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How to Choose the Best Milk Alternative for You

With more choices than ever and plant-based diets trending up, the milk alternative aisle can get a tad overwhelming these days. If you’re unsure what qualities to look for in a milk or milk alternative, here are a few things you might take into consideration.

Taste & Texture

It’s no surprise that taste is often the number one factor in our eating decisions. This is the one category that’s completely subjective based on preference, and also highly depends on how you’ll use it (see below: practicality). Here’s a description of the flavor profile for some of the more popular options available:

Almond – thinner than some other alternatives with a mild almond flavor

Soy – slightly nutty, slightly creamy consistency

Oat – on the sweeter, thicker end of the spectrum 

Pea – somewhat chalky mouthfeel, bland flavor

Rice – thin, sweet

Flax – rich, creamy and slightly nutty

Nutrition

Soy milk is the only milk alternative with nearly as much protein as cow’s milk with 7 grams per one cup serving. Other options, while low in protein, are typically fortified with calcium and vitamin D. However, it’s hard to beat the total package of nutrients in our new flax milk. One serving provides the same nutrition as one serving of milled flaxseed including 3 grams of fiber plus 3310mg of naturally occurring ALA Omega-3s. It’s also nut free, gluten free, dairy free, soy free, and non-gmo project verified which makes it appropriate for many with allergies and/or intolerances. 


Lemon Blueberry Muffins via Brooke Zigler – a great way to incorporate flax milk into healthy baking!

Practicality/Culinary Use

Lastly, an often forgotten question to consider when choosing a milk alternative is, “how exactly will you be using it?” Often times different choices are useful for different culinary applications. Here are two specific considerations:

  1. How will you be consuming the milk?
    Most milks can be used interchangeably in baking and the taste is less noticeable when mixed with cereal or oats. However if you’ll be drinking it by the glass, you’ll want to make sure you enjoy the taste plain. 
  2. Will you be heating the milk?
    Soy milk tends to froth well, while almond, oat and rice do not. The protein content is typically responsible for this. Keep in mind that some milks (such as coconut) may even separate when heated. Manitoba Milling Co. Flax Milk has a rich and creamy texture that works beautifully in cozy hot drinks. We specifically love this lower sugar hot chocolate!

Summary

In summary, there are many factors to consider when choosing the right milk alternative for your lifestyle. Fortunately Manitoba Milling Co. Flax Milk scores well across the board with great taste, nutrition, and practicality. Find it in 35 stores across Canada now (use our Find Us page to locate it in a store near you!). 

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