4 Low Carb, Dairy Free Swaps for Milk or Cream

4 Low Carb, Dairy Free Swaps for Milk or Cream

Comparison Chart | Video | Nut Milks | Seed Milks | Coconut Milk | Coconut Cream 

Dairy foods can be a satisfying part of a low-carb, high-fat diet, but if you do not tolerate cow’s milk or you choose to avoid it, here are four low-carb, dairy free swaps you can make.

Dairy Free Alternatives Comparison Chart

dairy free comparison chart

4 Low Carb, Dairy Free Swaps for Milk or Cream [Video]

In this video, you’ll learn…

  • The best non-dairy substitutes for cow’s milk!
  • How to find the best quality in non-dairy swaps.
  • A great substitute for heavy cream!

Cow’s Milk

A cup of whole or skim cow’s milk has about 12 grams of carbohydrates. It’s not hard to find alternatives with fewer carbs. 

Nut Milk

One of the easiest nut milks to find in your grocery store is Almond milk. You can also find Cashew or Macadamia milk.

The sacrifice when you swap nut milk for cow’s milk is that you won’t get the high-fat or protein benefits.

For instance, one cup of unsweetened Almond Milk has about 3 grams of fat and only one gram of protein. However, the carbs are lower than cow’s milk by at least 7 grams per cup depending on the brand. 

If you are using a high-quality almond milk, you are getting some of the nutritional benefits of the nuts, like vitamin E, which is a powerful antioxidant. 

When I taught nutrition courses, I would have the students envision an ‘E’ with a superman cape. Like Superman, vitamin E is a protector. Its antioxidant power fights for you by taking on free radicals that damage your cells.

almond milk is a dairy free swap

Unfortunately, it is difficult to find a good-quality brand. Most commercial brands do not use enough almonds to provide the nutrient benefits. Many contain additives like Carrageenan, which can cause inflammation and has been linked to very serious disease processes.

If you are interested in using almond milk, I think you’ll be happiest with the quality when you make your own at home. This is a simple process that you can Google. Here’s an article on how to make almond milk at home

Seed Milk

Seed Milk is another alternative to regular milk. 

Hemp milk is a milk made from hemp seeds. It is from the hemp plant which is the  same plant from which we get marijuana. However, the seeds do not contain much if any of the THC, which is the controversial ingredient in marijuana.

With store-bought hemp milk you get a bit more fat and a bit less carbs than you would from commercial brands of almond milk. 

Coconut Milk

Coconut milk can be found at two places in your grocery store. It can be found in the frigerated aisle next to the regular milks or in the canned food aisle. 

coconut milk vs cow's milk

I typically buy the canned coconut milk, simply because I don’t use a lot at a time. A large carton is impractical for the amount I use, and the canned variety tends to be higher in fat and contain fewer additives. 

This dairy free swap is from coconuts, but you don’t have to be afraid of it if you are not a fan of coconut flavoring. I am not a fan of coconut but find it hard to detect the coconut flavor when I use coconut milk. 

Coconut milk has four times the fat and half of the carbs of cow’s milk. However, you will lose some of the protein benefit. For instance, a cup of canned coconut milk has 33 grams of fat, 6 carbs, and just 3 grams of protein.

Coconut Cream

Coconut cream can be used in place of heavy whipping cream. If we compare 2 tablespoons of coconut cream with 2 tablespoons of heavy cream, we see coconut cream is lower in calories and fat. However, the two creams are comparable in carbs and protein.

I find coconut cream to be a great substitution for heavy cream because the consistency is similar. In fact, the coconut cream has the thicker consistency. 

Coconut cream dairy alternative

You can add coconut cream to coffee and use it in the same ways that you would use heavy cream. The challenge can be finding it. I cannot find it in my local grocery store. But it is available on Amazon.

Thank you for reading and have a great week!

About the Author:

Dr. Becky Gillaspy, DC graduated Summa Cum Laude with research honors from Palmer College of Chiropractic in 1991.

One thought on “4 Low Carb, Dairy Free Swaps for Milk or Cream

  1. I don’t eat cereal or drink milk, but I do like Greek yogurt in my morning smoothie: 1/2 cup plain (no sugar or flavoring added) Greek yogurt, plus 1 cup frozen mixed berries, plus 2 gigantic handfuls of spinach, blended with some filtered water. Is Greek yogurt permitted? Also, what about fruit (only berries)?

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