Looking for a unique dairy alternative that does not contain coconut or nuts? This homemade oat milk is cheap, easy to make, and delicious.
I am a huge fan of raw milk. I’d drink it by the glass full if I could right now. But my little one would be in a lot of pain if I did.
Being dairy-free is a big adjustment. But it’s nothing new to us. We entered the world of no dairy and alternative milks years ago.
At that time my son was also allergic to nuts and rice. So that eliminates a lot of options.
Homemade Oat Milk Dairy Alternative
We tried different versions of coconut milk. That was a big no. I can’t blame him – coconut milk tastes nothing like dairy milk. Even I can’t drink that plain.
Finally I found oat milk – something he didn’t mind drinking. Something I could use in cooking and baking that would be safe for him.
But oat milk is definitely not cheap. We usually pay about $3.50 for each small box.
Recently I was reading through Nourishing Traditions and saw a recipe for rice milk with an option to use oats. I had to try it immediately!
How to Make Oat Milk
First I made a fermented version. I figured it would be the healthiest option if my son would drink it. But it didn’t go over very well.
So I modified it a bit and made an unfermented version. Success!
Let me tell you this is SO much cheaper than buying oat milk. A quarter cup of oats makes over four cups of milk! Not only that I like that I can make sure the oats are properly prepared since oats are very high in phytic acid.
Nut-Free Milk Alternative
I may be in the minority, but I am not a big fan of nut milks. I don’t think anyone needs to consume that kind of quantity of nuts on a regular basis. They do contain quite a bit of omega-6’s, which we get more than enough of.
So I’m happy to have a safe alternative to dairy that my kids enjoy and doesn’t cost a ton. It is also extremely easy to make (just cook oats and puree).
The other benefit of having alternative milks is to make sure you get variety in your diet. This is very important when dealing with allergies. Rotating milk sources can help prevent future allergies or sensitivities.
How to Use Oat Milk
Oat milk works very well for baking. I even use it in cream soups and stews. It has a very neutral flavor.
You can also drink it plain or use it on oatmeal or homemade cereal.
As I mentioned you can make it into a fermented drink to boost nutrition. If you are used to ferments you can give that a try. If you are making it for kids that might have a more sensitive palate try it without fermenting.
Are you dairy-free? Are you looking for a unique milk substitute? Try homemade oat milk. It’s a mildly sweet, satisfying drink.
Need more options?
Try homemade rice milk or homemade quinoa milk.
- 1/4 cup old fashioned oats
- 1 cup warm water
- 4 cups water, divided
- 4 Tbsp. coconut sugar, honey or maple syrup (optional)
- 1/4 tsp. sea salt (optional)
- vitamin D drops (optional)
- 2 Tbsp. whey (optional)
- Soak the oats in 1 cup warm water for 24 hours.
- Combine the soaked oats and 3 cups water in a medium saucepan.
- Bring to a boil and simmer, covered, 2 hours.
- Pour the oats and water into a blender.
- Proceed with the non-fermented or fermented version from this point.
- Add the salt and sugar.
- Blend well.
- Pour into a jar and add another 1 cup water.
- Add a few drops of Vitamin D (optional).
- Shake before pouring.
- Add extra water if milk is too thick for your taste.
- Blend the oats and water.
- Pour into a jar.
- Add the whey and 1/2 tsp. sea salt.
- Cover and let sit at room temperature for 3 days.
- Stir in sweetener and 1 cup extra water.
- Add vitamin D if desired.
- Store in the refrigerator.
- Shake well before serving.
- This recipe easily doubles to make a half gallon of oat milk.
- This milk should not be used for children under the age of one since they don't have the enzymes to digest grains.
- This makes about 5 cups of milk.
- You can add extra water to the milk to thin it out.
Without going into all the details–my son has a dairy allergy. I would like to get a fermented food into his diet to assist with digestion etc. Could you please advise if the whey is required to make the oatmilk fermented? I have been told by his allergist and nutritionist that he cannot consume whey. Thank you!
There are many fermented foods you can make that are naturally dairy/whey free Erin. Sauerkraut is a great one to start with!
In general you can add unrefined sea salt instead of whey and get the same results. Obviously it will impact flavor, though. You could also try adding a high quality powdered probiotic to the milk. Or make water keifr. Good luck!
Hello, I am wondering what the over-night soaking does, and why the oats need to be boiled for 2 hours. Seems like such a long time, so I am very curious. Thanks you!!!
The soaking reduces phytic acid – which impairs digestion of grains. It’s good to soak most grains. The long cooking also helps with the phytic acid and just making them super soft and getting as much “juice” out of them as possible. Hope that helps!
Can you describe the flavor of the fermented version?
It’s been a while since I’ve made fermented oat milk, Anthoniece. So I can’t really describe it. But in general fermented foods have a sour note to them. Sort of like how yogurt has a sour tang to it.