The freezer section is a grocery store favorite — from frozen dinners to frosty desserts, it’s brimming with quick, affordable and delicious items. However, for some, consuming frozen products that contain dairy can lead to stomach issues and discomfort. For those who try to cut out ice cream and other cheesy entrees, don’t let that stop you from stocking up on microwave-ready delights while grocery shopping. We’ve rounded up some non-dairy and low-dairy favorites.
Instead of an ice cream bar
Try a greek yogurt version. Since frozen yogurt has probiotics, Amanda Hookum from the Chicago Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, says it has lower levels of lactose than ice cream. But since it’s still a dairy product, you’ll get a good dose of calcium.
Instead of plain mac & cheese
Add a vegetable. According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, symptoms of lactose intolerance can be reduced or even eliminated by eating dairy with another food. So instead of eating plain macaroni and cheese, try a frozen option that adds broccoli, kale or cauliflower — check out Amy’s offerings. In addition to adding color to your plate, Georgia Giannopoulos, RD, says dark green veggies like broccoli and kale are great sources of calcium, perfect if you’re on a low- or no-dairy diet.
Instead of dairy ice cream sandwiches
Try a soy version. Trader Joe’s makes miniature versions of the popular ice cream novelty in both chocolate and vanilla flavors. They’re just 90 calories, so even if you’re not a dairy-avoider, you can have a few indulgent bites without feeling too guilty.
Instead of traditional frozen pizza
Try one with vegan cheese. Two of my personal favorites include the Vegan Harvest pie from American Flatbread and Amy’s Vegan Margherita Pizza. Since I don’t have a dairy allergy and am just a little lactose intolerant, I usually sprinkle some Parmesan on these to add more cheesiness. Both of these brands have flavorful tomato sauce, and the crust is decent, too.
Instead of chocolate ice cream
Try Talenti chocolate sorbetto. This stuff is unreal — I didn’t have high expectations when I tried my first pint, but after a spoonful, I was hooked. It has no dairy and is impossibly rich, velvety and chocolaty.
Instead of ice cream cake
Try Daiya’s “New York Cheezecake.” Creamy coconut makes this vegan dessert taste rich and smooth. Even my dairy-loving parents enjoyed this cheesecake. Serve it with fresh berries and dairy-free whipped topping, and you’ll forget you’re not eating the real thing.