The week before last, I had a blip. I think it was all the Easter chocolate coming into shops, but suddenly two and a half years of no chocolate seemed too long and I caved. I think everyone with allergies has done this at some point or other, and I’m also pretty sure we’ve all regretted it- the obvious stomach related issues, the bad skin, and the fact for the next two days you feel like you’re knocking on the grim reapers door just doesn’t seem worth it.
It led me running back to my FreeFrom aisle, and I realised that I’ve tried almost all the mainstream free from products and some not so mainstream, so I feel I have a pretty good grasp on what is and isn’t worth the money. I therefore decided to compile all these together in one place for you all- so if you just got diagnosed or you’re a free from veteran, maybe you’ll find something that will help!
Adoring fans have always given actors and actresses flowers after their good performances, I decided to get all dramatic and show my fave products the same kinda love.
I’ve split this into categories and it’s a bit of a long one so get comfortable!
When it comes to milk alternatives, I think I’ve pretty much tried them all; almond, coconut, soya, rice, cashew etc. etc. I stuck with soya for a while, until I read some articles about it not being too great for you and so I made the switch to almond milk. The one pictured above- Blue Diamond Almonds, Almond Breeze unsweetened is the only one I now buy, rarely do I have drink it alone, but on cereal and in some hot chocolate, it works a treat.
The butter substitute I have loved for years now is ‘Pure.’ I read about this online when, a few weeks after ditching the dairy, I was wanting to bake but realised that-duh- I couldn’t use butter. I was excited when I realised this is sold in literally every supermarket, and so tried it and loved it- it is really not that much different to butter and works really well in baking! There are a few flavours of this but the sunflower is defiantly my favourite and has the least overpowering taste. I have tried a few dairy free butters, but they’ve all had strong smells which I hate, and they don’t work as well as Pure if you’re trying to bake.
The good stuff:
Nutella was always my one true love, and so extensive research has gone in to finding new spreads. This one from Plamil is quite runny in consistency (at room temperature) and works perfectly if you’re using it to top any baking you’ve made, on toast or for dipping strawberries (read: I eat it out of the jar with a spoon. Don’t judge me.) It has a really ‘milk’ chocolate taste, and is currently my favourite- however I do also like the Hotel Chocolate hazelnut spread too, so picking one over the other was like forcing me to pick between the children I do not have.
When I first gave up dairy, I went through a slightly insane period where any chocolate I saw that was dairy free went in my shopping basket. Without fail, every single chocolate bar was nibbled at, deemed gross, and then I proceeded to wail on the floor for a few hours about missing chocolate and how hard going cold turkey was. That was until I was perusing the internet and found these bad boys from Booja Booja. Whilst pricy for 9 chocolates, I really am willing to pay more for quality, and for the reassurance they’ve been produced in a factory that contamination won’t occur in- and so I tentatively bought them. Since then, i’ve only ever bought these (the Hazelnut chocolate one’s are the best!) they’re hard on the outside, and inside is hazlenutty chocolatey truffley goodness- best of all? You’d never know unless I told you that they’re dairy free.
I discovered these cookies from Lucy’s in America, and recently my mum found them for me on a trip to Whole Foods when she was down in London. They come in a variety of flavours (my favourite? Maple Bliss) and best of all, the packets are small enough that you can pop them in your handbag if you’re going on a day out. They’re crunchy and crumbley, and taste rather sugary- and best of all are pretty much free from everything (seriously- what is even left to make these of?!) they’re Gluten Free, Vegan, and free from; peanuts, tree nuts, milk, egg, and are non GMO- if only they could make them free from calories too…
Bit of a random one this, but if you look in my handbag or bedside table draw at any time, you’d find a packet of these Ice Breakers mints– I have them so often I even got some in my stocking this Christmas- thanks Santa. If you’ve got a stomach like mine, that is constantly unsettled and it always feels slightly like a troll doll from the 90s is in there knocking about, these are the only thing that will sort it out. It started last summer when I was coming back from America and felt like I was about to die from sickness in the airport- dreading the 11 hour flight home I thought maybe mint would settle it down. Miraculously it did, so the next time I felt poorly, I had the mints again- with the same result. Once I’d run out of these I tried all the mints that are available in England and they didn’t work so I found some online and stock up whenever a family member or I return to the states. I really don’t know what makes these different or make them work for me, but I’d really recommend you try them if you have any pesky trolls in your tummy- it’s worth a try right?
I discovered these at the FreeFrom show I went to in Liverpool, they’re from Sainsbury’s and are just typical dark chocolate mint crisps as you’ve probably had before after a dinner! These are gluten free, wheat free and obviously, dairy free. These are very addictive, you’ve been warned.
My favourite ever breakfast has quickly become this granola from The Paleo Foods Co– its free from gluten, wheat, dairy, has no refined sugar and has all the goodness of 6 kinds of nuts. I could eat this granola all day, I’ve been eating this even without almond milk recently, its super tasty. This is pricy for a cereal at around £5.75 a box, but I think it’s worth it for something that doesn’t upset the ol’ stomach! The yellow bow- Honey and Pecan is my favourite, followed shortly by the Berry and Almond, they’re even great throughout the day sprinkled over some fruit and makes sure you’re eating all the good stuff!
Packet baking mix
Baking mixes are sometimes the best option when you’ve got allergies as sometimes you can’t get the ingredients that make it taste like the real thing- for example the chocolate in these Delicious Alchemy brownies are amazing and taste like the real thing- when I made some from scratch they weren’t as milk chocolatey or light, so this is the easy way out! Added to this, lets be real, sometimes we don’t have time to bake up a storm and chucking it from a packet to the oven, to your tummy is easier! Find a full review here! The Oaty Cookies from the same brand are also fabulous!
(aka I don’t have a picture of these items-oops!)
The best Dairy Free curry sauce- Meridian Korma sauce
My brother actually found me this in a health food shop- if you add some onion and chicken this is a great tasting curry, you really wouldn’t know it was DF.
The best DF Ice cream- Almond Dream
I fell in love with this in America last summer and Waitrose now stock it, the Salted Caramel is my all time favourite, however the vanilla works great in DF milkshakes!
The best DF flavoured milk- Rebel Kitchen
Their ‘mylk’ is made using coconut milk, my favourites are the chocolate and also the chocolate orange flavours (sense a pattern? I looove chocolate!)
The best free from lollipops- YumEarth Organics
Free from allergens, these are great to throw in your handbag in case you need a sugar fix throughout the day!
The best dairy free ready-made pudding pot- Pudology
I panicked when I first tried these because I did’t believe they were DF! The orange chocolate is my fave!
The best DF custard- Alpro
This is great and easy to make, tastes delicious and just like the real thing- you won’t be missing out with this
The best Dairy Free peanut butter- Meridian
I prefer crunchy right now, this one is great and is vegan too, it has far less added ingredients than others I’ve seen
The best DF gingerbread man- Sainsbury’s FreeFrom
A great snack for at home or on the go, these are crunchy and full of flavour- I still miss the gumdrop buttons..
The best DF ice cream cones- Tesco Free From
Tesco have a really great range of free from products, I love these cornetto style ice creams, they’re DF but don’t taste any different- and even have the chocolate at the bottom of the cone, which has always been my favourite part!
The best dairy free yogurt- Alpo
I tend to eat more yogurt in the summer months, but he ‘plain with almond’ has long been my go-to.
I’ll keep this list updated as I find new DF gems I think you should know about; so keep checking back!
Is there any product or category you think I’ve missed? Let me know!