Help me replace dairy without soy
August 19, 2017 2:38 AM   Subscribe

I'm dairy and soy free at the moment for the sake of my baby who has an intolerance to it. I need to be quite strict and I'm finding it difficult to find reasonably low fat high protein alternatives to milk and yoghurt.

I used to eat yoghurt each afternoon with some fruit. I was having coconut yoghurt but really it's low protein and high fat so not very healthy. I also used to make my own smoothies with banana, yoghurt and semi skimmed milk. Again, I'm finding it tough to find a nutritious replacement that is filling and not too fattening. I am breastfeeding and go through quite a few calories.

Things I don't want/am already doing:
Nuts - great but too high in fat to eat in quantities that I find filling. I know I'm supposed to find a small handful filling. I just don't.
Avocado- already having this for lunch every day.
Tuna- ugh.

My lunch is a goat's cheese, ham and tomato open sandwich. Sometimes I have a kale and roast veggie salad with seeds but I find it tough to get it prepared. Two kids and one is not sleeping well during the day or night.

I'm hungry about an hour after that lunch. And then another hour after probably because all I can think of to eat is more carbs and fruit. It goes on until dinner. It's really annoying.

So I'm after suggestions for snacks or for easy ways to improve the lunch so that it's more filling.
posted by jojobobo to Food & Drink (29 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
If you aren't doing this already, try replacing your sandwich bread with a hearty whole grain variety. Hard boiled eggs have good fats and are loaded with protein. Roasted chickpeas can be quite delicious.
posted by xyzzy at 3:14 AM on August 19, 2017 [1 favorite]

What about adding chia seeds to your diet? They have fiber and protein, so are very filling. You could even mix some almond/other substitute milk with chia seeds, leave in the fridge overnight, and in the morning have something not unlike yogurt in texture.
posted by schroedingersgirl at 3:28 AM on August 19, 2017 [1 favorite]

Hemp milk can be an option, it has higher protein and omega-3 fatty acids than rice or coconut I believe, but make sure to get it fortified. Leafy greens, broccoli, sesame seeds, chia seeds, and quinoa can all be non dairy sources of calcium (make sure to take supplements, especially for your kids, since it is tougher to get calcium from those sources without eating a large amount.)

This link from Today's Dietitian gives a chart of different dairy alternatives, their protein, calories, fat, and their taste profile if that would be helpful.

Otherwise, seconding hard boiled eggs, roasted chickpeas. Or adding black beans or any bean to salads/soups, fruit and nut butter snack, adding protein powder to your smoothies (pea protein could be something for you to try as it's dairy/soy free). You could have oatmeal (1/2c dry oats has 8g protein) with nut milk, hemp seeds, etc. That's all I got from the top of my head that I recommend to clients... but good luck!
posted by buttonedup at 4:48 AM on August 19, 2017 [2 favorites]

You're saying no nuts, but what about nut milks? (Almond milk is getting a bit of a publicity boost at the moment.) You can also get oat, rice, or hemp milks- there are lots of not-soy non dairy options out there.
posted by freethefeet at 5:44 AM on August 19, 2017

Silk brand almond milk is the best straight one for one replacer of cows milk I've found as a newly minted vegan. It even works in tea! There are big differences in flavor between brands so try this one if you've been put off by another one.

Chickpeas are a great idea. I love Socca, a super simple Mediterranean flatbread made with chickpea flour. This is my recipe;

2 cups chickpea flour
2 cups water
1 tsp salt
1/4 cup olive oil
Blast ingredients in a blender/mixer until smooth and let stand for a couple of hours on the counter.
Pre-heat oven to 550 F
Brush a large baking tray with olive oil.
Put baking tray on top oven shelf then pour in batter.
Let bake for 5 mins then turn on broiler and brown the surface for a minute.
Take out of oven, brush with olive oil and sprinkle with fine ground pepper.
Cut into 3" squares and eat/store in fridge.

Works also pretty well as a sandwich filling (with a smear of mild salsa) and tastes somewhat like Spanish Tortilla. Yum!
posted by merocet at 6:06 AM on August 19, 2017 [3 favorites]

Question: you mention eating goat cheese, does this mean your dairy prohibition is just cow milk based?

If so, goat milk yogurt does exist and could be the solution to your problem.
posted by sciencegeek at 6:38 AM on August 19, 2017 [2 favorites]

Also sheep milk yogurt. Although it is somewhat "sheepy ."
posted by kerf at 6:46 AM on August 19, 2017 [2 favorites]

If you're hungry an hour after lunch, maybe you need something more filling. What if you add some extra ham to the sandwich and maybe some avocado? Also you say you want to avoid fat but fats help you feel full plus if you are breastfeeding I'd want to check on whether there are recommended macronutrient levels to meet.

That said for your afternoons snack you might try hummus or a cup of soup. I'd also try googling "high protein soy free vegan snack" and see what pops up.
posted by bunderful at 7:24 AM on August 19, 2017

While nursing, you're using up a lot of calories, so unless you have a health reason to limit fats, calories should not be an issue. Assuming you're vegetarian, wheat germ, beans, legumes all have protein - lentils are quick and easy, try with salt and olive oil. Hummus is a good idea. If your baby has colic and you need sympathy and/or suggestions, me-mail me.
posted by theora55 at 8:02 AM on August 19, 2017 [2 favorites]

You might pick up a few sample packets of whichever soy-free vegan protein powders you can get your hands on (Vega One is the one I see the most, I know my Sprouts has multiple flavors in the small packets; I've had the chocolate and vanilla and they were fine) and see if you like them. Use that in your smoothies with just water, or the coconut/almond/rice milk of your choice.

My husband's breakfast of choice is no-cook oatmeal, which we make by the half-gallon jar every week: 2C rolled oats, 2T chia seeds, some tablespoons agave nectar (you can also leave out and stir in to taste when you eat), 2C unsweetened coconut milk (sometimes vanilla unsweetened), and he uses a medium-size tub of greek yogurt but you could use the protein powder. Let it all marinate overnight, and it will last 4-5 days.

I use coconut milk (canned to replace cream or half and half, carton for oatmeal and coffee etc) for pretty much all milk applications now. So many vegan-oriented products are avoiding soy now and using pea protein instead, you just may have to go to Sprouts/Whole Foods/etc to get them. Cheese, unfortunately, is still the final frontier, and a lot of vegan cheese does not really satisfy a cheese craving.

Eat more meat, if you can. Batch-poach chicken (I do two pans at once, so I've got 5-6 breasts in the fridge when I'm done) so you've got it on hand all the time.
posted by Lyn Never at 8:13 AM on August 19, 2017

Eggnog made with rice milk or soy milk.
posted by amtho at 9:00 AM on August 19, 2017

Is there a specific health reason you're avoiding fats? If you're breastfeeding and hungry and carbs and fruit aren't doing it for you, let yourself have the high fat foods. If coconut yogurt is tasty to you, go for it. Eat more nuts. Fats are not automatically fattening!

Otherwise, could you try eating snacks based on meat, like jerky or chicken salad?
posted by MadamM at 9:43 AM on August 19, 2017 [4 favorites]

Came in to recommend Hemp Seeds, and especially Hemp Milk, which is super duper delicious!!
posted by jbenben at 9:51 AM on August 19, 2017

Pea protein based veggie milks like Veggemo and Ripple are higher in protein than other non-soy nondairy milks. I can't speak to Ripple since I haven't tried it yet, but Veggemo is pretty good.
posted by Gymnopedist at 10:22 AM on August 19, 2017

It doesn't necessarily solve the mealtime puzzle, but Nutpods might be useful for coffee/smoothies/etc.
posted by mcbeth at 11:06 AM on August 19, 2017

If you're not vegetarian or vegan, meat and/or eggs.
posted by Rock 'em Sock 'em at 11:39 AM on August 19, 2017

Also yes while breastfeeding it's normal to be super hungry. I personally would not worry about calories too much (or at all).
posted by Rock 'em Sock 'em at 11:40 AM on August 19, 2017

Dairy and eggs don't agree with me, I try to eat a high-protein diet, and I am tremendously lazy when it comes to feeding myself.

I often make overnight oats. In a glass Tupperware container, I take about 1/3 cup steel cut oats, 2 tbsp chia seeds, 1 tbsp hemp hearts, pour about 1/4 cup light coconut milk (full fat is a bit too heavy for me) and top off with a splash of almond milk if I want it a bit less dry. Cover, shake it up, leave it in the fridge overnight (though sometimes I forget and prepare it at about 7am and eat it at 10am or so and it's fine). First thing in the morning, drizzle a small amount of honey, sprinkle chopped walnuts (I buy these in bulk pre-chopped), and pour frozen sliced strawberries on top, then leave it in the fridge for an hour or two for the strawberries to thaw.

This is incredibly filling in a way that sticks with you, and decently high in protein. I make 2 or 3 days worth at a time and keep them in the fridge.

I also often buy turkey pepperoni in bulk from Costco and eat those for an afternoon snack. A protein shake with frozen berries, a handful of spinach, vegan, soy-free protein powder, a banana, and almond milk also gets me a long way.

Good luck!
posted by rodneyaug at 11:43 AM on August 19, 2017

Merocet's suggestion of socca is a good one, but the recipe as posted has an error -- the bread has to bake for 15 minutes, not five.
posted by Dolley at 12:16 PM on August 19, 2017

I'm confused that you say no dairy but mention a sandwich with goat cheese. If you can have goat milk, there's yogurt out there made from goat milk. It's not that hard to make your own if it's not available in your area. And, goat milk itself would make a good cow milk alternative if you can have goat milk.

OTOH, perhaps you've just had the terrible realization that you've inadvertently been eating dairy after all.

There are "milk alternative" products without soy. If they don't have the protein you want, you can mix pea or whey based protein powder with them.
posted by yohko at 12:45 PM on August 19, 2017

There are "milk alternative" products without soy. If they don't have the protein you want, you can mix pea or whey based protein powder with them.

Be careful with whey. Although it has only a trace of lactose, it is a milk protein. I consider it to be dairy.
posted by Dolley at 12:50 PM on August 19, 2017 [1 favorite]

Pea protein shakes are very good if they're cold. If you're vegan or vegetarian check to see if the field roast stuff has soy in it. That's a great vegan brand. Yogurt is not really going to happen, but coconut milk pudding with added protein is good.

Basically, go to Whole Foods, wander around for like an hour with $200 bucks, buy a bunch of stuff that looks good, and go from there.
posted by Rock 'em Sock 'em at 1:33 PM on August 19, 2017

Thanks all- I'm already using almond milk but t is low protein. I am also having calcium fortified oat milk but again it's low protein.

I'm already having avocado.

I'm not especially averse to fats but have gained weight since losing dairy and replacing it with all manner of coconut and nut based products so need to find some other alternatives. Hemp milk is not readily available here, nor is goats milk yoghurt.
posted by jojobobo at 2:46 PM on August 19, 2017

To clarify, the baby is intolerant of cow's milk proteins and soy. Goat based products are fine (fortunately!)
posted by jojobobo at 2:48 PM on August 19, 2017 [1 favorite]

Dolley (and other readers) I can assure you that the 5 mins in the Socca recipe is no mistake. I just made two batches this way and they are delicious. I think 15 mins at 550F might give you shoe leather rather than a delicious, luscious Mediterranean snack!
posted by merocet at 3:43 PM on August 19, 2017

If you plan to and do breastfeed for a while, it's amazing for weight loss. The 1st 4 - 6 months, I lost weight slowly. After 6 months, the weight just went from me to the now grown boy, and I was slim by 1 year. Good luck.
posted by theora55 at 8:30 PM on August 19, 2017

You might be able to have almond milk with protein added to it shipped to you (it's shelf stable). It's a decent option.

Pea protein powder (eg Vega) mixed with Oat milk might help.

Generally, though, you'll have to shift away from milk substitutes. Soy milk is the only decent macro replacement for cow's milk.
posted by Rock 'em Sock 'em at 8:59 PM on August 19, 2017

Ripple is a higher-protein milk substitute that is pea-protein based. I find it more substantial than nut milks.

(I guess they named it ripple to avoid calling it pea milk.)
posted by Violet Hour at 11:55 PM on August 19, 2017

The easiest way to replace the protein you got from dairy is to reconsider what you kind of food you snack on or breakfast (if that's the main points where you are trying to substitute). No reason not to have a few slices of chicken, a hard boiled egg or some smoked or tinned fish as part of your small meal. Or how about some veg with a bit of hummus? You can even enrich the hummus with pea protein. If you can frame it in terms of replacing the kind of snack you're used to with an alternative high protein meal the opportunities are endless. Your main limiting factor here is the desire to replace the dairy in a specific meal.
posted by koahiatamadl at 4:55 AM on August 20, 2017

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