Yogurt is a dairy product that not only makes for a yummy snack but is also hailed for its various health benefits.
Yogurt is packed with important nutrients required by the body. Being rich in probiotics, yogurt also contributes to good gut and digestive health.
However, unfortunately, not everyone is able to digest dairy products like yogurt effortlessly for example – those who are lactose intolerant.
But, thankfully, there are so many lactose-free and even dairy-free options available in the market if you want to avoid lactose or go vegan.
We have researched the market thoroughly and curated the best lactose-free yogurt brands that you can enjoy safely!
What Is Lactose Free Yogurt?
As we all know, yogurt is originally a dairy product that is obtained by the bacterial fermentation of milk. It’s rich in calcium and protein and contains probiotics that improve gut health.
Any product that comes from cow’s milk or dairy has lactose (the milk sugar) in it. This lactose is hard to digest for many people, especially those suffering from lactose intolerance. In this case, people opt for yogurt or any dairy product that is free of lactose.
There are two ways in which a dairy product can be made lactose-free:
- By adding lactase enzyme to the product to ease its digestion in the body. Apart from this, sometimes the manufacturers even mechanically separate lactose from dairy products and make them free of lactose.
- The second way is by avoiding animal derivatives and using other plant-based alternatives such as almond, soy, or coconut. These are dairy-free alternatives which are generally plant-based. They are preferred by those who follow a vegan diet and are also good alternatives for those with lactose intolerance.
In this blog, we have included both lactose-free yogurts and vegan yogurts. This means some of the products listed below aren’t dairy-free but are surely free of lactose. Both of these options are safe for those suffering from lactose intolerance.
But if you’re particularly looking for vegan options, you can skip the dairy yogurts and go with the plant-based alternatives listed down.
10 Lactose-free Yogurt and Yogurt Alternatives
Here are the top ten lactose-free yogurts and yogurt alternatives that will allow you to enjoy the delicious flavor and health benefits of yogurt without experiencing any unpleasant symptoms.
1. Green Valley Creamery Yogurt – Best Low-Fat, Plain Lactose-free Yogurt
This is a lactose-free milk yogurt, which means it has dairy in it but no traces of lactose. Lactase enzyme is added to the product that breaks down lactose into simple sugars (glucose and galactose). This simply means that you can enjoy this yogurt without experiencing bloating, gas, or any other issue linked with lactose intolerance.
Additionally, this yogurt has a low sugar content, which makes it an even healthier choice. The 8 g of sugar listed on the label isn’t added sugar; it’s the naturally-occurring milk sugar.
- Ingredients: Organic pasteurized cultured low-fat milk, lactase enzyme, and pectin.
- Live and Active Cultures: S. thermophilus, L. casei, L. acidophilus, L. selbrueckii subsp. bulgaricus, Bifidobacterium lactis, Lactococcus lactis subsp. cremoris, L. rhamnosus, Lactococcus lactis subsp. lactis, Leuconostoc mesenteroides subsp. Cremoris, Lactococcus lactis subsp. Lactis biovar diacetylactis, and L. delbrueckii subsp. lactis
- Taste: The yogurt has a delicious taste, so you can have it for breakfast, as a snack, or add it to any recipe. Make a smoothie, dessert, or soup; you can enjoy it in any possible way without worrying about lactose intolerance symptoms.
- USDA organic
- LOW FODMAP
- Rich in probiotics
- Certified humane raised & handled
- Manufactured in the United States
- Good source of calcium and protein
- Lowfat milk from pasture-raised cows
- Some people didn’t enjoy the taste.
- One customer said the water starts to separate quickly.
2. Fage Bestself Plain – The Best Yogurt For Lactose Intolerant People
The Fage Bestself lactose-free yogurt is made with 100% natural ingredients. It contains only 6 grams of sugar and 2% milk fat.
This is a plain Greek strained yogurt that comes from a brand that originated in Athens, Greece. Now the brand has gone global, and their Greek yogurt also comes in flavored options such as peach, blueberry, and vanilla.
This yogurt has the perfect creamy texture and thickness that your taste buds will fall in love with.
- Ingredients: Grade A Pasteurized Skimmed Milk, Cream, Lactase Enzymes, and Cultures.
- Live Active Yogurt Cultures: L. bulgaricus, L. acidophilus, S. thermophilus, L. casei and bifidus
- Flavor: This is plain Greek yogurt with a thick texture and creamy richness that is enjoyed by most consumers.
- Benefit: This is a low-carb, low-sugar, and high-protein option that is great for enjoying plain or adding to any recipe.
- Low sugar
- Blended yogurt
- Reduced fat
- Natural ingredients
- Some people find it a little expensive but still enjoy the flavor
3. Yogourmet Freeze Dried Yogurt – Best Dried Yogurt Starter For Making Fresh Homemade Yogurt
This is a dried yogurt starter for you to make your own fresh yogurt at home. You can enjoy this smooth and creamy homemade yogurt for the next 2–3 weeks by refrigerating it.
The brand says the freshly made yogurt offers 100 billion live and active bacteria (per 100g serving).
This product also improves lactose digestion and helps the body resist/fight infections. Besides, it’s good for preventing as well as treating diarrhea, as it aids gut and digestive health. Furthermore, because this is a dried product, it also has a longer shelf-life. The unopened package can last up to 25 years.
- Ingredients: Skim Milk Powder, Active Bacterial Culture (S. thermophilus, L. bulgaricus, L. acidophilus), and Sucrose.
- All-natural: This is an all-natural probiotic supplement with no added preservatives, chemicals, or coloring agents.
- Benefit: Offers 100 billion live and active bacteria per 100 g serving. This improves lactose intolerance, resists/fight infections, and prevent/treat diarrhea.
- Halal certified
- Fast incubation
- Kosher Certified
- Easy and economical
- No harmful chemicals
- No preservatives or coloring agents
- It’s made in a facility that deals with products containing soy and milk
- Some people said the yogurt turned out runny in consistency
- The flavor was also too tangy or sour for some
4. Chobani Greek Yogurt Drink Strawberry Cream – Best Lactose-free Greek Yogurt Alternaive
Just like Fage, Chobani is another brand that is the manufacturer of the finest Greek yogurts. They also have non-dairy yogurt options in different flavors. Their lactose-free yogurt line is made of all-natural ingredients, has no added sugar, and is packed with protein.
This means you get the benefit of billions of probiotics and a delicious flavor with this advanced nutrition yogurt.
- Ingredients: Cultured low-fat milk, chicory root fiber, strawberries, lactase enzyme, natural flavors, stevia leaf extract, monk fruit extract, water, fruit pectin, vegetable juice concentrate (for color), lemon juice concentrate.
- Live Culture: Thermophilus, L. bulgaricus, L. acidophilus, Bifidus, L. casei, and L. rhamnosus.
- Nutritional Fact: 25g protein, 0g added sugar, 20 amino acids, 3g soluble fiber, no lactose, billions of prebiotics + probiotics.
- Easy to digest
- 20 amino acids
- No added sugar
- Made from real fruit
- Billions of probiotics
- This product isn’t a low-calorie food as it contains 190 calories per serving. Thus, if you’re cutting your calories, then this isn’t the right option for you.
- Some customers find it too thick to drink
5. Kite Hill Blueberry Almond Milk Yogurt – Best Dairy-free Almond Milk Yogurt
This brand has several almond-based products in different flavors. This Greek-style yogurt produced from almond milk is a popular option enjoyed by many customers.
This particular yogurt listed here is in the blueberry flavor and contains 3 g of protein and a total of 12 g of sugar.
There is also a plain, unsweetened option available in the almond-based yogurt line that you can opt for if you want to cut your sugar intake.
- Ingredients: Almond Milk (Almonds, Water), Blueberries, Cane Sugar, Starch, Citrus Fiber, Natural Flavors, Locust Bean Gum, Carrot Juice (For Color), Blueberry, Xanthan Gum, Citrate, Sodium Citric Acid.
- Live Active Cultures: S.thermophilus, L.acidophilus, L. bulgaricus, Bifidobacteria
- Flavor: This almond-base yogurt is creamier and delicious and is high in protein content.
- Quality: This dairy-free yogurt doesn’t contain any artificial coloring, or preservatives, and is non-GMO project verified.
- Soy free
- No preservatives
- No artificial coloring
- Made from live cultures
- Some people said it leaves a weird aftertaste
- Some people also complained that molds developed in the pack before the expiry date
6. Top Therm Yogurt Starter – Best Yogurt Starter Rich In Probiotics
Top Therm is an old company that has its own 25-year-old, developed recipe of natural probiotic yogurt. This product listed here is a Greek yogurt starter culture that is dairy-free and has no added sugar.
You can choose a dairy-free milk option of your choice and enjoy delicious homemade Greek yogurt. To aid gut and digestive health, the probiotic starter culture has more than 17 billion live CFU.
This is a plant-based yogurt starter with live culture, which means it’s completely free of dairy, sugar, and calories. These yogurt pouches come in four different flavors and target different health concerns. You can either make 10 jars of traditional yogurt or 4 jars of Greek yogurt with one pouch.
- High-quality Probiotic: This product is packed with Acidophilus and Lactobacillus probiotics. It contains a total of more than 17 billion CFU live cultures.
- Nutrition Fact: This yogurt starter culture is plant-based and contains zero sugar and zero calories.
- Flavors: There are four options available each targeting different health concerns. The green one supports gut health. The red one supports heart health. The blue one supports immunity and the white one supports performance.
- Benefits: You can use a dairy or dairy-free milk of your choice to make yogurt at home. The freshly prepared yogurt would have higher levels of live probiotics in comparison to the readymade ones.
- Zero calories
- Halal certified
- No added sugar
- No maltodextrin
- No preservatives
- Plant-based culture
- No added colors or other additives
- It contains cornstarch which isn’t preferred by some
- Some customers complained that the culture didn’t work for them.
7. Cultures for Health Vegan Yogurt Starter – Best Starter Culture To Make Vegan Yogurt
This is a yogurt starter culture made especially for soy and other plant-based milk. This means that this yogurt starter will help you make your very own probiotic-rich vegan yogurt at home.
This product is completely free of dairy and contains just as much live probiotic culture as dairy-based options. This is also a good source of vegan protein and is free of additives.
- Ingredients: rice maltodextrin, Lactic bacteria (L. casei, L. acidophilus, S. thermophilus, L. rhamnosus, L. delbrueckii subsp. Bulgaricus, Bifidobacterium bifidum).
- Flavor: This is a plan vegan yogurt starter culture that makes creamy and delicious plant-based homemade yogurt.
- Safety: Each batch of the product is third-party laboratory tested for pathogens.
- Benefit: This yogurt starter is specially made for vegan milk options such as soy milk, almond milk, oat milk etc. Soy works best for thick creamy yogurt as it’s the only milk that can thicken without pectin. However, you can still enjoy yogurt drinks made with other vegan milk options.
- Function: Being rich in probiotics, vegan yogurt is a good source of vegan protein and supports digestive health.
- Low maintenance
- Contains maltodextrin
- Some people found it difficult to set the yogurt
8. So Delicious Dairy Free Coconut Milk Yogurt Alternative – Best Organic Coconut Milk Yogurt
As the name says, this is a coconut milk yogurt alternative by the brand So Delicious. This yogurt alternative is made with organic coconut milk.
It comes in a yummy blueberry flavor and is completely free of lactose, soy, and gluten. For those who can’t digest lactose, this is a good vegan alternative to enjoy the creamy yogurt delight without any symptoms.
There are no added artificial flavors, MSG, or trans-fats in this coconut milk yogurt alternative. The brand also has many other delicious plant-based alternatives that can satisfy your sweet tooth without causing digestive discomfort.
- Ingredients: Organic Coconutmilk (Organic Coconut Cream, Filtered Water), Blueberries, Organic Cane Sugar, Rice Starch, Pectin, contains 2% Or Less Of: Calcium Citrate, Blueberry Juice Concentrate, Natural Flavor, Citric Acid, Vegetable Juice (For Color), and Fruit, Locust Bean Gum, Vitamin D2, Live and Active Cultures, Vitamin B12, Coconuts, Tree Nuts, may contain: Soy.
- Flavor: This coconut milk yogurt alternative has a smooth and creamy texture and comes in a delicious blueberry flavor.
- Safety: The product is free of lactose, soy, and gluten with no artificial flavors, trans-fats or MSG.
- No artificial flavors
- No hydrogenated oil
- Non-GMO project verified
- No added MSG or trans-fats
- Made with organic coconut milk
- May contain soy
- Not ideal for those with nut allergies
9. Siggis PlantBased Coconut Blend – Best Flavored Coconut Milk Yogurt Alternative
This is also a coconut milk-based dairy-free yogurt alternative. The product is packed with protein and has less sugar content. The one listed here is a strawberry-flavored dairy-free snack that you can enjoy anytime. The consistency of the plant-based alternative is creamy and rich, with three times more protein and 40% less sugar in comparison to other yogurt alternatives.
- Ingredients: Coconut Milk (Coconut Cream, Water), Strawberries, Pea Protein, Cane Sugar, Macadamia Nuts, Coconut Oil, Tapioca Flour, Fruit Pectin, Natural Flavor.
- Live Active Cultures: L. delbrueckii subsp. Bulgaricus, S. thermophilus, L. plantarum, B. lactis, L. acidophilus.
- Nutrition Fact: This plant-based coconut blend contains 10 g of protein, live cultures, and no artificial preservatives or sweeteners.
- Benefit: You can enjoy this rich and delicious yogurt alternative whenever you crave thick Greek yogurt without worrying about being lactose intolerant.
- No sweeteners
- High in protein
- No preservatives
- No high fructose corn syrup
- One consumer found it to be too sweet
- Some also complained that it has mold or was spoilt before the expiration date
10. Silk Almond Milk Dairy-Free Yogurt Alternative – Best Almond Milk Yogurt Alternative
This dairy-free yogurt alternative made with almond milk is a delicious cream delight with no cholesterol, lactose, gluten, casein, or carrageenan. It has a delicious strawberry flavor and creamy texture and is rich in protein, calcium, and vitamin D.
Besides this, the brand also has several other almond milk-based dairy alternatives in yummy flavors.
- Ingredients: Almond milk (Almonds, Filtered Water), Strawberry Juice Concentrate, Cane Sugar, Pectin, Starch, Natural Flavor, Citric Acid, Vegetable Juice (for Color) and Fruit, Calcium Citrate, Live and Active Cultures, Tricalcium Phosphate, Vitamin D2,
- Live and Active Cultures: S. thermophilus, L. acidophilus, L. bulgaricus, L. casei, Bifidobacterium, SPP.
- Safety: The product is free of lactose, dairy, gluten, cholesterol, casein, and carrageenan.
- No casein
- No carrageenan
- No high fructose corn syrup
- No artificial flavors and colors
- Some people didn’t like the flavor
- Some people said it’s too sweet
What To Look for When Buying Lactose Free Yogurt
When it comes to choosing lactose-free yogurt, there are so many options available on the market besides the one listed above. However, it’s a matter of fact that not every product on the market is worth your money.
Here are a few things you should look for when buying lactose-free yogurt. This will ensure that you’re making the right choice.
When purchasing lactose-free yogurt, the first step is to inspect the label and read the ingredient list. While reviewing the ingredient list, you should look for the base ingredient, other added ingredients, and their quantities.
Ensure that the product doesn’t contain anything to which you’re sensitive or allergic. Look out for fillers, as some non-dairy yogurts may have gums, which can cause digestive distress if you have a sensitive stomach.
Also, the dairy values (DVs) of the ingredients should be checked on the label.
When reviewing the ingredient list, you should be mindful of the sugar content of the yogurt. Many brands add sugar and emulsifiers to give lactose-free yogurt the desired taste and texture. Going for products with less than 5 grams of added sugar is often recommended.
Especially if you’re cutting your sugar intake to lose weight, are diabetic, or are simply health conscious, it makes sense to choose a yogurt with a low sugar content.
Lactose-free yogurt should contain some protein in order to be a good dairy alternative and filling snack option.
A good protein content in a lactose-free yogurt option should be somewhere around 6 grams. Some soy-based products could even contain more than 10 grams of protein, whereas other plant-based options could have less than 6 grams. In the case of products like coconut yogurt, the protein content is lower, so you can consider adding some nuts.
Besides this, it makes sense to look for products with vitamin D and calcium. This will help you fulfill your body’s nutritional requirements even when you’re on a dairy-free or plant-based diet. Further, opt for yogurts with probiotic strains like Bifidobacteria, Acidophilus, Bulgaricus, and Thermophilus for good gut and digestive health.
Ideas for Serving Lactose-Free Yogurt
You can serve lactose-free yogurts in a variety of ways at breakfast, and lunch, or as a secret ingredient in various recipes.
- You can add granola to your vegan yogurt to make it healthier and tastier. Adding some fresh fruits and maple syrup would make a filling breakfast or snack option to enjoy at any time of the day.
- You can use it as a dressing or can even thicken a soup with it. The vegan yogurt would give a creamy and tangy twist to your soup or snack that you would relish.
- You can also make a creamy vegan pasta sauce with it.
- Making a DIY yogurt pudding is another brilliant idea to enjoy vegan yogurt and make the most of it.
- Lactose-free yogurt or alternative could also be used in your favorite baked good for adding extra moisture.
Related: Can lactose free milk cause gas?
Addressing General Queries Related To Lactose-Free Yogurt And Yogurt Alternatives
Which Yogurt Has the Lowest Lactose?
Greek yogurt in general has less lactose in comparison to regular yogurt. So, if you have ever wondered, is Greek yogurt lactose free? Then the answer is no, but it certainly contains less lactose than milk, regular yogurt, and even ice cream.
This is due to the straining and fermentation processes of the yogurt. Besides this, live and active bacterial cultures also break down the lactose sugar in the yogurt. This makes Greek yogurt easier to digest.
Apart from this, all plant-based yogurt options, such as coconut yogurt, soy yogurt, almond yogurt, and cashew yogurt, are free of lactose. All these lactose-free yogurts are a great option to substitute for dairy yogurt if you’re not able to digest lactose.
Which Greek Yogurt Is Lactose-free?
Among all the lactose-free yogurts listed above, here are the top Greek yogurt options:
- Fage Bestself Plain yogurt
- Chobani Greek Yogurt
- Kite Hill Blueberry Almond milk yogurt
Besides this, if you want to make your very own Greek yogurt at home, then you can make use of Top Therm Yogurt Starter.
Further, if you want to enjoy Greek yogurt without the dairy component, you can go for Siggi PlantBased Coconut Blend, which is a delicious Greek yogurt alternative.
Related: Check out this blog to learn how the lactose on chocolate may be causing your digestive issues.
Is Lactose-free Yogurt as Healthy as Regular Yogurt?
Yes, lactose-free yogurts are as healthy as regular yogurt. This is because, in order to make them lactose-free, the lactase enzyme is added to them without altering other nutritional components. The lactase enzyme breaks down the lactose present in the yogurt, making it more digestible for those who are lactose intolerant.
Plant-based lactose-free yogurts, on the other hand, could have different nutritional values depending on what has been used as the base ingredient. The plant-based yogurts are made using nuts such as coconuts, almonds, and cashews and foods like soy, oats, and peas.
Note that the nutritional value of a product also varies across different brands and manufacturers as the composition changes.
Related: Is there lactose in cream?
All in all, lactose-free yogurt is a great substitute for people with lactose intolerance to enjoy dairy and fulfil the body’s nutritional requirements.
The best part is that whether you’re lactose intolerant, dairy-allergic, or vegan, there is an option for everyone out there. Whatever your reason may be to avoid dairy-based yogurt, you don’t have to completely quit eating it!
Furthermore, these yogurts are rich in nutrition, delicious, and low in sugar, and thus make for a great breakfast or midday snack.
Apart from yogurt, you can also fulfill your body’s probiotic requirement by including a probiotic supplement in your diet, like ours.
Our Optima Healthy Gut Solution is packed with 25 billion probiotics and several other natural ingredients to support your overall gut and digestive health.