When you think of dairy, there are some foods that promptly come to mind. Dairy products like milk, yogurt, cheese, and ice cream are everywhere. However, others aren’t often included on the grocery list. Outside of nursery rhymes, though it is a common byproduct of dairy, we don’t often hear about whey.
Whey is found in dairy foods and milk products. Specifically, it is a common byproduct of dairy that we don’t often hear about. As a liquid, it appears like a cloudy white or pale yellow in color. Let’s dive into whey and what makes it a unique source of protein.
Whey commonly comes from the cheesemaking process, when milk is separated into solids called curds and into a liquid called whey. When special enzymes are added to the milk, it separates into curds (which are used to make cheese) and liquid whey.
While the curds are formed into cheese, the whey is pasteurized. It can then be dried into whey protein powder for various uses, like an ingredient in some drink mixes, protein bars, and other foods. Whey powder is often added to smoothies and other workout foods for its protein.
But whey products don’t only have to be in your workout routine. Whey powder’s neutral flavor adds little or no taste, dissolves easily in liquids, and provides a smooth texture, making it extremely versatile for more than a protein shake. You can add whey powder to soups, baked goods, dips and sauces, and many other foods, too. Imagine how happy that secret will make you when biting into your morning pancakes made with whey.
Also, this powdered whey is different from the liquid whey described above. This whey, which can be collected in yogurt production or cheesemaking, comes in acidic and sweet forms. Liquid whey brings flavor to dishes and can be used as a stock. It is also collected to be used in ricotta.
There’s so much more to whey’s story than being abandoned due to a scary spider. Visit usdairy.com to learn more about whey and how you can include it in your meals.