We were recently asked what we thought about oatmilk for use with coffee. Since we have only had oatmilk a few times in Espresso drinks at our local coffee shop, Market Square Bakehouse, we felt we couldn't give our thoughts without trying it out more extensively, so we purchased a box to do a product review!
We will start off the review stating that we love textured whole milk (steamed, foamed, frothed) in our Espresso drinks as some of our favorite drinks include: Flat Whites, Lattes, and Cortados. For filter coffee, especially hot, we typically drink our coffee black without creamer and occasionally use cream or milk in an iced coffee or cold brewed coffee.
Why would someone opt for a non-dairy milk or creamer? Some of the reasons are: dairy/lactose intolerance, vegan/vegetarian diets, the taste of milk is not pleasant to some people, and environmental considerations regarding dairy production.
As Oatmilk goes, the brand Oatly is one of the most recognized brands for use with coffee and they have a "Barista Edition" product which can be steamed/frothed with a texture closer to whole milk than other oatmilk products. The ingredients are: Oatmilk (Water, Oats), Low Erucic Acid Rapeseed Oil, Contains 2% or Less of: Dipotassium Phosphate, Calcium Carbonate, Tricalcium Phosphate, Sea Salt, Dicalcium Phosphate, Riboflavin, Vitamin A, Vitamin D2, Vitamin B12.
Some of the key points are that the product is: Diary-Free, Gluten-Free, Low Sodium, Kosher, Vegan, Vegetarian and Shelf Stable until opened (refrigerate after opening, use within 7 days)
For this review we used Oatly Oatmilk Barista Edition 32 oz. box (cost was about $4.50) with hot filter coffee using our dark roast Kia Kaha Blend, iced coffee using our KAHA Summertime Blend, and a Mokapot Latte (oatmilk frothed using a French Press) using our dark roast Vertical Espresso Blend.
Mokapot Latte using frothed Oatly oatmilk
Our first test was using Oatly oatmilk for a home Latte drink. For this we brewed our dark roast Vertical Espresso blend using a stovetop Mokapot then heated the oatmilk in a small saucepan over medium heat and frothed the oatmilk using a French Press. This is one of our go-to drinks at home for a fast home Latte drink. The oatmilk seemed to heat to temperature (small bubbles forming on the edges of the saucepan) a little faster than whole milk. We transferred the oatmilk from the saucepan to the French Press and began to froth the oatmilk. One thing we noticed is that the oatmilk did not froth as much as whole milk and the density of the foam was different than whole milk in our testing, but we were pleasantly surprised at the texture we were able to achieve. The taste was very enjoyable, and noticably "oaty" compared to that of whole milk, which was to be expected. Overall this was a great drink! We were impressed with the texture and the taste.
Hot filter coffee using Oatly oatmilk as creamer
Our second test used Oatly oatmilk as a creamer for our dark roast Kia Kaha Blend. We don't usually drink hot filter coffee with creamer, but we decided to test Oatly oatmilk across a range of coffees in order to give a more comprehensive review. We brewed up a cup of our dark roast Kia Kaha Blend using the Aeropress. Since we were going to be adding creamer we went a little higher on our coffee to water ratio for a stronger brew to stand up to the creamer. The texture and body of the Oatly oatmilk was a little thinner than whole milk and noticeably thinner than half & half creamer, but the body of the Kia Kaha blend still gave the cup a nice, full, mouth feel. Overall it made for a tasty cup!
Iced coffee using Oatly oatmilk as creamer
Our third test used Oatly oatmilk as a creamer for our KAHA Summertime Blend brewed as iced coffee. For this test we brewed a cup of KAHA Summertime Blend using the Clever Dripper (coming soon to the KAHA web store) for a rich, full immersion brew. We do like adding creamer to iced coffee and cold brewed coffee for a heavier mouth feel. Sometimes we will even add a touch of agave for a bit of a sweet kick. The Oatly oatmilk added an oat flavor to the Summertime Blend which beautifully complimented the graham cracker notes inherent in the Summertime Blend. It made for a very tasty glass of iced coffee!
Overall we were very impressed with the texture and taste of Oatly oatmilk and we will likely be putting it in our rotation. As always, we recommend experimenting with all things coffee, so give Oatly oatmilk a try to see if you like it and drop us a line to let us know what you think!