Almond Milk vs. Soy Milk

Almond milk and soy milk are two of the most popular non-dairy milk options in the world. But which one should be your milk replacement?

Plant-based milk experienced a significant jump in the past few years, with 41% of U.S. households purchasing vegan milk. 

Demand for alternative dairy milk has reached an all-time high, and it doesn't appear to be slowing down any time soon. The more people adopt a plant-based lifestyle, the more alternative milk options are hitting the shelves. 

Almond milk vs. soy milk is one of the many plant-based milk dilemmas across American households. As with dairy milk, not all plant-based milk is created equal. 

When it comes to choosing milk, it's important to choose the best one for your health, the environment, and budget. 

Learn everything you need to know about the pros and cons of almond milk vs. soy milk here. 

Almond Milk vs. Soy Milk: Comparison Chart

Don't have time to read the full article? Here's a chart to help you see how these two milks stack up in terms of nutrition, taste, and other important factors.

1 Cup

Almond Milk

Soy Milk



















What Is Almond Milk?

Almond milk is plant-based milk made from filtered almonds and water.

It is one of the most popular milk alternatives because of its rich pleasant, nutty flavor and creamy texture.

For this reason, it's an ideal choice for people following a vegan diet and those intolerant to dairy products.

Almond milk largely dominates the U.S. plant-based sector, with over $1.5 billion in sales in 2021. 

The simplest method to make almond milk is grinding almonds in a blender with water.

Once completely blended, strain out the pulp with a cheesecloth or a filter. Almond milk can also be made by adding water to almond butter, as seen in the video below.

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Not surprisingly, California produces over 80% of the world's almonds, thanks to its ideal growing conditions, rich soil, and year-round sunshine.

Almond Milk Benefits

Almond milk isn't just about taste.

There are also many health-based reasons to consider this nutty alternative as your milk of choice. 

Here are some of the benefits of drinking almond milk


Many commercial varieties of almond milk have been fortified with nutrients.

In these brands, you can expect to find calcium and vitamins A, E, and D. 

Fortification is how manufacturers add micronutrients to milk to increase its nutritional profile. Fortified almond milk ensures you get a healthy dose of key vitamins and minerals. 

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If you make homemade almond milk, keep in mind that you won't get the same nutritional benefits as store-bought almond milk that has been fortified.

Low in Calories

For people trying to lose weight, almond milk is a great choice.

Unsweetened almond milk is low in sugars and carbohydrates – about 80% fewer calories than dairy milk. 

Given almond milk is primarily made of water, this comes as no surprise. A single serving of unsweetened almond milk contains anywhere between 30 to 90 calories. 

Doesn't Raise Blood Sugar

Compared to dairy milk, unsweetened almond milk is unlikely to raise blood sugar levels. 

This means almond milk is great for diabetics

Because it's dairy-free, it doesn't contain milk protein or lactose that can raise your blood glucose.

To put it into context, a single serving of unsweetened almond milk contains 2 grams of sugar. At the same time, a cup of dairy milk has 13 grams. 

almond milk benefits over soy milk

May Strengthen Your Bones

Because almond milk is often used to replace dairy milk, many manufacturers enrich it with calcium.

This ensures people are getting their daily dose of calcium. 

Commercial fortified almond milk products typically try to match the amount of calcium in dairy milk.  

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To reap the most nutritional benefits, choose almond milk fortified with calcium and vitamin D.

High in Vitamin E

Almonds are an excellent source of vitamin E, a fat-soluble vitamin required for the proper function of many organs in the body. 

Vitamin E boosts your immune system and wards off incoming bacteria and viruses. In addition, vitamin E is important to vision, reproduction, and the health of your brain, blood, and skin. 

One cup of commercial almond milk provides over 100% of the DV for vitamin E.

That makes almond milk an excellent choice to help protect your body against illness and improve the proper function of your organs.

May Reduce Risk of Heart Disease

Experts suggest that eating almonds can reduce the risk of heart disease. Healthy fats are an essential part of a healthy diet. 

Adding almonds into your diet will increase the number of antioxidants in your bloodstream.

As a result, your cholesterol levels lower, and your blood flow improves.  

almond milk vs soy milk comparison

Suitable for Lactose Intolerance

People with lactose intolerance cannot fully digest the sugar (lactose) in milk and milk products. As a result, they may experience digestive issues, including bloating, diarrhea, and gas. 

Almond milk is a safe milk substitute for people who are lactose intolerant. Being dairy-free, almond milk contains no lactose at all. It's the best way to enjoy milk without the unpleasant side effects. 

Almond Milk Drawbacks

Unfortunately, there is no such thing as the "perfect plant-based milk." If there were, this article wouldn't exist. 

Here are a few drawbacks of drinking almond milk. 

Environmental Impact

All non-dairy milk is better for the environment than dairy milk. However, some are more "planet-friendly" than others. 

One of the main issues associated with almond milk production is its high water consumption, meaning it's not so great for the environment. 

Because of almond milk's high water and pesticide use, there are concerns that it may produce long-lasting effects on the environment in an already drought-stricken California. 

Lacks Protein

While almonds are high in protein, almond milk is not.

A single serving of almond milk contains 1 gram of protein because it's mostly water. 

Protein is an essential part of a healthy diet. Protein helps repair and build your body's tissues, curbs hunger, and helps maintain a healthy weight. 

The average person needs about 0.36 grams of protein per pound of body weight. 

Include protein-rich foods like peanut butter, tofu, and chia seeds in your almond milk breakfast smoothie to boost your protein consumption.

You can also mix almond milk with protein powder

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The reason most almond milk is low in protein is a lot of the nutrients are stripped during the straining process.

Not Suitable for Infants

Almonds milk and other nut milk are not suitable as a complete replacement for dairy milk for children under five years old.

Although some suggest fortified almond milk can be given to children as young as two years old. 

When it comes to infants and toddlers, no milk will compare to the nutrients provided by breast milk and instant formula. 

What is Soy Milk? 

Along with almond milk, soy milk (or soya milk) is one of the top milk alternatives to dairy milk.

Globally, soy milk products remain one of the most popular, with $202 million in sales in 2020. 

Soy milk is made from soybeans and has an excellent nutrient profile and creamy texture.

It is traditionally made by soaking soybeans overnight then grinding the beans with water.

Here's a video that shows the process:

Soy milk is typically sweeter than other dairy-free milk options, one of the many reasons why people enjoy consuming the product. 

In the U.S., Illinois produced the largest quantity of soybeans in the United States, with over 605 million bushels of soybeans. 

Check out our Soy Milk 101 video to learn more:

Soy Milk Benefits 

Soy milk has a long history dating back to the third century B.C. With so many years of cultivation, it only makes sense that the mighty soybean has some benefits. 

Here are the advantages of drinking soy milk. 

High in Protein

Soy milk is an incredibly protein-rich plant-based product. The protein in soy milk is healthy and can support healthy muscles and organs. Compared to other plant-based milk on the market, soy milk trumps them. 

soy milk icon

The protein content of soy milk is similar to dairy milk. A single serving of soy milk contains upwards of 7 grams of protein, compared to 8 grams in a cup of dairy milk.

Aids in Weight Loss

If you're looking to lose weight and adopt a healthier lifestyle, soy milk is a great diet inclusion. Soy milk is naturally lower in sugar content and doesn't compromise on nutrition. 

The high protein and low fiber content of soy milk make it the ultimate drink to aid weight loss. 

Improves Heart Health

Like almond milk, soy milk also promotes good heart health.

Having a diet rich in soy foods has been previously linked to a lower risk of cardiovascular disease, including coronary heart disease. 

Soybeans and soy foods are good sources of polyunsaturated fat, a healthy fat that can lower cholesterol.

Contains Calcium and Iron

When it comes to essential minerals, calcium and iron top the list.

Iron is vital in making red blood cells to help our growth and development. Calcium builds and maintains strong bone development and supports the functioning of nerves and muscle tissue. 

Drinking soy milk will boost your calcium and iron intake. Choose fortified soy milk to enjoy similar levels of calcium to dairy milk. 

soy milk or almond milk


Diabetes is a chronic condition that affects blood sugar levels. When your blood sugar is too high, you lack enough insulin.

As a result, you can become hyperglycemic, which can cause vomiting, excessive thirst or hunger, rapid heartbeat, and vision problems. 

Soy milk is a good alternative for diabetes and has decreased blood pressure in those with type 2 diabetes. 

Contains Riboflavin and Vitamin B12

Riboflavin (or vitamin B2) helps break down proteins, fats, and carbohydrates. Vitamin B12 is a nutrient that helps keep your body's blood and nerve cells healthy. 

Soy milk includes both vitamins B2 and B12. One cup of fortified soy milk contains 86% of the DV for vitamin B12 and about 79% DV for B2. 

Soy Milk Drawbacks 

Soy milk isn't perfect (neither is dairy milk!). While it isn't bad for you, it does come with a few not-so-fun side effects. 

Here are some of the drawbacks of drinking soy milk. 

Soy Allergies

If you have a soy allergy, you should stay away from soy milk. That said, soy allergies are pretty uncommon. Drinking soy milk with a soy allergy can result in hives or itching in and around the mouth. 

The allergy is less common in adults and more prevalent in babies and children. 

Added Sugars

Many soy milk brands on the market contain added sugars. Also, avoid soy milk with added flavor sweeteners like vanilla and chocolate. Instead, choose soy milk labeled "unsweetened" with no added sugar. 

Thyroid Problems

Eating large amounts of soy may affect thyroid function. Soy can interfere with iodine entry into the thyroid gland and may inhibit the action of thyroid hormones in the body's organs. 

A cup of soy milk is unlikely to affect the thyroid of a relatively healthy person. However, if you already have hyperthyroidism, you may want to avoid soy products, including soy milk. 

May Disrupt Estrogen 

Soy contains isoflavones, polyphenolic compounds that have estrogen-like effects. Because estrogen plays a significant role in the female body, from breast cancer to sexual reproduction, there are concerns soy milk can disrupt the way estrogen works. 

Currently, there is no proven link to suggest soy milk will increase the risk of breast cancer. Some studies even suggest soy milk can decrease the chances of cancer. 

The bottom line is there isn't enough substantial evidence to link soy milk one way or the other. 

almond milk vs soy milk which is better

Almond Milk vs. Soy Milk: Which Milk Is Better?

Almond milk vs. soy milk; it's an age-old question. Almond and soy milk have different nutritional profiles and benefits. 

Both soy and almond milk is rich in vitamins and minerals and has less fat than dairy milk. 

Keep in mind that processed soy milk may disrupt the way estrogen works in your body. This may lead to hormonal imbalances if consumed in excess.

Because of this, almond milk creeps across the line as a slightly better-for-you option. 

Ultimately, when it comes to choosing the best non-dairy healthy milk for you and your health, consider your diet, nutritional needs, and personal taste preferences. 

To learn more about the different kinds of plant-based milk, check out some of our other blogs.