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Allergies and intolerances

Does anyone have any tips for my first dairy free shopping?

26 replies

oodlesofpoodles · 17/07/2009 13:08

I am going dairy free for a few weeks due to bf my ds2 (recomended by his pead- long story)

Can anyone tell me the pros/cons of various milk alternatives (soy/rice/oat milk etc.)

Is milk in things that I wouldn't suspect?

Can I have any ordinary biscuits/cakes/chocolate or will I have to get 'free from' stuff?

I dairy free cheese as bad as I think its going to be? I would really like some parmasan.


OP posts:
Picante · 17/07/2009 13:11

Alpro fresh soya milk (sweetened) is definitely the nicest milk substitute. They do say boys shouldn't have too much soya before the age of one, but he'd hardly get any through your milk. I can't stand any other kind of milk... goats milk is foul!

Don't bother with dairy-free cheese, it's basically plastic! I'd rather go without cheese.

Milk is in everything... just depends how drastic you want to go!

babybarrister · 17/07/2009 13:15

This reply has been deleted

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

misscreosote · 17/07/2009 13:21

I second alpro soya milk (although I prefer the non sweetened one, in the uht cartons). If you're cutting out dairy, make sure you get the ones with added calcium (or take a supplement). Soya yogurts and desserts and ice cream also fab. For white sauces, oatly oat 'cream' is nice.

Quite a lot of normal stuff is dairy free - eg waitrose bourbon biscuits, those 'chocolate' macaroons, co-op doughnuts. You just have to get used to checking every single label, so allow lots of time for your first shop.

Lots of stuff that you wouldn't think of has dairy in it, eg jelly babies (I think, last time I looked...).

And soya cheese is the most disgusting thing I have ever tastes apart from a french delicacy of offal sausages. Don't do it.

We have to be completely dairy free for DD1 as she is extremely allergic. And I've just given up dairy as BF DD2 (has made a huge difference - no longer 'colicky'), but I take the view with me, that the amounts that go through are so tiny, if the amounts in the food are tiny (eg a trace of milk in some fishcake coating, for example) then life is really too short, and that seems to be OK. Have avoided take outs and eating out so far though, which is annoying as I love my friday night curry!

Clure · 17/07/2009 13:58

I'm vegan and so I'm an avid reader of labels - as one poster said milk and its derivitives (lactose, whey) are hidden in LOADS of foods so advise to check labels

I used to have the sweetened alpro soya milk which is a good taste, have now cut down on my soya intake and switched to oatley (oat milk) and provamel rice milk both of which are good on cereal. not sure about in tea/coffee as I take mine black.

Alpro do good range of yogurts and puddings in pots (chocolate is particularly yum) also they do dairy free custard in a carton.

Swedish Glace is a fab soya ice cream and loads of my friends can't believe its dairy free

Agree with not bothering with soya cheese, quite disgusting! Although the tofutti cream cheese is ok and you can use this in cooking. you can get "parmessano" which is like a sprinkling dairy free version of parmesan, I personally don't like it but DH does.

quirkychick · 17/07/2009 14:08

DD was allergic to dairy so we used to have provamel rice milk, and alpro soya milk. (Initially avoided soya too). Alpro make nice puds in pots. Second Swedish glace vanilla, didn't like the raspberry so much less "creamy".

Nairns oatcakes, rice cakes and pitta bread all dairy free.

If you want to eat out wagamamas is dairy free (though not puds) and very good at knowing what's in food.

Houmous usually good, used organic mayonnaise to spread in sandwiches instead of butter. Agree about reading all labels.

pointydog · 17/07/2009 14:11

I learned most of what I know from mn.

We liked rice milk but recently the govt issued new advice that no one under the age of 2 (I think) should drink it due to arsenic levels. That put me off.

Soya milk ok.

swedish glace ice cream is indeed delicious.

Free from stuff can be very expensive. There are some very cheap biscuits which have no milk products: bourbons, fruit shortcake biscuits, party rings, a cheapo brand of jammy dodgers (can't remember the brand now), crimbles macaroons (lovely).

For variation, it was easier for me to bake some cakes and biscuits with pure or vitalite (preferred vitalite for baking).

Definitely start reading all the labels (especially in the biscuit aisle) because you can unearth the odd thing that is milk free.

tesco own make empire biscuits, for example, which dd2 loves (bakery section).

fry's chocolate creams - that was a surprise!

sorry if I've repeated stuff

DidEinsteinsMum · 17/07/2009 14:24

Watch gravy granules so contain milk, there are odd brands from various shops of biscuits that are milk free but we use vitalite and make our own biscuits and cakes. Ds is 4 so its a good way to keep him busy in a afternoon (i can manage a batch of cakes made and baked in less then 40mins with no ds help) he has to weight everything.

The key thing is to allow 3 times as much time as you would normally do as it takes hours to read through the labels.

we like the metropolitian swedish glacie, and the basic vanilla, chocolate, and raspberry flavours.

Ds cant stand the alpro soya milk but loves the custards and stuff. We use So good soya life (with long life milk). Soya milk is really down to personal taste and if you dont like one try another type.

Just remember the 1st trip is the worst and it gets so less daunting as you get into the swing of it.

Good luck!

DidEinsteinsMum · 17/07/2009 14:25

opps just remembered watch some of the own brand stuff. We stick to the Alpro custard as the own brand stuff is just not as nice IMO, both in taste and texture.

Clure · 17/07/2009 17:12

also I use Pure margarine, they do soya and sunflower both dairy free

MummyDragon · 17/07/2009 18:56

Sainsburys do a detailed list (contains product name, description, first part of bar code and the shelf description showing where to find it) for allergy sufferers - they do a nut-free list, dairy-free list, etc etc. I got hold of a nut-free one a few years ago. It was brilliant as I was able to relax completely when eating my purchases; after all, no way would a mahoosive supermarket risk its reputation by telling you that a food was definitely nut/milk free if there was a chance it wasn't.

If it's not available on their website, I think you could get hold of a copy by ringing Customer Services. I hope this helps you. I imagine the other supermarkets probably do this too.

girlsyearapart · 17/07/2009 19:17

Depending on how milk free you are going then there are loads of foods you have to avoid lots listed by other people already. Our dietitian gave us a list of what to avoid when you look at the labels eg whey, milk powder etc. Other v random sounding ingredients. Good to get yourself a list. If you contact your paed they can prob refer you to the right dept to get a list. They also gave us loads of milk free recipe booklets.
If your dc ends up staying dairy free then post on here again for ideas for child friendly milk free snacks and meals. Our dd2 is 10 mo and is dairy, soya, egg and wheat free amongst others so I spend much of my time standing in the free from aisle scratching my head! Good luck x

Stormfly · 17/07/2009 21:13

Also double check Ecover washing-up liquid as one type (Chamomile?) has/had whey in it.

We have not found an edible soya cheese either, although dd does eat Cheezly quite happily - probably because she has never tasted real cheese.

I agree that Oatly cream and Swedish Glace ice cream are very nice, as is Alpro custard. I think they brought out a chocolate custard but it was horrible. If we want chocolate custard then whilst the usual yellow Alpro one heats up in the pan, we blend a spoonful of cocoa powder with hot water in a cup and tip it into the pan. Much nicer.

pointydog · 17/07/2009 21:54

we ditched cheese completely

oodlesofpoodles · 18/07/2009 19:25

Thanks everyone. I got Alpro soya milk and oatly milk I've tried them both in coffee and was quite impressed but I haven't had them 'neat' yet. Got Nairns biscuits and they were nice and some 'free from' tangerine flavoured chocolate (been addicted to orange chocolate since being pg) which was nice but not like chocolate iykwim. I think I will try to wean myself onto frys chocolate cream instead. I also found dairy free lemon curd which isn't too bad (although it doesn't taste like lemon curd) and I've found that toast and marmalade is just the same (almost) as toast, butter and marmalade. I am a bit worried about what I am going to cook to replace the copious amounts of pasta with cheese that I usually make but I'll get used to it soon. I really want to eat the gorgonzola and pate that my fridge is full of.
I'm not sure how drastic I'm supposed to go but I'm seeing the pead again in a week.
Thanks again.

OP posts:
trixymalixy · 18/07/2009 19:39

If you like orange chocolate try Green and Black's Maya Gold. It lists milk as an ingredient, but actually doesn't see link below.

Ds who is very allergic to milk is fine with it.

g&b info

oodlesofpoodles · 18/07/2009 20:48

trixy that is fantastic!! Thats the exact chocolate I am addicted to. I have a case of it from the cash and carry .

OP posts:
ABetaDad · 18/07/2009 20:55

Alpro Original (Sweetened) soya milk is the best tasting. Rice Dream is OK but not as good. Both of these you can get in lots of health foos shops and supermarkets.

I do not like the Lacto Free milk made by Arla but I do like the Lacto Free Yoghurt. I think you can get that from both Sainsbury and Waitrose.

Ice cream I do like Swedish Glace vanilla flavour but the chocolate version is not as good. Again available via Sainsbury and probably other supermarkets.

quirkychick · 18/07/2009 21:04

Booja Booja make vegan luxury chocolates that are definitely adult and very delicious. I think you can get them in larger supermarkets. We also used to get a lot of stuff in local health food and organic shops.

Definitely get a list from the dietician of all the things to watch out for in food labels. As there are quite a few!

ellceeell · 18/07/2009 21:06

Sainsbury dairy free list is here htm?WT.mc_id=pai06017se73

trellism · 18/07/2009 23:53

You could also try looking for kosher parev stuff in the Jewish food section in larger supermarkets or Jewish shops if you live in or near that kind of area. It's guaranteed to be completely free of all dairy.

Some of it's a bit stodgy but I find it's often nicer than the FreeFrom products as it's made for a wider audience, as it were.

gigglewitch · 18/07/2009 23:56

go to Aldi!! Loads of their stuff is 'unintentionally' as it were, dairy free. Therefore does not cost a fortune

katieheinson · 11/08/2009 09:33


I?m totally dairy free as well! When I first decided to cut out dairy I was really worried that I would miss out on foods I loved. I initially was a bit worried about trying Soya but tried Alpro Soya Original and was surprised at how nice it actually was! I agree with the others, Alpro is definitely the nicest brand of Soya milk! Now I have it on my cereal every day and in my hot drinks! Try the cream in hot chocolate! It is beautiful and doesn?t curdle!

Also if you get stuck for ideas there are loads of recipes on the Alpro website that are really lovely and really easy to make!

Hope this helps you!!!



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oldraver · 13/08/2009 18:00

OODLES... A lot of the Lindt Excellance chocolate bars are Dairy free and absolutely scrumptious. There is a mint and an orange one. 'Dairy free' chocolate is usually rank to a proper chocolate lover as to me proper choccie doesnt have milk in anyway.

Most ginger bisciuts and gingerbread men are dairy free though Sainsburys do insist on putting a Smartie on theirs which is annoying. Sainsburys also put milk in their own brand tomato ketchup (cue big argument on phone to them after their 'you wouldn't know the difference' add campaign

If you ever buy packet hams they can contain milk. There are some pate's out there that are ok as well

OurLadyOfPerpetualSupper · 13/08/2009 18:12

For your pasta with tomato sauce and cheese: obviously buy or make a df sauce, then you can add a cream cheese made from soya (from health food shops.)
My DCs love it mixed with the Seeds of Change sun dried tomato sauce - tastes like tomato and mascarpone.
If you're allowed sheep's milk, Pecorino tastes like Parmesan.

OurLadyOfPerpetualSupper · 13/08/2009 23:39

The soft cheese is called Tofutti.

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