We Ranked Every Plant-Based Milk
Delicious, flat, creamy or watery - we’ve tried them all.
Following our “Lazy Girl’s Guide to Vegan Coffee”, this post came as a natural sequel.
We take coffee seriously here at Rooted. It’s not like, Don’t talk to me before I have my coffee! ...but it’s not far from it either.
We were lucky enough to be gifted a milk frother earlier this year, and since then, it’s been a non-stop revolving door of alt milks to determine the age-old question of, Which plant milk reigns supreme?
Before we started on this journey, we had no idea how much plant milk could vary. The taste, the finish, the calories, the price… The plant based milk market is practically overflowing these days, and the sheer abundance of options can be a little intimidating. Luckily, your besties have done all the hard work for you.
Disclaimer! Before we get into it, let’s acknowledge that even our faves can be problematic.
Plant based milk = no animal cruelty = good.
Plant based milk = smaller carbon footprint = good.
Plant based milk = high water/land/resource usage during farming = bad.
Plant based milk = packaged in notoriously difficult-to-recycle tetra packs = bad.
In our journey so far in becoming our most sustainable selves, we’ve come to the conclusion that there’s no such thing as the perfect consumer. Setting yourself up for perfection is setting yourself up for failure; and hey, we’re only human. Little swaps here and there, transitioning your lifestyle one day at a time, educating yourself one article at a time - it all helps.
“We don’t need a handful of people doing zero waste perfectly. We need millions of people doing it imperfectly.” Anne Marie Bonneau
We’re not perfect, and we’ll never claim to be. But damn it if we don’t try our best, and you’re welcome to come along for the ride. Get in babe, we’re going plant milk shopping.
There was a time when soy milk didn’t have to share the spotlight with anyone else. With competition heating up, let’s see if soy still stands up to the test.
Bonsoy Soy Milk: 🍆🍆🍆🍆🍆
Elite. The original alternative milk that wormed its way into every cafe imaginable, and lauded by lactose-tolerant and intolerants alike. Nowadays, you’ll find this barista-approved formula on our very own supermarket shelves for the rest of us to enjoy. Creamy, mellow with a touch of sweet to balance your favourite coffee, or recipe.
❓ 143 cals per 250ml | 💰 Price: $4.80/ L
Next on the scene was almond milk. Now, there’s whispers that almond milk is jUsT aS BaD aS dAiRy because of how much water it takes to farm, but let’s just shut it down right here. All milk alternatives are better for the planet than dairy.
True: A glass of dairy milk produces three times more greenhouse gas emissions than any plant-based milk, and consumes nine times more land.
Also true: It takes 65L of water to produce one glass of almond milk.
One’s bad, the other’s bad.
Inner Goddess (Aldi) Almond Milk: 🍆
I was so excited by how cheap the Inner Goddess Almond Milk cost! When you've been on this journey as long as I have, you've seen some crazy prices for just 1L of milk. But spoiler: this one was gross. Flat and watery. I could barely force myself to finish the carton in the name of food waste. Would not recommend, no matter how cheap it is!
❓ 40 cals per 250ml | 💰 $1.49/ 1L
Aldi Organic Almond Milk (Unsweetened): 🍆
What’s wrong with you, Aldi??? Can you please give the people (me) what they want (a decent almond milk)??? This one was also gross, flat, and watery. Steer clear.
❓ 69 cals per 250ml | 💰 $2.49/ 1L
I’ve noticed that the Coles Dairy Free Milk range has some groupies, so it definitely piqued our interest. But guys. It ain’t it. It doesn’t froth well enough for a “barista” made milk, and the price tag to taste enjoyment ratio doesn’t sit well either. Give it a miss.
❓ 65 cals per 250ml | 💰 $3.50/ 1L
So Good Almond Milk is a dependable pantry staple. Decent tasting, low calorie, holds up when frothed, inoffensive. I regularly stock up on these (they go on sale pretty often at Coles! #moneywin).
❓ 41 cals per 250ml | 💰 $2.75/ 1L
It’s a little flat, it’s a little meh, but not offensively so. It’s just whatever. Nothing special. No further comment. Do with that what you will.
❓ 40 cals per 250ml | 💰 $2.50/ 1L
I totally got jipped by the packaging on this; the Australia's Own branding looks a bit gourmet, a bit paddock-to-plate (in a plant-friendly way?), a bit farmer chic. I thought, this company looks like they know how to make a good almond milk. I thought wrong. It’s gross. It separated instantly as soon as I poured it over my coffee.
❓ 55 cals per 250ml | 💰 $2.80/ 1L
I really like this one! It’s the only non-shelf-stable almond milk I’ve tried in this experiment, and maybe that’s why it tastes better? Who knows how the magic of UHT works. The Califia Almond Milk is light, smooth and fluffy as a dream when it’s frothed. It’s also the lowest calorie almond milk I've tried. Docking a point for price point, though; it’s packaged in a smaller size than what’s standard (750ml to 1L) so it’s definitely pricey.
❓ 38 cals per 250ml | 💰 $4/ 750ml
MilkLab Barista Almond Milk: 🍆🍆🍆🍆🍆
MilkLab is an Aussie cafe staple, and for good reason. Their almond milk is simply undisputed - silky smooth, full-bodied, creamy heaven. It's not stocked in mainstream supermarkets as yet, but I'll hold out hope...
❓ 91 cals per 250ml | 💰 $4.88/ 1L
The Inside Out Barista Almond Milk holds up so well compared to other supermarket almond milks! It's thinner in consistency compared to MilkLab, but does the job admirably. The price is a little dear, though.
❓ 119 cals per 250ml | 💰 $5/ 1L
“Do you call her, almost say my name?” Dairy croons longingly. “Cause let’s be honest, we kinda do taste the same…”
LET ME TELL YOU how my life changed the day I first had oat milk. This was the moment when home coffees stopped being sub par to cafes. To a former barista, that’s saying something. During our first lockdown, I tried everything to find an equivalent to my favourite $4 coffees (one, because cafes were closed and two, because I drink at least 4 coffees a day like an addict and that stuff adds up!). Nothing hit the spot quite like an expertly tamped espresso shot and perfectly frothed latte, though. Until this.
Oat milk + home frother = financial freedom, gastronomic delight.
I'm so disappointed by the Coles brand range of plant milks :( I want to love it. I do. Coles is out here working round the clock to pump out these vegan friendly goods. We respect the hustle. It's just that... she’s very flat. Tastes bland, not creamy. Not worth it.
❓ 138 cals per 250ml | 💰 $3.50/ 1L
LIGHT OF MY LIFE, MY HOLY GRAIL, MY ONLY HAPPINESS. If you haven’t tried Chobani Oat Milk yet, you are MISSING OUT. I recommend this milk to at least 5 new people a day. It’s THE perfect oat milk. What a dream! What a treat! It’s a little on the sweet side, but it compliments everything you use it with. Coffee, oats, go crazy.
❓ 157 cals per 250ml | 💰 $4.60/ 956ml
I went the longest time without trying Oatly. I’d tried all the other oat milks before I tried Oatly. It was kind of like being an adult who never got into the Harry Potter hype as a kid, and you let it slip to your friends who become weirdly intense about you trying it for the first time but you don’t really want to because now it’s your identity. Does that make sense? Okay, Oatly’s good. It’s really good. It’s everything you want in an oat milk. I’d say it’s more mild, less sweet, just as creamy, as my first love Chobani - still good, still great, just preference.
❓ 148 cals per 250ml | 💰 $4.80/ 1L
I’d been a fan of the Minor Figures branding long before I actually tried the product. Cute, sleek, minimal; it’s probably peak millennial, now that I think about it. But alas, this is a milk review. Minor Figures Oat Milk I found a teensy bit lacking; it wasn’t as full bodied as the other oat milks I’d tried, and as a result didn’t froth as well as the others. It’s okay, but I can’t justify the price point for what I get.
❓ 140 cals per 250ml | 💰 $4.80/ 1L
The Alternative Dairy Co Oat Milk is another staple you’d see in cafes; it does the job, and it does it well. It doesn't look like it's made its way into mainstream supermarkets as yet, but if you happen upon it - I'd recommend it!
❓ 144 cals per 250ml | 💰 $4/ 1L
Note: This post will be updated as we continue our journey to try every single plant milk in Australian supermarkets. Stay tuned for our final ranking.