Easy Vegan: Ditch Dairy Without Sacrifice

Stop me if you’ve heard this one before: “Eliminating dairy from my diet is too difficult because…”

  • I can’t locate a substitute
  • There aren’t enough options to choose from
  • Dairy alternatives are too expensive

If this sounds like you or someone you know, have no fear! Below are some great options to replace dairy in common foods with ZERO sacrifice.

Most importantly, by utilizing any or all of these options to remove dairy from your diet, you’re on the path to eating healthier and saving the lives of countless animals. Everyone wins!

Milk

Plant milk is EVERYWHERE, and it has been for a long time. But only recently has plant milk completely swallowed up the milk section in your local grocery store. And most importantly, there are a number of different milks with subtly different flavors. There’s oat, cashew, almond, macadamia, soy, and plenty more options. If one of these doesn’t appeal to you, I implore you to try another.

Did you know? Plant milks use significantly less water in the manufacturing process compared to dairy milk. Oat milk in particular uses the least. So if you’re into water conservation, oat milk may be your milk of choice.

Do you bake? Take any baking recipe that calls for milk, and replace it 1:1 with plant milk. It’s that easy! No crazy conversion or workarounds for your baking or cooking recipes.

Butter

Another great item to replace in cooking or baking recipes that requires no modification, butter is a simple and easy and works exactly as you would expect.

Plant-based butter is also growing in popularity in the dairy aisle at your local grocery store. In addition to the big name brands like I Can’t Believe It’s Not Butter and Country Crock now offering vegan butter, other types of butter are growing in popularity for being slightly healthier such as avocado oil butter. It’s often on sale and worth a try!

Coffee Creamer

If you’re like me, you can’t start your day until you’ve had a cup of coffee. And while I enjoy coffee black, I’ll admit I can’t resist the dessert-y sweetness of coffee creamer.

Luckily, there are numerous coffee creamers from popular brands like Silk and Coffee Mate to choose from with all of the delicious flavors you expect. It works just like a dairy coffee creamer and the cost is also about the same. What do you have to lose?

Pro Tip: Some of you may be thinking that you’ve been using “non-dairy” coffee creamer for years, but I implore you to read the nutritional facts label. Many creamers that say “non-dairy” actually still contain milk, but can legally say “non-dairy” as long as the dairy content is below a certain percentage.

Ice Cream

Years ago, non-dairy ice cream was limited to sorbet in most grocery stores. In 2021, most popular ice cream brands offer a range of non-dairy varieties which taste exactly as you would expect and give the same satisfaction! Brands like Häagen-Dazs, Breyers, Halo Top, and Ben & Jerry’s are adding more vegan options all the time.

Did you know? Ben & Jerry’s has touted that over 20% of their ice creams are now offered as a vegan non-dairy option, with plans to veganize all of their main flavors within the near future.

These are just a few easy items to buy at the grocery store that can be your gateway drug into veganism. Whether you want to reduce your cholesterol levels, are lactose intolerant, or care about the ethical treatment of animals, these foods listed above can be bought, cooked or baked, and used exactly as you would with a dairy-based product so your routine doesn’t change.

There are many ways to reduce your dairy consumption, but these are four simple and effective options that you can find at your local grocery store.

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