5 Plant Based Alternatives to Replace Milk

There can be various reasons behind saying no to milk. It can be lactose intolerance, milk allergy, personal preference or any other reason. Life without milk is almost impossible to imagine. From childhood we are conditioned to drink milk. It is part of many Indian desserts and is a good source of calcium and protein. So to say goodbye to milk becomes difficult.

Even if someone wants to avoid milk then also they are not able to do so because milk has many nutrients like calcium, vitamin b and protein which our body needs. People are also not able to find a suitable replacement for milk.

There are many non dairy substitutes to milk available in market like soya milk, almond milk, coconut milk, rice milk and oat milk. The following table depicts nutrient content in these substitutes.

Nutrient content in one cup
Soya Milk Almond Milk Coconut Milk Rice Milk Oat Milk
Calories 109 60 80 120 130
Fat 5 g 2.5g 4.5g 2.5g 2.5g
Protein 7g 1g 4.9g 1g 4g
Carbs 8 g 8g 7g 23g 24g


Soya milk is one of the best alternatives to milk. Both cow’s milk and soya milk contain almost same amount of protein. It is also rich in iron, vitamin C, vitamin D and essential fatty acids. Soya milk is very rich in antioxidants and fiber.

To make soya milk, dried soybeans are soaked and then grinded with water. The pulp is then strained. It can be prepared at home or can be brought from store.

Soy milk has a distinct taste so people may take some time to get used to it. Nowadays many people are turning to soy milk.

Almond milk is good option for people who look for milk substitute as it contains neither lactose nor gluten. It is easily digested by the body.

It is made by blending skinned almonds with water. It may not be pocket friendly as it is costlier than cow’s milk.

For people transitioning from cow’s milk, almond milk is a good option as it does not have strong flavor of its own.

Many times almond milk is sweetened by using artificial sweeteners. Therefore, check the nutritional information

Coconut milk is extremely beneficial for our body. It is a good source of iron, magnesium and potassium. It has anti-inflammatory properties which help in keeping the gut healthy.

Coconut milk contains lauric acid (a rare medium-chain fatty acid) that is easily utilized by the body for energy.

Rice milk is unsweetened and is slightly foamy than cow’s milk. It can be used in place of milk in cereals.

Just like almond milk, oat milk has neither lactose nor gluten. This creamy and light flavored milk is high in fiber which gives the feeling of fullness. One downside of consuming oat milk is that it contains more calories as compared to other substitutes.

Also, while shopping for these milks make sure that you check their labels. Avoid them if they have artificial sweeteners or if they contain sugar.

All these alternatives can be used in place of milk depending on what you are making. You may need to experiment a little to find which milk works best for you. Once you get the hang of it, everything will become much easier.

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