Can Water Replace Milk in Milkshakes?

Milkshakes are a popular dessert beverage, typically made with ice cream, milk, and flavorings such as syrup or fruit. However, some people cannot consume milk due to lactose intolerance or other dietary restrictions. In these cases, it may be tempting to substitute water for milk in a milkshake recipe. But can you really make a milkshake with water? In this article, we’ll explore the answer to that question.

What is a milkshake?

A milkshake is a sweet and creamy beverage typically made by blending ice cream, milk, and flavorings such as chocolate syrup or fresh fruit. Milkshakes can be made in a variety of flavors and are often served with whipped cream and a cherry on top.

Can you make a milkshake with water?

Technically, you can make a milkshake with water, but it will not be the same as a traditional milkshake. A milkshake made with water will be thinner and less creamy than a milkshake made with milk, and it will lack the rich, smooth flavor that comes from using ice cream.

To make a water milkshake, you can blend ice, water, and the flavor of your choice. You may also want to add a thickener, such as cornstarch or xanthan gum, to give your milkshake a creamier texture. It’s important to note, however, that a milkshake made with water will not have the same taste and texture as a traditional milkshake.

Alternatives to Milk in Milkshakes

If you cannot consume milk due to lactose intolerance or other dietary restrictions, there are a number of alternatives to milk that can be used in milkshake recipes. Some popular milk substitutes include almond milk, soy milk, and coconut milk. These substitutes can be used in the same way as milk in a milkshake recipe and will provide a similar creamy texture and flavor.

1. Non-Dairy Milk:
Non-dairy milk alternatives have grown in popularity in recent years, offering a range of flavors and textures suitable for milkshakes. Some common non-dairy milk options include

  • a. Almond Milk: Made from ground almonds and water, almond milk has a slightly nutty flavor and creamy consistency, making it a popular choice for milkshakes.
  • b. Coconut Milk: Made from the pulp of ripe coconuts, coconut milk adds a rich and tropical flavor to milkshakes. It also has a creamy texture.
  • c. Soy Milk: Made from soybeans and water, soy milk is known for its high protein content and smooth consistency. It can be an excellent substitute for dairy milk in milkshake recipes.
  • d. Oat Milk: Made from soaked oats and water, oat milk has a mild, slightly sweet flavor. It blends well in milkshakes and adds a subtle oat flavor.

2. Fruit juice or puree:
Using fruit juice or puree as a base for milkshakes is another refreshing option. Not only does it add natural sweetness, but it also enhances the fruity flavors. Some popular choices include

  • a. Apple juice: Apple juice provides a naturally sweet and slightly tart flavor, making it a versatile base for fruit-based milkshakes.
  • b. Banana puree: Bananas are a fantastic addition to milkshakes, adding creaminess and natural sweetness. Use ripe, frozen bananas for a thicker consistency.
  • c. Berry purees: Berry purees, such as strawberries, blueberries, or raspberries, add vibrant colors and delicious flavors to milkshakes.

3. Yogurt:
Yogurt can be an excellent milk substitute in milkshakes, providing a creamy and tangy component. Look for non-dairy yogurt options if you’re avoiding dairy. Some yogurt alternatives include

  • a. Greek yogurt: Greek-style non-dairy yogurts offer a thicker texture and higher protein content, making them a great choice for a more indulgent milkshake.
  • b. Coconut Yogurt: Made from coconut milk, coconut yogurt adds a tropical twist to milkshakes while adding creaminess.

4. Ice Cream Alternatives:
For a truly decadent milkshake experience, consider using non-dairy ice cream alternatives. These can replicate the rich and creamy texture of traditional ice cream. Some options include

  • a. Almond milk ice cream: Almond milk-based ice creams offer a creamy consistency and come in a variety of flavors, perfect for milkshake experimentation.
  • b. Coconut Milk Ice Cream: Coconut milk ice creams offer a smooth texture and tropical flavor for velvety milkshakes.


While it is technically possible to make a milkshake with water, it will not have the same taste and texture as a traditional milkshake. If you cannot consume milk, there are a number of milk substitutes that can be used in milkshake recipes to provide a similar creamy texture and flavor. By experimenting with different milk substitutes and flavors, you can create a delicious and satisfying milkshake that meets your dietary needs and preferences.


Can you make a milkshake with water?

It is technically possible to make a milkshake with water, but it will not taste like a traditional milkshake. A milkshake typically consists of ice cream, milk, and flavorings such as syrup or fruit. By substituting water for milk, you will not get the same creamy consistency and rich flavor that milk provides.

If you are lactose intolerant or avoid dairy products, you can use non-dairy milk alternatives, such as almond milk, soy milk, or coconut milk, instead of regular milk to make a milkshake. However, using water instead of milk will result in a completely different flavor and texture profile.

Although you can use water instead of milk to make a milkshake, the end result may not be as satisfying. Water tends to thin the consistency of the shake and can dilute the flavor, resulting in a less enjoyable drinking experience.

Can you substitute water for milk in a milkshake?

Many people ask if water can be substituted for milk in milkshakes, and the answer is yes, but only if it is added to another ingredient, such as heavy cream, condensed milk, or milk powder, to dilute those ingredients so that they are closer to the consistency of milk.

Do you need milk for milkshakes?

Milk is a traditional and important ingredient in a milkshake, providing the creamy texture and richness that characterize the drink.

However, there are some milkshake recipes that do not require milk. For example, some vegan or dairy-free milkshakes may use non-dairy milk alternatives, such as almond or coconut milk, instead of regular milk. In these cases, the dairy alternative helps create a creamy texture and taste similar to a traditional milkshake.

Milk Alternative Pros Cons Best for
Almond Milk Low in calories and fat, high in vitamin E Thin consistency and slightly nutty flavor Chocolate and vanilla-flavored milkshakes
Soy Milk High in protein, low in calories and fat Slightly bean-like flavor All types of milkshakes
Coconut Milk Creamy texture and slightly sweet flavor High in calories and fat Fruit-flavored milkshakes
Oat Milk Creamy texture and slightly sweet flavor Can be expensive All types of milkshakes
Cashew Milk Creamy texture and slightly nutty flavor Can be expensive Vanilla and caramel-flavored milkshakes

It’s important to note that the taste and texture of a milkshake made with a non-dairy alternative may differ from a traditional milkshake made with dairy. It’s best to experiment with different dairy alternatives to find the one that works best for you.

What is a milkshake without milk?

A non-dairy milkshake is a drink that uses substitute ingredients instead of milk, such as plant-based milk, yogurt, avocados, or frozen bananas, to achieve a consistency and taste similar to a traditional milkshake. Some recipes may use ice cream as a base or use ice and sugar to create a similar texture. While the exact ingredients may vary from recipe to recipe, the common theme is to create a creamy, sweet beverage that resembles a milkshake without the use of dairy milk.

Can I make Slim Fast with water?

Slim Fast is formulated to be mixed with water for a smooth, creamy texture. In fact, some recommend using water instead of milk for a healthier option. So feel free to mix your Slim Fast with water if that’s your preference.

To make Slim Fast with water, simply mix the powder with water according to the instructions on the packet. It is important to note that while Slim Fast can be a convenient and effective weight loss tool when used as part of a balanced diet and exercise routine, it is always recommended to consult with a healthcare professional before starting any weight loss program.

How do you thicken a milkshake?

Just add more ice cream! The more ice cream there is in relation to the milk content, the thicker the milkshake will be. If you need to add more ice cream to thicken, feel free to add in more sauce, syrups, or mix-ins to flavor, if necessary.

Can you use water instead of milk with Slim Fast?

Can I use water or milk alternatives when using the shake or smoothie mix? There’s absolutely no problem adding your SlimFast smoothie powder to dairy alternatives.

What can you substitute for ice cream in a milkshake?

Basic Milkshake Without Ice Cream

For the simplest no-ice-cream milkshake, simply blend ice cubes with milk, sugar, and a dash of vanilla extract. The more fat that’s in the milk, the creamier your milkshake will be—if you want a super-creamy milkshake, use equal parts heavy cream and milk.

Does ice go in milkshakes?

Finally, don’t add ice! It’ll water down the consistency. You can also make a thicker milkshake by adding malted milk powder, which contains malted barley, wheat flour, and evaporated whole milk powder (technically this makes it a malted milkshake, or malt, for short).

Can you use yogurt instead of milk in a milkshake?

Yes, Greek yogurt is good for you! It’s one of my favorite healthy ingredients. Greek yogurt is low in added sugars (the sugars in plain Greek yogurt occur naturally in dairy), and it’s rich in calcium, probiotics, nutrients, and antioxidants.

How do you make a smoothie thick?

Regular ice cubes or frozen milk or even frozen coffee ice cubes all work wonderfully to thicken up a smoothie. I always add at least 1/2 to 1 cup of ice cubes to my smoothies because I like them very cold and thick. Again, frozen ingredients make the biggest difference in making thick smoothie bowls.

Can you make a milkshake with a spoon?

To make a milkshake without a blender, start by adding 3 parts ice cream and 1 part milk to a bowl. Then, use a spoon or a whisk to mix the ice cream and milk together. Once you’re satisfied with the consistency, pour your milkshake into a glass, top it with some whipped cream, and enjoy!

What is a hand spun milkshake?

At the most basic level, “hand-spun” is just what it sounds like: Each time someone orders a shake at Chick-fil-A or Wendy’s, the treat doesn’t just emerge from a machine – an employee mixes at least part of it by spinning ingredients with a blender.

Can you make milkshakes with a hand blender?

You can use a food processor or a hand blender (immersion blender). But making a milkshake in a blender is the easiest way!

How do you make a milkshake without a mixer?

How to make a milkshake using a blender

  1. Soften the ice cream. Allow the ice cream to sit out for 5 to 10 minutes at room temperature.
  2. Add milk to the blender. Add ½ cup of milk of your choice.
  3. Add the ice cream and the mix-ins.
  4. Blend on low until the desired consistency.
  5. Top it and serve.


How can I blend something without a blender?

Here are the ways that you can puree, chop, and blend foods without using a blender:

  1. Use a food mill.
  2. Use a chinois strainer.
  3. Try an immersion blender.
  4. Use a chef’s knife.
  5. Use a cheese grater.
  6. Boil the food and mash it with a fork.
  7. Use a rolling pin.
  8. Use cheesecloth and mallet.