9 Best Ways To Substitute For Milk In Hamburger Helper

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Are you looking for some milk substitutes for a hamburger helper recipe? If you are, then you will be glad to learn about these 9 easy ways to substitute for milk in hamburger helper. Keep reading to find out how!

substitute for milk in hamburger helper


Hamburger Helper is a packaged dried pasta with powdered seasonings from General Mills, sold as part of the Betty Crocker brand.

A box of hamburger helper consists of dried pasta, with a packet of powdered seasonings. The product line also features other starches, such as rice or potatoes. However, for today’s post, we will be discussing milk substitutes for the hamburger helper pasta. 

Milk is often used in hamburger helper to make the creamy sauce.  But, what if you no longer use it , or you run out? Thankfully, below we share 9 ingredients other than milk that can be used to make helper.

So, whether you’re making your own homemade hamburger helper from scratch, or you’re using the contents of the box, these milk substitutes below are worth a try.

What can I substitute for milk in hamburger helper?

There are many ways to substitute for milk in hamburger helper including heavy cream, half and half, evaporated milk, cream cheese plus shredded cheese, sour cream plus shredded cheese, almond milk, oat milk, soy milk, and water.

Let’s discuss each below.

Best substitute for milk in hamburger helper

Heavy cream

Heavy cream for hamburger helper

If you’re out of milk, then you can use an ingredient like heavy cream as an alternative for milk in hamburger helper. Heavy cream adds more richness and creaminess to hamburger helper, however, it can be used in equal amounts or even diluted with water as a good replacement.

Substitution: 1 cup of heavy cream or ½ cup of heavy cream and ½ cup of water = 1 cup of milk

Evaporated milk

Evaporated milk

Evaporated milk is another amazing substitute for milk in hamburger helper. Evaporated milk is richer and creamier with a slightly cooked flavor that is achieved by reducing the water content in fresh milk over heat by up to 60%. This results in a more concentrated version of regular milk.

Many people enjoy using evaporated milk in equal parts to make their hamburger helper i.e 1 cup of evaporated milk to replace 1 cup of regular milk.

However, for a closer flavor and texture to regular milk, diluting evaporated milk is ideal. Read more about substitutes for evaporated milk here.

Substitution: ½ cup water and ½ cup evaporated milk = 1 cup regular milk

Half and half

Half and half as a sub for milk in hamburger

Half and half can also be used to cook hamburger helper without milk. Half-and-half is made from equal parts heavy cream and equal parts milk, therefore, while it is rich and creamy, it is not as thick and rich as heavy cream alone.

I personally prefer a ratio of ½ cup water to ½ cup half-and-half when I’m trying to turn half and half into milk. However, many other people also use a ratio of ¾ cup half-and-half to ¼ cup water to make milk out of half and half.

Check out how to dilute half and half to make whole milk below

Substitution: ¼ cup water and ¾ cup half and half = 1 cup regular milk

Cream cheese + shredded cheese

shredded cheese


If you’re making hamburger helper without milk, another ideal replacement you can use is cream cheese and shredded cheese.

To make it, simply cook your hamburger helper as you normally would, then add about ½ cup of cream cheese and 2 cups of shredded cheese to the cooked hamburger helper instead of milk. Then stir to combine until creamy.

Sour cream + shredded cheese

Sour cream and shredded cheese make another good milk substitute for hamburger helper.

To use sour cream and shredded cheese in place of milk, simply cook the hamburger helper as per the instructions. Once cooked, stir in ½ cup of sour cream and 2 cups of shredded cheese into the pot until everything is well combined. You can check out this hamburger helper recipe made with sour cream and shredded cheese here. 

Almond milk

Almond milk for hamburger


Almond milk is a great dairy-free substitute for milk in hamburger helper. If you’ve cut out dairy or cow’s milk, almond milk makes for a creamy dairy-free hamburger helper meal.

In this case, you can use original almond milk, unsweetened almond milk, or vanilla almond milk.

Almond milk is less creamy than cow’s milk, but this does a great job of making a light creamy dairy-free sauce for this dish. Also, read more about the substitutes for almond milk here.

Substitution: 1 cup almond milk = 1 cup regular milk

Oat milk

oat milk as a replacement for milk

Oat milk is another amazing dairy-free milk that can be used as a replacement for regular milk in hamburger helper.

Oat milk is becoming increasingly popular and is a type of milk made from oats and water. It is creamier than almond milk and many people say that it tastes somewhat like cow’s milk, except for the fact that it is sweeter.

Substitution: 1 cup oat milk = 1 cup cow’s milk

Soy milk

Soy milk


If you are soy-free, then soy milk is another good way to replace milk in helper. It is soy-free, plant-based, creamy, and rich and makes for a delicious hamburger helper sauce for your dish.

Substitution: 1 cup soy milk = 1 cup of milk


water for hamburger helper

Lastly, water is typically used in hamburger helper anyway. However, if you’re out of milk and all the other substitutes above, or you’d rather just not use them, then water is also okay to use.

Water has no richness or creaminess, so using it as a substitute for milk will make for a less creamy helper, but, if you do not mind this then go ahead and try it out.

FAQs about hamburger helper without milk

Can you make hamburger helper without milk?

Yes, you can. There are 9 ways you can make hamburger helper without milk including heavy cream, half and half, evaporated milk, cream cheese plus shredded cheese, sour cream plus shredded cheese, almond milk, oat milk, soy milk, and water.

More milk replacement in your favorite recipes

Today, you’ve learned how to make a hamburger helper without milk. Therefore, if you’re ever out of milk and you’re in a bind, you have 9 amazing stand-ins for regular milk that are likely in your kitchen right now!

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