With veganism on the rise, more and more people are opting for dairy-free alternatives to cow's milk, including soy milk, oat milk, almond milk, and much more. I enjoy pretty much any dairy alternative but if I had to pick only one, it would be almond milk. Before getting into what makes almond milk the best, let's talk about what it is. 

What Is Almond Milk?

nut, almond, walnut
Torey Walsh

While almond milk has gained popularity in recent years, it's actually been around for centuries. It was first noted in a 13th century cookbook, which described how to make almond milk. Essentially you take some almonds, stick them in a blender with water, and then filter out the solids to get the "milk." Today, there are a variety of brands that offer almond milk, so even if you're not up to the hassle of making it at home, you can still have this great alternative. 

What Makes Almond Milk the Best?

Honestly, all dairy alternatives are great. They contain healthy fats, protein, as well as other nutrients. Not to mention, they're much better for the environment. Almond milk requires less water per gallon than cow's milk or even soy milk. It also has a much lower carbon footprint than either. 

At the end of the day, almond milk comes out on top for me simply because of its versatility. You can drink it plain and enjoy its nutty, slightly sweet flavor. Or, you can add it to drinks like coffee and hot chocolate and it won't affect the taste as much as some other dairy alternatives, like soy or coconut milk would. It also can be easily substituted in for cow's milk for any recipe, sweet and savory alike. If following a recipe that calls for cow's milk, simply use the same recommended amount for almond milk. With other dairy alternatives, because of varying levels of thickness, it takes a little adjusting in measurements to get recipes to turn out right. 

So if you're new to plant-based dairy alternatives, or just want to try something new, pick up a carton of almond milk and maybe it'll become a staple in your kitchen.