Since the 1970s, I’ve been drinking plant-based milks. The market’s expansion to include so many alternative milk products manufactured from a range of nuts, grains, and legumes has been overwhelming (in a good way!).
Recently, we published Healthy Almond Milk Shopping Guide Because almond milk is the most widely consumed plant-based milk. We’re happy to present you an Oat Milk Guide to assist you choose the finest store-bought oat milk since you asked (and asked!).
Because it is plant-based, nut-free, and soy-free, oat milk is becoming more popular. Oat milk is my favorite plant-based milk. The main issue with oat milk is that it contains more carbs and sugars than other plant-based milks (more on that later).
Oat Milk Ingredients
All oat milks have oats and water, and the finest store-bought oat milk brands will only contain those two components.
Sweeteners, oils, thickening agents, emulsifiers and stabilizers, flavorings, preservatives, and vitamins and minerals are all added to many additional oat milk products. These additives are used to improve the texture, look, performance, shelf life, and nutritional profile of foods. They may also cause issues for a number of reasons. Take a look at the following:
- Added sweeteners may result in tastier milk, while simple sugars may raise your blood sugar and insulin levels . Most of us do not need any more sugar in our diets! (For further information on sugar, see the section below.)
- Added oils Lower-quality seed oils, such as rapeseed or canola, are often found in oat milks. These fat sources may skew a healthy fatty acid ratio; most of us require more omega-3 fatty acids, while plant-based oils include a lot of omega-6 fatty acids. This can result in increased inflammation , which none of us need! The finest store-bought oat milk products include just the trace amount of fat found naturally in whole oats.
- Flavoring ingredients (Even “natural flavors”) are made out of exceedingly complicated, unnatural, and opaque substances. We don’t know what’s in them as consumers. The only flavoring component included on the finest store-bought oat milk labels is vanilla extract.
- Thickening, emulsifying, stabilizing, and preserving ingredients Gums and mineral salts may be present in oat milk. While many of these chemicals are deemed safe in small doses, are heavily processed and may not be well accepted by certain persons . If oat milk is a mainstay in your diet, you’re definitely looking for a product that’s devoid of additives. All of these ingredients will be absent from the finest store-bought oat milk.
- Added vitamin and mineral ingredients might look good on the nutrition label, but they may be heavily processed and are not always bioavailable (Can be absorbed by the body). I like to receive the majority of my nutrients from entire foods. Again, the finest store-bought oat milks will not include synthetic vitamins.
Because cow’s milk is inherently sweet, we anticipate milk replacements to be somewhat sweet as well. Many plant-based milks include sweets in order to appeal to customers transitioning from dairy milk.
When it comes to sugar levels, oat milks may be challenging. There are no additional sugars on the ingredient list of many oat milk products. However, if you look at the nutrition label, you’ll see that it contains a lot of sugar.
Why is this?
Enzymes are often used by oat milk makers to partly break down the oats, making the milk creamier and sweeter. Maltose is a simple sugar made from naturally existing oat starches.
The benefit of this is that makers may use fewer (or no) extra ingredients to get the creaminess and sweetness that consumers want. The disadvantage is that the food might be sweet and heavy in carbohydrates and sugar while yet having “no sugar added.”
These sugars must be included on the nutrition label by manufacturers, so if you’re managing your sugar consumption, look for “total sugars” and “added sugars.” Some zero-sugar oat milks are manufactured without this enzymatic step and include some carbohydrates but no simple sugars. Several of these goods are mentioned in my suggestions below.
The lactose in dairy does not affect blood sugar responses as much as maltose and added sugars do in cow’s milk and oat milk. Even if you’re not very concerned about sugar in general, keep an eye out for added sugars in oat milk.
Is the Best Store-Bought Oat Milk Fortified?
To mimic the nutritional profile of dairy milk, some oat milk products include minerals, vitamins, and even protein. These packets may advertise the presence of calcium, vitamin D, or vitamin B-12. But do you really need this?
Personally, I substitute oat milk for cow’s milk since I am not searching for the nourishment that cow’s milk provides. Because I maintain a balanced diet and supplement with a multivitamin and vitamin D, I prefer unfortified oat milk.
If you’re looking for a dairy substitute, you could consider enriched oat milk. Because of the added additives, none of the Best Stuff is in this category; if you want a good fortified oat milk, look at any of the goods mentioned under Okay Stuff.
Glyphosate, the carcinogenic primary component in Monsanto’s RoundUp and other herbicides, is extensively used in oat and other common crop farming.
In 2018, the Environmental Working Group (EWG) commissioned two studies It discovered worrying amounts of glyphosate in a wide range of conventional oat-based cereals and meals. Popular children’s snacks were among them. Because to cross-contamination, most conventional items included increased amounts of glyphosate, as did nearly a third of organic products.
As a result, we only consider oat milk to be Good Stuff if it is organic and/or verified glyphosate-residue free by The Detox Project. The finest store-bought oat milk is organic and devoid of glyphosate residue.
If oat milk is a mainstay in your diet, I strongly advise you to choose a glyphosate-free product.
A Note About “Barista” Oat Milks
These mixes often include more oils and additional substances to make them particularly creamy. I did discover two barista oat milks that are acceptable:
- Elmhurst Oat Barista Edition It also contains filtered water, whole grain oats, cane sugar (in a very tiny quantity), dipotassium phosphate, and salt. Although not organic, Elmhurst oat milks are glyphosate-free.
- Minor Figures Barista Oat (Organic) is a good choice for those searching for a creamy, foamy oat milk. Water, organic oats, organic sunflower oil, salt, and potassium carbonate are the components. I don’t like for the sunflower oil, but I appreciate that it’s organic and that this milk lacks many of the ingredients found in most other cafe goods.
Homemade Oat Milk
I used to make my own oat milk when I was on a macrobiotic diet thirty years ago. I filtered entire oats after cooking them in a lot of water. The end product was quite boring, but thick and creamy. With a plant-milk maker, it is now much simpler to manufacture tastier variants of these milks. This We have and recommend this one. For the most healthy form, I choose steel-cut oats.
The finest store-bought oat milk is organic and/or certified glyphosate-residue free; has no additional sugars, thickeners, oils, or stabilizers; and contains just a few essential, well-known components. The four brands listed below are suitable.
Elmhurst Milked Oats Unsweetened Oat Milk
Elmhurst Milked Oats Unsweetened Oat Milk includes simply filtered water, gluten-free whole grain oats, and salt. Although not organic, The Detox Project has verified its oats to be glyphosate-residue free.
Oat MALK Original
The Original Oat MALK is the Best Stuff-it’s organic and verified glyphosate-residue free by The Detox Project. It’s made up of only three ingredients: filtered water, organic oats (gluten-free), and himalayan pink salt.
The nine oat milk brands listed below are known as Okay Stuff since they’re organic, glyphosate-free, and contain minimal components. Having said that, I don’t purchase any of these brands since they include additives. Some of these products are worth considering if you’re seeking for a healthy alternative for cow’s milk.
Although Califia Farms Extra Creamy Oatmilk is not organic, it is glyphosate-free. The components, including sunflower oil, are a bit more fabricated than I believe to be Good Stuff. Still, nothing horrifying can be discovered here.
Chobani Oat Zero Sugar Plain
Chobani Oat Zero Sugar Original It includes no additional sugar and is made with glyphosate-free oats. The “natural flavors” and “nutrient extract blend” are my main worries since they are opaque components that may disguise a variety of chemicals and residues. Rapeseed oil is a low-quality alternative to canola oil. I wouldn’t eat this on a regular basis, but it’s not exactly Sneaky Stuff.
Mooala Organic Coconut Oatmilk
Kirkland Signature Organic Non-Dairy Oat Beverage earns points for being organic and easily accessible, but loses points for including sunflower seeds. Mooala Organic Coconut Oatmilk is distinct in that it is produced with coconut cream. Organic agave fiber (inulin), calcium, and gellan gum are also included. I appreciate using coconut cream instead of poorer grade oils. Mooala gets 0 grams of sugar in their oat milk by preparing the oat milk without breaking down the starches into simple sugars. When we asked for further information, they said, “We use a proprietary processing method that does not generate sugar in our formula, unfortunately we are unable to share any other details.” This does not sit well with me since it involves extra processing and is not transparent., organic “natural flavors,” and other additions.
Oatly Oatmilk and OatMilk Chilled
Oatly Oatmilk and Oatmilk Chilled are glyphosate-free but not organic. The ingredients aren’t as basic as the Good Stuff, but they’re also not as artificial as they might be (for example, no gums are used). Although I am not a fan of rapeseed oil, the rapeseed oil used in the US market is non-GMO and hexane-free. (I give some credit to Oatly, a Swedish firm that has been operating for decades, long before oat milk was hip.)
Oatsome Organic Oat Dilk
Water, organic gluten-free oats, organic sunflower oil, and vitamin and mineral components make up Oatsome Organic Oat Drink. Okay Stuff since it has a short ingredient list, the primary components are organic, and there are no additional sugars. “Original Oatsome Organic Oat Milk contains about 10 mL of sunflower oil per liter (roughly 0.34 fl oz per 33.8 fl oz.)” says Oatsome. According to my calculations, Oatsome oat milk contains roughly 1% oil.
Pacific Foods Organic Reduced-Sugar Oat Original
Water, organic oats, and a few minor ingredients (gellan gum, sea salt, sunflower lecithin, tricalcium phosphate, and vitamin D2) make up Pacific Foods Organic Reduced-Sugar Oat Original. I’m not a fan of the additives, but I do like the organic oats and the fact that this product has far less sugar than other oat milks.
Planet Oat Original Oatmilk
Planet Oat Original Oatmilk, Unsweetened Original Oatmilk, and Shelf Stable Original Oatmilk Original Oatmilk is not organic, however it is glyphosate-free. They are made with purified water and oats, and no oils are added. The lower components aren’t great, but they’re usual for oat milk. The unsweetened product has much less sugar than the others.
RISE Brewing Co. Organic Oat Milk (Original)
RISE Brewing Co. Organic Oat Milk (Original) is made with basic, organic ingredients (water, organic oats, organic sunflower oil, sea salt) and is glyphosate-free. This brand is Good Stuff, however the extra sunflower oil isn’t perfect. I was disappointed with their response when I asked how much sunflower was used in this formula: “the percentage of our ingredients is proprietary and something we aren’t able to disclose.” RISE also sells Organic Vanilla Oat Milk, which has the same components as well as “organic natural flavor” and organic vanilla extract. I’m not a fan of natural tastes, but this oat milk is OK.
Any oat milk brand that isn’t Good Stuff or Okay Stuff might be termed Sneaky Stuff. After all, plant milks in general are touted as a healthier alternative to dairy.
In any event, we recommend avoiding any oat milk products that aren’t organic and/or glyphosate-free, as well as those with lengthy ingredient lists that include lower-quality oils, sugars, and additives.
Are there any oat milk brands that we haven’t covered that you’d want to know about? Do you prefer oat milk over almond milk or soy milk? Which brand is your favorite in terms of taste? We’d love to find out!
Which oat milks are glyphosate free?
Planet Oat Original Oatmilk, Unsweetened Original Oatmilk, and Shelf Stable Original Oatmilk Original Oatmilk is not organic, however it is glyphosate-free. They are made with purified water and oats, and no oils are added. The lower components aren’t great, but they’re usual for oat milk.
Is Oatly glyphosate free?
The Detox Project has confirmed our oatmilk to be glyphosate residue free.
Does chobani oat milk have glyphosate?
Chobani makes their yogurt using organic oats and does not use glyphosate as a drying agent. Glyphosate is a kind of herbicide. Researchers from the University of Washington discovered earlier this year that glyphosate exposure might raise cancer risk by 41%. Chobani instead uses the sun and air to dry its oats.
Is Earth’s own oat milk glyphosate free?
Earths Own Oat Milk
It requires 7 times less water to grow than almond or cow’s milk. Glyphosate is not used in the production of the all-Canadian and gluten-free oats.