Saturday, 21 September 2013

A Glass of "Milk"

I am still looking for a way of announcing the variations we consume as alternatives to dairy milk. Until I find a suitable alternative the only word I can use is milk! We say Mummys milk (generally rice or almond) Little Ones milk (SMA lactose free formula , Lactofree and now KoKo) and Daddys milk (the only one having dairy). We have even started educating little one that not only do cows produce milk but so do sheep, goats, other mammals and even plants. This feels very alternative to me and will cause the teachers a few headaches when he gets to school. Lets hope by that very soon schools will be more rounded in their approach to food,  allergies, intolerances and nutrition.

The growing market in alternative milk now has a lot to offer. You can find most of these in the supermarket but certainly a great selection will be available at your local health food shop and online.

I find that each has its own advantages and disadvantages. Some will suit your taste buds and others may not suit at all. Some are thicker, some thinner, some heat well, others are nice cold. Most can now be found in the larger supermarkets. If you have trouble finding them you may have more luck at health food shops or online. There are several brands available for each of the types but these are some of the most common. If there is a milk substitute needed you can always find an alternative.

(no lactose, contains cows milk)

Lactofree provide a whole range of dairy containing products without the lactose. If you can eat dairy these are the first call for an alternative to milk. They taste exactly like "normal" dairy as they are made with cows milk. The range is fantastic for cooking as they have all the same properties as dairy. The individual portion packs are fantastic for popping in your bag and using while out and about.

Coconut, Chocolate or Strawberry Coconut

KoKo (formerly Kara) is a fantastic, reliable brand of coconut milk drinks. They come in a range of flavours and are great for children and adults alike. They can be used in baking or cooking and make great easy hot chocolate when heated up. If you want to make savoury dishes or coconut cream thick enough for whipped cream replacement you may wish to use a tinned brand. These often produce a thick cream on the top of the thinner milk. I really like Blue Dragon Coconut Milk in a small carton.

Almond, Rice, Hazelnut or Soya

Alpro have an extensive range and are well known or their soya milk. They have now extended to soya free and dairy free milks. I find the options are fantastic for creating different flavours in your food and drinks. The almond milk works really well in coffee and the rice milk is my favourite in pancake batter. They are available in fresh or long life so you can choose which suits you best. The UK advice is that rice milk is not suitable as a main drink for children under the age of 5 due to the level of arsenic found naturally in the plant (

Almond Milk and Cream

Ecomil can be tricky to track down but you may find them in Holland and Barratt, individual health food shops or online. Their almond milk is really thick, creamy and sweet. It is fabulous for adding to desserts but it's not cheap and may be too sweet for some people.

My Dairy Free Dream
 Rice, Praline (contains barley/gluten)

The range from My Dairy Free Dream is growing. The rice milk is much too watery for my taste but I would recommend trying all of their products that are safe as they all differ. Please beware the Praline contains gluten. 

Milk or Cream (contains small amount of gluten)

Oatly comes as milk or cream and is a tasty milk alternative for anyone who can tolerate a small amount of gluten (maximum 100 parts per million). I have found the cream works really well in cooking as there is little after taste and it responds well to heating. 

Hemp Milk

"I am ashamed to say I haven't tried this yet. Very popular with health conscious peeps as well as those needing to avoid animal milk."

I have now tried and tested hemp milk. I have to admit I thought it wold be fairly unpalatable. Having been told by a friend to try it in a smoothie which would disguise its flavour, and the comments from hubby about whether it would be green, I was reluctant. I am ashamed of my lack of bravado. Hemp milk is smooth, sweet and nutty reminiscent of hazelnut and sesame seed. I would certainly use it in smoothies but also on cereal, in porridge and hot chocolate. Sadly it doesn't taste good in a cup of tea!

Let me know if I have missed any, especially if they are really useful and tasty!


  1. I use coconut milk (Tesco own chilled) in tea and coffee as I found soy milk (especially Alpro) too 'beany'. I tried the Good Hemp the other day but didn't like the taste and it was too sweet for me. I love the cream from the tinned coconut milk mmmmmm now I have got o go have have some!!!! This was a very informative post, thank you xxxx

  2. Its good to know the Tesco version is good too thank you. I know what you mean regarding the taste of soya. I also question whether I am intolerant of soya. I must try Hemp milk soon so I can judge for myself. Having a sweet tooth it may not be a problem. Thank you for reading glad it was informative :)

  3. I became rather intolerant to soya as I was replacing *everything* dairy with it so now I spread my dairy free love! Haven't tried the coconut or hemp yet.

    Isn't it great that more stuff is widely available now?

    I've had the Blue Diamond Almond Breeze too, it's delicious on cereals :)


  4. Thanks Lisa, spreading out your choices does seem to be the best option. It also adds much more interest in a restricted diet :)

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