Finding vegan milk options that work for you is helpful when you become a vegan. Not all milk replacements behave the same, so I’ve created this quick walk-through to show you which ones work best in which situations.
Oat milk is lower in calories than nut milks, but it’s more versatile in cooking. It works great in baked goods as a replacement for cow’s milk. Making oat milk at home is really easy – here’s my recipe on how to make oat milk.
Soy milk is made from soy beans. It’s high in nutrition, although it will only work for you if you enjoy the taste of soy. If you like the taste of tofu, you’ll probably like soy milk. Soy milk has a high calorie content compared to other types of plant-based milks so it’s a good choice for someone looking to maintain their weight. I usually use soy milk at home for adding to cereal, it is delicious!
Almond milk is considered by many vegans to be the best-tasting plant-based milk option out there. Like most nuts, almonds tend to be expensive, so one way to save money on almond milk is by making your own.
Coconut milk is known for its high nutritional content – it contains vitamins C, E, B1, B3, B5 and B6 as well as minerals (iron, selenium, sodium, calcium, magnesium and phosphorous). Since it has a distinctly sweet coconut flavor, it works best in fruity smoothies and desserts.
There are generally two kinds of coconut milk you can find in a supermarket in the US. Canned coconut milk is shelf-stable and can vary in quality and price. Generally I recommend using the best quality canned coconut milk you can find, the ingredients should ideally by all or mostly all coconut (not “coconut milk” as an ingredient in a list). The other kind of coconut milk you can easily find in the US is the kind meant for drinking, which is usually sold in cartons and must be kept refrigerated.
On Instant Veg, recipes calling for coconut milk will usually be using canned coconut milk used unless otherwise stated.
Rice milk is low in calories and somewhat starchy. It makes a good base to protein drinks where you’ll be adding additional sources of protein, and is also good for baking when you want to keep calories lower.