image of milk alternatives for post 8 of the best milkk alternatives for coffee for a delicious tasting brew

8 of the Best Milk Alternatives for Coffee for a Delicious-Tasting Brew

Coffee and milk go together like peanut butter and jelly.  One is usually associated with the other.  Consider lattes, cafe con Leche, macchiatos, cappuccinos, flat whites, etc. They are classic coffee and milk drinks that many coffee lovers enjoy. However, some people cannot drink milk and look for milk alternatives for coffee.

Milk alternatives for coffee are becoming more popular, whether it’s due to an allergy or simply a lifestyle choice.  Milk substitutes for coffee are becoming more popular as the consumption of milk from animals declines.

With so many varieties and choices, selecting the best milk alternatives for coffee is just a matter of preference.

image of milk alternatives with the text 8 of the best milk alternatives for coffee

What Difference Does the Milk make in Coffee?

You need the right equipment and ingredients to make a great cup of coffee. The type of milk can affect both taste as well as texture. 

For each option in this post, we’ll tell you how the milk alternatives for coffee affect your coffee’s taste or texture and the amount of “stretch.” 

Stretch is how well the milk substitute for coffee can foam for the coffee drinks we know and love, including lattes and cappuccinos. 

The proteins in milk begin to melt when they are heated, so incorporating air into heated non-dairy or dairy milk causes the proteins in it to trap the air and “stretch” the milk into foam. 

You might be an avid coffee drinker and have been experimenting with plant-based milk alternatives for your morning cup of joe. Veteran vegans may have their milk preferences set in stone, but those with allergies may be new to this world of milk substitutes for coffee.  

Whatever your reason for exploring milk alternatives, you’ll find something perfect for you on our list..

Many kinds of milk can serve as substitutes for cow’s milk, but they will likely have to resemble the traits you find in animal milk for that foamy, creamy texture we enjoy in coffee with milk drinks.

Milk Alternatives for Coffee

Soy Milk

Soy milk has been one of the most popular milk alternatives for coffee for many years. It is easily accessible and relatively affordable, making it a great choice for coffee shops and home baristas. 

Occasionally, soy milk may curdle in coffee as a reaction to the hot temperature or acidity of the coffee. This is especially true for soy milk without preservatives, as they may be more prone to separating in your coffee drink. If you experience curdling or separating, try pouring the heated soy milk into your coffee cup first, then add the coffee.

What does soy milk taste like in coffee?

Soy milk is an excellent alternative to dairy products, with its smooth and creamy texture. It does not have an overpowering aftertaste like other milk substitutes for coffee do!.

Can Soy Milk Make Foam for Coffee?

Soy milk has similar protein levels to dairy milk and has good stretch which is just one reason that this milk substitute has grown in popularity. It can produce a foam similar to the foam of cow’s milk.

Almond Milk

The popularity of almond milk has steadily been on the rise. Almond milk is nut milk that is available in both sweetened and unsweetened varieties which each contribute to the flavor of your coffee. 

However, when it comes to coffee, almond milk doesn’t perform as well as some other non-dairy milk alternatives for coffee. Almond milk can curdle in coffee because of the same reasons that soy-based milks do – too high of a temperature or an acidic environment. To avoid curdling, ensure that you don’t pour cold almond milk into very hot coffee.

The variety in reaction may depend on what kind of roast and brand, so it’s best to try several almond milk options to find which one is right for you and your coffee.

What does almond milk taste like in coffee?

Almond milk has a subtle nutty flavor with a some slightly bitter aftertaste. For this reason, many almond milk drinkers choose the sweetened version for their coffee drinks, depending on the coffee roast used. 

Can Almond Milk Make Foam for Coffee?

Although you can produce excellent, silky foam with almond milk, it does tend to separate when heated. Latte art created with almond milk may look pretty on top of the beverage’s foam. However, it may leave the drink underneath somewhat watery.

Coconut Milk

Coconut milk is quickly becoming one of the most popular dairy alternatives because it has a thick and creamy texture that coffee drinkers love.

Coconut milk is perfect for coffee drinks because it has a high-fat content, which helps create a creamy texture. The flavor of coconut isn’t too strong and doesn’t overwhelm your taste buds so you can enjoy the flavor of your freshly brewed coffee.

Be sure to buy the coconut milk that comes in cartons and not cans. Canned coconut milk is much thicker and has a more prominent coconut taste.

What does coconut milk taste like in coffee?

When you think of coconut you may associate it with a pina colada or other tropical drinks, however coconut milk in reality has a lighter coconut flavor than other coconut products such as shredded coconut. 

The light coconut taste is hard to notice in coffee drinks that contain syrups or other flavorings. In a latte or cappuccino, you can expect some sweetness to come through.

Can Coconut Milk Make Foam for Coffee?

Coconut milk is full of healthy fats and naturally creamy and dense making it a strong favorite to produce foam. The foam is less dense and has larger bubbles than cow’s milk.

Oat Milk

The popularity of oat milk in coffee drinks has been on the rise. Oat milk is one of the best milk alternatives for coffee made from a combination of oats, water, and sometimes canola oil or rapeseed oils for emulsification.

You can get full-bodied non-dairy milk that rivals the richness of whole cow’s milk!

This milk substitute for coffee appeals to health-conscious customers because it contains relatively little fat with surprisingly high fiber and protein content. One of the most popular grains in North America, oats have been shown to help with heart health and cholesterol levels. 

Lastly, it contains no gums or stabilizer and no added sugar so you can enhance your coffee drink naturally.

What does oat milk taste like in coffee?

Oat milk has a creamy and lightly wheaty taste that is similar to dairy milk. It has a smooth and creamy texture that blends easily in coffee. It’s growing in popularity as one of the best choices for milk alternatives for coffee. 

Can Oat Milk Make Foam for Coffee?

Oat milk’s naturally thick, buttery, creamy texture make it an excellent substitute for dairy milk in regard to texture and flavor.  It does stretch well to create a nice foam but may take longer to foam than cow’s milk.  The bubbles are slightly larger than dairy milk, though.

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Cashew Milk

The taste of this nut milk is closer to proteins and fats found in cow’s milk, but it has a more costly price tag. That being said, more people are reaching for cashew milk because it has the same creamy texture as dairy milk.

What does cashew milk taste like in coffee?

Cashew milk is a great alternative to other nut milks because it doesn’t have the same level of nuttiness that others have.  It also has a slightly sweet taste with great creaminess. 

Can Cashew Milk Make Foam for Coffee?

Cashew milk has a fair amount of stretch but it creates larger bubbles that make the foam less dense. The soapiness of cashew milk is one drawback to its use.

Rice Milk

Dairy-free milk, void of both nut and soy, makes rice milk a popular option for a milk alternative for coffee drinkers with nut allergies and those who are lactose intolerant.

If you’re looking for a light and refreshing milk substitute for coffee, this is the perfect alternative!

What does rice milk taste like in coffee?

The flavor of your coffee is the star here, as rice milk does not have a lot of flavor. It’s also quite watery which can dilute your coffee a bit.

Can Rice Milk Make Foam for Coffee?

It’s not the ideal choice as a milk substitute for coffee as its lack of protein doesn’t allow for it to produce foam for lattes and cappuccinos.

Hemp Milk

Hemp seed milk is a good protein source, making it popular with people looking to substitute dairy products.

Hemp plants contain trace amounts of THC, which gives them their psychoactive properties. Hemp seeds and hemp seed milk do not have enough THC to cause psychoactive effects.

How Hemp Seed Milk Tastes in Coffee

The flavor is both nutty and vegetal, with a thin texture that dissolves easily in your coffee drink..

Can Hemp Seed Milk Make Foam for Coffee?

Due to its high protein content, hemp seed milk steams well.  Baristas have compared hemp seed milk’s stretch or foam to that of soy milk, although hemp seed milk’s foam may dissipate faster.

Pea Milk

Pea milk is a great source of protein, and it doesn’t have the green color you might expect as it is made from the protein found in yellow peas. The nutritional benefits of pea milk are abundant, with its high protein content and a healthy dose of potassium.

How Pea Milk Tastes in Coffee

Pea milk has been rated by coffee drinkers to be just as good in terms of taste,  if not better than other dairy alternatives. 

You can enjoy the benefits of non-dairy milk without sacrificing your lattes and cappuccinos! This smooth, neutral alternative will not leave an unpleasant vegetal taste in your drink.

Can Pea Milk Make Foam for Coffee?

Since pea milk has a higher protein content, it is good at making foam for coffee drinks. The foam is silky in texture.

The Bottom Line for Milk Alternatives for Coffee 

We’ve gathered an overview of questions and answers for you that get straight to the point. 

What is the creamiest replacement for milk in coffee?

If you need a creamy non-dairy milk replacement, we would recommend soy.

Soy milk is the creamiest, thickest option out there. It will give your coffee extra foaminess that you can’t get with any other type of non-dairy alternative.

Which milk replacement tastes most like milk?

If you’re looking for a dairy-free alternative, oat milk has one of the closest tastes to real cow’s milk available. Oat milk is naturally sweet, similar to almond milk and soy milk, and will add a dairy-like texture that is a great option for lactose intolerant and vegan coffee lovers, alike. 

So, which is your favorite milk alternative for coffee? Do you like the creaminess of almond milk or the sweetness of coconut milk in your morning cup of Joe? Each type of non-dairy milk has a unique flavor and many can be frothed to create beautiful foam. The bottom line is that there are many great choices for non-dairy milks for coffee, so find the one that works best for you and enjoy!

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