What Does Soy Milk Taste Like? (3+1 Variables)


Soy milk and soy beans on a light table

If you aren’t too familiar with soy, the first things that come to your mind are tofu and soybeans. I bet you aren’t that familiar with soy milk, especially when you found your way to the answer about what it tastes like. Without keeping you in the unconsciousness, what does soy milk taste like?

Unsweetened soy milk haves a mild plant-like taste with a creamier and richer texture than most other plant-based milk. The taste is rather sweet, and it’s closest to the real cow’s milk taste of the non-dairy milk options.

Flavored soy milk can taste like vanilla, chocolate, or something else, depending on the flavor used.

When you ask people what soy milk tastes like, that’s close to the usual answer. Some might like soy milk, whereas others don’t. If you ask me, I do enjoy using soy milk in baking, oatmeal, or as an add-on with other ingredients. However, the taste for my personal preference is too, well, soy.

All in all, three things contribute to the taste of soy milk: flavor, texture, and smell. In addition, appearance is something that contributes to how pleasant it looks. Next, let’s go over these matters individually.

1. Flavor

Soy milk is made from whole soybeans or full-fat soy flour mixed with water, put in simple terms. The first is the most common way to make soy milk, so naturally, it will taste like them.

This gives soy milk a plant-like aroma that is an acquired taste. The taste can vary slightly depending on the brand and manufacturer, but the grainy plant taste remains.

2. Texture

The texture of soy milk is rich and creamy, at least when compared to other plant-based milk like almond or rice milk. This makes it quite pleasant to drink because it isn’t watery and dilute.

However, some soy milk is thicker than others. This is accomplished by adding carrageenan, a vegan alternative to gelatin or calcium. These bind the liquid more, making it thicker, and some people find it too artificially thick.

Soy milk without the thickening ingredients isn’t as thick as most products available in grocery stores because soybeans doesen’t have the natural fats that real cow’s milk has.

3. Smell

A similarity between soy milk and cow’s milk is that both doesen’t emit much of an odor. However, both will have a sour rancid smell that isn’t pleasant to the nose when they are spoiled.

4. Appearance

I already talked about the texture of soy milk that is part of the appearance and the feel on the mouth when consumed. I explained that some soy milk has a richer texture than others, usually because of thickeners such as carrageenan. However, what about the color.

Unlike cow’s milk which is pure and clear white, soy milk is darker with an opaque or even lightly beige color. When you think about it, the color is similar to soybeans.

What Is Soy Milk?

Soy milk, also known as soya milk, is a dairy-free milk substitute made from full soybeans. This plant-based drink is made by soaking and grinding soybeans, boiling, and finally filtering and cooling, so it’s a clear, smooth liquid. Alternatively, soy milk can be made from full-fat soy flour.

When preparing soy milk, it’s important to have a good balance between water and soybeans. Generally, the optimal weight ratio is 10:1 for regular soy milk. If you have 1 kg of water, you’ll need 100g of soybeans.

When you compare all plant-based milk to cow’s milk, soy milk is the closest to it in taste, texture, and appearance. The similarities are close to one another in nutritional values too. Take a look;

NutrientSoy MilkCow’s Milk
Calories5442
Protein3,3g3,4g
Carbohydrates6g5g
Fat1,8g1g
Cholesterol0mg5mg
Sodium51mg44mg
Potassium118mg150mg
Soy milk and cow’s milk nutritional facts per 3,5og (100g) | Source: USDA

Note that the above facts can vary between brands and manufacturers. Anyways, soy milk can be used similarly to cow’s milk. You can drink a cold glass as it is, put it in cereal or coffee, add it to smoothies, or whatever you would use cow’s milk for.

So, why would you use soy milk in the place of cow’s milk in the first place? There are a variety of reasons, including;

  • You don’t like the taste of cow’s milk
  • You are lactose intolerant
  • You are a vegan
  • You try to reduce cholesterol intake

Even if you are a cow’s milk lover, I encourage you to try soy milk as it opens new experiences to you and who knows, maybe you’ll like it!

Does Soy Milk Taste Like Vanilla?

Soy milk, soy beans, and vanilla.

Vanilla and soy aren’t exactly made from the same ingredients, yet the rumor about soymilk tasting like vanilla is real. Is there any truth to it, or is it just a myth?

Regular unsweetened soy milk doesen’t taste like vanilla. However, sweetened soy milk added with vanilla flavor tastes like vanilla and has a delicious taste.

So, when you see people saying soy milk tastes like vanilla, they likely have enjoyed vanilla soy milk instead of unsweetened soy milk.

A great example of great vanilla-tasting soy milk is Vanilla Silk Soy Milk. If you don’t like unsweetened soymilk and are a fan of flavored milk, then the vanilla silk soy milk is something you will like! It’s low in calories, high in protein, and delicious in taste!

What Tastes Better, Soy or Almond Milk?

When looking at the world of milk substitutes that aren’t made from any animal but plants, you have a wide range of options. Some of the most popular milk substitutes are soymilk and almond milk. Which milk tastes better?

Generally, almond milk is considered to taste better because the taste of soy milk can have a strong plant flavor. However, soy milk is considered better in coffee and baking because its texture is better, making it tastier as an add-on.

So, if you want a glass of plant-based milk and you have the choice of almond or soy, choose almond if you want the popular opinion. If you want a dash of dairy-free milk on your coffee, for baking, or for cereal, choose soy milk, again from the general opinion.

Naturally, you have your taste buds and might like almond milk better in cooking and soy milk better as a beverage. However, my personal and general opinion of the taste and uses of almond and soy milk supports the claims above.

Although, if I want a dash of plant-based milk on my coffee, I choose oat milk by a long shot; that’s another story. If you’re interested, check out my article about what oat milk tastes like.

What Does Spoiled Soy Milk Taste Like?

Even when soymilk is made from plants, it spoils like all or most things. However, you wouldn’t want to unknowingly throw out soy milk if you think it’s spoiled even when it isn’t. That said, where can you know if soymilk is spoiled or not?

Spoiled soy milk tastes sour with an unusual, bad taste. You can also notice if soy milk has gone bad by looking at it and whether it has an unusual color or curdled texture. The odor of bad soy milk is rancid and bad, which indicates that it has spoiled.

There are a few things to ask yourself when determining whether your soy milk has gone bad or not, especially if you have a hard time knowing.

First, look at the milk carton and see whether it’s past its expiration date. Generally, expiration date means best to be used and not the final possible date to use it. However, if you suspect it has gone bad, you should discard it.

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Another thing to consider is what type of soy milk you are having. There are two types of soy milk: shelf stable and refrigerated soy milk. Both soy milk types need to be stored in the refrigerator after opening, but shelf-stable soy milk can be stored at room temperatures before opening. That said, has your soy milk stayed open overnight or hours straight at room temperature? If so, you should discard it.

To recap, keep these things in mind when determining spoiled soy milk;

  • Off taste
  • Unusual color & texture
  • Bad smell
  • The expiration date has passed
  • It has stayed at room temperature when opened

Soymilk is a great milk substitute made from plants that fit many situations. At first, getting used to soy milk can take time, but after a while, then chances are you’ll start to appreciate it.

Here You’ll Find My Favorite Kitchen Equipment.

Thanks for reading this article! I hope that it brought you real value that you can benefit from in your personal life! Here is my top kitchen equipment that I seriously couldn’t live without, and I think they could ease your life as well as they do mine.

  • Knife set: As a chef, I can’t stand dull, poor-quality knives without any design. My absolute favorite kitchen knife set is the Gangshan 3-Piece Knife Set. It comes with a handcrafted 8″ chef’s knife and a 3.5″ paring knife. What I love even more than these flawless knives is the walnut knife block which is incredible and unique.
  • Skillet: In addition to knives and my unwillingness to bargain with its quality is the cookware. My favorite skillet is Le Creuset Enameled Cast Iron Skillet. This particular skillet is 9″ in size, it is heavy, it gets very hot, which is what is required to get a good sear, and it is just beautiful, as are all Le Creuset products. Le Creuset doesn’t need an introduction as a brand, as it is one of the world’s rated brands.
  • Food processor: I remember when I hadn’t a food processor at home. It wasn’t easy! But now, when I use my Ninja BN601 Food Processor, I can make anything super fast, which saves me many hours per week. This food processor has 1000 watts of power and four options, including chopping, slicing, dough, and purees. I also like the middle-sized 9cup (2.1l) bowl as it is big enough yet not too big to look unfitting in my kitchen.
  • Tweezers: Dalstrong Professional Cooking Tweezers are like tongs but much more elegant, thin, and easy to use. They are great for virtually anything, but flipping, turning, and grabbing with them is easy and makes cooking much more fun! These Dalstrgon tongs are titanium coated and very durable. Also, I like the black color instead of the everyday steel.

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Omar Abdalla

I’m the owner of JRS. While I love writing about food, I also enjoy peaceful and relaxed cookouts at home.

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