I’ve been on a dairy free diet since my bottle refusing baby (aka baby cravings) was confirmed with having a dairy allergy in February. This dairy free diet has certainly tested my willpower but learning to live without dairy has been really helpful for cooking dairy free baby meals. It’ll be even more valuable in years to come if she doesn’t grow out of her milk allergy, as I now know first hand which tasty dairy free food substitutes to use.
For those of you on a dairy free diet, breastfeeding or not, here’s my tips for eating dairy free.
List of dairy free foods I use all the time
These are just a few of my kitchen staples which I use to manage my baby’s dairy allergy, I will continue to add more dairy free foods as I discover them.
My favourite dairy free butter substitutes
Anytime a recipe needs butter, I substitute it with olive oil or nuttelex.
Nuttelex – I could not live without this amazing vegetable oil-based spread, it tastes just the same as butter without any dairy in it. Our little family has been using nuttelex instead of butter before we even knew about our baby’s cow milk allergy so no taste adjustment required at all (I’ve had to learn to love dairy free milk as I need my coffee).
Dairy free cheese
Bio cheese – if it wasn’t for this amazing soy based cheese, I would not be able to eat pizza (I couldn’t go without some kind of “cheese” on pizza as it is just too dry for my liking)! Thankfully our small business Crust Mount Lawley caters for vegans so I’m always raiding the cool room. This dairy free bio cheese is best placed on the bottom vs top of your food as it burns easily. I add my bio cheese on top of the sauced pizza base under the toppings before placing in the oven.
This is my favourite Vegan Pulled Jackfruit Crust Pizza…
Soy milk – Bon Soy & MilkLab are my favourite soy milk brands. Vitasoy is a close second.
I’ve tried almost every type of dairy free milk from Woolworths and Coles – it seems my trolley always has some type of long life dairy free milk! I am personally not a fan of Rice or Almond Milk.
Dairy free bread / baked goods
There’s a lot of bread and baked goods that contain or may contain traces of milk. These are the brands that I use which are completely daily free:
- Golden Crumpets
- Tip Top Muffins
- Tip Top Raisin Toast
- Helga Traditional White & Mixed Grains
- Abbots Rustic White & Wholemeal
- Abe’s Bagel Bakery’s Bagels (just not the ones with cheese as the flavour)
- Pampas puff pastry
- Mission wraps
Dairy free yoghurt
I only like this Nakula Harvest’s coconut milk yoghurt…I find some of the others too thick and rich.
Dairy free snacks for me
- Kooee! Grass-fed beef jerky – eating jerky takes me back to my childhood, my Asian family are very much into jerky but since moving out of home it’s been ages since jerky made it into my pantry. Thanks to Kooee, I now have a pantry filled with this all-natural beef jerky, a great high protein snack for this dairy free diet when burger boy is indulging in his milk chocolates on the couch. I love the smoked chipotle beef jerky which has a good kick of chilli! Kooee Snacks is avail online at www.kooesnacks.com.au
- Ritz / Jatz crackers / Corn Thins – love these on its own or topped with tuna/dried Italian sausages
- Fruit – our house is always filled with loads of fruit
- Veg & dips – celery and carrots with homemade hummus dip is one of my fav combos
- Animal Confectionary party mix – I’m absolutely hooked on these and yes I know, not the healthiest treat but sometimes after a full day with the kids I just want my lollies!
Dairy free snacks for baby cravings
These are my favourite store-bought baby dairy free snacks from Coles / Woolworths for baby cravings which have no traces of milk, egg or peanut:
- Baby Mum-Mum first rice rusks
- Kiddylicious range of puffs and snacks
- Sunbeam Sultanas
Dairy free salad dressings and food seasoning
Besides being dairy free, each of the mingle seasonings has no preservatives or anti-caking agent in them. Being a mum of two, small business owner and blogger – I’m always after quick and tasty meals so Mingle takes the thinking away from cooking especially when I’m rushed for time.
I love sprinkling a bit of Sally Ranch on my fish, Sass smokey on my steak and Siena Garlic & Herb on my roast veggies (pumpkin and sweet potato is a staple in my house).
Yumm Tastes all started with owner and mum of four, Tarryn Zail-Wise (Chief Taste Officer) making salad dressing for friends from an old family recipe with no artificial colours or preservatives. Now they have a whole range of preservative-free product aimed at making life easier for busy families who enjoy cooking tasty quick meals.
I’ve been adding a splash of the Poppy Splash and Thai Zing (both dairy free) – to my protein salads. Check out the full Yumm Tastes range online at www.yummtastes.com.au.
Dairy free diet meal plan ideas
- Fruit toast
- Toast with avocado or nuttelex
- Cereal with bon soy or oat milk (only ones I can have in my cereal)
- Coffee with soy or oats milk
- Bagels with cold meats
- Sausage rolls using Pampas puff pastry with no egg, milk or cheese
- Meat/seafood with salad, rice, couscous or pasta
- Corn thins or sandwiches with John West Tuna (no trace of milk, egg or peanut), vegemite or pan-fried mingle seasoned chicken
- Cook everything with oil, substitute nuttelex for anything with butter and any of the dairy free milk featured in my list of dairy free foods above.
- Roast meat with roasted vegetables, our favourite is pork loin with crunchy crackling!
- Meat with a salad using my favourite dairy free dressings
- Potato mash using a dairy milk substitute – soy and oat milk are my preferences
- Pasta with a tomato based sauce or a dairy free bechamel sauce
(if your baby also has an egg allergy like baby cravings, San Remo and Barilla have a great gluten-free range which doesn’t have any traces of milk/egg)
- Rice noodles
- Fried or plain rice with curry/stir fry
- Saffron linguine with seafood (sometimes I get bored with tomato-based pasta)
- Dairy free smoothie
I’ve tried so many raw desserts and protein balls but have just come to terms that they are just not for me.
My favourite spot for having dairy free desserts out in Perth are Measure and Lot Six Zero in Yokine. Measure’s salted caramel donuts were my first real dessert after starting this dairy free dessert and I had my first strawberry milkshake in 4 months at Lot Six Zero. It was just amazing that I didn’t have to be that annoying customer asking with that customised order… Lot Six Zero clearly have dairy free milkshakes on the menu which are made with soy milk and soy ice cream!!
Note that none of the above foods contains eggs or peanuts as baby cravings is also allergic to egg and peanut.
Milk allergies in babies – what dairy allergy symptoms our baby had
For those of you who are on a dairy free diet because you have a breastfeeding baby with a dairy allergy, I’ve included details on what we experienced with our baby’s milk protein allergy. I’m sure every reaction is different but this is just what happened to us.
baby cravings allergy to cow’s milk (which we didn’t know was milk at the time) resulted in little bumps that looked kinda like small white heads starting from her face and spreading down to the rest of her body. She went pale and floppy after 20 minutes of having her creamy bechamel chicken so we rushed her to the hospital. Luckily she was only nostalgic for a short time and the hospital just monitored her.
It is worth mentioning she’s had my creamy chicken dish a couple of times before this anaphylaxis reaction but reacted on the third time hence why I didn’t realise she was allergic to milk.
Since we had her allergies confirmed, I carry around an EpiPen and Baby Zyrtec with me everywhere I go.
On a separate note, baby cravings has given us a few scares…the first one was when she was four months. We spent 10 days at Princess Margaret Hospital after she was diagnosed with meningitis. I blogged about the scariest week of our parenting lives here.
Enough about me! What’s your dairy free diet story?
Love to hear your dairy free diet tips and stories on how you are managing your baby’s milk allergy. Leave me a comment!
Disclaimer: the above products featured where dairy free at the time this post was published, please check the labels of all products mentioned in this post before using as they do change their ingredients from time to time. foodie cravings was provided with Mingle Seasonings, Kooee Snacks and Yumm Tastes products to review. See my disclosure policy for further details.