Dairy free recipes and food reviews

About me

About me

My dairy free journey

Helen here, welcome to The Dairy Free Diary! I’ve loved cooking (and eating) for as long as I can remember. There is nothing I like better than finding a great new recipe or an unusual ingredient and making something amazingly tasty.

The dairy downfall

At 17 I was on track to do a course in patisserie and possibly find my perfect career. Until disaster struck, I’d been suffering with constant heartburn, an upset stomach, nausea, etc. The doctor suggested I kept a diary of what I ate everyday to try and find the root cause of the problem. Well, I’m guessing it’s no surprise to anyone reading this that the problem was good old dairy.

In the course of a week I had to go from someone who scoffed whole tubs of Ben & Jerry’s, quaffed large frappucinos and dived into a box of milk chocolate without a second thought, to cold turkey dairy free living. Although, my stomach prospered, my heart was more than a little disappointed.

My life post-dairy

Of course, the patisserie course never happened, what’s the point in paying money to cook something you can’t eat? But I still kept cooking. In fact, although I was disappointed that I couldn’t eat some of my favourite foods, something exciting happened. I had to become a lot more creative, I had to look for new ways of cooking; new ingredients that I never knew existed. Who could’ve dreamed up oat crème fraiche, soya cream, and cashew nut cheese until they absolutely had to?

And so, my dairy free voyage began. I started to notice that a lot of recipes that were aimed at the dairy free crowd weren’t particularly inspiring. Many were recipes that would never have included dairy anyway. Many were gluten free recipes that required specialist ingredients that I didn’t have, the same goes for vegan recipes. While a whole 65% of the world population can’t properly digest lactose, only a small number of restaurants and supermarkets actually cater to them. It was almost impossible up until recently to find a ready meal that didn’t contain some sort of dairy product.

Why a dairy free blog?

I thought that it would have been really great if there was a UK resource exclusively for the dairy challenged (with maybe some incidental gluten free and vegan recipes thrown in) that could give the low down on what to cook, what to buy, and where to eat so that I didn’t have to spend money on products that weren’t worth it.

So here I am, starting a new diary full of recipes and amazing dairy free products that I discover in my everyday life. And because I’m so truly wonderful, I’ve decided to share it with you (yes, you are very lucky indeed). But seriously, I hope this blog can help you along the way to realising dairy free food isn’t really that bad and can even stand up to its dairy-full counterparts. So please explore and let me know what you think. You can also follow me on Instagram, where I upload photos of what I eat everyday to hopefully give you some inspiration.

If you have any ideas for recipes or products I should review, don’t hesitate to email me at: thedairyfreediary@gmail.co.uk. Thanks for reading and enjoy!