Best Oat Milk: From Lattes to Protein Shakes

Oat Milk


In recent years, non-dairy milks such as oat milk have gone from specialty food to affordable, accessible, and widespread. Many people rely on non-dairy milk to make drinks, bake, or even to add to protein shakes. Non-dairy milks are often shelf-stable before opening, making them a good option for anyone who wants to shop in bulk. Whatever your reason for avoiding cow's milk, we've collected some of the best oat milk options out there so you can explore which oat milk could be right for you.

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Best Oat Milks - Our Top Picks

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Best Overall - Califia Farms Oat Milk Barista Blend

Califia Farms Oat Milk Barista Blend

SPECS

  • Flavor: Original
  • Package volume: 32 oz.
  • Calories per serving: 130
  • Sugar per serving: 3g

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Califia Farms makes a variety of plant-based milk options for everything from cooking and baking to drinking in lattes or by itself. We particularly like their Oat Milk Barista Blend. This oat milk is creamy and has a nice, neutral flavor that isn't overpowering. Not all oat milk is gluten-free, but this one is, making it a safe option for folks who need to avoid gluten due to an allergy, intolerance, or celiac disease. It's also carrageenan-free but still has a creamy, smooth texture.

Most people find that it's great for steaming (hence "Barista Blend" in the product name), but there have been reports that the steamability varies by carton. We think that the Califia Farms Oat Milk Barista Blend is a great choice for anyone searching for a workhorse oat milk that they can use in almost anything.

What We Like

  • Gluten-free
  • Carrageenan-free
  • BPA-free packaging
  • Smooth and creamy
  • Neutral flavor
  • Sustainable brand

What We Don't Like

  • Slight nutty flavor (not for everyone)
  • Steams inconsistently from carton to carton

BUY: Califia Farms Oat Milk Barista Blend

Best Oat Milk for Coffee - Elmhurst 1925 Sweetened Oat Milk

Elmhurst 1925 Sweetened Oat Milk

SPECS

  • Flavor: Original, chocolate
  • Package volume: 32 oz.
  • Calories per serving: 100
  • Sugar per serving: 5g

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Elmhurst 1925 makes a wide variety of plant and nut-based milks, available in both sweetened and unsweetened varieties. We find that a slightly sweet oat milk goes best with coffee, which is why we recommend the Elmhurst 1925 Sweetened Oat Milk. This oat milk contains tons of whole grains. It's preservative-free and non-GMO, so it's a great option for anyone interested in avoiding unnecessary chemical additives. We like that there is a chocolate flavor option, though most people wouldn't choose that to add to their coffee.

This oat milk steams well enough to use in a latte, but it would be just as good to add a splash of creaminess to a cup of your drip coffee, too. And if you are trying to be more calorie conscious, this oat milk is great—it contains less calories per 8-ounce serving than many of the oat milks on our list.

What We Like

  • 20g whole grains per serving
  • Gluten-free
  • Carrageenan-free
  • Nutrient-dense
  • Chocolate flavor option
  • No preservatives

What We Don't Like

  • Expensive
  • Thinner consistency

BUY: Elmhurst 1925 Sweetened Oat Milk

Best Oat Milk Creamer - Green Thumbs Foods Oat Milk Powder

Green Thumbs Foods Oat Milk Powder

SPECS

  • Flavor: Original
  • Package volume: 30 servings (1.32 lbs.)
  • Calories per serving: 80
  • Sugar per serving: 3g

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Though some non-dairy milks have a long shelf life before opening, they all have to be refrigerated after opening and used within a week or two. Many non-dairy milks need to be refrigerated from the moment you purchase them, taking up space in the fridge and often going partially unused by the time they need to be thrown out. The Green Thumbs Foods Oat Milk Powder is the answer to this problem. It's powdered oat milk that you can rehydrate with water in batches, making just the amount of oat milk you need. You can even play around with the ratio of water to powder in order to create a creamier product.

It's low in calories at just 80 per serving, and it allows users to cut down on waste by making only the amount they need at a time. We also love that it's glyphosate (RoundUp) free, since glyphosate can cause digestive and other health problems in some people. If you're looking for a shelf stable oat milk creamer, this is the one for you.

What We Like

  • Long shelf life (1 year)
  • Less waste
  • Low calories
  • Glyphosate-free

What We Don't Like

  • May need a blender to dissolve completely
  • Can't be added directly into coffee or tea

BUY: Green Thumbs Foods Oat Milk Powder

Best Oat Milk for Frothing - Nutpods Original Barista Oat Milk

Nutpods Original Barista Oat Milk

SPECS

  • Flavor: Original, cinnamon dolce, french vanilla
  • Package volume: 32 oz.
  • Calories per serving: 70
  • Sugar per serving: 0g

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Sometimes you just want to enjoy a nice, foamy cappuccino without the calories or lactose of cow's milk. It can be hard to find a non-dairy milk that foams as well as cow's milk for lattes and other drinks, but this oat milk comes close. The Nutpods Original Barista Oat Milk is low in calories, creamy, and froths like a dream. We love that this blend is zero sugar. It still has carbs like all oat milk, but with zero grams of sugar, it's still a healthier option for anyone looking to limit their sugar intake.

Some folks won't like the flavor of this oat milk. Without added sugar to round out the flavor profile, the oat flavor can seem strong, especially if you're used to sweetened oat milk. But it's still delicious, and the lack of sugar will be barely noticeable when added to smoothies and lattes.

What We Like

  • Low calorie
  • Zero added sugar
  • Glyphosate-free and gluten-free
  • Froths beautifully

What We Don't Like

  • Oil and flavor additives
  • Strong oat flavor

BUY: Nutpods Original Barista Oat Milk

Best Oat Milk for Lattes - Minor Figures Organic Oat Milk

Minor Figures Organic Oat Milk

SPECS

  • Flavor: Original
  • Package volume: 33.8 oz.
  • Calories per serving: 139
  • Sugar per serving: 11g

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When it comes to lattes, we love Minor Figures Organic Oat Milk. This oat milk is super creamy and steams beautifully, with a foamy texture that is surprisingly similar to cow's milk. The taste is smooth and pleasant, without an overwhelming oat or nutty flavor. It pairs well with espresso as well as hot tea. It's organic, which is a huge plus, and it doesn't contain a bunch of unnecessary additives.

If you're watching your calorie, carb, or sugar intake, you may want to go with one of our other oat milk selections, though. Minor Figures Organic Oat Milk doesn't have any added sugar, but it is rather high in carbs and naturally occurring sugars. We think that's because this is one of the thicker, creamier oat milks we've tried. If you don't mind the nutrition facts and you're looking for the perfect oat milk for lattes, look no further.

What We Like

  • Super creamy
  • Steams well
  • Good flavor
  • No added sugar
  • Organic

What We Don't Like

  • High in naturally-occurring sugar and carbs
  • Not gluten-free

BUY: Minor Figures Organic Oat Milk

Best Organic Oat Milk - Oatsome Organic Oat Milk

Oatsome Organic Oat Milk

SPECS

  • Flavor: Original, chocolate, barista blend
  • Package volume: 33.8 oz.
  • Calories per serving: 130
  • Sugar per serving: 13g

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We love Oatsome Organic Oat Milk for its creamy, delicious taste and its organic ingredients. If you're concerned about pesticides and glyphosate contamination, you may choose to eat organic foods. Glyphosate contamination is found in high amounts in oats, but in order to remain certified organic, organic farmers are prohibited from using RoundUp or other glyphosate-containing products. So organic oat milk like Oatsome are a great choice! It also steams well, isn't genetically modified, and is gluten-free. It is rather high in sugar at 13 grams per serving, likely from carbs from the oats. But if consumed in moderation, Oatsome Organic Oat Milk can be a delicious and healthy substitute for cow's milk.

What We Like

  • Organic
  • Non-GMO
  • Gluten-free
  • Creamy and thick
  • Enjoyable taste

What We Don't Like

  • High in sugar

BUY: Oatsome Organic Oat Milk

Best Budget Oat Milk - Pacific Foods Barista Series Oat Milk

Pacific Foods Barista Series Oat Milk

SPECS

  • Flavor: Original
  • Package volume: 32 oz.
  • Calories per serving: 180
  • Sugar per serving: 3g

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Oat milk can be surprisingly expensive. If you're searching for a budget option, we recommend Pacific Foods Barista Series Oat Milk. This oat milk is rich and creamy with a flavor that is well-suited for both cold and hot drinks. Users love how well this oat milk foams up. It contains 4 grams of protein per serving, which may not seem like much, but it's on the higher side for oat milk.

This oat milk is carrageenan-free, kosher, and vegan. It may be hard to find in local stores, because it's often sold wholesale, but it's easily accessible online. If you're looking for a budget oat milk option, give the Pacific Foods Barista Series Oat Milk a try.

What We Like

  • Foams well
  • Smooth, pleasant taste
  • 4g protein per serving
  • Carrageenan-free

What We Don't Like

  • Primarily available in wholesale
  • Not certified gluten-free

BUY: Pacific Foods Barista Series Oat Milk

Best Vanilla Oat Milk - Chobani Vanilla Oat Drink

Chobani Vanilla Oat Drink

SPECS

  • Flavor: Vanilla
  • Package volume: 32 oz.
  • Calories per serving: 120
  • Sugar per serving: 9g

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We've featured a lot of "original" or plain-flavored oat milks so far, but if you're looking for an oat milk that has vanilla, check out the Chobani Vanilla Oat Drink. This delicious oat milk is sweet and creamy, with an enjoyable (but not overpowering) vanilla flavor. It's also available in a number of other flavors if vanilla isn't your preference. We like that this oat milk is gluten-free and also sold in bulk 52-ounce containers. It tastes great on cereal, oatmeal, or any food where the vanilla flavor is a nice addition. Some folks may prefer oat milk without added sugar, but some sugar is probably necessary to pair with the vanilla flavoring. In general, if you're looking for a crisp and refreshing vanilla oat milk to drink on its own, in a protein shake, or to eat with cereal, this is a great pick.

What We Like

  • Gluten-free
  • Sweet, smooth vanilla flavor
  • Also available in 52 oz. containers
  • Tastes great on cereal

What We Don't Like

  • Added sugar
  • Texture a bit watery

BUY: Chobani Vanilla Oat Drink

What to Look for in Oat Milk

Ingredients

Oat milk generally contains oats, water, salt, and a preservative. Some oat milks also contain added sugar, which improves flavor, or artificial flavorings, like vanilla or chocolate.

Taste

Oat milk doesn't taste like cow's milk, but compared to other non-dairy milks, it is one of the most similar to milk in taste and texture. Oat milk has a creamy, almost nutty flavor that may remind you of oatmeal. Some brands of oat milk include added sugar or flavors if you prefer a certain taste.

Texture

Oat milk has a similar texture to cow's milk, but if you're used to drinking cow's milk, oat milk may seem watered down. The texture is more similar to skim or nonfat milk than whole milk. Oat milk may contain additives to improve its texture and mouthfeel. However, if you have digestive concerns such as IBS, you may want to steer clear of oat milks that include carrageenan, a common thickener that may worsen digestive upset in certain people.

Oat Milk vs. Almond Milk

Oat milk and almond milk are both non-dairy milks, but their taste, texture, and ingredients differ. Almond milk is made of pureed almonds, water, salt, and sometimes sugar. It's generally lower in calories than oat milk. Its texture is quite watery; for a texture more like cow's milk, try oat milk instead. Oat milk steams better than almond milk, so if you're interested in frothing your non-dairy milk for lattes or other hot drinks, oat is better than almond.

FAQs About Oat Milk


Can oat milk make you gain weight?

Any food can make you gain weight if you consume it in large enough quantities. Generally, oat milk is lower in calories and fat than cow's milk. Almond milk is even lower in calories, but it doesn't have the same creaminess as oat milk, and it doesn't froth or steam as well for beverages. Oats are also a healthy source of whole grains and may improve cardiovascular health.

Is oat milk inflammatory?

Inflammation is a complex process that scientists learn more about every day, so there's a lot of gray areas when it comes to inflammatory foods. Some people believe gluten is inflammatory, but there isn't a definitive answer on this, and many oat milks are gluten-free, anyway. Oats and oat milk are heart-healthy and there's some research to suggest they may actually reduce inflammation in the body. So generally speaking, oat milk is not inflammatory.

Which non-dairy milk is the healthiest?

Non-dairy milks provide a variety of health benefits. There is no single non-dairy milk that beats all of the others in terms of healthiness, so which one you choose should depend on your personal taste and health goals. Soy milk is a great source of protein—other non-dairy milks tend to pale in comparison to cow's milk in the protein department. Soy may also reduce inflammation. Almond milk is low in calories. Oat milk tastes great and may confer some of the heart-health benefits of oats and oatmeal. Coconut milk is a good source of healthy fats and electrolytes.

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