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Have you ever been excited about a new recipe and then felt at a complete loss because there were ingredients listed that you can’t eat?


I have, many times, due to being lactose intolerant. My name is Whitney Hopper and I’m the newest member of the Rhino Nutrition team at Camp Rhino. I always thought I was eating “healthy” but when I made nutrition a priority, along with my training, I was able to lose 35lbs that I was struggling to lose before. As my nutrition coach, Anna was so patient and helpful while we navigated through my diet together. Having intolerances to dairy and eggs made some of my meal planning difficult. I couldn’t just have an omelet for breakfast or drink most of the protein powders on the market. There was a lot of trial and error while I was finding substitutes for foods I couldn’t eat. Eventually though I was able to find reliable products that I could substitute in my diet and still remain on track with my plan. I wanted to share some of those with you in hopes that maybe it will make the process easier. Some of the products have different macronutrients counts than the traditional food- you’ll want to take this into consideration and adjust your portion size accordingly.


We know that dairy products have a lot of beneficial micro- and macronutrients in them including protein, fat, and a variety of vitamins. Many people enjoy them for these benefits and/or just for the taste of them. However, some people aren’t able to digest dairy products due to an allergy or intolerance.


Most people that have challenges with dairy products are actually lactose intolerant, rather than allergic. Their bodies either decrease or stop producing the lactase enzyme that breaks down the lactose (sugar) in dairy products. Some companies, including Lactaid and Fairlife, have already added the lactase enzyme into their dairy products to allow them to be easily digested without the usual side effects.


Here are a few common dairy products with different options that you can substitute for them. Hopefully, this will make meal planning for you (or a loved one) easier.


With dairy and lactose, for comparison:

• Stonyfield Organic 2% Milk (1)

Macronutrients per serving: 130 calories | 5g fat | 12g carbohydrates | 8g protein


Substitutes without dairy and/or lactose:

• Fairlife 2% Milk (Contains dairy, but has added lactase enzyme) (2)

Macronutrients per serving: 120 calories | 4.5g fat | 6g carbohydrates | 13g protein


• Silk Organic Unsweetened Soy Milk (Contains no dairy or lactose) (3)

Macronutrients per serving: 80 calories | 4g fat | 3g carbohydrates | 7g protein


• Silk Oat Yeah- The 0g Sugar One (Contains no dairy or lactose) (3)

Macronutrients per serving: 60 calories | 3g fat | 7g carbohydrates | 1g protein


• Silk Organic Unsweetened Almondmilk (Contains no dairy or lactose) (3)

Macronutrients per serving: 40 calories | 3.5g fat | <1g carbohydrates | 1g protein


With dairy and lactose, for comparison:

• Chobani Non-fat plain (4)

Macronutrients per serving, ¾ cup: 90 calories | 0g fat | 6g carbohydrates | 16g protein


Substitutes without dairy and/or lactose:

• Silk Plain Soy Yogurt (Contains no dairy or lactose) (3)

Macronutrients per serving, 8oz: 140 calories | 5g fat | 13g carbohydrates | 10g protein


• Forager Unsweetened Plain Cashewgurt (Contains no dairy or lactose) (5)

Macronutrients per serving, 5.3oz: 110 calories | 7g fat | 9g carbohydrates | 3g protein

(This is my favorite for Overnight Oats)


• Avocado (6)

Macronutrients per serving, 1/3 of an avocado: 80 calories | 8g fat | 4g carbohydrates | 1g protein

Avocado can be subbed for yogurt and/or butter when cooking or baking, but it may change the taste a little bit. It’s also a great butter substitute for toast- especially a restaurant that doesn’t have a dairy-free butter option.


With dairy and lactose, for comparison:

• Butter (7)

Macronutrients per serving, 1 tbsp: 102 calories | 12g fat | 0g carbohydrates | 0.1g protein


Substitutes without dairy and/or lactose:

• Earth Balance Vegan Butter (Contains no dairy or lactose) (2)

Macronutrients per serving, 1 tbsp: 80 calories | 9g fat | 0g carbohydrates | 0g protein


Other great options, depending on if you need a substitute for a topping (toast, bagels, etc) or as an ingredient for baking/ cooking:


Nut butter (peanut, almond, cashew), Hummus, Avocado, or Coconut Oil

Baking and Cooking:

Oils: avocado, olive, sunflower, or coconut

Unsweetened apple sauce, Avocado, or Mashed banana

Portions for these will vary based on the amount needed for the recipe.


If you would love some support and nutrition coaching, schedule an Nutrition Intro meeting with me here. I’m excited to help!

What are some of your favorite substitutions? Let us know in the comments.

Happy Eating,

Whitney (Rhino Nutritionist)


PS- Ready to try some new recipes? Follow this link to find lots of yummy and healthy recipes.



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