If you need to avoid dairy products, there is some very good news for you. The marketplace is full of non-dairy options for those who shun the stuff that comes from cows and goats. Prices aren’t too high; availability is good in most parts of the country and you can really learn to enjoy some great-tasting beverages. It’s possible that you’ve already heard of things like soy and almond milk. But what about all the other non-dairy choices? Here’s a short list of what’s out there.
You can buy or make coconut milk. The beverages you buy at the store, as opposed to the super-thick stuff in the can, are light and creamy. They work well in coffee, on cereal, or just as a delicious drink. You can bake with coconut milk too without worrying about the very mild taste overtaking your main dish.
This good-tasting substitute for dairy has a big following and is currently one of the most popular non-dairy milks. The best part is that you can easily whip up a batch at home. All you need is a blender, a cup of rolled oats and four cups of water. Mix on high for about one minute and then strain the stuff through a fine-fiber cloth. If you don’t want to make a mess in the kitchen, pick up some Oatly oat milk at the store and enjoy it right out of the container.
We use cashews in hundreds of standard meal recipes so it makes sense that cashew milk would be just as versatile. Well, it is. This stuff is creamy as can be and makes a wonderful addition to a cup of black or sweetened coffee. Like its cousin, almond milk, cashew is delicious all by itself or in smoothies. Some people who avoid dairy products choose cashew as their default cereal add-in, coffee “cream” and baking ingredient. One reason for that: there are so many different high-quality brands of cashew milk on the market and the mainstream grocery chains carry most of them.
What can you put on cereal or in coffee that tastes even better than most dairy milks? Flax milk, of course. It’s a simple combination of water and pressed flax oil. The rich, smooth texture and incredible taste make it a popular choice at breakfast time.
Creamy and thick, this strong-tasting non-dairy milk is primarily used in baking and food preparation. One of its big advantages is that it contains a lot of protein, more than all the other non-dairy milks on this list except for soy.
Sweet, light rice milk has been around for centuries. In Asia, before the Western hemisphere was settled, people were mixing this concoction of water and boiled rice as a drink and as a food additive. Today, it’s most commonly used as a nutritious drink, poured over cereal and put into coffee. Nowadays, everyone adds some type of sweetener to rice milk so be sure to look at labels of store brands and make sure that the added sweetener is on your personal “okay” list.