Almond Milk… What’s hiding in the ingredient list?

You stroll through the ‘healthy’ section of the supermarket, the long life milk aisle and the fridge section… but which almond mylk is the right one? which one is not only healthy but delicious.

Almond milk has been a popular milk choice for some time now, long before the bearded hipsters decided it was cool. Traditionally almond milk is made with few ingredients – almonds & water. Sometimes a pinch of salt or dates are added but really that is more for our taste preference than anything else. With more and more brands sharing their own almond milk recipe (which is wonderful!) it also means that making the right decision for your health needs just got a little bit more complicated.

Almonds are naturally rich in protein with over 19.5g / 100g and nutrients such as Calcium, Potassium, Magnesium and other minerals. When made into a milk, almond milk has a delicious subtle flavour that is able to balance the bitter flavours of a coffee or matcha or hides in a cake or gluten-free loaf.

So which store-bought almond milk is right for you? The trick with all things boxed, bottled or packaged is to read the ingredients and find what is really inside that bottle. It’s not also about what we want from our choice but also what we want to avoid; gums, thickeners, preservatives, additives, artificial flavourings and colourings are unnecessary and less than good for our health.

The below products are not listed in order nor am I sponsored by any of the brands or companies, my aim is to support my client’s needs and to help make shopping a little easier.

FROM THE FRIDGE

  1. Inside Out Original Almond Milk – a popular choice and found in Harris Farm and some cafes, Inside out has a subtle but delicious flavour. The addition of Nativa (stevia) and the Gellan can cause some digestive upset in individuals and should be used with caution in individuals with gastric conditions.
    Ingredients: “Filtered Water, Activated Almonds (11%), Natvia™, Vegetable Gum (Gellan), Sea Salt.”
  • Nutty Bruce Almond Milk – You can find Nutty Bruce almond milk in most Woolworths and Coles, it is free from additives and other thickeners which makes it a good on the go option.
    Ingredients: Filtered Water (84.5%), Activated Organic Almonds (10%) (almonds that have been soaked in water for 12 hours), Organic Rice Syrup, Sea Salt.

  • FROM THE SHELF 

    1. Pure Harvest Organic Activated Almond Milk – This one is usually my go-to when picking from the long life milk aisle, a simple ingredient list, lots of almonds (which are organic and activated) and that tastes delicious. This almond milk is free from additives and thickeners which is why it’s my usual go to.
      Ingredients; Filtered water, Organic Activated Almonds (10%), organic rice syrup, sea salt 
  • Milk Lab – While this almond milk is creamy and ideal for making caps and latte’s it does have quite a few numbers lurking in the ingredient list. It also contains only 3.5% almonds. 
    Ingredients: 
    Australian Water, Almonds (3.5%), Sugar, Sunflower Oil, Maltodextrin (From Corn), Acidity Regulators (340, 332), Vegetable Gums (407, 410, 401, 412), Sunflower Lecithin, Sea Salt. 
  • Almond Breeze – another popular cafe choice, however its one that I personally stay away from. It is one of the few almond milks that contains Carrageenan, which for me is a strong no. It also contains only 2% almonds, raw sugar and other additives such as flavours which I would prefer to avoid. Personally I am not a fan of the taste of this product and prefer to choose alternative products, but best to make up own mind as your taste buds may differ.
    Ingredients; Filtered water, raw sugar, grown whole almonds (2%), calcium carbonate (ground limestone), tapioca starch, sea salt, carrageenan, sunflower lecthin, natural flavour. 
  • Australia’s Own Almond Milk– Australian own almond milk is one of the original almond milks, I remember it being the first one I tried! It does, however, contain a small amount of almonds when compared to other brands and uses sunflower oil which I know some people try to avoid.
    Ingredients: Filtered Australian Water, Organic Almonds (3%), Organic Agave Syrup, Organic Sunflower Oil, Salt.
  • ALMO unsweetened almond milk – you can find this one on the shelf in Harris farm, it has a simple ingredient list however does contain Xanthan gum which some people with digestive concerns try to avoid.
    Ingredients: Filtered water, 5%*Australian grown almonds, calcium, non GM xanthan, sea salt. 
  • VitaSoy Unsweetened Almond Milk –  When looking at the ingredient list for this one, you would see there is only a few amount of almonds hiding in that tetra pack. It is however lower in additives when compared to other brands.
    Ingredients: Filtered water, whole almonds (min 3.8%), mineral (calcium phosphate), emulsifier (sunflower lecithin), sea salt, natural flavour, vegetable gum (gellan). 
  • SoGood Almond – this is another one with a big ingredient list, personally, one that I would prefer not to consume.
    Ingredients: Filtered water, cane sugar, almonds (2.5%), mineral (calcium), emulsifier (sunflower lecithin), natural flavour, salt, mineral salt (sodium bicarbonate), vegetable gum (gellan), antioxidant (ascorbic acid), vitamins (B12, B2, B1). 
  • Inner Goodness Almond Milk (Aldi) – This one is popular due to its price point however it doesn’t boast such a wonderful ingredient list, I personally would not pick this option.
    Ingredients; Water, Ground Almonds 2.5%, Natural vanilla Flavour, stabilisers, Mineral salt, Vegetable gums, anti caking agent 
  • Woolworths Almond Milk
    Ingredients: Water, Ground Almonds (2.5%), Natural Vanilla Flavour, Stabilisers (460, 466, 418, 415), Mineral Salt (Calcium Carbonate), Sea Salt, Vegetable Emulsifier (Sunflower Lecithin).
  • Coles unsweetened Almond Milk
    Water, Ground Almonds (2.5%), Tapioca Starch, Natural Vanilla Flavouring, Mineral Salt (170), Vegetable Emulsifier (322, Sunflower), Salt, Vegetable Gums (418,415).

  • MAKE YOUR OWN

    In reality, we often go to the supermarket for our groceries and nut milks… its time convenient! but if you have the time, there is nothing more delicious than making your own nut milk.

    I N G R E D I E N T S

    1 cup of organic almonds, skin on
    1 L of filtered water
    1 fresh date (to sweeten and is optional)
    pinch of sea salt
    other optional ingredients; vanilla bean powder, honey, cinnamon

    M E TH O D

    1. Place all the ingredients into a high performance blender.  Process until smooth. (yep thats it!)If you making your nut milk for coffee and tea, you will need to pour the milk through a strainer or nut milk bag to remove pulp. If you are using for smoothies, leave the pulp in for added fibre

    Health and Happiness,
    Alyce xx (BHSc Naturopathy)

     

    *** companies change formulations frequently, always check the label before purchasing. New products are always coming onto the Australian market which is wonderful! some brands may be missing from this list. ***

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