How many calories are in a tablespoon of Carnation evaporated milk?

Carnation evaporated milk is a canned milk product that has had approximately 60% of its water content removed through an evaporation process. This makes it thicker and creamier than regular milk. But how many calories does a tablespoon of evaporated milk contain?

Quick Answer

One tablespoon (15 ml) of Carnation evaporated milk contains:

  • 20 calories
  • 2.5 g fat
  • 3 g carbs
  • 2 g protein

Calorie and Nutrition Breakdown

Here is a more detailed nutrition breakdown for one tablespoon or 15 ml of Carnation evaporated milk (1):

Nutrient Amount
Calories 20
Fat 2.5 g
Saturated fat 1.5 g
Trans fat 0 g
Carbohydrates 3 g
Sugar 3 g
Protein 2 g
Cholesterol 10 mg
Sodium 25 mg
Calcium 116 mg
Iron 0 mg
Potassium 70 mg
Vitamin A 75 IU
Vitamin C 0 mg

As you can see, one tablespoon of Carnation evaporated milk contains 20 calories, coming mostly from fat (2.5g) and carbohydrates (3g). It also provides small amounts of protein, vitamins and minerals.

Carnation Evaporated Milk Nutrition Facts Panel

Here is the nutrition facts label for Carnation evaporated milk for reference (1):

The nutrition facts panel provides a detailed breakdown of all the nutrients in Carnation evaporated milk per serving size. As you can see, one tablespoon (15 ml) contains 20 calories.

Calorie and Macronutrient Comparison to Regular Milk

How do the calories and macronutrients in Carnation evaporated milk compare to regular whole milk? Here is a comparison of the nutrients in one tablespoon (1, 2):

Nutrient Carnation Evaporated Milk (1 tbsp) Whole Milk (1 tbsp)
Calories 20 9
Fat 2.5 g 0.9 g
Carbs 3 g 0.5 g
Protein 2 g 0.6 g

Due to the evaporation process, Carnation evaporated milk is higher in calories, fat, carbs and protein compared to an equal serving of regular whole milk.

Uses for Carnation Evaporated Milk

Here are some common uses for Carnation evaporated milk (3):

  • Coffee creamer
  • Whipped topping
  • Ice cream
  • Smoothies
  • Cream sauces and gravies
  • Casseroles
  • Soups
  • Puddings
  • Custards
  • Pancakes and waffles

Evaporated milk can be used in place of regular milk in recipes, lending a creamy, rich taste. The creamy texture works well for coffee, desserts, sauces and more.

Substituting Evaporated Milk for Regular Milk

When substituting evaporated milk for regular milk in recipes, here are some guidelines (4):

  • For every 1 cup of milk, use 1/2 cup evaporated milk plus 1/2 cup water
  • For every 1 cup of evaporated milk, use 1 1/4 cups regular milk
  • Reduce any added sugar in the recipe by 1/3 since evaporated milk is slightly sweeter
  • For savory recipes, add a pinch of salt to counterbalance the sweetness

Making these adjustments will help balance the thickness and sweetness of evaporated milk when used in place of regular milk.

Evaporated Milk vs. Condensed Milk

Evaporated milk is sometimes confused with sweetened condensed milk. But despite the similar names, they are very different products (5):

  • Evaporated milk – Milk with about 60% of the water removed. No added sugar.
  • Sweetened condensed milk – Milk with about 60% of the water removed. Contains added sugar.

So evaporated milk has no added sugar and is used for both savory and sweet recipes. Condensed milk is sweetened with sugar and used primarily in desserts.

Nutrition Comparison

Here is a nutrition comparison between equal servings of evaporated milk and sweetened condensed milk (1, 6):

Nutrient Evaporated Milk (1 tbsp) Sweetened Condensed Milk (1 tbsp)
Calories 20 54
Fat 2.5g 1.3g
Carbs 3g 10.3g
Sugar 3g 10.2g
Protein 2g 0.6g

As you can see, condensed milk is significantly higher in calories, carbs and sugar due to the added sugar. So be careful not to confuse these two canned milk products!

Storing and Shelf Life of Evaporated Milk

Here are some tips for proper storage and maximizing the shelf life of evaporated milk:

  • Store unopened cans in a cool, dry place away from direct sunlight.
  • Avoid storage areas that may experience temperature extremes like near the stove or in the garage.
  • Store opened evaporated milk in an airtight container in the refrigerator.
  • Use opened milk within 5-7 days.
  • Look for any signs of bulging, leaking or rusting on cans.
  • Check the “best by” date on the can before consuming.
  • Properly stored, unopened evaporated milk lasts 6-12 months past the printed date.

Following these tips will help keep evaporated milk fresh and prevent spoilage.

How Is Evaporated Milk Made?

Evaporated milk is made by heating regular pasteurized cow’s milk under vacuum to remove about 60% of the water content (7).

Here is the basic process for how evaporated milk is manufactured:

  1. Milk is pasteurized at high heat (280°F for 3-4 seconds) to destroy bacteria.
  2. The milk is then pumped into vacuum chambers and heated to 200°F.
  3. The vacuum lowers the boiling point and causes water to evaporate from the milk.
  4. Steam is removed as the water evaporates until 60% of the water content is removed.
  5. The evaporated milk is cooled and pumped into cans.
  6. Cans are sealed and sterilized by heating to 250°F.

This evaporation process gives evaporated milk a shelf-stable, creamy texture and extends its shelf life compared to regular milk. No other ingredients are added besides vitamin D in some brands.

Difference From Condensed Milk

Sweetened condensed milk undergoes a similar initial evaporation process. But sugar is also added before canning to act as a preservative (8).

The key differences are:

  • Evaporated milk – no added sugar
  • Condensed milk – 40-45% sugar added before canning

So the evaporation method is similar, but condensed milk contains added sugar while evaporated milk does not.

Homemade Evaporated Milk

It’s also possible to make homemade evaporated milk with just a few ingredients (9):

Homemade Evaporated Milk

  • 2 cups milk
  • 1/4 cup half-and-half or light cream
  • Pinch of salt (optional)
  1. Combine all ingredients in a saucepan.
  2. Bring to a gentle simmer over medium heat, stirring frequently.
  3. Once simmering, reduce heat to low and cook uncovered for 30-60 minutes, stirring occasionally, until reduced to about 1 cup.
  4. Remove from heat and transfer to an airtight container. Refrigerate up to 1 week.

This simple homemade version mimics the texture and flavor of canned evaporated milk. Just be sure to store it in the fridge and use within a week.

Powdered Evaporated Milk

In addition to canned evaporated milk, powdered evaporated milk is also available (10).

Here are some details on powdered evaporated milk:

  • Made by removing about 50% of milk’s water, then drying into powder form
  • Shelf-stable and can be stored for 1-2 years
  • Contains added emulsifiers and stabilizers
  • When reconstituted with water, provides texture and flavor of evaporated milk
  • Mix equal parts powder and water

Powdered evaporated milk is another convenient option that can be easily stored and transported. Reconstituting with water allows it to be used in any recipe calling for evaporated milk.

Evaporated Milk Recipes

Evaporated milk can be used in both sweet and savory recipes. Here are some recipe ideas:

Savory Recipes

  • Evaporated Milk Mashed Potatoes
  • Creamed Corn
  • Chicken Pot Pie
  • Clam Chowder
  • Alfredo Sauce
  • Macaroni and Cheese

Sweet Recipes

  • Evaporated Milk Ice Cream
  • Pumpkin Pie
  • Evaporated Milk Pudding
  • French Toast
  • Whipped Topping
  • Key Lime Pie

Evaporated milk is thicker, creamier and more flavorful than regular milk, making it a great ingredient in comforting soups, sauces, desserts and more.


In summary, one tablespoon (15ml) of Carnation evaporated milk contains 20 calories and provides 2.5g of fat, 3g carbs and 2g protein.

Compared to regular milk, evaporated milk is higher in calories and nutrients due to the concentration caused by removing 60% of the water content.

Evaporated milk has a variety of uses, from coffee creamer to ice cream to savory recipes. Be careful not to confuse it with sweetened condensed milk, which contains added sugar.

Stored properly in the pantry or fridge, evaporated milk can last for months past its “best by” date. Though it requires processing to make, homemade evaporated milk can also easily be made with just milk, cream and heat.

So if you’re looking for a convenient, creamy, concentrated milk product, evaporated milk can be a versatile ingredient in both cooking and baking.

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