Monday, April 01, 2019

Another Wonderful Non-Dairy Milk Alternative
Unsweetened Ripple
Ripple Chia Pudding and Ripple Smoothie Recipes

Creamy, delicious, vegan and high in protein.

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Doug and I haven't had dairy milk in over 25 years. And in the past 25 years we've tried every non-dairy milk on the market - Rice milk, soy milk, almond milk, cashew milk, oat milk, hemp milk, coconut milk and probably a few more I can't recall. 

I must admit, I love soy milk. I even have a soy milk maker and used to make my own from organic soy beans. And I adored the soy yogurt I was able to make in my Instant Pot. But then I found that my thyroid was a bit sluggish and my naturopath told me to avoid soy since it's a goitrogen and can interfere with the absorption of thyroid hormone.

Other favorites were hemp milk, due to its omega-3 content, and almond milk, because of its taste and low calorie content. I also like to make my own almond milk, which is quite easy. 

Recently my friends Marcia and Bob introduced me to Ripple. I laughed when I heard the name because in the late 1960's, when I was in college, Ripple was a cheap, fortified wine that was very popular. I once had a Ripple party and we managed to line the entire perimeter of my small studio apartment with empty Ripple bottles - I don't remember much else about the party so I probably had my share.

Cheap Ripple wine, circa 1960-1970

Ripple Non-Dairy Milk
Ripple is made from peas. For me, it seems like it's the non-dairy milk most similar to the consistency and richness of soy milk. It's vegan, lactose free, nut free, soy free, and gluten free. Although it's not certified organic, it is GMO free. 

Here's what I love about it:
* It's creamy and delicious, not watery like some non-dairy milks
* It's dairy and lactose free
* It doesn't contain nuts, soy or gluten. Nuts aren't a problem for me but they are for several of my friends and now I don't have to worry about using this in a recipe
* It contains 8 g of plant protein per serving
* It even has 32mg of DHA omega 3
* The unsweetened has 0 sugar and 0 carbs
* It uses 98.5% less water than dairy milk and 96% less water than almond milk during manufacturing.

What I don't love about it:
* Although it's non-GMO, I wish it were organic. There's a big writeup in their FAQs that explains their reasoning.
* I don't love that it contains omega-6 rich sunflower oil as I try to avoid these inflammatory oils.
* Although some people like their non-dairy milk to have added calcium, I don't. A cup of Ripple contains 450mg of calcium per cup and no magnesium. This is an issue for me for three reasons: First, that's a LOT of calcium - I think people take too much of it. Second, calcium should be balanced 2:1 with magnesium and this is not. Third, if you are taking thyroid medication, you cannot take a calcium supplement for at least 4 hours. Since most people take their thyroid meds first thing in the morning, they will not be able to use Ripple or any other beverage that is heavily fortified with calcium in their morning smoothie or coffee. This is a bummer for me. 

All this said, I love this stuff. It makes an amazing smoothie (which I have in the afternoon) and a very creamy chia pudding.

Strawberry Banana Oatmeal Smoothie with Ripple
Vegan, Dairy and Gluten Free
[Makes 2 Servings]
Requires a high speed blender

1 1/2 cups cold Ripple unsweetened non-dairy milk
1 frozen banana
1/3 cup uncooked rolled oats
1 cup sliced strawberries
1 packet stevia

Place all the ingredients in a high speed blender and process until smooth. Serve immediately. 

Creamy strawberry banana oatmeal smoothie 
 *                    *                           *                        *

Chia Pudding with Ripple
Vegan, Dairy and Gluten Free
[Makes Six (1/2-Cup) Servings]
Requires a high speed blender and a 1-quart container

Allow 1 1/2 days for soaking and thickening

3 Medjool dates, pits removed
2 cups unsweetened Ripple non-dairy milk
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon or to taste
1 teaspoon vanilla or to taste
1 or 2 packets stevia
1/4 cup raw chia seeds

Coarsely chop the dates and soak in the milk for 2 hours.

Place the soaked dates, milk, cinnamon, vanilla and stevia in the blender. Blend until smooth.

Pour the blended liquid in a 1-quart container. Stir in the chia seeds. Stir vigorously for 1 minute. Let the mixture sit for another 15 minutes and stir again vigorously until the chia seeds are well blended and separated. You may need to do this again a few times as the chia seeds have a tendency to clump.

Cover the container and place in the refrigerator for at least 24 hours to allow the chia seeds to absorb the liquid. 

Serve alone or with fresh fruit. I love it with fresh strawberries or mango.

Delicious chia seed pudding with strawberries

Ripple comes in other flavors: Original, Vanilla, Unsweetened Vanilla, and Chocolate.
You can make the smoothie or the chia pudding using any of these flavors.

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