Are you a fan of creamy, cheesy sauces but looking for a dairy-free alternative?
Look no further than oat milk!
This versatile plant-based milk can be used in a variety of recipes, including everyone’s favorite comfort food: cheese sauce.
But can oat milk really stand up to the task of creating a rich and flavorful sauce?
In this article, we’ll explore the possibilities of using oat milk in cheese sauce and share some tips and tricks for making the perfect dairy-free version.
Whether you’re vegan, lactose intolerant, or just looking to switch things up in the kitchen, read on to discover the wonders of oat milk cheese sauce.
Can You Use Oat Milk In Cheese Sauce?
The short answer is yes, you can definitely use oat milk in cheese sauce. In fact, oat milk is a great alternative to dairy milk in many recipes, including cheese sauce.
Oat milk has a neutral flavor that won’t overpower the other ingredients in your sauce, and its creamy texture makes it a perfect substitute for dairy milk. Plus, oat milk is vegan and lactose-free, making it a great option for those with dietary restrictions.
When using oat milk in cheese sauce, it’s important to choose an unsweetened variety. Sweet cheese sauce is not a good thing, and the added sugar in sweetened oat milk can throw off the balance of flavors in your sauce.
You’ll also want to make sure you’re using a good quality oat milk. Some brands may have a stronger flavor or thinner consistency than others, so experiment with different brands until you find one that works well for your recipe.
Why Choose Oat Milk For Cheese Sauce?
There are several reasons why oat milk is a great choice for cheese sauce. Firstly, oat milk is a plant-based alternative to dairy milk, making it a great option for vegans or those with lactose intolerance. It’s also a sustainable choice, as oat milk production requires less water and land than traditional dairy farming.
Another reason to choose oat milk for cheese sauce is its neutral flavor. Unlike other plant-based milks, such as almond or soy milk, oat milk has a creamy texture and a mild taste that won’t overpower the other flavors in your dish. This makes it a perfect substitute for dairy milk in cheese sauce, where you want the cheese to be the star of the show.
Oat milk is also easy to find in most grocery stores, and it’s often less expensive than other non-dairy milks. You can even make your own oat milk at home with just two ingredients – oats and water.
Finally, using oat milk in cheese sauce is a healthier option than using dairy milk. Oat milk is naturally low in fat and cholesterol, and it contains fiber and important nutrients like vitamin D and calcium.
How To Make Oat Milk Cheese Sauce
Making oat milk cheese sauce is easy and requires just a few simple ingredients. Here’s how to do it:
– 2 tablespoons vegan butter
– 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
– 1 1/2 cups unsweetened oat milk
– 1/4 teaspoon salt
– 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
– 2 tablespoons nutritional yeast (optional)
– 1 cup shredded vegan cheese (such as Applewood Smoked ‘Cheddar’ or Violife Epic Mature)
1. In a medium saucepan, melt the vegan butter over medium-low heat.
2. Add the all-purpose flour and whisk until a paste is formed (this is called a roux).
3. Slowly pour in the oat milk while whisking constantly to prevent clumps.
4. Add the salt, black pepper, and nutritional yeast (if using), and stir to combine.
5. Bring the sauce to a gentle simmer and cook for 5-7 minutes over medium-low heat, or until the sauce thickens and coats the back of a wooden spoon.
6. Add the shredded vegan cheese and stir until melted and combined.
7. Serve immediately over your favorite dish, such as cauliflower cheese or lasagne.
– Use a good quality oat milk for the best results.
– Avoid using coconut-based creams or milks, as they can have a strong aftertaste that may not work well in a savory sauce.
– Experiment with different vegan cheeses until you find one that melts well and has a flavor you enjoy.
– You can also customize the flavor of your oat milk cheese sauce by adding different spices or seasonings, such as smoked paprika or hot sauce.
Tips For Perfecting Your Dairy-Free Cheese Sauce
If you’re new to making dairy-free cheese sauce or looking to improve your skills, here are some tips to help you perfect your recipe:
1. Choose the right plant-based milk: While oat milk is a great option for cheese sauce, you can also use other unsweetened plant-based milks like almond, soy, or cashew milk. Just make sure to choose a full-fat variety for a creamier texture.
2. Add nutritional yeast for a cheesy flavor: Nutritional yeast is a key ingredient in many dairy-free cheese recipes, and it adds a cheesy, umami flavor to your sauce. Be sure to use it in your recipe for the best results.
3. Use tapioca starch for a meltable texture: If you want your cheese sauce to melt and stretch like real cheese, you’ll need to add tapioca starch (also known as tapioca flour) to your recipe. This ingredient helps give the sauce its signature texture and stretchiness.
4. Whisk constantly for a smooth sauce: To prevent lumps from forming in your sauce, be sure to whisk constantly while cooking. This will help ensure a smooth and creamy texture.
5. Experiment with different flavors: Once you’ve mastered the basic recipe, try adding different herbs, spices, or seasonings to customize the flavor of your cheese sauce. Garlic powder, onion powder, and liquid smoke are all popular additions that can give your sauce a unique twist.
By following these tips, you’ll be able to create a delicious and creamy dairy-free cheese sauce that’s perfect for any recipe. So go ahead and give oat milk (or any other unsweetened plant-based milk) a try in your next batch of cheese sauce – you might just be surprised at how good it tastes!
Recipes To Try With Oat Milk Cheese Sauce
If you’re looking for some delicious recipes to try with oat milk cheese sauce, here are a few ideas to get you started:
1. Oat Milk Mac and Cheese: This classic comfort food gets a dairy-free makeover with the help of oat milk. Simply make a roux with butter and flour, add oat milk, your favorite cheese, and seasonings, and stir in cooked macaroni. Top with more cheese and breadcrumbs, and bake until bubbly.
2. Béchamel Sauce: Use oat milk to make a creamy béchamel sauce that’s perfect for lasagna, pasta bakes, or any recipe that calls for a white sauce. Start by making a roux with butter and flour, then gradually add oat milk and seasonings until the sauce thickens.
3. Crab Mac and Cheese: Impress your dinner guests with this decadent baked mac and cheese featuring crab meat. Make the cheese sauce with oat milk, add cooked noodles, crab meat, and a blend of cheeses, then top with breadcrumbs and more cheese before baking.
4. Broccoli Cheese Sauce: Use oat milk cheese sauce as a healthier alternative to traditional cheese sauce for broccoli. Steam or roast broccoli until tender, then pour the oat milk cheese sauce over the top.
5. Open Faced Turkey Sandwich: Spread oat milk cheese sauce on top of an open-faced turkey sandwich for a delicious lunch or light dinner option. Top with sliced turkey, avocado, tomato, or any other toppings you like.
No matter how you use it, oat milk cheese sauce is a versatile and delicious addition to any recipe that calls for cheese sauce. Give it a try and see how it compares to traditional dairy-based sauces!
Other Uses For Oat Milk In Cooking
While oat milk is a great substitute for dairy milk in cheese sauce, it can also be used in a variety of other dishes. Here are a few ideas:
1. Béchamel Sauce: As mentioned earlier, oat milk can be used to make a delicious béchamel sauce. This creamy white sauce is the base for many dishes, including lasagna, mac and cheese, and pot pies.
2. Creamy Soups: Oat milk can be used to add creaminess to soups without the added fat and calories of heavy cream. Try using it in creamy tomato soup, potato soup, or butternut squash soup.
3. Smoothies: Oat milk can be used as a base for smoothies, adding creaminess and a subtle nutty flavor. Try blending it with frozen fruit and spinach for a healthy breakfast or snack.
4. Baked Goods: Oat milk can be used in place of dairy milk in many baked goods, including cakes, muffins, and pancakes. It adds moisture and richness to the batter without affecting the flavor.
5. Coffee and Tea: Oat milk can be frothed and used as a dairy-free alternative to milk or cream in coffee and tea drinks. It adds a subtle sweetness and nutty flavor that pairs well with coffee and tea.