What does 2% milk mean?

In this brief article, we will answer the question, “What does 2% milk mean?” types of milk, and methods to prepare reduced-fat milk at home.

What does 2% milk mean?

2% milk refers to the percentage of fat in milk. This indicates that the milk contains only 2% fat out of the total weight of the milk. It is also termed reduced-fat milk.

What is the difference between whole milk, 1% milk, skim milk, and 2% milk?

It is essential to compare the nutrients to understand better.

Type of milkServing sizeEnergy (kcal)Carbohydrates (gms)Protein (gms)Fat (gms)
Whole milk1 cup1501288
2% milk1 cup1201285
1% milk1 cup1001282.5
Skimmed milk1 cup801180

From the above table, we can analyze the fact that 2% milk is lesser in calories and fat than whole milk. Whole milk would have 3.5% of the fat. Skimmed milk has 0.5% of the fat.

The 2% milk also contains slightly higher amounts of calcium and vitamin A compared to whole milk. Skimmed milk has no fats and 1% milk has lower fat content compared to 2% milk.

Does 2% milk contain all the essential nutrients as whole milk?

As the fats are stripped off 2% milk, there are lesser vitamin A levels. As a result, vitamin A is fortified in 2% milk along with vitamin D. 2000 IU of vitamin A along with 400 IU of vitamin D is added as per FDA recommendations.

Is there a difference in flavor and texture of whole milk and 2% fat milk?

Yes, there is a difference in flavor and texture between both types of milk. Whole milk is creamier and tastier than reduced-fat milk. Reduced-fat milk also has a thinner consistency compared to whole milk which is thicker.

How to prepare reduced-fat milk at home? 

There are two techniques to prepare reduced-fat milk at home. The first method is boiling the milk and the second method is to store them in the refrigerator in an air-tight container.

Boiling the milk

Ingredients

  • 4-5 cups of whole milk

Method

  • In a non-stick pan, add three tablespoons of water to the base of the pan. This would prevent the milk from sticking to the pan or burning.
  • Add whole milk to the pan. It is not necessary to use cow’s milk only. You can use buffalo milk or goat milk as well.
  • Let the milk boil for at least 10 minutes.
  • Remove the milk from the stove and let it cool for at least three hours.
  • Transfer the milk into the refrigerator and let it cool for 10-12 hours.
  • After 10-12 hours, remove the milk out of the fridge. You would notice the cream on the top of the milk.
  • Remove the cream on the milk using a spoon or fork.
  •  Boil the milk again for 10 minutes. Remove it off the stove and let it cool for 3 hours.
  • Transfer the milk into the refrigerator and keep it for 10-12 hours.
  • Remove the milk from the refrigerator and using a spoon or fork remove the cream formed on top of the milk. The fat content now would have been significantly reduced more than before.

You can repeat the same steps again by boiling the milk, storing it in the refrigerator, and removing the fat if you want a more reduced-fat version.

Keeping milk in the refrigerator

Ingredients

  • 4 cups of whole milk

Method

  • Transfer the milk into an air-tight bottle or container. You can also choose to store the milk in an airtight jar. Make sure to use a transparent container to be able to make out the cream from the milk.
  • Keep the milk in the refrigerator for at least a whole day.  Do not shake or move the container as it can disrupt the separation of fat from milk.
  • Remove the milk from the refrigerator. You can now make out a clear separation of cream and milk. Now that you have observed the cream line, you can separate the cream from the milk easily.
  • Open the airtight jar or container and slowly remove the cream using a spoon. You can store the cream in another container for making butter or incorporate it into other recipes. Be careful not to put the cream back into the milk.
  • Store the milk in the refrigerator for later use.

Other FAQs about milk which you may be interested in.

Is 2% milk healthier than whole milk?

2% milk has lesser fat and calories than whole milk. It could be ideal for weight watchers though studies have found that whole milk is healthier as well. Toddlers and children have been recommended to consume whole milk as fat is required for growth and development.

Conclusion

In this brief article, we have answered the question, “What does 2% milk mean?” types of milk, and methods to prepare reduced-fat milk at home.

References

https://gonnaneedmilk.com/articles/types-of-milk-explained/
https://healthyeating.sfgate.com/better-adults-whole-milk-two-percent-milk-1278.html
https://www.usdairy.com/news-articles/what-do-milk-fat-percentages-mean
https://graceharborfarms.com/2-vs-whole-milk/
https://m.tarladalal.com/how-to-make-homemade-skimmed-milk-42374r
https://www.wikihow.com/Skim-Fat-from-Whole-Milk

Hi, I am Charlotte, I love cooking and in my previous life, I was a chef. I bring some of my experience to the recipes on this hub and answer your food questions.