It’s Plant Milk Day! This year, we thought we’d update our previous guide to the best plant milks to give you some more information on which vegan milk is best for which purpose, as well as answer some of the top questions about plant milk.
According to research, plant milk is far more sustainable than cow’s milk, as producing it requires less water and land. Plant milk production also releases fewer emissions, which is great news for both animals and the planet. The environmental impact of different plant milks is different, however, as illustrated in the chart below. Luckily, there are plenty of different varieties to choose from – and more vegan milk alternatives are hitting the market every year.
With well over 300 plant milks certified with the Vegan Trademark, it’s now easier than ever to choose an alternative to dairy, whether you’re a pea milk purist or an oat milk obsessive. When you see the Vegan Trademark used on a product, it means that our skilled team has checked all the ingredients and the making process to ensure they meet our strict standards of being free from animal products.
What vegan milks are there?
- Oat milk needs just a fraction of the water and land required to produce cow’s milk, and is perfect for an iced latte. Vegan Trademark registered oat milk products include ASDA Fresh Oat Drink, Ecomil Oat Drink, Provamel Oat Original and Alpro Oat Original, No Sugars and Growing Up.
- Soy milk may be the most well-known vegan milk alternative, and is used all over the world. It’s also quite versatile, meaning it can be used for a range of purposes from popping in your tea to even using it for savoury dishes like vegan mac and cheese. Its popularity means there’s plenty to choose from, including ASDA’s Free From Sweetened Chilled, Sweetened Long Life and Unsweetened Long Life soya milks, Alpro’s Soya Original, Organic Unsweetened and Growing Up milk.
- Almond milk is another vegan classic, and works amazingly for sweet treats such as desserts, chocolates and even vegan milkshakes. For this one, we’ll suggest Innocent’s Almond Dairy Free, ASDA’s Free From Unsweetened Chilled and Unsweetened Long Life almond milks, and Alpro’s Almond Original, No Sugars and Caramelised.
- Hazelnut milk is another great option to suit sweet treats and add an extra dimension to your coffee. There are plenty of Vegan Trademark certified options for you to try, including Innocent’s Hazelnut Dairy Free, ASDA’s Free From Hazelnut Drink, Ecomil’s Hazelnut Drink Sugar Free and Alpro’s Hazelnut Original.
- Coconut milk is a super-versatile option for cereal, smoothies, baking and more, and adds a lovely coconut twist to your coffee! If this is your pick, try Rebel Kitchen’s coconut-based Whole Mylk, Koko Dairy Free’s Original and Unsweetened coconut milks, ASDA’s Free From Chilled and Long Life coconut milks and Alpro’s Coconut Original and No Sugars.
- Have you tried cashew milk? Many comment that this one is perfect for cooking and desserts, as it’s thick and creamy texture make it suited to cheesy flavoured sauces and indulgent puddings. Try out Alpro’s Cashew Original and Ecomil’s Cashew Drink Sugar Free.
- If you’re looking for a different kind of plant milk taste, why not try hemp milk? Its nutty and light flavour makes it perfect for cooking, smoothie and even for tea. It’s surprisingly versatile! Check out Good Hemp’s Seed Milk.
- Another plant milk you might not have tried is pea milk – which is a bit newer to the vegan milk scene. Again, this one is surprisingly versatile, and Vegan Trademark options include Wunda Plant Based Not Milk in Original and Unsweetened, which are powered by protein from yellow split peas.
Which vegan milk is best for coffee?
Lots of brands are releasing barista versions of their own plant milk alternatives, which are made to be more suited to coffee drinks. Barista products usually contain different additives compared to their regular counterparts, which are there to help with frothing.
Which vegan milk is best for baking?
Many people suggest that the more versatile plant milks, such as soy, oat and almond, are best for baking, as these have a less watery texture than some alternatives. With higher protein content, they can be a great nutritional addition to your home baking.
Does vegan milk contain enough vitamins and minerals?
If you’re thinking of ditching the dairy and opting for plant milk instead, it’s great to note that many plant milks are fortified with essential minerals such as iodine. If you’re still worried about getting enough vitamins, The Vegan Society’s VEG 1 contains essential vitamins and minerals, such as B12, D3 and selenium.
Whether you’re looking to make the switch to vegan milk or just want more information on the best uses for plant milk alternatives, we hope this blog was useful for you. Using plant milk in your recipes? Make sure to tag @vegantrademark on Instagram or Twitter to join in the conversation. We’d love to see your ideas!
By Jo Cassin, Brand Marketing Officer
The views expressed by our bloggers are not necessarily the views of The Vegan Society.