Dairy has a well-deserved spot on the Mount Rushmore of balanced diets. It provides a variety of health benefits and is an optimal source of many important nutrients and vitamins. Unfortunately, there is a population of people who understand all too well that just because something is good for the average person, that does not make it good for everyone. There are between 30 and 50 million people in the United States who are lactose intolerant. And almost two percent of children under the age of four have a milk allergy.
The dairy alternatives market is steadily growing as people are recognizing that traditional and flavorful recipes are still possible to enjoy with substitute ingredients. Even people who do not experience lactose intolerance or have a dairy allergy are choosing to tap into the benefits of going dairy-free:
Of course, all of that sounds great, but the actual process of going dairy-free is a lot easier said than done, right? Well, yes and no. Change, no matter what kind it is, can always be a challenge. However, once you commit yourself and make a few minor tweaks to your grocery list, you will find that you can make almost anything equally (and often even more) delicious with a dairy alternative.
naturally delightful's top 5 dairy-free Alternatives to milk
We stay dairy-free at Naturally Delightful by relying on the quality of the substitutes that we use. Outlined below are just a few of our favorite milk alternatives:
1. oat milk
Oat milk is a trending alternative in the world of dairy-free options. Its simplicity is its charm. Oats are blended with water, strained (sometimes even double strained), and then chilled for use. And since oats are naturally gluten-free, oat milk is a safe and healthy dairy alternative for people with dietary restrictions.
Although oat milk contains less protein than traditional cow milk, it does still provide many important vitamins and minerals that are necessary to sustain a healthy diet:
When you use oat milk as a dairy-free option, the fibers can also help to manage your cholesterol levels and satiate your appetite to help you feel fuller for longer periods of time.
2. coconut milk
Coconut milk is another dairy-free option for people who suffer from lactose intolerance, have dairy allergies, or are just looking for ways to make healthy adjustments to their diet. It is made from a coconut’s flesh that is either boiled or simmered in water and then strained.
While oat milk contains no saturated fats, coconut milk is heavily composed of healthy fats. It also provides an assortment of vitamins and nutrients like fiber, vitamin C, folate, manganese, copper, and selenium.
Like oat milk, coconut milk is naturally gluten-free, making it a safe option for the celiac disease community as well as anyone else seeking to avoid gluten.
3. Almond milk
Almond milk is a sweet, multi-purpose substitute for dairy. It is commonly used as a beverage or as an ingredient in recipes.
This milk comes from almonds that are blended with water to the desired consistency and then strained. The creamy texture and nutty aroma make it one of the more popular and flavorful choices for someone on a dairy-free diet.
Almond milk’s taste is not even its most appealing quality, though, as it has numerous properties that can enhance your overall health. It packs a strong magnesium, antioxidants, and calcium punch while staying low on calories and carbohydrates.
4. Cashew milk
Cashew milk is also a nut-based dairy alternative. After the cashews are shelled and toasted, they are soaked and then ground into a substance with a paste-like texture. The final product comes from more blending with water and then straining the pulp.
Cashew milk is a low-calorie, dairy-free alternative to milk that comes loaded with a variety of important vitamins and minerals. With fortification, it offers an ample serving of iron, calcium, vitamin A, vitamin D, and vitamin E.
5. Pea milk
One of the newer members to join the dairy-free family is pea milk. It is made from the protein of yellow split peas that has been stripped from the fiber and starch of the plant.
The end result is a protein-rich product that is dairy-free, soy-free, and nut-free, making it an ideal dietary substitute for someone with lactose intolerance or a milk allergy. For people who have to closely monitor and manage blood sugar levels, the unsweetened option of pea milk is typically low in carbs and sugar.
And just in case you've read this far with visions of a swampy, greenish extract (maybe even a little bit like split pea soup), rest assured that pea milk is actually as aesthetically appealing as any of the other traditional or dairy-free milks. Pea milk is produced and sold as a savory alternative with a creamy, white consistency.
GREEN BAY'S FINEST ORGANIC, GLUTEN-FREE, AND VEGAN BAKERY
If you are looking for a way to reap the health benefits of dairy-free options without sacrificing the flavor of your favorite foods, visit us at Naturally Delightful, Green Bay's finest organic, gluten-free, and vegan bakery. Our custom cakes, sweet treats, breakfast options, and anytime meals are all prepared with an assortment of only the best dairy-free ingredients. Whether you are planning a big event or just looking to satisfy a personal craving, Naturally Delightful offers all of our customers a 100% satisfaction and smile guarantee!