Trader Joe’s OAT BEVERAGE (Refrigerated, 1/2 gallon)


Trader Joe’s Non-Dairy Oat Beverage (sold in the fridge with other milk, 1/2 gallon)

I usually buy the other TJ’s OAT MILK (sorry dairy farmers I meant “non-dairy oat beverage”) which I like a lot; specifically the quart shelf stable one. But I thought I should test and review this other “fresh” Oat Beverage (aka oat milk) they sell in a 1/2 gallon size in the refrigerated case with the other fresh milk drinks. For one thing this 1/2 gallon one comes out a little cheaper at $3.99 vs. the shelf stable quart which is $2.39 (or $4.58 for 2). This fridge oat milk tastes a little different than the shelf stable one, it’s a bit thicker (creamier?). I would guess the reason is if you examine the label on this one we can see it has Sunflower Oil as an ingredient, not to mention a good number of other ingredients, which probably account for the slightly creamier mouth feel. In contrast, the quart shelf stable Oat Beverage version (quart) contains ONLY 2 ingredients: water and hydrolyzed oats. You can compare the labels below. I like the “simpler” oat milk in the quart box despite the fact that it costs a little bit more (58 cents) for the same amount, plus I actually like that I don’t have to keep the shelf-stable quart one in the fridge until after I open them. We both prefer the taste of the non-fridge ones which is less thick. So I probably won’t buy this 1/2 gallon “fresh” version Oat Beverage again even though I do like that it has some “added vitamins”. It’s taste OK however I don’t need that slightly thicker taste and texture which is from I’m imagine trying to copy regular milk but adding extra ingredients, like oil and gums to thicken it and make it creamier. Anwway, you can try both versions of TJ’s oat milk and see which you prefer. BTW I do also buy regular whole (cow) milk too, for coffee, tea…and making my own yogurt(!) We should all buy dairy products to support dairy farmers as we need them!

TJ’s ‘fresh’ non-dairy oat beverage – INGREDIENTS: Water, Hydrolyzed Oats, Sunflower Oil, Calcium Carbonate, Dipotassium Phospate, Sea Salt, Gellan Gum, Xanthan Gum, Citric Acid, Tricalcium Phosphate, Vitamins A, D, B and B12.

1/2 Gallon Refrigerated Oat Beverage (this one)

1 Qt Shelf Stable Oat Bev. (the other one) contains only water + oats

TJ’s Non-Dairy OAT BEVERAGE (aka OAT MILK)


oatmilk1

Trader Joe’s OAT BEVERAGE

Now I do still drink regular milk, which I prefer in my coffee and tea. However I have been trying to cut down on the amount of real (whole) milk I use on a daily basis, as I try to watch my cholesterol. Mostly now I use real milk to make my morning cappuccino and for putting in my tea.  But for some other uses where I formerly might have chosen real milk such as on my morning breakfast cereal, I’ve gotten pretty used to trying alternatives such Soy or Almond Milk. Having tried almost all the non-milk beverage alternatives, I saw this non-refrigerated “oat milk” beverage at Trader Joe’s when it was first introduced a few months back. TJ’s seemed to have it in many places all over the store to push its introduction. I tried it and guess what? I loved it. Its terrific! I really think this is a good “milk alternative beverage”, maybe for me it may be the best of all the alternative milk products, beating out soy milk and nut milks.

TJ’s OAT BEVERAGE has a creamy smooth taste with a subtle milky sweetness which is pleasing.

The label says: “who knew that oats and water could be mildly sweet“? Instead of adding cane sugar as an ingredient, we unearth the balanced sweetness by breaking down the starches present in oats to create sugar. The sugars created bring out a whole new flavor dimension. A smooth, creamy, mildly sweet and totally amazing beverage”

I think I like one only sees TWO INGREDIENTS – WATER and (hydrolyzed) OATS in this product. This is for the shelf stable box pack whereas the refrigerated oat milk interestingly has more ingredients in it.

Ingredients and Nutrition Facts

Basically this box of TJ Oat Beverage has taken the place for our “non-dairy milk” even over the almond milk stuff. A quart of the shelf stable Oat Beverage cost $2.29. It’s very convenient to always have one in your cupboard. Oh and by the way as far as dairy farmers are concerned nothing except what comes out of a cow should be called “milk” and I totally support dairy farmers as if we lose more numbers of them, we are screwed. Hence the labeling, “oat beverage” and not “oat milk”.

RAVE

PACIFIC ORGANIC ALMOND MILK


I’ve tried a number of the “milk alternative” beverages at Trader Joe’s. Most of them are pretty good. The one I keep going back to is PACIFIC FOODS ORGANIC ALMOND MILK (“Original”). I think the reason is I find its taste is a tiny bit better due to the fact the almonds its made from are roasted.

The Pacific Foods website says: “We take organic almonds and add a gentle roast to emphasize the robust, authentic flavors of the almonds. The result is our smooth, signature taste that’s a pleasure to drink by the glass and blends perfectly in your dairy-free recipes.”

We all know roasting nuts brings out their flavor, right? This subtle but noticeable taste in this almond beverage makes a small but slightly significant better taste giving this almond beverage a little depth of flavor over the other almond milks TJ carries.

I mostly use Almond Milk in the morning on my cereal. But this is also good to drink on its own (well chilled), mixed with yogurt, which is usually the things I put on my breakfast cereal with some fruit. I use this almond milk to make Smoothies; and its great for those. I actually do drink regular (cow) milk too though. I use regular whole milk in my daily cappuccino. Almond or Soy milk adds a taste that I don’t like in coffee drinks, for my taste or a cup of English tea.

The Pacific Almond Beverage costs a bit than the other nut milk beverages. This sells for $2.19 (1 Qt) compared to for example TJ’s Almond Milk ($1.89). Still this is worth trying and comparing to see what you like best. This version (original) does have a little organic cane sugar in it, but its hardly “sweet” and I think that also makes it tastier. Cow’s milk has naturally produced sugars too you know, just check the label.

The dairy milk industry by the way has been going crazy for the last few years about the word “milk” being used for anything other than the liquid produced by lactating cows. Hence the wording: “plant-based beverage” on the this box! The FDA thinks people get confused seeing the word milk used for anything other than cow milk. I do feel bad for dairy farmer’s, who have seen milk consumption decline way down from say, when I was a kid.

 

NO RECIPE RECIPE: BREAKFAST SOAKED OATS aka OVERNIGHT OATS (No Cooking)

OVER NIGHT OATS ARE A YUMMY AND HEALTHY BREAKFAST!

The night before, put up some rolled oats (or quick oats) in a bowl or container. Pour an equal amount of almond milk over them to cover by a bit and stir to mix. A spoonful of chia seeds are nice too! Let this oatey mix sit and soften up overnight in the fridge. The raw oats will soften up without cooking and become yummy. If you use Quick Oats this can be ready to eat in 15 minutes or so. Dried fruits thrown in will soften and be lovely too (dried cranberries, dates, raisins….) In the morning the mixture will be ready to eat. Top your overnight oaks with your favorite fruits (bananas, berries…) yogurt or kefir and maybe more almond milk if too thick. Some crunchy topping? Granola or a cereal. Nuts. Sweeten with honey or some raw sugar if desired. 

OVERNIGHT OATS WITH NICE PHOTOS