Does milk tenderize meat?

In this brief guide, we are going to answer the question “does milk tenderize meat” with an in-depth analysis of whether or not milk tenderizes the meat. Moreover, we are going to discuss the tenderizing tools and the different methods that you can use to tenderize your meat.

So without much ado, let’s dive in and figure out more about it.

Does milk tenderize meat?

Yes, milk does tenderize the meat to some extent. So milk does contain some lactic acid in it that helps with tenderizing the meat and the calcium present in the milk also activates certain enzymes in the meat that aids this process. Moreover, fermented milk products like buttermilk and yogurt can also be used to tenderize milk. You can read more about it here.

How to make meat tender by using milk?

Milk can be used along with salt and some herbs as the marinade to tenderize meat. The herbs and spices are used to impart flavor to the meat. All you gotta do is to take some milk in a bowl, add some salt and herbs like cumin, thyme, pepper, etc in it. Now put it in the refrigerator overnight. Don’t forget to cover the bowl with the help of plastic wrap or cling film. Take it out of the fridge the next day and cook it as desired.

How to use tenderizing tools?

So some special tenderizing tools are available in the market and you can use them to tenderize your meat. They usually have a big bumpy head and are made up of wood or steel. These tools can be used readily in boneless meat. Moreover, if you do not have a tenderizing tool available you can also use a clean hammer for this purpose but you should keep in view the sanitation and cleanliness profile of the hammer. 

So if you have bones present in your meat we recommend you not to tenderize it with the tenderizing tool or else the bones will crush. What you can do instead is to separate the bones from the meat and afterward tenderize it using the tenderizing tool.

So what you gotta do is to lay a plastic wrap on the counter. Place your boneless meat on it and pound the meat with the help of the tenderizing tool till you achieve your ideal meat thickness. Now grill it or fry it and enjoy your tender and juicy meat. 

Other FAQs about Milk which you may be interested in.

Can evaporated milk be substituted for condensed milk?

Can I substitute condensed milk for regular milk?

Does Almond milk go bad?

What are the different ways that you can use to tenderize meat?


Brining is the process that is used to make the meat juicier and to add some extra flavor to it. In brining, we immerse the meat in the water with a little salt, and some herbs added to it.

In the case of brining, the process of osmosis sets in, but as the outer environment is hypotonic in this case (salt is added in a lot of water) so the water moves into the cells of meat and therefore the meat becomes juicier and tender after brining.

It is worth mentioning here that osmosis is the process in which the solvent moves from a point of lower solute concentration to a point of higher solute concentration. The process of osmosis maintains the solute-solvent balance throughout the semi-permeable membranes and this process also plays an important role in the body of living organisms.


Marination is the process that is done to impart different flavors in the meat. Marination is done by using some acids (lemon), salt, and different spices. The acid degrades the structure of the protein and imparts the flavor of different herbs and condiments that are added to the marination mixture. Moreover, as the acid denatures the protein it also makes the meat tender and juicier.

Moreover, you can also use yogurt or buttermilk along with herbs and salt as a marinade.

Using baking soda

Baking soda is the bicarbonate salt so what it does is to alkalize the meat, raise its pH, and make it difficult for the protein molecules to tightly bind together. Baking soda denatures the proteins present in the meat, thus, it makes the meat juicer and tender. 

So if you want your beef steaks or chicken wings to be tender and juicier, we recommend you to use baking soda for it. All you gotta do is to make a baking soda and water mixture and soak your meat pieces in it for at least 15 minutes. Afterward, rinse, and cook. In the case of the larger meat pieces, you can rub the baking soda all over the meat and let it stay in the fridge for a couple of hours. Afterward, rinse it and cook as desired.


In this brief guide, we answered the question “does milk tenderize meat” with an in-depth analysis of whether or not milk tenderizes the meat. Moreover, we discussed the tenderizing tools and the different methods that you can use to tenderize your meat.


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