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Milk and Non-Dairy Alternatives

Photo of a glass of milk
Photo credits (left to right): Photo credits (top to bottom): Flickr: Marina Shemesh

Foods Included

Cow's Milk, Goat's Milk, Sheep's Milk, Almond Milk, Soy Milk, Rice Milk, Coconut Milk


Milk products are a great source of calcium and protein. Cow's milk is the most common. However, goat milk and sheep's milk can be found in some grocery stores. Whole milk has about 3% fat; low-fat and skim milks have had some or all fat removed. Plant milks like soy milk, almond milk, and rice milk are also available. These often have added sweeteners and nutrients.

Buy It

Most cow’s milk in stores has been pasteurized to kill bacteria. Check the “use by” date to see how long you have to use it. Check ingredients lists on non-dairy milks for added sugars and other things you don’t want.

Store It

Store cow's milk and milk products in clean, closed containers in the fridge. These can last for weeks if stored well. Always check the smell and color of milk products before using. Fresh milk is usually white and has little smell; if it has a strong smell, yellow color, or is starting to separate, throw it out. Non-dairy milks should be stored according to package directions.

Cook It

Enjoy milk on its own or added to smoothies and other drinks. Milk is used in many baked items. It can also enrich soups, casseroles, and sauces. Milk will curdle if mixed with acids like vinegar or lemon juice. Non-dairy milks do not always work like cow’s milk in recipes.

Why It's Great

Great source of calcium, protein, and riboflavin. It's also a good source of thiamin, vitamin B6, and Vitamin B12.

Try It

Black-Eyed Peas in Coconut Milk
30 mins
Photo of prepared Black-eyed Peas in Coconut Milk
Mock-Southern Sweet Potato Pie
1 hr
Photo of the prepared recipe
Microwave Scrambled Eggs
4 mins
Rice Cooker Mac 'n Cheese
20 mins
Photo of Rice Cooker Mac 'n Cheese in a rice cooker
No-Cook Chocolate Pudding
25 mins
Photo of the prepared recipe
Banana-Blueberry Smoothie
5 mins
Photo of the prepared recipe

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