Raw Milk 101 - Storage

Answered on August 19, 2014
Created February 01, 2013 at 2:38 AM

After a long time of searching for a source of raw milk, I think I have found one that I might start buying from. Before I invest in this though, I need to know about a few things.

How do you store all the milk you get and when you get more then you can use, what do you do? What things do you make with the milk(eg. yogurt,butter,cheese)?

Can I freeze it and will it damage the milk in any way?

How long can I keep milk in the fridge for before it turns sour?

What kinds of things do you use soured milk for?

How much raw milk per day/week do you drink?

Do you find that it is better in yogurt/kefir form or just as milk?

How do you store the cream from the milk and what do you do with it?(eg. butter)

If there is anything else that you think I should know before buying a cow-share, please let me know.



on February 01, 2013
at 09:03 AM

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8 Answers


on February 01, 2013
at 08:43 PM

I freeze raw milk all the time, because driving to the farm to get it takes so long and the gas to get there is expensive. Freezing milk you may lose a tiny amount of the probotics within the milk, and the cream may change slightly in texture (it may get a little lumpy), but it tastes the same.

I stored my milk in 1/2 gallon glass jars. The milk lasted in my fridge 1.5-2 weeks before I noticed it going sour. I keep my fridge on its coldest settings, the colder your fridge the longer the milk lasts.

I never separated the cream from the milk, I always give the milk jar a shake so it would all mix together. Skim milk tastes awful!

If the milk ever went sour I made yogurt, because its real easy to make.



on February 01, 2013
at 10:45 PM

I love my cow share milk! To answer your questions based on my experience:

I haven't tried freezing my raw milk. Cheeseslave does all the time (www.cheeseslave.com).

Mine tastes fresh at least 7 days. A few days after that it starts to sour a bit, but from what I have read it's not harmful if you drink it a little sour.

You could use the soured milk for making yogurt (I heat my milk before making yogurt, so it would kill the bacteria and allow the yogurt culture to take hold). If you eat some grains, you could use it to soak them.

I get 1/2 gallon and I am pretty much the only one who drinks it. I either drink a small glass per day or make yogurt with it. I have experimented with raw yogurt, but often I heat it first.

The milk is really, really delicious. It's good any way. I also make milk kefir but I don't love the taste as much as yogurt or just drinking it straight.

I use the cream in my coffee. Typically when I make coffee in the morning I just pour from the milk jug without shaking. I figure that makes what gets into the coffee close to half-n-half. SO GOOD.


on February 01, 2013
at 03:23 AM

Store it in a fridge, glass bottle preferably. I rarely had excess, since I used to drink it all. 2 tall glasses everyday, but not anymore. I've made yogurt with it, tasted great. There's not really a set time that you can keep it for, depends. In the winter you can keep it for longer. At times I've kept it for an entire week. I wouldn't advise freezing it. They make delicious smoothies but it's best had straight from the bottle :)



on February 01, 2013
at 09:03 AM

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on February 03, 2013
at 08:25 AM

During the winter I keep my raw milk in the fridge for two weeks; the last few pints begin to sour but I don't mind.


on February 03, 2013
at 07:41 AM

I find it interesting that a paleo person whose interest is in pre-agricultural foods, would be interested in milk and refrigeration.

That said, I've never frozen my raw milk.

We make butter, yogurt, crème fraiche, cottage cheese, buttermilk (which is better for baking)/ whipped cream, poured-fresh cream on an old-fashioned dessert or pudding. Drink lots of milk, use the cream in coffee. If I have extra I share it with someone else. Give my cat or dog a sweet sip. Have the best sour cream on hand for baking....Jewish-style coffee cake, for example.

I've had milk last two weeks. If sometimes it has a little tang, it doesn't bother me. The milk is very sweet in itself. When very cold it is almost like drinking a milkshake. So, if it becomes a little tangy, put straight natural-processed cocoa in it, shake & let it sit overnight to blend. Shake again, as necessary. Voila, chocolate milk! Needs no sugar to satisfy craving for good chocolate!

The milk is never wasted.


on February 02, 2013
at 07:28 PM

As others have said, I store my milk in glass jars in the fridge. We just got some 1/2 gallon pitchers with lids that are perfect for milk! I rarely have more than we can use, but sometimes I make cheese or yogurt anyway. I like to make mozzarella because it is pretty easy and doesn't require a lot of special equipment.

Regarding how long the milk stays fresh, this depends a lot on what the cows are fed. Feeding cows some kelp seems to help the milk stay sweet much longer. I have had milk stay tasty for over two weeks! When it does get to tasting "off," you can pour it on your plants--they love it!

I get my milk from Jersey cows, and they give a lot of cream. I can skim about a cup off each gallon and still have Very rich milk! I usually make butter every two weeks, so that I have at least two cups of cream to work with. Other times (especially at holidays) we whip the cream and sweeten it for topping hot chocolate, pie, etc, instead of making butter. When you make butter, the buttermilk that is left over is great in bread or even to just drink!


on February 02, 2013
at 05:03 PM

I have been drinking raw milk for a year now. It comes in plastic half-gallons. I open it, pour off about 1/2 cup to give it some expansion room when freezing. Freezing does change the cream texture, slightly - a little lumpy, but tastes the same.

if I want butter, i'll skim about 1/2 the cream, and store it in a glass jar until i get about a quart - butter is quick in food processor. With half the cream left, the milk is still smooth and tasty. I find it stores in fridge for about 2 weeks.

If it starts to sour, make cream cheese or use for baking. check out this site - thehealthyhomeeconomist.

Also, after recent surgery and all those antibiotics, my gut was in a horrible state. a week of raw milk had the healthy bacteria back at normal levels.

Since i started drinking raw, eating grass fed meat and free range eggs, all from local farms, I feel better, am losing weight, and my skin just glows. After all the years of being told I was lactose intolerant - nope, just pasteurized intolerant.



on February 02, 2013
at 12:49 AM

i just bought my first quart of raw goat's milk today and there's an expiration date on the bottle- says it lasts up to one week in the fridge. it tastes much sweeter than i remember cow's milk tasting. i was planning on making yogurt with it but it's just so good as it is.

added 2/2/13 i ended up drinking a small glass of the milk last night. boy has today sucked! i had a toilet bowl of blood and i haven't seen that in about 1.5 months. i only got 1 hour of sleep from my gas. i asked the lady how often they get the milk in and it had been the day before when it came. my mom drank some, too, and is fine. i guess i have to give it up already. i've only been eating fermented yogurt (24 hours) and hard cheese with no lactose. seems even the goat's lactose was just hell for me.

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