Best Dairy Free Meal Replacement Shakes 2022

Vegan Meal Replacement Shakes? No Problem We Test The Best!

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The Top 5 Lactose Free Meal Replacement Shakes 2022


Rootana – The Best Dairy Free Meal Replacement Shake

Instant Knockout Complete
– The Best High Protein Vegan Shake 

Protein Works Complete 360 Meal
– The Best Budget Shake

Abnormal - A Customised Shake

Vegan Gainz
– Best Lactose Free Meal Replacement Shake For Bulking

Dairy free meal replacement shakes are exactly what they sound like, meal replacement shakes designed for vegans and lactose intolerant people, so as you’d expect one of the easiest ways to make sure something is dairy free is to look for vegan meal replacers, although there are some options available which aren’t expressly vegan. 

Dairy free meal replacement shakes are exactly what they sound like, meal replacement shakes designed for vegans and lactose intolerant people, so as you’d expect one of the easiest ways to make sure something is dairy free is to look for vegan meal replacers, although there are some options available, which aren’t expressly vegan. 

  Meal replacement shakes can offer a complete solution to your dietary needs, people avoiding dairy products through veganism or lactose intolerance can often find themselves short of certain vitamins and minerals without supplements. The biggest risks are of not having enough B12, Calcium and, despite conventional wisdom about green veg, iron. We recommend Rootana as our go to for a complete dairy free meal replacer, you can read our review here or visit their website to check deals.  

Dairy Free Meal Shakes FAQ

We overview some of the top questions about lactose free meal replacers

Is Plant Based Protein As Good As Whey?

Yes and no, if you have just pea protein, or just brown rice protein then it doesn't have a complete amino acid profile like this dairy counterpart, however with blends this can be rectified to make sure you get a completely balanced mix of the amino acids you need as well as your BCAAs. Soy however does have a complete profile and can compete stand alone with whey, so make sure that you look for effective blends of vegan protein.

Do Vegan Meal Replacers Taste Different?

Yes, they tend to be a little thicker, but a little less creamy than their whey counterparts, and dairy free protein powder is different again, but we'll review those in a different piece.

Can I Use Vegan Protien Powder For Cooking? 

Believe it or not a more commonly asked question is "can I use vegan protein powder in coffee" to which the coffee snob in us cry's a little. But the answer is yes, vegan meal replacement powder can be used for cooking. It's most often used in oatmeal, or mixed with soy yoghurt to make a protein bowl, topped with fruit these can both be delicious and healthy options. 

What's The Difference Between Dairy Free Protein Powder And Meal Replacers?

Dairy free protein powders are not balanced to be a completely balanced nutritional shake. They're designed to be a top up for people who need more protein in their diet and are normally made predominantly from soy protien isolate or pea protein isolate. They're lower calorie, but don't contain essential vitamins, tend to not satisfy hunger cravings as they're designed for building muscle not to help maintain or lose weight. They are however a great addition to a low protien dairy free meal.

The Best Lactose Free Meal Replacement Shake


Rootana is hands down our favourite meal replacement shake, it's new in 2022 and hasn't hit the US market yet (don't worry it's coming). It currently only has 3 flavours available, but each one of them is brilliant, we're particularly fond of the vanilla, we don't actually have any of the samples left in the office, because Dave apparently decided he wasn't sharing and took them home to drink.... which pretty much tells you how much we all liked it here. The cocoa flavour is also fantastic and the original gives a whole host of self flavouring options. 

Criteria Score
Fullness 10/10
Nutrition 10/10
Value 9/10
Recommended 10/10

Key Features

No artificial sweeteners, no additives, all natural, tastes amazing, keeps you full, there's not really much else to say it's a solid all rounder go to meal replacement shake for anyone who avoids dairy. They're also none gmo and completely organic.

Who's It For?

People looking for a staple meal replacement shake, and that want to make sure they put sustainable and the healthiest products in their body, it's not the cheapest, but it is great. 

As we can see the nutritional makeup of Rootana is designed to make sure you get a well balanced complete meal. It also has 20% of every essential vitamin and mineral that you'll need for the day which lines up with it being 20% of your calories. It's fortified with calcium, zinc, magnesium and vitamin D, which will help promote overall health wellbeing and help with mood regulation. It also contains all the healthy fats that your body needs to function correctly. Unfortunately unlike some of our other options it isn't gluten free. Rootana shakes are definitely topping our favorite meal replacement products.

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Using Dairy Free Meal Replacement Shakes For Weight Loss

Following a vegan diet, or dealing with lactose intolerance can be difficult making it quite awkward to eat quickly and healthily when you’re on the go, shockingly vegans actually have higher rates of obesity than lacto-vegetarians, which adds a lot of credence to vegans and people who are dairy free having less healthy and quick options available to them. This makes meal replacement shakes particularly beneficial to this segment of the population. 

It can be especially difficult when eating out in the USA or looking for healthy convenience food that is suitable for people with lactose intolerance or vegans. It has been clinically proven that using meal replacement shakes designed for weight loss is more effective for weight loss than simply dieting with the average weight loss being 12.3% vs 6.7%, which is almost double. They also kept more weight off overall in the following weeks, with the diet proving to be effective for 95% of the shake group. Which is why we recommend using Instant Knockout Complete as our go to dairy free meal replacer for weight loss, read the review here or visit their website.   

Vegan Meal Replacement Shakes For Weight Gain

Many vegans and vegetarians are underweight, they're the most likely demographic in the USA to have this problem, meaning they’re less likely to be getting enough calories and essential nutrients, which is where complete meal replacement shakes can be incredibly useful. Gaining weight healthily, sometimes called clean bulking, can be an incredibly difficult task, especially for people with lower appetites, adding in a meal replacement shake can be a good way to help you remember to eat and make sure that you get all the essential nutrients your body needs.

What To Look For In A Vegan Meal Replacement Shake

Not all dairy free meal replacement shakes are created equal, the things that you want to look to avoid are proprietary blends, in these you won’t know exactly what’s in them and if the ingredients are of a high quality or not. As for what you want to make sure they do have, you want to make sure that they’re fortified with the vitamins and minerals you need for a healthy diet, that they suit your protein and calorie requirements, but most importantly that they taste good and keep you full. 

Flavour is always going to be subjective, but we try to judge objectively and have at least 5 of our staff taste test the shakes, we each rate it from one to ten which is where we get our figure. 

Vitamins and Minerals, it needs to have at least as many as would meet the percentage of your calorie intake the shake accounts for. 

Protein (macro) nutrients, this will vary on what the shake is designed for, if it’s meant to be a high protein shake for people going to the gym we will expect more, if it’s supposed to be a complete meal designed for maintaining a weight, we won’t expect as much. 

Proprietary Blends, we simply take points off for this. 

How full does it keep you? Well, we work from the same system as flavour, so again it’s not a perfect system, but it’s about as good as we can get. 

Value, is it good value? Expensive is fine, cheap is fine, but we want to make sure you’re getting the best of the above for the best price possible.

Lactose Intolerence And Getting Enough Nutrients

As we said earlier it can be quite difficult for people following a lactose free diet to get all the essential nutrients that their body needs without taking supplements. As such some of the key ingredients you should look out for when you’re selecting your meal replacement shake are:

Dietary Aids And Enzymes

With having a different blend of food than your body is used to you'll want to make sure that the shakes you get have the right enzymes in to help keep your gut healthy.


As a rule of thumb when calculating your macros you need about 1g of protein to every lb you weigh to grow muscle and .8g to maintain it, you also need to get about 10-20% of your calories from fats, after that, you can mix it however you want.

Vitamins and Minerals

Vegans and the lactose intolerent will want to focus on B12, calcium and iron. The best dairy free meal replacement shakes come fortified with all of these to help make up for this.

Omega 3 & Omega 6

This is particularly important with vegan meal replacement shakes as omega oils are needed for brain and joint function and outside of fish or large amounts of flax seeds it's not very easy to get. So, having refined versions of these becomes incredibly important for people following vegan diets, although less so for lactose intolerent people who eat fish. Typically meal replacement shakes will get this from flax seeds or chia seeds.

Fiber and Prebiotics

Fibre is a great way of making sure that you stay feeling full and it doesn't really load you up with calories, it also helps make sure your stomach stays healthy and that you avoid bloating or feeling overly full.


You'll of course want to look out for allergens, this means you'll want to watch out for anything else that doesn't agree with you, for example artificial flavourings or sweeteners, or checking for nut allergens. This will of course be dependant on your personal dietary needs.

Protein Type

The blend of protein matters, soy protein is what we refer to as complete, meaning it has all the amino acids your body needs, however, other plant based proteins are not complete, meaning they need to be blended to achieve optimum results, this can be by mixing hemp protein, brown rice and pea protein in different volumes.

Get Instant Knockout Complete - Our Top Rated Meal Replacement Shake For Weight Loss

We can't get enough of instant knockout complete, definitely the best new meal replacement shake on the market, so to see what everyone is raving about, us included check it out today!

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