Flavored Milk is always a great option when you are reaching for a beverage. Flavored Milk is a fun way to add variety to milk and still get all that good for you “stuff” milk offers! It’s always a win when the kids beg you to let them have more milk!
My family owns and operates a dairy farm so naturally, we believe in consuming lots of dairy products! It’s crazy to me to think that some families are all about non-dairy alternatives to milk! I’m here to tell you from first-hand experience that farm-fresh real dairy milk is rich in nutrients and is not created the same as non-dairy alternatives!
I was at a dairy convention several years ago and the farmers were talking about whether adding chocolate to milk was a good thing or not so good since it also adds sugar. At the end of the day, I think most people agreed drinking milk is important and if people will drink more milk if they add chocolate flavoring to it then it’s okay.
Although I agree with those farmers because I understand the importance of getting all those nutrients from milk, I’ve found a way to add variety with Naturally Flavored Milk without adding sugar!
Naturally, Flavored Milk is so fun! I wish someone would open a Naturally Flavored Milk and cookie shop kind of like all those soda pop shops that are popping up everywhere except with flavored milk! That would be so fun and I’m pretty sure Santa would love it too!
There are as many variations of flavored milk as you can think of! The sky’s the limit! My family loves experimenting with all different kinds of fruits, spices, and nut butter! Gosh, it’s so fun! I can’t wait for you to try it!
Before I share our favorite Naturally Flavored Milk combinations I’m going to explain a few little tidbits you are going to want to know about milk…real farm-fresh dairy milk!
There are 5 huge differences when it comes to comparing real farm-fresh dairy milk and nondairy milk alternatives. Let me break it down.
The nutrients you get from real farm-fresh dairy milk are naturally occurring vs. non-dairy milk which has been fortified in an effort to attempt to measure up to the nutrients you get from real dairy milk.
Even after fortification very few, non-dairy milk options can match the nutrients found in real dairy milk.
Milk has 9 essential nutrients.
- B vitamins help convert food to energy.
- High-quality protein helps build lean muscle.
- Vitamin A maintains a healthy immune system (Let’s face it no one has time to be sick).
- Potassium regulates the balance of fluids (an awesome alternative for those of us who don’t just love bananas).
- Bone building calcium, vitamin D, and phosphorus (My kids coaches claim there are more broken bones now than ever before because kids don’t drink enough milk).
Bottom line…naturally occurring nutrients are always better than fortified.
When you read an ingredients list it’s always comforting knowing that you can pronounce each item in the list!
- Real dairy milk only has three ingredients you’ve all heard of; milk, Vitamin A and Vitamin D! That’s it!
- Many non-dairy milk alternatives have around 10 ingredients; salt, sugar, or thickeners like gum (you don’t want to drink these!)
Bottom line… fewer ingredients is always better!
When you look at the nutrition label on the milk you will notice milk does have sugar…naturally occurring sugar called lactose.
- Many non-dairy kinds of milk have sugar added to them; can sugar, cane juice, etc,
- If you want to know if sugar has been added to non-dairy milk check the ingredient list. Beware though, there are lots of names for sugar. Remember if you don’t know what the ingredient is it’s probably not too good for you!
Bottom line…naturally occurring sugars are much better for your body than added sugars.
I told you guys my family owns a dairy farm…it’s a LOT of work! Like a really LOT! I wish there was a way to emphasize it more than just by typing in all capital letters! To say that it bothers me when I’m at the grocery store and hear people complain about the price of milk is an understatement! It’s especially bothersome when they have a few packs of beer, a couple of cases of water, and some gallons of orange juice in their cart.
Have you ever stopped to think about the price of a gallon of water when you purchase it in bottles?
- Milk costs about 25 cents per serving and delivers more nutritional benefits than any other drink on the market! You can’t beat that!
- Soy milk is 44 cents, coconut milk is 56 cents, flax milk is 61 cents, and rice milk is 79 cents per 8-ounce servings! (According to 2017 sales data from IRI and average grocery prices for top markets).
- Let me do the math for you. The average American family spends about 10% of their budget on food that’s about $80 per week. In one year on average, a family will spend about $628 on dairy milk vs. $1,222 if they chose almond milk. That a $600 yearly savings! Kind of huge…not to mention the extra nutritional benefits! (Based on an average family size of 2.58 people.)
Bottom Line…if you want to help the bottom line in your budget grab real dairy milk!
Milk is a foundation in hundreds of American classics; creamy mac and cheese, alfredo sauce, ice cream, sour cream, whipped cream! Where would the world be without it?
- Substituting non-dairy milk for real dairy milk in baking and cooking recipes is always tricky and doesn’t always work out!
- Each different non-dairy milk has a different flavor which means it will alter the flavor, consistency, and texture in recipes.
Bottom line…milk is an old classic that’s still widely popular for many reasons and one is because you just can’t be that ice-cold taste!
As I promised here are our favorite Naturally Flavored Milk combinations!
Now that you a whiz at milk facts let’s move on to fun ways to add flavor, no added sugar, to the superfood!
- 1 c. milk + ¼ c. frozen berries (raspberries, blackberries, and blueberries) = Mixed Berry Flavored Milk
- 1 c. milk + ¼ c. frozen diced peaches (2 mint leaves optional)= Peaches and Cream Flavored Milk
- 1 c. milk + ¼ c. frozen raspberries + 2 T. unsweetened coconut flakes = Tiger Tail Flavored Milk
- 1 c. milk + ½ frozen banana + 2 tsp. Natural peanut butter = Chunky Monkey Flavored Milk
- 1 c. milk + 1 T. pumpkin puree + dash pumpkin pie spice = Pumpkin Pie Flavored Milk
- 1 c. milk + a few mint leaves = Shamrock Milk
For one serving I use 1 cup milk (which is one serving) and ¼ c. frozen fruit for the fruity combinations. If I add nut butter I add about 2 teaspoons. When I add spices I usually just add just a dash, but I never measure that!
I have to tell you I usually make at least 2-3 servings at a time because I always have boys congregated around in my kitchen begging for a little taste of each! It’s almost like a competition to see how many awesome flavor combinations we can come up with!
For yummy recipes and more information about the National Milk Life Campaign visits Milk.Life.com and follow them on Facebook or Pinterest!