Best Dairy Alternatives

I have begun to live life in the lactose free zone. For a cheese addict like myself this is NOT easy but I can still eat non cows cheese (goats, halloumi etc) which gives me some hope. Like many people who choose to eliminate lactose, this is due to my intestines hating a lot of foods I put in it! Luckily there is a bit of a lactose free trend going on at the moment which is making it a lot easier to do than it was 10 or 15 years ago. I remember being horrified as a child when my lactose intolerant cousin used to put orange juice or even water in her cereal. CRAZY.

In terms of milk, there are now many options available. So far I’ve tried oat, rice, almond, hazelnut, soy, lactose free milks (avonmore and M&S are good for these and they taste most similar to “normal” milk), and coconut. Dairy free yogurt options are also pretty good with some great soy and coconut varieties. Below are my favourites.

Best Milk Alternative: Koko Milk

Where to Buy: Londis, Tesco, Health shops

Why I like it: Made from coconut (not to be confused with tinned coconut milk), this has very light and refreshing taste. It is great on its own with some ice (I fond not a lot of other dairy free milks are not nice to drink alone) and AMAZING in coffee. Its is also low in fat. A 250ml serving will provide 37.5% of the adult recommended daily allowance of calcium. Since I’ve tasted it I basically can’t get enough of the stuff.

Negatives: Low in protein.

Runner Up: Alpro Almond Milk (unsweetened). Note: Beware of some almond milks that contain a potentially harmful additive called carageenan, always check the ingredients.

Best Yogurt Alternative: Sojade Yoghurts

Where to Buy: Avoca, Fallon & Byrne, Health Shops

Why I like it: Although I’m not a huge fan of soy products in general, I really love this yogurt. It is very light and every flavour I’ve tried has been excellent. I actually much prefer it to dairy yogurts and I would even buy this had I the choice of the two. It comes in 10 flavours and the lemon curd is a great dessert option. It also contains the good bacteria of Bifidus and Acidophilus which is not present in other dairy free yogurts I have tried. It’s also gluten free, vegan, organic, GMO free and good for cooking with.

Negatives: Some of the flavours can be a bit high in sugar.

Runner Up: I have genuinely despised every other dairy free yogurt I’ve tried so this has to be an n/a.

Best Ice Cream Alternative: Nobu Ice Cream

Where to buy: There are many stockists in this list

Why I Like it: This ice cream is amazing. It is dairy free, sugar free and made mainly from coconut milk, avocado and honey so it doesn’t include any nasty stuff. It comes in three flavours; lemon, coconut and vanilla (my favourite), and chocolate and toasted almond.  They are creamy, full of flavour and delicious. I love the coconut flavour served melting over something hot like my banana french toast below.

Negatives: It is a tad on the pricey side at €7.49.

Runner Up: Swedish Glace, available from most health stores.