Malt Powder Substitute – What Can You Use?

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Malt powder has many uses and is one of the key ingredients in many baking recipes. It has a caramel-like sweet flavor and a smooth texture similar to regular flour.

There are two types of malt powder. Diastatic malt powder has enzymes that help the dough rise, and is often used in baked goods. Non-diastatic malt powder doesn’t have enzymes and is much more common than diastatic malt flour.

Although malt powder has many uses, it can be hard to find. If you can’t get your hands on malt flour, you’re probably wondering what can you use to substitute malt powder.

So, what is the best malt powder substitute? Malted milk powder is the best substitute for malt powder. Malted milk powder is made from a blend of wheat flour, malted barley, and evaporated whole milk powder. If you can’t find malted milk, use Ovaltine milk powder, vanilla powder, rice milk powder, bread flour, or soy milk powder instead. 

Several ingredients have similar flavor, texture, and sweetening properties as malt powder. Keep reading to discover different malt powder substitutes. 

What Is Malt Powder?

Malt powder or malt flour is made by finely grinding sprouted barley. It isn’t the same thing as malted milk powder, which consists of a mixture of wheat flour, malted barley, and evaporated whole milk powder. 

Malt powder is used in many baked recipes, because of its natural sweetness. It is also used to make malted milkshakes.

Diastatic malt powder and non-diastatic malt powder are two types of malt flour. 

Non-diastatic malt powder is much more common and easier to find. It gives a wonderful caramel flavor and shiny appearance to baked goods.

Diastatic malt powder has enzymes that turn starches into sugar which helps feed the yeasts used to make yeast dough. When used in baked goods, diastatic malt powder results in higher rises. 

Is Malt Powder the same as Milk Powder?

No, malt powder and milk powder aren’t the same. True malt powder is made from barley. To manufacture malt powder, barley is allowed to sprout for a short amount of time and is then dried and finely ground into powder.

Milk powder, also known as dry milk, powdered milk, or dried milk is a dairy product made by evaporating milk to dryness. The biggest advantage of milk powder is that it has a longer shelf life than liquid milk.

6 Best Malt Powder Substitutes

Malt powder is used to sweeten milkshakes and add color, flavor, and shine to baked goods. Several ingredients have similar properties as malt powder and might be easier to find in stores.

Use the following ingredients as a milk powder substitute in baked goods:

1. Malted Milk Powder

Malt milk powder is a powder made from wheat flour, evaporated whole milk powder, and malted barley. Malted milk powder is an excellent substitute for malt powder and can be used to add color, flavor, and sweetness to baked goods. 

Use malted milk powder as a 1:1 replacement for malt powder in recipes.  

2. Ovaltine Powder

Ovaltine powder, also known as Ovomaltine is a milk flavoring product made from malt extract, whey, and sugar. It is available in classic malt and chocolate malt flavors and can be used instead of malt powder in milkshakes and baked recipes.

Substitute Ovaltine powder for malt powder at a 1:1 ratio.

3. Malt Syrup

Malt syrup is an unrefined sweetener made from malted barley. It’s dark brown in color, sticky, and has a distinctive malty flavor.

Malt syrup has the closest flavor to malt powder and adds a nice color and aroma to recipes. Use barley malt syrup as a 3:1 replacement for malt powder in recipes.

4. Maca Powder

Maca powder is made from maca, a cruciferous root vegetable native to the Andes mountains, in Peru. It has a nutty, slightly butterscotch flavor, and a balanced sugar level.

Maca powder has a similar texture as malt powder and is chock full of vitamins and minerals, including zinc, potassium, phosphorus, calcium, and iron. Substitute maca powder for malt powder at a 1:1 ratio. 

5. Milk Powder

Milk powder is made by evaporating milk. Dry milk is one of the most readily available substitutes for malt powder and can be used in beverages, sweet desserts, and baked goods.

Regular milk powder isn’t as sweet as malt powder, so you’ll need to add sugar to it if you want to use it as a malt powder substitute in baked goods.

6. Coconut Milk Powder

Coconut milk powder is a fine powder made by drying raw, unsweetened coconut cream. It has a perfect balance of flavor and smooth texture for baked recipes.

Although not as sweet as malt powder, coconut milk powder adds the right amount of sweetness to recipes. Use coconut milk powder as a 1:1 substitute for malt powder in beverages and baked goods. 

Can I use Normal Milk Powder instead of Malted Milk Powder?

Yes, you can substitute regular milk powder for malted milk powder in recipes. Malted milk powder is made from normal milk powder, malted barley, and wheat flour so it has a similar texture and flavor as dry milk.

However, normal milk powder isn’t as sweet as malted milk powder, so you’ll need to add sugar or another sweetener if you decide to use it as a substitute in recipes.  


Malt powder is often used to sweeten and add color and shine to baked goods. It’s made from ground sprouted barley and is often confused with malted milk powder which is made from wheat flour, malted barley, and powdered milk.

Although malt powder is used in various recipes, it’s not readily available in grocery stores. If a recipe calls for malt powder, and you don’t have it at home, use malted milk powder instead. 

Other readily available substitutes for malt powder are malt syrup, coconut milk powder, molasses, Ovaltine powder, maca powder, milk powder, rice malt syrup, soy milk powder, potato flour, vanilla powder, corn starch, corn syrup, and bread flour. 

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