Just about anything can be turned into milk these days – nuts, rice, peas, you name it. But among all of the various types of milk that you’ve seen lining the shelves in recent years, soy milk tends to carry a little seniority out of the bunch as one of the first non-dairy milks that became widely accessible.
Soy milk has been consumed in China and other Asian countries pretty much forever. It began to grow in popularity globally in the 1950s and 1960s, and eventually gained new traction in the US in the 1990s. What’s interesting is that soy milk had its moment in the sun as the first popular alternative milk, but now it tends to be overshadowed by newer products like almond milk, coconut milk, and oat milk.
That said, whether you follow a plant-based diet, have a dairy allergy, or just prefer the flavor of soy milk in your coffee, you can still find it at most major grocery stores and several major coffee chains. So which US chains offer soy milk? Here’s everything you need to know.
What are the benefits of soy milk?
The reason soy milk became popular in the first place (at least in the US) is a result of its marketed health benefits. Soy milk, or soya milk, is made by soaking and grinding soybeans, so it’s a great plant-based alternative to dairy milk for those who are lactose intolerant or vegan. It’s got a creamy texture and a distinctive, sweet flavor.
Of the many alternative milks, soy milk is actually the closest to cow’s milk in terms of nutritional value – it’s a good source of protein, it contains essential amino acids, and it’s composed of both healthy fats and carbs. Much of the soy milk you buy at the store or get in your coffee is also fortified with vitamins and minerals, which adds to its nutritional profile.
Because soy milk has anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties, along with omega-3 fatty acids that protect the heart, it brings many health benefits along with it. These include lowering the risk of diseases such as heart disease and diabetes, as well as lowering blood pressure and “bad” cholesterol levels.
Major grocery store chains that sell soy milk (and the top brands they carry)
Soy milk may not be as popular as it once was, but it’s still widely available throughout the US – especially at major grocery store chains. There are fewer brands on the market than most popular milk alternatives like oat milk or almond, so you’ll only see a handful at each store.
It often comes in either natural soy milk flavor, vanilla, or chocolate. However, since many brands sweeten their soy milk, you may want to check the label for added sugar content if you’re looking to keep the milk substitute as healthy as possible.
Here are all of the major grocery store and warehouse chains through the US where you can purchase a carton of soy milk, along with the brands they currently carry (just keep in mind that the exact brands and availability will vary depending on location).
|Brands Currently Carried
|Central Market Organics
Major coffee chains with soy milk on the menu
Since it’s a popular milk choice for coffee drinks in particular, it’s a little surprising that soy milk has dropped off the menu at some major coffee chains. However, there are still a handful of franchises where you’ll easily be able to order it.
The brands that these coffee chains carry are difficult to nail down in some cases, so we’ve included any that we could identify – but just keep in mind that these may not be 100% accurate since some brands differ based on the franchise and coffee shops often switch products. If you’re curious about the exact brand or ingredients, ask your local barista to confirm.
Unfortunately none of America’s major fast food chains sell soy milk (or any other milk alternatives for that matter). That includes national chains like Burger King, Wendy’s, Sonic, and Taco Bell, and even those with coffee and breakfast on menu like McDonald’s and Chick-fil-a.
If your go-to coffee order includes soy milk, here are the major coffee chains in the US where you can grab a cup of joe with soy milk.
|Brand Currently Used
|The Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf
|Tim Hortons*Most availability in Canada
Starbucks uses WestSoy soy milk for their coffee and beverages, which is actually a blend that’s specially formulated for Starbucks chains. It’s sweetened with evaporated cane juice and vanilla flavoring.
No, Dunkin’ currently does not offer soy milk on their menu. However, they do offer oat milk, almond milk, and coconut milk as non-dairy milk alternatives.
No major fast food or quick service chains in the US currently offer soy milk on their menu as a milk alternative or non-dairy substitute. This includes fast food chains that serve coffee, like McDonald’s, Chick-fil-a and Taco Bell.
There currently aren’t any major restaurant chains in the US that include soy milk on their menu, including major national breakfast chains such as Denny’s and IHOP.