Vegan Replacements for All Your Favorite Dairy Products
"I can't imagine living without cheese!"
Have you ever said this? Maybe you never want to give up iced coffee. Would mornings even be the same if you couldn't slather your bagel with cream cheese? It makes sense that we've become so dependent on dairy products, as dairy is in many of our favorite meals and snacks. Think about cheesy pizza, creamy ice cream, thick yogurt and smooth cream cheese! Dairy can make or break many meals—but what if you could enjoy all your favorite foods without dairy?
There are many different reasons why people may want to reduce dairy in their diets. Some cut dairy because they're lactose-intolerant or have other health-related issues, and others choose to eat plant-based for ethical reasons. A growing interest in plant-based diets is significant because more companies are producing quality dairy replacements. CNN reported that milk sales continue to decrease while plant-based milk is rapidly increasing. Gone are the days when vegan cheese wouldn't melt and vegan ice cream just tasted more like ice than cream. Many plant-based alternatives to dairy products taste so similar to the real deal that you can't even tell the difference.
Here are the best plant-based options for your favorite dairy products. Whether you're completely cutting dairy out of your diet or you're just looking for fun new products to try, we've got you covered.
It's difficult for most people to let go of cheese. Even lactose-intolerant people will suffer the consequences of eating cheese because they can't give up their comforting grilled cheese or Friday pizza night. However, with the new vegan options, you can have your (cheese) cake and eat it too. Miyoko's is an incredible plant-based company that has mastered the art of vegan cheese. They have every type of cheese imaginable such as cheddar cheese shreds, pepper jack slices, mozzarella, garlic herb cheese wheels and cream cheese. Their products are made from cultured plant-based milks while using traditional methods to mimic real cheese's taste and texture. Violife is another excellent option. Violife has cream cheese, parmesan, cheese slices, cheese shreds and cheese blocks. They also have vegan feta that is just incredible.
You don't have to give up ice cream when you switch to a plant-based diet. There are endless non-dairy ice cream options, like the ones listed in our popular vegan icecream ranking list. One of the most popular brands of ice cream in the world comes from our two favorite men in the form of Ben & Jerry's. Ben and Jerry are apparently very forward-thinking as Ben & Jerry's has a vegan line of ice cream! They have their classic flavors like Cherry Garcia and Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough, but they also have flavors exclusive to the plant-based pints like Crème Brûlée Cookie and P.B. & Cookies. They recently just released Change the Whirled in collaboration with Colin Kapernick. The pint features fudge chips, graham cracker and chocolate cookie swirls. If you love ice cream sandwiches, try Cool Haus' vegan ice cream sandwiches made with vegan cookies.
(via Ben & Jerry's)
It's difficult to choose one plant-based milk as the ultimate milk replacement. There are so many different types of plant-based milk and they're all good in different ways. For the sake of this article, we've narrowed it down to two standouts: Blue Diamond Almond Breeze Almond Milk and Oatly Oat Milk. Almond Dream Almond Milk is the most versatile non-dairy milk, as it's great for smoothies, cereals and baking. Oatly Oat Milk is the more rich and creamy non-dairy milk option. It's a great addition to lattes as it mimics the richness of regular milk. It's also the most sustainable non-dairy milk and has more protein than almond milk. For a full rundown on the most popular non-dairy milk, check out our definitive ranking of the six most popular types of non-dairy milk.
Coffee is probably the most important part of many people's days, so you're going to need the perfect non-dairy creamer to make sure you start your morning right. Califia Farms has plant-based creamers that flawlessly add the rich and creamy flavor you usually get from normal creamers. They have plain flavored options like the Unsweetened Better Half and Unsweetened Almond Milk Creamer. They also have more exciting flavors like the Hazelnut Oatmilk Creamer and Pecan Caramel Almond Milk Creamer. And, yes, they even have a pumpkin spice flavor.
(via Califia Farms)
What if we told you that you could have your yogurt parfaits every day and cut dairy from your diet? Thanks to Forager that is possible. Forager is a family-owned company that produces fantastic plant-based products. Their cashew-based yogurt comes in regular-style yogurt, Greek-style yogurt and protein yogurt, which packs 7g of protein into one serving. The creaminess from the cashews and the addition of natural flavors like vanilla bean or real fruit will make you forget all about Yoplait and Chobani. If you're allergic to nuts, Silk soy yogurt is the best option for you. They have all the classic yogurt flavors from vanilla to blueberry and each serving has about 5-7g of protein.
Earth Balance butter will make you question if you ever need to use real butter again. It's that good. Earth Balance has a selection of plant-based butters made that taste and spread exactly like real butter. They have a soy-free option and olive oil, sunflower x oil, and coconut oil versions of their original spread. Earth Balance also has baking sticks for recipes and can easily replace butter in any recipe.
(via Earth Balance)
Dairy-based dips are without a doubt an essential part of any snack plate. Thankfully, our friends at Kite Hill have almond-milk based dips that will satisfy all your cravings. They have a Tzatziki dip for vegetable trays and Ranch Dip for all your favorite savory meals and snacks. However, the star dip is their French Onion Dip. The flavor and texture are impeccable. It's great for chips, but honestly, you can dip anything into it and it will taste amazing. Kite Hill also produces a plant-based sour cream, which can be the base of a dip or a perfect tangy topping to tacos.
(via Kite Hill)
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