Ask the experts… What are the best dairy-free milks to use for different styles of cooking?

Q What are the best dairy-free milks to use for different styles of cooking?

Coconut milk comes in two forms, tinned and ‘fresh’ and is the most versatile. Due to its natural creaminess, tinned coconut milk is the perfect base for dairy-free ice cream and for use in Asian cooking, where it would naturally be paired with spices. It is also the perfect base for anything creamy, for example it makes a great substitute for cream when making chocolate truffles.

The thick part of tinned coconut milk can also be whipped and used in the place of whipping cream.

‘Fresh’ coconut milk is perfect for use in the place of milk in tea and coffee, for baking and for pouring on breakfast cereals.

Almond milk is a good all-round milk that can be used in the place of cow’s milk. However, if using it in tea and coffee be sure to let the drink cool a bit before adding the milk or it will curdle.

You can reduce you sugar intake vastly with Ecomil’s totally sugar free product line of milks, which range from coconut to hazelnut and hemp. Ecomil also produce cuisine milks that are great for us in sauces or curries.

Oat milk is another creamy milk and is perfect for all-round use, provided that you are not gluten-intolerant or coeliac, in which case it is best avoided due to potential cross-contamination with wheat. Oatly are the obvious choice if you like a frothy coffee or latte as they sell a special foamable Barista milk that isn’t overly sweet or excessively heavy.

Other dairy-free milks such as soya, hemp and rice can be used in baking to replace dairy milk. Each have different consistencies and taste, so I suggest some experimenting to find what you like best from the many tasty alternatives available these days!

About our expert

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Vicki Montague is an acclaimed and well-followed blogger, recipe writer and teacher who found her calling after she was diagnosed with IBS. She was later to discover her daughter had coeliac disease. As well as creating recipes, Vicki offers unique cookery lessons too – from the comfort of your own home – via video linkup. She also has a number of videos on her YouTube channel, showing people how to make her simple and tasty dishes.

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