With the world leaning towards adopting a more plant-based diet, substitute milk is slowly becoming a regular part of our daily meals. One such alternative milk and a popular one, in this case, is oat milk.
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With that said, it’s only right to know if you should give it a try. But, what exactly is oat milk made of? How is it made? And is it good for your health?
What is Oat milk?
It is dairy-free substitute milk made from oats. Being lactose-free, it is a perfect choice for your vegan diet.
In simple terms, oat milk is what you get when you blend a mixture of mashed oats plus water. To make sure the resulting mixture is smooth, strain it in a cheesecloth, this way, removing all the pulp resulting from the blending.
You should also note that processed oat milk never tastes the same. Different brands come up with their unique additives from vitamins, flavors, minerals, to sweeteners hence the difference in taste.
How is Oat Milk made?
It is done by mixing and blending rolled oats and water, producing oat milk. Sometimes flavors or sweeteners are added to enhance the taste.
Can you make oat milk at home?
Mix a single mug of rolled oats with four mugs of water, add any flavor or sweetener you desire, and blend for about thirty to forty seconds. You then strain it over a clean cloth, to make sure it is free of pulps.
The resulting mixture is smooth textured milk, which is ideal for combining with coffee, cereal, or baked product.
However, there are factors you need to consider, to avoid making your oat milk slimy.
1. First, it is vital you only blend for thirty to forty seconds. Over-blending could affect the resulting texture of your milk, making it slimy.
2. Secondly, submerging the oats in water could also make your milk slimy. Only blend with water, no need to soak.
3. Oat milk thickens when heated. The resulting view is not very desirable. Hence, after blending, store in your refrigerator for future use.
4. Another essential step is straining. If not correctly done, the resulting pulps could make your milk slimy. Hence, the need strain twice, merely to be sure.
5. What you use for straining is also very significant; it should not let in any pulps. Use a cheesecloth, a towel, or a clean set of cloth.
Nutrient Facts Regarding Oat Milk.
Are you in search of a healthy drink? Then look no further, than oat milk, it could be your ideal drink. It contains several minerals, vitamins, and fiber, which could be vital for your body.
A single cup of unflavored oat milk contains the following.
Minerals; Iron, potassium, phosphorous, sodium, and calcium
Vitamins; Vitamin A, Vitamin D, Vitamin B12, and Riboflavin.
Other nutrients include sugars, calories, protein, fiber, fats, and carbohydrates.
Made from smashed oats, when you drink oat milk, you will not get the same amount of nutrients as you will get from consuming a whole dish of oats. Hence, the need to supplement it with more nutrients.
In addition to sweetening, brand oat kinds of milk contain extra minerals and vitamins. It’s also proper to note that, when related to other plant-based milk, it contains more fiber and proteins.
How To Use Oat Milk.
Since it has a neutral taste, oat milk combines well with different types of food. You can use it for baking, add it in your coffee, or for cooking other types of grains. Also, use it when making pancakes.
You can likewise utilize it when making smoothies and soups. It can also be used as a substitute for dairy milk, for instance, when cooking mashed potatoes. Have a glass of oat milk when you come straight from a workout, it will provide you with a ready energy source.
Is oat milk healthy?
How healthy is oat milk? Studies suggest that drinking oat milk has numerous benefits to our bodies. The following are some health benefits you get from drinking oat milk.
1. Perfect for a vegan diet.
If you are one of those people with diet restrictions, then oat milk should work for you. Made from mixing oats plus water, it does not have lactose, soy, or nuts, making it the right drink if you are allergic to any of the above.
And while oats are naturally free of gluten, processed ones could contain gluten particles. Contamination likely happens from being prepared in a facility that makes other products containing gluten. Hence, if you have a gluten allergy, make sure to counter check before use, or you can stick to homemade oat milk.
2. Rich in Vitamins.
Although oat milk possesses other vitamins, namely A and D, it’s richer in B vitamins than the rest of the plant-based kinds of milk.
These vitamins are vital for your body. They help, for example, in maintaining healthy skin or proper hair growth.
3. Decreases Cholesterol in your Blood.
Oat milk has a dissolvable fiber known as beta-glucans. Beta-glucans bind with cholesterol, reducing its absorption into the blood. It’s significant for you as it reduces your chances of having heart complications.
4. Strengthens your bones.
Oat milk contains calcium and vitamin D, which are essential in bone formation and strength.
Calcium makes sure you have strong bones while also keeping them healthy. Lack of it could cause hollow bones or increase your chances of having a fracture or breaking a bone entirely.
Vitamin D aids in the retention of calcium from your digestion tract. Lack of it would mean no calcium, which could result in weak bone formation.
Oat Milk Negatives.
While the benefits of Oat milk are there for all to see, you need to note that certain negatives come with it.
- Not all oat milk is gluten-free
First, except for a few cases, oat milk produced commercially isn’t ensured to be gluten-free. This can be dangerous if you have a serious health condition such as celiac disease or you are allergic to gluten. In case you have such a condition, only purchase verified gluten-free oat milk, or you can make it at home.
- Sweetened or flavored options are high in sugar
Second, certain kinds of processed oat milk have high sugar content, particularly on the off chance that they have been flavored or sweetened. If you are trying to limit your sugar intake you should be sure to purchase an unsweetened option.
- More expensive than dairy milk
If you compare the prices of dairy milk to oat milk, the latter is more expensive. Therefore, if you are running on a tight budget, it is better to make oat milk at home.
What is the best oat milk brand?
If you are not in to making your own oat milk at home, there are several brands to choose from. The one brand that stands out is Oatly! Their milk is made from gluten-free oats and is certified Non-GMO.
Founded in the 90’s, the Oatly company was one of the forerunners in the oat alternative milk movement. They use a patented enzyme technology process to turn fiber rich oats into an oat milk product.
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