Whole milk is unprocessed and thus retains all its dairy fat content, which makes it rich and creamy. It’s much more delicious than low-fat milk and has a lot of nutritional benefits. However, not everyone can or wants to consume it. If you, too, are looking for whole milk substitutes, don’t worry — there are many tasty and healthy alternatives available, including milk made from nuts, oats, and even seeds.
Naturally, each alternative has its own distinct flavor and nutritional profile. So, whether you’ve run out of whole milk or have dietary restrictions, these substitutes of whole milk will help you select an alternative that best suits your dietary needs and taste preferences!
1. Unsweetened Almond Milk
Unsweetened almond milk has fewer calories and fat but more dietary fiber, vitamin D, and vitamin E than whole milk. It also has less saturated fat, sugar content, and calories. We recommend using unsweetened almond milk since almonds already have a subtle sweetness, and a sweetened version can make your dishes too sweet.
You can use unsweetened almond milk as a substitute for whole milk in smoothies, cereals, lattes, and many baked goods. But remember that, like nut milk, almond milk also has a watery consistency, so don’t expect the same creaminess as whole milk. When baking with it, you may need to add a little extra leavening agent, such as baking powder or baking soda, as almond milk is not as thick as whole milk.
Suggested ratio: 1 cup whole milk = 1 cup unsweetened almond milk.
2. Coconut Milk
Coconut milk is a delightful plant-based alternative to whole milk that may be used in a number of ways. It has fewer fat and calories while maintaining a creamy, velvety smooth consistency. It is also rich in calcium, vitamin B12, and iron.
Coconut milk may be used as a direct substitute for whole milk and is ideal for making creamy sauces and soups, as well as for baked goodies. When substituting coconut milk for whole milk, keep in mind that the flavor and texture may differ slightly. It’s also a good idea to use unsweetened or low-fat coconut milk to avoid too much sweetness or fat.
Suggested ratio: 1 cup whole milk = 1 cup coconut milk.
3. Oat Milk
Oat milk is naturally dairy-free, vegan, and gluten-free, making it a tasty and nutritious solution for those with dietary restrictions. It also contains fewer calories and fat than whole milk and has a similarly creamy texture with a subtle sweet flavor.
Oat milk is one of the closest substitutes to whole milk as it offers a similar taste and consistency. Given its neutral flavor, it also works in a number of recipes that call for whole milk. You can use it in your tea or coffee as well as for baking cakes and cookies.
Suggested ratio: 1 cup whole milk = 1 cup oat milk.
4. Soy Milk
When it comes to nutrition, soy milk is a wonderful alternative to whole milk. It is high in protein and low in fat, making it a good choice for those who wish to cut back on calories and fat in their diet. This lactose-free and vegan option also contains vitamins and minerals, including calcium, iron, and vitamins A and B.
You may use soy milk in any recipe that calls for whole milk. Use it in equal amounts to substitute for the original ingredient in smoothies and soups and to cook other dishes, including for baking. But note that soy milk may add some sweetness to the final dish, so you may have to adjust your recipe accordingly.
Suggested ratio: 1 cup whole milk = 1 cup soy milk.
5. Skim Milk
Skim milk is another excellent substitute for whole milk when it comes to nutritional value. It contains all of the essential vitamins and minerals found in whole milk but with a lot less fat and calories. It also has more calcium and protein than whole milk.
Skim milk may be substituted for whole milk in practically any recipe. For best results, use a one-to-one ratio when replacing whole milk with skim milk. Note that skim milk is essentially non-fat milk, so it won’t have the same rich and creamy consistency as whole milk. However, when baking with skim milk, it is best to use a mixture of skim milk and butter or oil to achieve the desired texture and consistency.
Suggested ratio: 1 cup whole milk = 1 cup skim milk.
6. Cashew Milk
Rich, creamy, and packed with nutrients, this plant-based milk is also a good substitute for whole milk. It contains more heart-healthy monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fatty acids than whole milk while being lower in fat and calories. Additionally, it has a natural sweetness, making it a fantastic choice for enhancing the creaminess of your morning coffee, smoothies, or even baked goods!
When it comes to cooking, cashew milk is a versatile choice that can be included in a wide range of recipes. Use it in equal amounts to substitute whole milk in any of your favorite dishes. Cashew milk gives a rich, creamy texture that enhances the flavor of everything from soups and sauces to smoothies and baked goods.
Suggested ratio: 1 cup whole milk = 1 cup cashew milk.
7. Rice Milk
Rice milk is a staple in many vegan households and a great choice for those with lactose intolerance. It’s naturally sweet, lighter, and thinner in consistency than whole milk. Additionally, rice milk has a low-fat content, making it a better choice for people who want to limit their calorie intake.
Rice milk can be used in a variety of recipes, from soups to smoothies and everything in between. You can use it for cooking, baking, and topping your morning cereal. Keep in mind that the thinner consistency of rice milk may affect the texture of your dish slightly, so it’s best to experiment a bit until you get the desired result.
Suggested ratio: 1 cup whole milk = 1 cup rice milk.