In an attempt to enjoy cereal as a sad, dairy-free human, I used almond milk instead of dairy milk for several months. It wasn't bad, but it wasn't great. I didn't love the almond flavor in my cinnamon cereal, so I bought Rice Dream Rice Milk

Minerva Ho

I am about 3/4 of the way through my 64 oz container that I bought almost a month ago. (As a college student, it would have been nice to be able to buy a smaller quantity so it wouldn't take up half of my refrigerator, but that's another issue for another day). 

It Doesn't Taste Like Much 

Unlike almond or cashew milk that has a nutty aftertaste, rice milk does not have much flavor. It claims to have "subtle sweetness from brown rice," but I'm not sure there is actually any brown rice in it. I don't know what an aftertaste of brown rice would taste like, but I haven't found it yet.

In a bowl of cereal, I am actually able to taste the cereal and fruit, and not the liquid. It's nice, but a little disconcerting for someone who is used to the taste of dairy milk in their breakfast. 

The container has a recipe for a smoothie on the side, but it calls for more fruit (2 cups watermelon) and other flavors (6 mint leaves) than rice milk (1 cup). I'm sure it's a good smoothie but if you have to add so much fruit to add flavor, it might not be the best base. 

It's Watery 

Minerva Ho

I was warned that rice milk wouldn't be good in cereal because it was more watery than dairy milk. I was initially skeptical of the rumor, but it was soon confirmed. Just coming out of the container, it looks like water that just has coloring in it. It comes out quickly and doesn't have much of a distinct smell--unlike when you can instantly smell if dairy milk has spoiled. 

I generally like to pour the milk into my cereal a few minutes before I want to start eating it so that the pieces will be a bit soggy. After about 10 minutes one day, my cereal wasn't soggy at all. While it's nice to be able to eat cereal slowly without it getting completely soggy, I might as well be eating cereal with water in it. 

The Nutrition Value Isn't Great 

Minerva Ho

While almost every milk alternative is fortified with calcium to make up for the nutrition that people aren't getting from dairy, I'm not sure that the other ingredients in rice milk are making it a healthy alternative. The first ingredient is water, followed by partially milled brown rice. 

In one 8 oz serving, you receive 30% of your daily recommenced value of calcium. It also provides 25% of your recommended Vitamin B12 and D intake, but the rest of the nutrients are negligible. Additionally, there is only 1 gram of protein as compared to 12 grams of sugar.  

I will finish my container of rice milk, but I don't plan to buy any more of it. I might try oat milk next, but after the disappointment of rice milk and pea milk, I might have to go back to nut milks.  For an in-depth comparison of several dairy alternatives, check out this list.