Potatoes are the versatile king of the vegetable world. Fried or baked, mashed or roasted, sweet or savory, the humble root vegetable really can do it all — including, most recently, potato milk.

According to The Cut, potato milk is the next plant-based milk in line to replace dairy, and will soon be sold in supermarkets and coffee shops everywhere. Supposedly environmentally conscious and full of nutrients, multiple outlets have deemed potato milk the next suitable contender to replace the lactose in our lives. 

So what is potato milk and how is it made?

Simply, potato milk is plant milk made from potatoes. Its texture is said to be white and milky and its neutral flavor means that potato milk works as a mix-in for tea and coffee, poured atop breakfast cereal, or even as a base for macaroni and cheese. (However, other reviews have noted that potato milk has a “saline aftertaste,” suggesting that it might be best to stick to savory uses.)

Wondering how a potato gets from the ground to your macchiato? Like other plant milks, the potato gets heated, strained, and emulsified with rapeseed oil and water for a liquified, creamy consistency. In addition to heart-healthy omega-3s (which many plant-based eaters tend to be lacking), the rapeseed oil contributes to the creamy texture of potato milk similar to cow’s milk. Some manufacturers have even added pea protein and chicory fiber, while home-brewers have added vanilla and other sweeteners.

Ophélie Buchet, a global food and drink analyst at market research firm Mintel, told The Guardian that potato milk has the potential to displace oat milk as a more sustainable dairy-free alternative “without asking consumers to compromise on nutrition, price or taste.”

“We’ve seen the popularity of soy, almond, oat, and pea milk in recent years,” British supermarket chain Waitrose wrote in their 2022 Food and Drink report. “Now it’s the turn of potato milk. Low in sugar and saturated fat, it’s set to dominate coffee shop menus in the coming months.”

Not only does potato milk have low sugar and fat contents, it also doesn't contain soy and many typical allergens that may be present in other plant-based milks. The flavor is reportedly naturally mild (and the texture somewhat creamy thanks to potato's natural starch), but the process for making it is theoretically much better for the environment than dairy and some other plant-based milks.

The potato milk brand DUG claims growing potatoes is twice as efficient as growing oats, given that potatoes only require half the land of oats. Plus, making potato milk requires more than 50 times less water than almond milk – approximately 1.8 gallons for potato milk, versus 98 gallons for almond milk – and is said to produce considerably less carbon dioxide than milk from animals.

“Our choice to use potatoes as a base means we have a super-sustainable drink,” DUG CEO Thomas Olander told The Guardian.

Additionally, potatoes have unique benefits that may transfer to potato milk, such as antioxidants, magnesium, potassium, fiber and even Vitamin C. While they’re full of essential nutrients, potatoes may also lessen your risk of developing certain cancers, diabetes, and heart disease, in addition to enhancing blood sugar control and improving the overall health of your digestive system.

Where can I get it?

If you want to take a stab at making potato milk at home, you can – it’s easily made with some boiled potatoes, a blender, and added sweeteners, if desired. If you’d rather stick to mashing, though, Swedish brand DUG has recently debuted its creation following research from Professor Eva Tornberg at Lung University. The current line of potato milks – which does contain additives such as rapeseed oil, fructose, and "natural flavour," among others – includes Original, Barista, and Unsweetened.

However, the cost of potato milk will be key to its long-term success as the higher price of plant milks is the “number one” thing that stops consumers buying them, according to marketing firm Mintel.

As of right now, DUG’s “barista” version costs £1.80 for a liter, or about $9.75 a gallon – three times the average price of a gallon of dairy milk in the United States.

While I love a good waffle fry, I’ll be sticking to my brown sugar oat milk latte until further notice.