• Meera Trivedi

Dairy

Dairy is one of the most common allergens, so there are many many substitutes. When I was a baby I threw up every single baby formula I ever had, which is how my parents discovered they needed to test me for allergies. I grew up on all sorts of milks that a lot of allergy kids loved but I hated. Then I made my way to oat milk. This is not an advertisement for oat milk though. I was allergic to oats for a long time, so I needed other options. I was even allergic to soy and wheat as a kid. So I needed rice milk. Then I needed soy milk. Then finally I was able to have oat milk. Here's a little bit about each, plus more:

Rice Milk

This is the standard allergy-free milk. All you need for it is rice and water. Realistically, you are going to buy rice milk. Although it doesn't take too long to make, it is unreasonable for me to expect anyone to make it for their kid. It is absolutely up to you. Here is the brand I used when I was a kid:

Rice Milk brand: Rice Dream Organic Rice Milk

Making Rice Milk is very straightforward. All you have to do is cook rice, blend it with water, and then strain it into a cup. It's only rice and water. You can add sweetener or flavoring if you want; I recommend honey or even fruit if you want to try that. So, buy a package of rice, cook it based on those directions, blend it with water, and put it through your strainer. The amount of water you put is up to you, just know that water makes liquid thin. With too little water, you'll think its too thick and chunky. Thickness is YOUR preference. It also could depend on what flavoring you put in there, so just put in a little water at a time when you blend and see what works for you! For a strainer, you have lots of options. There's nut milk strainers, steel strainers (which probably what you have already) and more.


Soy Milk

If you can have soy, but not oats or nuts, this is a great option for you. It is worth it to try rice milk as well, but I hope soy milk works out for you. Again, you're most likely going to buy soy milk, so my best advice is to search around, experiment, and find what brand works best for you. Every kid is different. Here is the brand I used when I was a kid:

Soy Milk brand: Silk Soy Milk ; Soy Dream Soymilk

If you want to make it, here is a recipe:

All you need is soybeans, water, and honey for sweetener if you'd like. You can buy any soybeans, you just have to let them sit in water overnight before making the milk the next day. When you begin to make the milk, drain the water out of the bowl and then you should be able to peel off the skin of the soybeans. Once you do that, you can blend them with water. The amount you put is up to you, more water means thinner milk, so I usually like to put anywhere from 3-3.5 cups of water in the blender. Let it fully blend, then strain the mixture. For a strainer, you have lots of options. There's nut milk strainers, steel strainers (which probably what you have already) and more. Then you have to boil it, so add the milk and about a cup of water to a pot and boil. Stir it while its boiling, and when its done you should see a foamy layer on top of the mixture. Scoop that out. Then continue to keep the milk on the stove (medium heat) for 15-20 minutes, let it cool, and enjoy! If you want to add honey or other sweeteners, you can add these at the end. Because you are cooking the milk I don't want you to add something beforehand and risk burning anything.


Oat Milk

While all these milks are great options, my preference is oat milk. I drink oat milk every day and have ever since I overcame my oat allergy. Oat milk is also great for cooking! If you are not allergic to oats but you need a nondairy milk to substitute in other baking recipes, use oat milk. I cant stress the enough, but try every option of milk that is safe for you, and then make your decision on which one to stick with. I tried all milk that I could before choosing oat milk. And if it helps, my sister, who has no allergies, drinks oat milk only, instead of dairy milk, because she actually prefers it. Here is the brand I use:

Oat Milk Brand: Pacific Foods Organic Oat Milk (says Organic Oat Plant-Based Beverage on the carton).

There are three options: Original, Vanilla, and Reduced Sugar. I just buy Original.

If you want to make it, here is a recipe:

All you need is oats, water, and honey if you'd like to sweeten it. First, let the oats sit in water for about half and hour. Then drain the water out of the bowl. You should still run them under water just to rinse them a bit extra after you drain. Then combine the oats, the honey/sweetener and about 4 cups of water into a blender, and blend until well-combined. Make sure you use different water. It can be confusing because you need to soak, then rinse, but you should be adding 4 cups of new water into the blender, and making sure there are no chunks when you are done blending. You can add a little extra water to help this. Then, just strain it and you're done! For a strainer, you have lots of options. There's nut milk strainers, steel strainers (which probably what you have already) and more.


Almond Milk

Unfortunately, nut milks are not something I can help you with. I am allergic to nuts. I cannot try any of them for you, but I know people who aren't allergic to nuts would like to have these options, so I am going to give them to you anyway. Almond milk is easier to find relative to the other milks on this list, so you should be able to find a good brand. Here is the one my sister recommends:

Almond Milk brand: Almond Breeze

If you want to make it, here is a recipe:

All you need is almonds and water, and of course honey if you'd like to sweeten. The protocol for making milk yourself is pretty simple, as you can see. Its basically just the ingredient and water. I'm sure if you've read other recipes in this post you can probably guess what you need to do, but anyways. For almonds, you need to let them soak in water for anywhere between 4-7 hours, but it's easiest to just do it overnight. When you begin to make the milk, drain the water out of the bowl and run the almonds under water again to rinse them. You need to rinse with new water because the other water you drained had almonds in it for many many hours. Then add about 4 cups, of new water, the almonds, and the honey/sweetener into a blender and blend until there are no chunks left. Then strain and you're done! For a strainer, you have lots of options. There's nut milk strainers, steel strainers (which probably what you have already) and more. You can microwave it (30 seconds ish) or refrigerate for a few minutes if you want a certain temperature. It is entirely up to you.


Coconut Milk

Coconut milk is a great options for those with more allergies. It's probably one of the non-dairy milks you've also heard of more. I find that people know what almond milk and coconut milk is, but not soy, rice, or oat milk as much. This should make it easier to find coconut milk brands near you. I don't drink coconut milk regularly, but my friend does, and this is what he recommends:

Coconut Milk brand: Trader Joe's Coconut Beverage

If you want to make it, here is a recipe:

All you need is shredded coconut and water, and of course honey if you want to sweeten it. Proportions are up to you because it depends on how much coconut you have and how much milk you want to make. Remember that more water means thinner milk. You do have to boil the water before making the milk though, so make sure you do that first. Then add the boiling water and the shredded coconut to a blender and blend it well. Set your blender to a high setting and let it blend until it is very well mixed. This can take up to 2 minutes. Then all you have to do is strain it, and you're done! For a strainer, you have lots of options. There's nut milk strainers, steel strainers (which probably what you have already) and more. You can refrigerate it for a few minutes if you don't want to drink it hot. The temperature is up to you. Enjoy!


My Milk:



Here include some milks I mentioned as well as a bunch more I found at the grocery store! Even chocolate oat milk!


Recipe Sources:

https://tinyurl.com/svb-ricemilk

https://tinyurl.com/svb-oatmilk

https://tinyurl.com/svb-soymilk

https://tinyurl.com/svb-coconutmilk

https://tinyurl.com/svb-almondmilk

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