My Favourite Vegan Dairy Alternative Products

I have been dairy free for 3 years now and I love the growth in veganism for the increase in food products there has been. I am lucky that I am not allergic to dairy so I don’t have to worry about contamination and all vegan products are suitable for me to eat which is why I have called this post my favourite vegan foods rather than my favourite dairy free foods as they aren’t all suitable for allergy sufferers (I have provided information below on which products are believed to be safe for dairy allergies and which contain soya). New products are coming out all the time and I obviously reserve the right to change my mind when I find new brilliant products.

vegan milk in a fridge door

My Suggestions Of The Best Vegan Alternatives To Dairy Products

The Best Vegan Cheeses

For a long time I have claimed that there is no such thing as a good dairy free (or vegan) cheese and I still stand by the claim that none taste as good or behave in quite the same way as actual cheese, but I have found several now that I like the taste of and enjoy when I fancy cheese type dishes:

Grated Sheese Vegan Mozzarella Style Cheese from Bute Island Foods Ltd

I tried this cheese after discovering that Papa Johns use a mixture of the Bute Island Foods Sheese on their vegan pizza. It is a while colour and doesn’t go golden like normally cheese when grilled, but it melts nicely and works well if you want to make home made pizza or similar.
The Bute Island Foods factory is meant to be dairy free so their products should be safe for dairy allergies. The cheese is made from "a blend of coconut oil and starches" and doesn’t contain soya, dairy or gluten. It is available in larger Sainsburys stores and my local organic shop. 

A packet of the Bute Island foods ltd Grated Vegan and Dairy Free Mozzarella Style Sheese (or cheese)
Grated Vegan and Dairy Free Mozzarella Style Sheese (or cheese)

Follow Your Heart Dairy Free Smoke Gouda Slices

I'm sure I have mentioned this cheese before on my blog and it is still my favourite for toasted cheese sandwiches. The smoked flavour covers up some of the flavours that I don’t normally like in vegan cheese and it melts nicely to make a lovely oozy sandwich. Coconut oil based and stated as soya and dairy free. Available from Ocado and Organic shops.

Violife Creamy

With a consistency somewhere between cream cheese and dairylea this mild tasting spreadable cheese is pretty non offensive and tastes great on crackers. I have attempted mixing it with icing sugar for frosting and stirred through pasta, both of which works ok, but it’s best just as a cheese spread I think. Made from coconut oil, free from dairy, soya and gluten. This is available pretty widely in supermarkets.

crackers on a plate spread with Violife creamy with a packet next to them
Violife Creamy is a great vegan cream cheese alternative for crackers

Violife Greek White Block

This is the Violife answer to feta cheese. The texture is a bit more plasticky, but if you fancy a greek style salad with feta it’s close enough to curb the craving. I have tried cooking with it and it doesn’t work at all: it just melts and loses all shape, disappointing as I also fancied feta and spinach in filo pastry. Made from coconut oil, free from dairy, soya and gluten. Available from Ocado (and other places).

The Best Vegan Ice Creams

I wrote a post about some of the dairy free and vegan ice creams available, but it seems like there are more on the market every week. Personally I don’t like my ice cream to taste particularly strongly of soya or coconut so that rules quite a few out for me.

Vegan Almond Magnum

Magnum have managed to create an ice lolly with both decent chocolate and an enjoyable vanilla ice cream that is comparable to the original. I find the almond version with crunchy almonds pieces in the chocolate adds an extra element to make it even tastier. These are listed as "may contain milk", ice cream and made from coconut oil.
As an aside I have tried the Aldi version of these and they are ok, but I much prefer the Magnum ones so I look for when they are on offer.

Ben and Jerry’s Chocolate Fudge Brownie Non-Dairy Ice cream

If you can get over the price tag of this premium ice cream then the B&J’s dairy free versions are delicious. They are a hard ice cream which needs to be left for a few minutes before you can scoop it out of the tub (or just eat it out of the tub with a spoon), it is a rich, quality ice cream in the style you would expect from Ben and Jerry’s. They also have Cookies on Cookie Dough, Peanut Butter & Cookies and Coconutterly Caramel'd Ice Cream. Almond milk based and contains soy lecithin.

A hand holding an opened tub of vegan dairy free Ben & Jerry's ice cream
Ben & Jerry's Chocolate Fudge Brownie Non-Dairy Ice Cream is Vegan and delicious

The Best Vegan Cream

Food Heaven Heavenly Whipped 

One of the things I missed the first winter I was dairy free was hot chocolate with squirty cream on top. I have since discovered the Heavenly Whipped cream which comes in a squirty can and is a good alternative. It is sweet tasting and creamy, but unfortunately doesn’t retain it’s shape very long so it’s best sprayed shortly before consuming (straight into your mouth is an approved option). Does not contain soya. Thank you to Lauren for this suggestion, she has a brilliant list of dairy free treats you should check out too. 

Elmea Plant

This cream has only been available since December and it has fast become my favourite so I’m hoping they continue to produce it. Available in Single and Double versions, it is on sale in Sainsburys and Asda (I have only found the double version though). 
It is made from broad bean aquafaba and can be used in lots of different ways including: poured straight from the pot, in cooking or whipped. It doesn’t have as rich a taste as the dairy alternative or quite as much substance, but it is an excellent vegan alternative to cream (I really don’t like the taste of soya creams). I have used it lots in the last month.
One of my favourite things is it priced the same as the dairy Elmea (and found in the chiller cabinet next to them) so it is really affordable. Sadly it isn’t suitable for dairy allergies as it is produced in the same factories as dairy creams. It doesn't contain Soya.

2 pots of Elmea Plant Double Cream alternative to dairy cream on a fridge shelf
New Elmea Plant Vegan Double Cream Alternative

The Best Vegan Chocolate

If you like rich dark chocolate then being vegan isn’t really an issue: many dark chocolates are vegan. Even the “milk” chocolate vegan or dairy free alternatives are often pretty rich and taste darker than the dairy equivalent. I don’t know which my favourite of these type of richer chocolates are, but what I missed most was a chocolate bar like dairy milk, one that isn’t too rich and I can happily munch through in one sitting. It took me a little while, but I have found what I was looking for in NOMO from Kinnertons. I love the Fruit & Crunch bar especially and I've been known to stock up when it's on offer. Suitable for dairy, egg, gluten, peanut and tree nut allergy sufferers. Doesn't contain soya.

A pile of purple and blue NOMO chocolate bars
NOMO chocolate, SoMu (so much) yum

The Best Vegan Milks 

There is a huge range of vegan milk alternatives on the market and it’s not surprising given that everyone has a different favourite. We currently have 4 different varieties in our fridge: 
KOKO unsweetened because it’s my milk of choice for tea, coffee and cooking. It doesn’t have a strong taste so it’s the only milk I have found that I am happy to have in my tea. Fortified with Calcium and Vitamin D2 and B12.
Almond milk: We buy different versions depending on what is on offer, our current version is fortified with Calcium and Vitamins D, E and B12.
Alpro Soya Growing Up Milk: I have tended to avoid soya milk, but the cost of almond milk has been creeping up and I recently read an article about how almond farming is killing off bees so I have started to buy this milk for Baby Boy and I will try and switch Little over to it when she has finished her almond milks. Fortified with Vitamins: D, C, B2 (Riboflavin) and B12 as well as Calcium, Iron and Iodine.
Chocolate Oatly: I find the normal Oatly too sweet for anything other than cereal, but the chocolate one is really nice. Little was asking for some little cartons of the Alpro chocolate milk yesterday and I talked her into a big carton of the Chocolate Oatly instead because it’s cheaper. Fortified with Vitamin D, Riboflavin, B12, Calcium and Iodine.

A fridge shelf with: alpro growing up soya drink, Koko unsweetened, Almond drink and oatly chocolate milks
There is a huge range of vegan and dairy free milk alternatives available

Have you tried any brilliant vegan dairy alternative products recently? I would love your suggestions.

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