Should You Put Buttermilk in Coffee? Pros and Cons

Last Updated on February 27, 2023

If you’re looking for a way to make your coffee even more delicious, you may want to consider adding buttermilk instead of traditional coffee creamers. But is this a good idea? Let’s take a look at the pros and cons of adding buttermilk to coffee.

As coffee drinkers, we can be very particular about what is added to our java. Sometimes we want to minimize the bitter taste that black coffee has, we don’t necessarily want fancy calorie-laden coffee drinks, we just want our hot coffee to help us start out our day on the right foot.

buttermilk in coffee - pros and cons

We’ll explain what buttermilk is, how it can be used in coffee, and whether or not we recommend doing so. And if you agree that using buttermilk in coffee is not for you, we’ll provide some alternatives that you can try.

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What is Buttermilk, Anyway?

Buttermilk isn’t a type of butter; it’s a fermented dairy drink. Traditionally, buttermilk is made from the liquid that remains after churning butter from cream.

However, today most commercial buttermilk products don’t involve the butter-making process – instead, they are produced by adding lactic acid bacteria to pasteurized and homogenized skimmed milk, or cream. This causes the drink to thicken slightly and gives it its characteristic tangy flavor. 

Is Buttermilk Healthy for You?

Buttermilk can be a great addition to your diet if you’re looking to make some healthy lifestyle changes. Compared to normal milk, it’s lower in fat, calories and sugar but still has a unique and delicious flavor.

Buttermilk also contains lactic acid, which gives the milk its distinctive sour taste and helps with digestion. Plus, it provides a wealth of other essential vitamins and minerals such as phosphorus and riboflavin, making it a nutritious addition to your daily diet.

However, while buttermilk can certainly be part of a balanced diet, it’s important to watch out for added stabilizers or any other kind of additives that don’t enhance its nutritional value. All things considered, if you opt for organic buttermilk when possible, then yes – it can very much be healthy for you.

Is It a Good Idea to Put Buttermilk in Coffee?

You might be tempted to try a new flavor combination by adding buttermilk to your morning coffee, particularly with the potential health benefits, but you should think twice before reaching for the carton of buttermilk.

whiskey barrel coffee gift

It’s true that buttermilk can have a unique tangy flavor in small amounts, and it can be used successfully in some recipes. However, this is not one of those cases.

Buttermilk has an acidic character that reacts with the caffeine molecules in coffee, resulting in an unpleasant sourness that overwhelms the traditional coffee taste. Because of its high acidity, it also changes the color of your coffee from dark brown to a murky gray-brown, which isn’t very appetizing. So, no…we do not recommend it.

You’re much better off sticking with cream or nondairy substitutes so you can enjoy all of the flavors you love without spoiling them. Your taste buds will thank you! 

If You Really Want to Try Adding Buttermilk to Your Coffee…

If you’re determined and curious to give it a try, the best way to experiment with adding buttermilk to your coffee is to start with a small amount. A teaspoon or so of the buttermilk will be enough for you to determine if you like it or not.

Additionally, it is important to mix the in buttermilk thoroughly before testing it out. This will ensure that your taste buds are able to pick up on all the nuances of the flavor combination.

If you prefer a milder flavor, try just half a teaspoon of buttermilk and add more later. You can also try different types of buttermilk and different brands until you find one that suits your tastes best.

Who knows? Maybe you’ll decide that the unique tangy result is a tasty cup of joe. It’s up to you, my friend.

What Else Can I Put in My Coffee Besides Milk?

what to put in coffee besides milk

There are lots of great, delicious options out there instead of regular whole milk, coffee creamer, or buttermilk, as we’ve just learned.

Almond milk, oat milk, and soy milk offer high protein and fiber content that traditional cow’s milk lacks.

For the health-conscious coffee connoisseur, coconut milk, flaxseed milk, or hemp milk are all excellent sources of Omega fatty acids.

For those who prefer something a little sweeter, you can opt for cashew milk which has a creamy texture.

If you’re looking for something with an extra kick that’s packed with flavor and creaminess, try out macadamia nut milk or walnut milk.

If you don’t mind the extra calories, a small dollop of vanilla ice cream will add sweetness and creaminess to your morning cup of joe.

No matter what type of milk you choose to put in your coffee, these dairy-free and vegan alternatives will surely add more complexity (and fewer calories!) to your morning ritual, and you’ll forget thinking about putting buttermilk in coffee.

How to Use Butter in Your Coffee

how to make butter coffee

Making a coffee drink with butter, not buttermilk, is easier than you think!

Start by combining one cup of freshly brewed coffee with one tablespoon of melted unrefined coconut oil, or ghee if you prefer.

Next, add one teaspoon of grass-fed butter to the hot liquid and stir until everything has been incorporated.

You can now blend the mixture in a blender for 30 seconds for a creamy finish. If you prefer your beverage extra frothy and want it to look like something from a cafe, use an electric milk frother with additional butter and coconut oil added to get a perfectly smooth foam on top.

Don’t be afraid to experiment with different ratios of ingredients to achieve your desired flavor and texture; some people prefer less fat while others like more foam! With a few simple steps, you can easily enjoy a delicious butter coffee drink at home.

What are Some Good Uses for Buttermilk?

baking with buttermilk

Even though we discourage using buttermilk in your coffee, it is a quietly versatile ingredient that can be used in a variety of recipes.

In terms of cooking, it’s a great substitute for regular milk and adds moisture to dry dishes like macaroni and cheese.

It can also be used as a marinade to tenderize meats, providing an amazing depth of flavor without adding too many calories.

When baking, however, buttermilk really takes center stage. You can use it to make fluffy biscuits, pancakes, or waffles; your cakes and muffins will come out perfectly moist; and if you want richer cookies or bread, try swapping out regular milk for buttermilk. Buttermilk coffee cake is another well-known use for this drink, and it results in a tasty, fluffy morning treat.

And don’t forget about slaws and dressings! Whether you’re making coleslaw or tangy BBQ sauce, buttermilk will help bring it all together.

Conclusion: Buttermilk in Coffee

So there you have it, my friend. The pros and cons of putting buttermilk in coffee. For me, it’s a hard ‘no’. The two shall never meet in my coffee cup!

But, it is a personal decision, and knowing that buttermilk has some health benefits, you might decide to give it a go and see what happens.

If not, stick with using buttermilk in baking!


Should you put buttermilk in your coffee? Learn the pros and cons here.