A Lovely Recipe for Sweet Milk "Sorbet" (and A Bit of a Tantrum)

Churn away in your favorite ice cream maker.

Churn away in your favorite ice cream maker.

Mercy, but this is some good stuff!  And it's so easy to make that I'm not sure that I should share it.  But I can't help myself.  I am altruistic by nature, and you all need to know how to make this.  You know, for when you want something creamy and frozen to top your apple pie, or strawberry shortcake.  Or maybe you just want a milkshake.

The sorbet is in quotation marks up there because technically, this is a sherbet, because it contains dairy.  So, I guess we could call it Sweet Milk Sherbet, but it just doesn't sound as good.  We used to make this at the restaurants using big honking #10 cans of sweetened condensed milk, but you probably don't want to make an enormous vat.  Or maybe you do.  At any rate, the mix will keep in the fridge for quite awhile, so you can make multiple batches if you do decide on the #10 can route.

Sweet Milk Sorbet

  • 1 part sweetened condensed milk
  • 1.25 parts hot water
  • vanilla to taste
  • salt to taste

So, if you have 4 ounces of sweetened condensed milk, you'll need 5 ounces of water.  8 oz-->10 oz, etc.  For the big #10 can, you'll need a gallon of water.  Anyway, mix the hot water and the milk together really well.  Add a pinch of salt and enough vanilla so that you're happy, and chill the whole thing.  Spin in whatever ice cream maker you own, and then let it set up completely in the freezer.  That's it.  Easy, huh?

Once again, I'm afraid that the pastry police will come and haul me away for telling you guys about this, but I won't go quietly, no I won't!  I'm so over the whole "secret recipe" thing that I could just scream.  I mean, seriously, folks--if the magic is really in the technique, why can't people share Great Aunt Sadie's Pumpkin Loaf recipe with the world?  The world won't add that elusive "Aunt Sadie Love" ingredient.  They won't be able to.  And how many times have you read reviews of online recipes and review after review says (use a high, silly voice to read this):  "Oh, this recipe was really great!  But when I made it, I changed x, y, z and oh, by the way, I poached it instead of baking it!"  See?!  The end result is completely different.  Aunt Sadie's Pumpkin Loaf has been miraculously transfigured into Polly's Butternut Squash Floating Island.

Share your recipes, people.  You're just giving folks seeds.  It's what those folks do with those seeds once they have them that dictates the final product.  You can't grow true Vidalia onions in Topeka, and nobody else's pumpkin loaf can compete with Great Aunt Sadie's.

Ahem, I think that, perhaps, I have just had a wee bit of a tantrum.  I actually went back and changed the post title after my fit so that you wouldn't be blindsided.  I wanted you to know what to expect!  Okay, I'm better now.  Enjoy the sorbet; it is seriously good.


  1. says

    Leslie has wanted to get the ice cream attachment for our Kitchenaide, if she see’s this recipe I’m sunk :).

    I’m so afraid if we get one, I’ll instantly gain 20lbs.

    I totally agree with you about the “secret” recipe. I’m of the opinion that you should share all your recipes so people beyond your reach can enjoy them too.

  2. says

    Thanks for being a sharer….there are few to many left in the world today.

    Cory the kitchenaid ice cream maker is the best! A little cumbersome to leave in the freezer all the time but it seems that as soon as I take mine out and put it somewhere else in the cupboard I spy a great easy recipe like this one. Back in it goes tonight so I can try this…I guess it should get a permanent space in there!

  3. linda says

    I have the Cuisinart ice cream maker and I LOVE it! I also have the KA attachment but I prefer the cuisinart.

    I’ve made this sherbet/sorbet before and it’s terrific.

    If you don’t believe in secret recipes why won’t you give me that pound cake recipe?????

    And after I gave you my maple nutmeg pie recipe.


    I have an OUTSTANDING recipe for brown sugar chocolate chunk ice cream if anyone is interested.

  4. linda says

    As a follow-up to “secret” recipes: I make a scrumptious “teriyaki chicken” that never fails to draw rave reviews and requests for the recipe. I never give it to anyone because I’m too embarrassed. Here’s the recipe: Put some chicken breasts in a baking dish. Mix 1 cup of orange soda with 1/2 cup soy sauce. Pour over chicken and bake.

    It’s hard to maintain your image as a gourmet cook with recipes like that, but I tell you, it’s fab!

  5. says

    @linda make the Van Halen poundcake. It is very closely based on the secret recipe. And just to be clear, it’s not MY secret–I’m keeping someone else’s secret 🙂 And the maple nutmeg pie is just the thing to eat and eat. And eat. in front of the television! Soy sauce and orange soda, huh? Sometimes ignorance is bliss 😆

  6. says

    I used to give electric ice cream makers to my friends as housewarming gifts because secretly I always wanted one, but never NEEDED one, and I knew I would either (a) eat too much ice cream or (b) lose it in the back of a cupboard somewhere. But now you are making me rethink my own logic. Thank You!

  7. Jim Krieg says

    You know, back in the day, bakers were hired because they made a particular item very well. Maybe you made great brioche or croissant. So the new employee would not write down or reveal the formula thereby giving him job security. My dad’s baking mentor tell’s the story of his dad hiring a guy who made great brioche, but he himself was a jerk. So by and by the boss, through passing glances, learned all the amounts except the eggs. So one day he hid around the corner and counted the eggs as they were being cracked. He then had stolen the “secret” recipe and fired the guy on the spot. So the secret recipe idea used to be job security.

    • says

      Yeah, I guess I can see that. I mostly am coming at it from the home cook’s perspective. I have just never seen the point of being so secretive with something that is so universal: the love of food. And even if I tell you exactly how I make something, chances are good that the end product won’t be quite the same. So my thought is why not just share, teach what you know, spread the wealth and bank some good karma on the way. 🙂


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