Does collagen creamer have dairy?

Collagen creamers have become increasingly popular additions to coffee and tea in recent years. Collagen is a protein found throughout the body that provides structure and elasticity to the skin, bones, muscles, tendons, and ligaments. As we age, collagen production slows down, leading to common signs of aging like wrinkles, sagging skin, and joint pain. Collagen supplements like creamers and powders have emerged as an easy way to increase your daily intake of this important protein.

But an important question for many is whether these collagen creamers actually contain dairy. This is key for those who have dairy allergies or intolerances or who follow diets like paleo or vegan that restrict dairy consumption. In this article, we’ll take a thorough look at whether popular collagen creamer products contain milk-derived ingredients.

Do collagen creamers contain dairy?

The answer isn’t quite straightforward. Some collagen creamer products do contain milk-derived ingredients like casein or whey protein, while others use vegan collagen sources. Let’s take a closer look:

Collagen creamers with dairy

Many collagen creamers rely on common dairy proteins like casein or whey protein to provide the collagen peptides. For example:

– Vital Proteins Collagen Creamer contains casein and whey protein concentrate.

– Bulletproof Collagen Protein Creamer contains hydrolyzed grass-fed collagen peptides from cow’s milk.

– Ancient Nutrition Multi Collagen Creamer uses bovine hide collagen peptides and casein.

So if you want to avoid dairy-derived collagen, these creamers would not be suitable options. Always check the ingredients list carefully for milk proteins.

Dairy-free collagen creamers

Luckily, there are also several collagen creamer products that use vegan, dairy-free collagen sources:

– Califia Farms Collagen Creamer uses aquafaba collagen peptides that are vegan and dairy-free.

– Nutpods Unsweetened Collagen Creamer relies on coconut cream and pea protein for collagen.

– Silk Collagen Creamer contains collagen sourced from cassava root, rosemary extract, and acerola cherries.

So if you follow a vegan or dairy-free diet, look for these alternative collagen sources on the ingredient list.

Why do some collagen creamers contain dairy?

There are a couple reasons why many collagen creamer products rely on dairy-based collagen:

Bovine collagen peptides are easily obtained

Bovine collagen extracted from cow hides or bones is abundant and easy to obtain. Gelatin, a form of hydrolyzed collagen, is also readily available as a byproduct of the meat industry. So sourcing dairy-based collagen like casein or whey is often the most cost-effective option for manufacturers.

Dairy proteins offer functional benefits

Milk proteins like casein have useful functional properties like emulsification and water-binding. This allows them to produce creamy, smooth textures and stabilize the product. So relying on casein or whey provides both collagen and important functional benefits.

Animal collagen may be absorbed better

Some claim that collagen peptides from animal sources like dairy or fish may be more bioavailable or effectively absorbed compared to plant-based collagen peptides. But more research is still needed to confirm whether this is true.

Collagen creamer ingredients to avoid if dairy-free

When evaluating a collagen creamer ingredient list, here are some common dairy-derived items to watch out for:

Casein or milk protein

Casein is a milk protein that makes up about 80% of proteins in cow’s milk. It provides an excellent source of collagen but contains lactose and dairy.

Whey protein

Whey is the liquid part of milk that separates from curds during cheese production. Like casein, it contains dairy and is used for its high protein content.

Butter or ghee

Some creamers rely on butter or ghee (clarified butter) to provide a rich, creamy texture. Obviously, these contain dairy.


Lactose is the natural sugar found in milk. It will be listed if lactose or milk solids are added to the creamer. Those with lactose intolerance need to avoid it.

Natural flavors

The term “natural flavors” is vaguely defined, so it could potentially come from dairy. When in doubt, contact the manufacturer to ask.

What are the best vegan/dairy-free collagen creamer options?

If you want to add collagen to your morning drinks but avoid dairy, look for these top collagen creamer picks:

Califia Farms Collagen Creamer

– Pea protein and aquafaba collagen provide 10g collagen per serving
– Contains coconut cream for creamy texture
– No dairy, soy, gluten, eggs, nuts or grain

Nutpods Unsweetened Collagen Creamer

– Uses coconut cream and pea protein
– 10g of collagen from plant-based sources
– Totally unsweetened with 0g sugar

Silk Collagen Creamer

– Collagen from cassava root, rosemary, cherries
– Contains coconut milk and pea protein
– No dairy, lactose, soy, nuts, gluten or cholesterol

OWYN Plant-Based Collagen Creamer

– Pea protein collagen with 8g per serving
– Free of top allergens and made from whole foods
– Contains MCT oil from coconuts

What are potential issues with dairy-free collagen?

While vegan collagen avoids dairy allergies and intolerances, there are a couple potential drawbacks:

Lower collagen content

Some vegan creamers have slightly lower amounts of collagen per serving compared to dairy-based, around 8-10g versus 10-20g.

Potentially lower absorption

Plant collagen peptides may potentially be less bioavailable and absorbable than bovine collagen peptides, but more research is needed in this area.

More processed sources

Vegan collagen tends to come from more processed plant sources compared to bovine collagen from cow hides. But this is a personal preference.

Higher price

Sourcing vegan collagen does come at a higher cost, so dairy-free collagen creamers may be priced higher than conventional options.

What are collagen creamer benefits?

Let’s discuss why you may want to use a collagen creamer in the first place:

Increases collagen intake

Collagen creamers provide an easy way to increase your daily collagen consumption. Most offer 8-20g per serving.

Supports skin, hair, nails, and joints

Research shows collagen supplements can improve skin elasticity, hydration, nail strength, and osteoarthritis symptoms.

Contains other beneficial ingredients

Many collagen creamers also contain vitamins, minerals, MCT oil, protein, and antioxidants for added benefits.

Can support weight loss

Collagen may help increase muscle mass and strength. Some research finds it may support fat loss as well.

Easy to use daily

You can effortlessly add collagen peptides into your usual coffee, matcha, or tea routine.

Has a neutral, mild flavor

Collagen powder blends smoothly into beverages with minimal impact on taste or texture.

Are there any side effects of collagen creamers?

Collagen creamers are generally safe for most people but there are some potential side effects to be aware of:

Allergic reactions

Those with dairy allergies may react to collagen from dairy sources. Fish or shellfish collagen could also trigger reactions for those with seafood allergies.

High calcium levels

Large amounts of collagen sources like whey could potentially increase calcium levels too much. Those with a history of kidney stones should be cautious.

Weight gain

Although collagen may support weight loss, high calorie creamers could lead to weight gain if consumed in excess. Be mindful of portion sizes.

GI issues

Some people report bloating, gas, or indigestion. Start with small amounts to assess tolerance.

Bad taste

Lower quality collagen may have an unpleasant taste. Seek reputable brands and high quality sources.


Collagen sourced from animals could contain heavy metals or other contaminants if not purified properly. Choose reputable suppliers.


Collagen creamers offer an easy way to reap the many purported benefits of collagen peptides for skin, hair, nails, and joints. While some collagen creamers do contain dairy-based proteins, there are also many vegan options available that rely on plant-based collagen from sources like peas, coconut, and cassava.

If you need to avoid dairy due to allergies or intolerances, simply read ingredient lists carefully and look for dairy-free options that use alternative vegan collagen sources. With so many formulas available now, you can easily add collagen to your morning coffee or tea regardless of your diet.

Leave a Comment