Milk from a cow is consumed by millions of kids and adults each day. It comes in whole milk (150 calories/1 cup), 2%, 1% and of course, skim milk (80 calories/1 cup), which has no fat at all. The American Heart Association recommends that people over the age of two years drink skim or 1% milk to keep saturated fat intake reasonable. But for various reasons, many folks will not drink milk from a cow.
Soy Milk comes in plain, vanilla & chocolate flavors. It has slightly less protein than cow’s milk at 5 g protein/1 cup and 100 calories. It is completely cholesterol-free. Look for brands that have calcium and vitamin D added. It can be used as a beverage and in recipes that call for milk.
Rice and Almond Milks are very low protein – only 1 gram/1 cup. They have been fortified with vitamins A, B12, and vitamin D to mimic cow’s milk. Rice milk has 120 calories/1 cup and almond milk only 60 calories/1 cup.
Coconut Milk has a thicker texture than the other milk replacements AND more calories – a hefty 445 calories and 48 g fat/1 cup! The protein is similar to soy milk at 5 g/1 cup.
There are several reasons that folks bypass cow’s milk and find a milk-alternative: lactose intolerance, dairy allergy or the choice to be vegan and eliminate all animal products. It’s great that there are milk alternatives for use as a beverage or as an ingredient in recipes.