Is Cold Foam Vegan?


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Coffee. Many love specialty coffees that have extra add-ins to make the coffee taste a little less bitter. Whipped cream can be placed atop your drink for a sweet finishing touch. 

A healthy option though, is cold foam. Cold foam is so popular in the coffee world. The light and airy topping is the perfect addition to a glass of iced coffee. 

It is made by frothing cold milk and so when placed on top of the cold drink, it won’t melt so you get a taste of the creamy whip with every sip. Many people love coffee and some include vegans. 

So, can they, too, get in on this cold foam craze? Is cold foam vegan?

Cold foam is not normally vegan. It is made with nonfat milk which is dairy. However, cold foam could be made with a non-dairy milk, it just won’t have the same texture as regular cold foam.

Cold foam was first introduced in 2014 at Starbucks reserve Roastery in Seattle, Washington. Since then, it has become a popular menu item at virtually all coffee shops, topping iced coffee drinks everywhere. 

It has a light and airy taste and sometimes has vanilla added in for a sweet cold foam. 

Cold foam is made by frothing cold milk. This creates tiny bubbles throughout the liquid creating a creamy and frothy foam. Since cold foam is cold, it can top iced coffees without melting. 

Cold foam is commonly made with nonfat milk, and nonfat milk has dairy in it. 

Vegans do not eat dairy. In fact they don’t eat or use anything that comes from animals so cow’s milk is out of the question. But, if a vegan wants cold foam in their coffee, they could have it if it is made with non-dairy milk. 

Non-dairy milk won’t froth up the same way that non-fat milk will and the texture will be somewhat different but at least they can enjoy a frothy topping to the caffeinated beverage. 

All that to say, cold foam isn’t usually vegan-friendly but if made with a plant-based milk, it is.

To see the most popular milk frothers that you can use to make your own cold foam just click here. 

Instant Pot Milk Frother, 4-in-1 Electric Milk Steamer, 10oz/295ml Automatic Hot and Cold Foam Maker and Milk Warmer for Latte, Cappuccinos, Macchiato, 500W

Want to make your own cold foam, warm foam, or hot milk for all your favorite drinks?

Then you have to try out this amazing gadget that will work to make whichever foam for whatever drink you are craving!

Can Cold Foam Be Vegan?

There is a sweet cold foam, made with vanilla syrup, but a more subtle option is just regular cold foam that can be made from just the milk. Typically, you will use dairy milk for cold foam, so can it be vegan?

Cold foam can be vegan if it is made with non-dairy milk. The downside is that this milk won’t froth the same as nonfat milk. But, by adding a couple other ingredients can bring the frothy topping to a texture similar to what regular cold foam is. 

According to the article, Vegan Cold Foam, “Cold foam is simply a mixture of milk and cream that has been aerated just enough to become a creamy foam texture. It’s very similar to whipped cream but with less air. This texture is great to add to the liquid because most of it sits on top allowing you to get a fresh creamy taste in every sip. If you’re vegan, you can easily make your own cold foam using plant-based milk and a few simple steps. You can enjoy a rich and creamy coffee or tea on a plant-based lifestyle. It’s easy to make right at home from scratch. You can any flavor you enjoy to customize your drink.”

Did you know that you can make vegan coid foam at home? It’s simple and easy to do and all you need is a few ingredients and a mixer of some sort. You can use any plant-based milk for a vegan cold foam and for the thickening, coconut cream works great. 

You can also add a pinch of sea salt to bring out the flavors. For frothing the milk, you can use an electric milk frother, hand mixer, or whisk. 

Whatever tool you use for the frothing, this batch of cold foam will turn out good with a texture similar to that of a regular cold foam.

Is Vanilla Cold Foam Vegan?

At coffee shops, cold foam is made with nonfat milk, sugar and cream for a sweet cream cold foam that is delicious on coffee. We talked about regular cold foam, but is vanilla cold foam vegan?

Vanilla cold foam can be vegan if you use the right ingredients. Plant-based milk, coconut cream, vanilla extract, and maple syrup create a good vegan sweet cold foam.  So, yes, you can make a thick frothy sweet cold foam that is vegan.

The thick and creamy topping of cold foam is enjoyed by many. Vegans can also enjoy it, too. If made with non-dairy milk and by adding a few other things in, you can make a vegan sweet cold foam. 

For this vegan sweet cold foam, it is recommended to use plant-based milk, coconut cream, vanilla extract and also maple syrup. Froth this up to create a delicious topping for all of your iced coffees. 

You can make this at home or order it at a coffee shop.

The article, These Starbucks Drinks Are Completely Vegan and Seriously Delicious, tells about different kinds of vegan cold foam drink you can order at the famous coffee chicken of Starbucks. 

They state, “Starbucks Cold Brew with Cinnamon Almondmilk combines the chain’s popular cold brew with cinnamon, vanilla, and almondmilk cold foam. In January 2020, oatmilk launched at select Starbucks locations, which is a key ingredient the same drink above, though it’s only served at select locations. Hopefully, if oatmilk is deemed a popular milk substitute among Starbucks customers, it will ultimately expand nationwide…Starbucks’ Cold Brew with Dark Cocoa Almondmilk Foam consists of cold brew which is topped with mocha sauce (which yes — is completely vegan!), as well as a dash of cocoa powder and, of course, that widely beloved almondmilk cold foam that we’ve all become totally and utterly obsessed with over the last year.”

Final Thoughts

In conclusion, cold foam is not typically a vegan coffee topping. It is usually made by frothing cold nonfat milk. But, if you substitute a frothed plant-based milk for the typical nonfat milk, then it becomes vegan-friendly. 

Coconut cream is often added to the non-dairy milk to thicken it up so that it is a similar texture to regular cold foam. You can even make or order a sweet cold foam for a sweeter vegan option. 

This adds some ingredients like vanilla extract for sweetness. So, even though cold foam isn’t normally vegan, if made with a plant-based milk instead of a dairy milk, it is a vegan-friendly coffee topping.

Hannah R.

Hey, I'm Hannah and I'm the founder of Get Eatin'.

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