Now that almond, coconut and macadamia milk have had their time in the spotlight, we’d like to introduce you to the latest contender… oat milk. Creamy in texture, delicious in taste and free from gluten, soy and dairy, oat milk is the newest craze that’s here to stay.
With local cafes slowly but surely starting to offer oat milk as an alternative to traditional dairy-free milks like soy, we’re here to investigate. Is it good for you? How does it compare to other milks? Read on for the 6 benefits that oat milk brings to the table.
What is oat milk?
A vegan alternative to cow’s milk, oat milk has risen to fame over the last 12 months and is fast becoming a favourite amongst non-dairy drinkers. It’s made by blending a cup of soaked rolled oats with three cups of water, and then straining the mixture to extract the milk. Traditionally you’d have it by itself, but you can also add cinnamon, dates or vanilla to change the flavour.
These days, oat milk is available pre-made at your local grocery store and sits amongst the long-life milk. The benefit of buying store bought over making it yourself? Most manufacturers add extra minerals and vitamins to create a product that mimics the micronutrients found in cow’s milk, like Vitamin D, calcium and riboflavin.
What are the health benefits?
If you ate porridge as a child, you’ve probably heard the spiel about how good oats are for your health! They’re a 100% whole grain, filled with fibre, B vitamins and minerals and are a plant-based protein. Oat milk contains a type of fibre called beta-glucan that has shown improvement in cholesterol levels, and may also help to reduce the risk of heart disease.
With vegetarian and vegan diets at a higher risk of anaemia (due to most plant foods lacking important micronutrients), oat milk can help to combat anaemia, thanks to it’s high iron content. With one cup of oat milk containing approximately 10% of your daily iron needs, it’s a great source for vegans and vegetarians.
Can I use it in anything else?
Just like any other milk alternative, you can use oat milk as a replacement in a variety of foods and drinks. Oat milk is fantastic in coffee, and can easily be frothed up to create a creamy, delicious coffee. It’s creaminess makes it a great substitute for milk in other traditional foods, such as smoothies, creamy soups and baked goods. In most recipes you can swap out cow’s milk for oat milk, especially as liquid in pancakes or as a creamy texture in mashed potatoes.
Next time you go to grab coffee, why not choose oat milk? Good for you, good for the environment and the perfect concoction to start your morning off with!