. Next, strain the milk using a cheesecloth. Once you’ve strained the moisture from the curds, you can experiment with your cheese’s flavor. Along with salt, add herbs from your garden or stir in some of this year’s preserves.
2. Feed Goat’s Milk to Orphaned Animals
If you’re bottle-feeding baby livestock and equine, goat’s milk can serve as a solid stand-in if the mother’s milk isn’t an option. According to the University of Minnesota Extension, for foals specifically, goat’s milk is the second-best alternative to mare’s milk, and it’s easier for horses to digest than cow’s milk.
Consult your veterinarian on the best feeding schedule and whether you should dilute the goat’s milk for bottle feeding.
3. Churn Goat’s Milk Ice Cream
Who can deny the cool, creamy delight of home-churned ice cream? Along with having a uniquely tangy flavored, ice cream made with goat’s milk may be easier to enjoy for people with a lactose sensitivity.
Simply sub out cow’s milk for goat’s milk in your favorite homemade ice cream recipe. Or, try something a little more unique: Make a custard with egg yolks, sugar, and goat’s milk, then add fresh goat cheese. Stir until all the ingredients dissolve, then chill and churn. Drizzle your ice cream creation with honey and top it with toasted walnuts or fruit compote.
4. Take Desserts to the Next Level with Cajeta
Cajeta is a flavorful Mexican caramel sauce you can use to sweeten coffee and top pancakes, ice cream, and more. Or just eat it right off the spoon.
To make cajeta, in a stainless-steel pot on medium heat, mix a quart of goat’s milk, 3/4 cup sugar, 1/2 teaspoon plus 1/8 teaspoon baking soda (it will lighten the sauce), 1/8 kosher salt, and a split vanilla bean (with the seeds removed). Stir the milk mixture occasionally to dissolve the sugar. Once the milk turns foamy, continue cooking it, stirring frequently until it’s golden and thick, about 45 minutes. Remove the vanilla bean, and pour the cajeta into a sterilized, heat-resistant glass jar. Then, thin the cajeta with a splash of milk or water and allow it to cool. You can keep the cajeta in the fridge for up to three months. (Recipe adapted from Serious Eats.)
5. Butter Up with Goat’s Milk Butter and Goat’s Buttermilk
If you’ve ever made your own butter from cow’s milk cream, note that making goat butter will take a little more time. That’s because unlike cow’s milk, goat’s milk is naturally homogenized, and the cream won’t just rise to the top. You can use a cream separator or let your fresh goat’s milk sit in the fridge for several days to let the fat rise before skimming off the top.
You’ll need to accumulate at least a quart of fat, so after skimming, store what you’ve accumulated in the freezer, adding to it every time you have more. When you have enough, chill a bowl for 30 minutes and then get to churning the fat using an electric mixer. Whisk until the cream looks like whipped cream, then keep going. The buttermilk will separate away from the butter, which will stick to the whisk. (Recipe adapted from Better Hens and Gardens.)
Try goat butter on popcorn, toast, and biscuits, or bring it to room temperature and whip it with honey. Use the buttermilk in recipes for pancakes, bread, muffins, and other baked goods.
6. Upgrade Your Skin Care Routine with Goat’s Milk
The fat molecules, lactic acid, and vitamin A found in goat’s milk are purported to benefit the skin, according to dermatologists interviewed by Business Insider. Together, these components can help exfoliate and hydrate and potentially mitigate cellular turnover, which may help minimize fine lines and wrinkles and improve acne.
You can make a face mask out of dried goat’s milk powder by mixing it with equal parts water. However, consider spot-testing the mask in a small area before applying the mask to your whole face, and monitor for an allergic reaction.