World Plant Milk Day: How to use plant milks in cocktails

The nectar of vegans, almond, soy, coconut, rice, oat and other non-dairy milk alternatives have the same potential to be mixed in cocktails as full fat milk and cream.

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A staple on coffee shop menus now, their appearance on cocktail lists has been driven by lactose intolerance, milk allergies, dietary preferences and respect for the environment, and while some might say they don’t always taste so great on their own, plant milks and spirits are natural bedfellows in mixed drinks.

Not only can they be infused for different flavour profiles, but plant milks also tend to have a longer shelf life, which is great news for budding mixologists with a penchant for tinkering and experimenting.

When it comes to shaking things up a bit, there aren’t any hard and fast rules, it’s all a matter of taste and a measure of imagination. Each plant milk variety brings something to the table, but styles such as cashew or hazelnut will lend a little bit of roasted nuttiness, while soy (less thick and sticky than almond milk) will work like a dream with coffee based liqueurs, or cocktails when you need a generous pour.

Here’s more mixology inspiration for those boozy, vegan friendly moments…

1. Piña Colada

Piña coladas look great, taste great and are the first go-to vegan friendly cocktail that comes to mind. Fill a highball glass with ice, add 40ml rum (we love a blend of white and dark rums), 50ml pineapple juice and 50ml coconut cream or coconut milk to give it a light touch of sweetness. Stir gently and garnish with two pineapple wedges.

2. Vegan White Russian

Deliciously dark, decadent and decidedly easy to rustle up, simply switch cream for oat milk and you’ll find its herbaceous quality adds another dimension to a White Russian. Half fill a cocktail shaker with ice and combine equal parts oat milk, vodka and Kahlua, shake vigorously and strain over ice into a rock glass.

3. Brandy Milk Punch

Soy milk is super versatile and will pimp up your brandy beautifully. Half fill a cocktail shaker with ice, add 45ml Cognac VSOP, 55ml soy milk, 10ml Monin vanilla syrup, shake vigorously and strain into a chilled coupe or highball filled with ice, and lightly dust with grated nutmeg.