If you are reading this article, you probably prefer to add milk or creamer to your morning coffee to make it more palatable. But whether because of a specific diet or lifestyle choice, it is increasingly popular to use non-dairy creamers instead of the usual dairy products.
Most options are plant milk, with many confusing features such as flavor, type of milk, and other dietary considerations. So to make your decision easier, keep reading your options for choosing the best non-dairy coffee creamer!
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- Dairy Free
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- Sugar Free
- Non Dairy
- Gluten Free
- Sugar Free
- Gluten Free
- Non GMO
- Soy free
- Keto Friendly
What Is Non-Dairy Coffee Creamer?
A non-dairy creamer can be in liquid or powder form and substitutes for the usual dairy substitutions like half-and-half or cow’s milk. Almond milk, coconut cream, cashew milk, oat milk, soy milk, and other similar derivatives are the primary base for the top non-dairy creamers.
People often prefer a coffee creamer without dairy because of lactose intolerance or a specific diet like a vegan. Lactose can cause discomfort for some, but milk allergies involve a dangerous immune response. Those people need to be sure to avoid all dairy-based ingredients.
Lastly, many people prefer dairy-free creamers to reduce their calorie intake. Many non-dairy alternatives have a natural sweetness while being sugar-free. Others have low-sugar tastes added, such as french vanilla flavor or pumpkin spice.
8 Best Non-Dairy Coffee Creamers
You can use many dairy alternatives in your coffee, each with specific flavors and dietary considerations. So let’s review some of the most popular non-dairy creamers and what features make them unique.
1. Califia Unsweetened Almond Milk Creamer
Califia Farms Unsweetened Almond Milk Creamer comes from primarily almonds and water. Some other components, like locust bean gum and gellan gum, help to give it a smooth and creamy texture. This texture benefits people concerned that almond milk is too thin to be a creamer.
As unsweetened milk, you only take in 40 calories per serving and get a healthy dose of calcium. In terms of comparing this almond milk creamer to the other options, the key features are:
- Milk Type: Liquid almond milk
- Tasting Notes: Smooth and creamy with a subtle natural sweetness
- Vegan: Yes
In addition to being vegan, this Califia almond milk is also gluten-free, kosher, and carrageenan-free. The low-carb content will also keep you on your keto diet.
2. SOWN Organic Oat Creamer Unsweetened
SOWN Organic Unsweetened Oat Creamer has primary ingredients of water and organic hydrolyzed oats. The rolled oats have a naturally creamy texture, and there are added ingredients such as canola oil and gellan gum that help give it a cream-like smooth texture.
This unsweetened version has zero grams of added sugar, which helps to fit diets such as keto. There are also no artificial sweeteners or additives, which means the natural sweetness of the oats is the primary flavor. The main features include:
- Milk Type: Liquid oat milk
- Tasting Notes: Smooth and creamy
- Vegan: Yes
And besides being USDA organic, this oat milk creamer also fits with gluten-free, vegan, and vegetarian diets. The beverage is also allergy-friendly by avoiding 8 of the most common allergens.
3. Nutpods Original Unsweetened Almond+Coconut Creamer
Nutpods Original Coffee Creamer is an unsweetened non-dairy creamer with the main ingredients being almonds, coconut cream, and water. As a plant-based creamer without any sweeteners, this beverage will work with keto, vegan, and kosher diets. It is also sugar-free and gluten-free.
The almond milk base gives it a smooth texture that blends well with your coffee. And the addition of coconut cream makes for a creamy texture with a subtle coconut flavor. The primary features of this almond/coconut creamer are:
- Milk Type: Liquid almond milk with coconut cream
- Tasting Notes: Creamy, smooth, and subtle coconut flavor
- Vegan: Yes
Overall, the main upside to this almond milk is that the coconut cream provides a subtle sweetness and superior texture compared to standard almond milk. It will complement your coffee without overpowering the natural coffee flavors.
4. Silk Original Dairy-Free Soy Creamer
Silk Original Dairy-Free Soy Creamer is a healthy milk alternative that contains even more calcium than the typical dairy creamer. Made from soybeans and filtered water, this plant-based beverage has a natural soy flavor that blends well with coffee.
Be aware that this product does contain pure cane sugar, and you will likely taste a more prominent sweetness than many of the other creamers in this article. There is a vitamin and mineral blend added that provides extra nutrition. Otherwise, the primary features include:
- Milk Type: Liquid soy milk
- Tasting Notes: Rich and creamy with noticeable sweetness
- Vegan: Yes
And as a plant-based non-dairy drink, this product contains none of the potentially dangerous compounds for lactose intolerant people or those with milk allergies. There is no lactose or casein protein, and it is also gluten-free.
5. Nestle Coffee-Mate Sugar-Free French Vanilla Coffee Creamer Powder
The Nestle Coffee-Mate French Vanilla Coffee Creamer Powder has a remarkable french vanilla flavoring despite having zero sugar. As a powdered creamer, one bottle is enough for 140 servings. One or two teaspoons of this powder complement coffee well, and each teaspoon only has 15 calories.
You should, of course, enjoy a french vanilla flavor if you are to consider this creamer. And for folks that prefer to mask the intensity of their coffee, you will find this does a fantastic job without having unhealthy added sugar. The main features are:
- Milk Type: Powder coffee creamer
- Tasting Notes: French Vanilla with a rich/creamy texture
- Vegan: No
One important note, something you can read toward the end of the article, is this dairy-free creamer is not necessarily vegan. Many Coffee-Mate creamers contain no lactose or cream but still have milk-derived protein. It’s one of the most popular options, you can easily find Coffee mate in your local grocery store.
6. N’Joy Non-Dairy Coffee Creamer
N’Joy Non-Dairy Coffee Creamer is a powdered creamer that comes from a blend of ingredients, including soybean oil, corn syrup, and sodium caseinate. Be aware that sodium caseinate comes from the milk protein casein, meaning that this creamer is not vegan and can be dangerous for people with a milk allergy.
But as a powder with an easy-pour spout, you can have 170 servings of creamer in one 12-ounce bottle. The main features include:
- Milk Type: Powder
- Tasting Notes: Rich texture and light flavor
- Vegan: No
As with many non-dairy products, this is fantastic for people with lactose intolerance but not safe for vegans or those with milk allergies.
7. Laird Superfood Creamer
The Laird Superfood Creamer is popular among people who value high-fat diets like keto. With a primary ingredient of coconut milk powder, you will get a delicious flavor in a nutrient-dense creamer.
Other ingredients add to the flavor and texture, including coconut sugar for flavoring and extra virgin coconut oil for texture. The other main features are:
- Milk Type: Coconut powder
- Tasting Notes: Subtle coconut flavors
- Vegan: Yes
As a plant-based creamer, consider this option if you love the health effects of MCT fats, as this creamer contains all four. There are no sugar additives or artificial ingredients/chemicals.
8. RIPPLE BARISTA-STYLE MILK
This Ripple Barista-Style Vegan Milk is a plant-based beverage that works fantastic for coffee drinks such as lattes and cappuccinos. The pea-based beverage is high in pea protein, and the liquid foams and froths in a way that resembles whole milk. Sunflower oil adds extra smoothness to give you a creamy coffee.
Otherwise, you will get a healthy dose of protein with low sugar content. But there is enough sweetness to balance the coffee flavors in those espresso-based milk drinks. The main features include:
- Milk Type: Liquid pea-based milk
- Tasting Notes: Full-bodied, subtle sweetness, velvety texture
- Vegan: Yes
Assuming the taste of this particular plant milk works for your palate, this Ripple milk is a fantastic way to stick to a vegan diet while still getting textured milk in your espresso drinks.
How To Choose a Non-Dairy Creamer
As you can tell, there are many non-dairy coffee creamers out there with sometimes confusing features. So to help make your decision easier, let’s work through some of the features that will narrow down the right choice for you.
Non-Dairy Vs. Dairy-Free Vs. Lactose-free
Are dairy-free coffee creamers the same as non-dairy products? And do these labels guarantee that there is no lactose? The reason these labels are confusing is that non-dairy alternatives—while they do not contain milk, butter, or cream—can still have some milk ingredients.
And milk allergies can cause life-threatening allergic responses. Additionally, people who are lactose intolerant can have painful stomach cramping from the milk compound lactose. The easiest way to understand these terms is to first know that dairy products come from cows, goats, or sheep.
So dairy-free creamers usually come from plants and do not contain dairy ingredients. But since the government does not enforce this label, you should always check the label carefully. And non-dairy can be even more confusing. While non-dairy products can be dairy free milk, the regulatory definition allows for the milk protein casein to be present.
If you are concerned about a serious milk allergy, your best bet is to choose a dairy-free creamer and carefully check the ingredients to be sure. Non-dairy creamers will almost definitely be lactose-free, but understand the FDA definition of non-dairy before assuming anything.
Type of Milk
Non-dairy products come from a range of sources, each with its benefits. Most of these The differences in flavor and texture are most important for some, while dietary considerations such as being gluten-free or fitting in with a vegan diet.
Additionally, some have the benefit of natural sweetness while others have added sugars to produce specific flavors. Let’s explore the most popular options.
Almond milk is a fantastic dairy-free coffee creamer that comes from either whole almonds or almond butter. The texture of this milk is light and there is a naturally sweet/nutty flavor while being low in calories.
- Low calorie
- Source of vitamin E
- Low saturated fat
- Naturally sweet flavor
- Low nutrient concentration (mostly water)
- Contains phytic acid, which limits the absorption of iron, zinc, and calcium.
Coconut milk, which contains water and the white flesh of coconuts, is one of the healthiest options for avoiding carbs. It also has a remarkably creamy texture and only a subtle coconut flavor. It is often used to make Bulletproof coffee.
- Low-carb option
- Creamy texture
- High in MCTs, a healthy saturated fat
- Very little protein
- High fat for some diets
With a similar amount of calories to cow’s milk, oat milk has a subtle sweetness and overall mild flavor. The ingredients are primarily oats and water, although you should look for additives like gums and oils that affect the texture. One of the most popular Starbucks drinks, the Iced Brown Sugar Oatmilk Shaken Espresso is made with this delicious dairy-free milk.
- Mild flavor
- High in protein and fiber
- Contains beta-glucan, which helps lower cholesterol
- High calorie
- High carbohydrates
Soy milk contains a similar amount of protein to cow’s milk at approximately half the calories. Soy creamers come from soybeans and have a creamy flavor. Lookout for common additives such as vegetable oils that thicken the texture.
- Milk taste
- High nutrional content
- High protein
- Some controversial health studies show long-term harm in some people
Since many people are aiming to mask the intensity of coffee flavor, dairy-free creamers often have added flavor. Usually, through added sugars, these delicious flavors will make the drink tasty but also can have negative health consequences.
But there are sugar-free flavorings such as vanilla and hazelnut that are healthier options. The main benefit of flavor is that it will strongly cover the coffee taste. But the downside to that is you will not taste the subtle flavors of the coffee itself.
Dietary restrictions are a common reason for choosing non-dairy creamers. Vegan creamers, for example, will be completely milk-free, including proteins. You might also prefer flavored dairy-free creamers that are sugar-free, relying on artificial sweeteners.
Lastly, you can expect most dairy-free creamers to be gluten-free, although some sweetened products and syrups might contain gluten.
Now that you have read about the most popular non-dairy coffee creamers and what to look for when choosing one, you might still have some confusion. So let’s briefly answer some of the most common questions people have about these milk alternatives.
It is hard to give one answer to everyone, but the main consideration is whether you will use a dairy or dairy-free creamer. For folks without an allergy, dairy creamers contain vitamins and minerals. If you want a healthy non-dairy option, avoid cane sugar.
Many dairy-free coffee creamers do a fantastic job at making the texture of coffee creamy like a cappuccino or latte. Soy creamer, coconut milk, and coconut cream are all reliable ways to make your coffee creamy without using dairy.
While Coffee-Mate creamer is mainly derived from coconut oil, water, and sugar, it does have a milk-derived protein in it. This example showcases how dairy-free products can remove lactose while still having the protein casein, which comes from milk.
As you can tell, there is a lot more that goes into choosing the best non-dairy coffee creamer than you previously thought. From confusing terms and regulations to ingredients and dietary restrictions, choosing the right creamer for you can be tough.
Hopefully, one of these non-dairy creamers spoke to you and you will shortly be enjoying your morning coffee with a healthier and more delicious routine!