I’ve gotten something of a reputation at this point for trying to dissuade as many people from drinking Oatly as possible.
If you’re not sure why, check out my article on it. The short version is that Oatly is mostly made of:
And yes, it’s by far the best tasting, best frothing milk alternative out there. But it should be in the same mental category as Oreos and McDonalds.
Will having it as a treat every now and then hurt you? Definitely not.
Is putting it in your coffee every day, or god forbid, drinking it straight, a good idea? Definitely not.
But there are tons of people who are lactose intolerant who want a good alternative to dairy milk. So what should they drink instead?
There are other “plant-based” milks like Almond Milk, or Soy Milk, but most of those have the same issues as Oatly. They use low-quality ingredients, vegetable oils, and in the case of soy milk… soy.
Unfortunately, a very simple heuristic you can use is: Don’t drink any milk a coffee shop serves unless you’re paying a painful amount extra for it.
For example, in Austin, you can sometimes get Fronks Nut Milk in your cappucinos… for an extra $2. That’s what a non-bad-for-you milk alternative is going to cost you.
If you’re not in Austin, what are other good alternatives? The best one I’ve found is Malk Organics. You can buy it in Whole Foods and their milks are exceptionally clean and well-sourced. They’re glyphosate-free and have no weird oils or other ingredients added to them.
Another one that looks like a good alternative (I haven’t researched this one as much) is the pistachio milk Tache. They seem to take their ingredients seriously, and nothing stands out as problematic in what they’ve included.
And… that’s about it. I’ll add other options to this list as I find them, but for now, those are the only widely available options I’ve found that I’d give to my kid.
Do your own research of course and let me know on Twitter if you find any others. But at the very least, please do not drink Oatly.