Every aspiring or seasoned dairy farmer is familiar with whey, the byproduct of making yogurt, cheese, and other delicious dairy products. In the process of making many of these dairy products, the whey is often discarded, but it’s actually quite nutritious on its own, and can be reused in many different ways.
- Use in almost any recipe in place of water or even milk. Whey adds depth of flavor to bread, soups, sauces, marinades, and main dishes. If you are overrun with whey, you can even boil pasta or rice with it!
- Soak grains and legumes The acid and cultures in whey won’t harm anything in this process, they’ll enhance phytic acid breakdown for easier nutrient absorption.
- An acid rinse on your shampoo “skip days”. If you’re familiar with the ‘no-poo’ or ‘low-poo’ method of washing hair and its benefits, you’ll be glad to know that whey makes a great, affordable acid rinse hair cleanser.
- Feed pets and livestock. Pour a little whey over dry pet food or animal feed for a delicious treat!
- Lacto-ferment your own sauerkraut, veggies, and condiments Uncooked sweet whey is great for preserving probiotic-rich foods to add to your pantry or stockpile.
- Make more cheese! Ricotta, to be specific, is made with acid whey. So, if you’re dissatisfied with how much whey you end up with after making cheese, simply use it to make more.
- If all else fails, compost Raw whey is a live, active element that is super beneficial for a healthy compost pile. If you’d rather just toss your extra whey, this is the best option.
Many of us have been surprised and even a little disappointed at how much whey results from the dairy-making process rather than the desired cheese or yogurt. With the right mindset, though, whey can be an added benefit rather than a waste product.
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