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Ask The Readers- What Kind Of Milk Do You Buy?

Earlier this week I was having a skype conversation with a few friends about milk. Yes, I chat about exciting things like milk with my blogging friends on skype.

As we were talking about milk and what kind we buy and how much it costs, I knew I had the perfect question for my ask the readers feature this week.

I would love to hear what kind of milk you buy.Β Do you buy skim, low fat, or whole milk?

And I know the price of milk varies a lot across the US, but I am curious how much it varies. So, I would also love to hearΒ how much you are paying for a gallon of milk?

We usually buy lowfat (1%) and this week I paid $3.59 a gallon for it, but we buy Braums milk, which is probably a little more than average in my area, but it is so much better and so worth it.

Lynn's Kitchen Adventures


  1. We buy 1% anything that is hormone free as we have an almost three year old and am convinced that the non hormone free advances development. And our price (in MN) varies week to week. Some weeks it’s about 2.39 and some weeks are like 4.19. Quick Trip is pretty much constant at about 2.39 but it’s too far of a drive just for milk.

  2. We buy 1% most of the time. But we used ot bu one of each because I like 1, hubby likes 2 and the girls needed Whole. I always buy it on sale and usually the store brand. It was $1.77/gal this week at Fry’s (a Kroger store). Oh and I am in Goodyear, Arizona

  3. We typically buy 2%, but we buy organic – so 1/2 gallon is around $3.

  4. We buy raw milk with the cream still on it from an Amish farm in southeastern PA. $3.75/gal.

    • @Julie Fuller, That is a great price for raw milk! When we were buying 1 gal/wk, it cost us $26/mo. It’s worth it, though, IMO. So delicious and healthy!

    • Jeri Riddick says:

      @Julie Fuller, We buy raw milk too, but we have to get it thru a co-op since we don’t own a cow….yet! We pay $30 to join (which covers the ice chests to keep it in) and then we pay $6.50/gal, full milk still with cream. I know people that also get it from a farm nearby for $9/gal, and someone else that goes to a farm about 90min from here for $12/gal. I’m in Texas btw.

      • @Jeri Riddick, Wow! The going rate around here seems to be about $5/gal — I think our little Amish source is cheaper because it’s not licensed by the state (I guess Amish are exempt?); I think it’s cheaper here in generally because raw milk IS widely available in PA and so there is lots of competition. If it makes y’all feel any less envious, though, my little family (husband, two toddlers) drink 3-4 gallons a week! So our milk budget is still way out there. And we do have to drive about 50 minutes both ways to get it, and bring our own jars… but yeah, I know we’ve got it good. πŸ™‚

        • Jeri Riddick says:

          @Julie Fuller, I wish we had an Amish source! A friend took some classes from a group about making cheese and other things. A gal of milk for a 1# of butter. A gal of milk for about 1# of mozzarella. Hefty price. Makes me want my own cow even more, especially with 3of4 kids gobbling cheese sticks!

      • @Jeri Riddick, Yikes, up to $12 a gallon?! It really is liquid gold, but compared to the $4/gallon we pay, that seems a bit exorbitant. πŸ™‚
        We’re in central Illinois.

    • Hi, Julie!
      I know that your post about milk from an Amish farm is year old BUT…
      Could you please give me that farm name and address. We are looking for
      a reputable source of raw milk.
      Thank you very-very much!

  5. We buy whole because we have four growing, active (and skinny) boys who need the extra fat/calories. Because we have a large family we cannot go organic on all our foods but milk is the one thing I insist on organic. I can get it for $5-$6 per gallon by combining sales with coupons, but it can cost as much as $6.79 per gallon.

  6. I usualy get 1% Lactose Free Walmart brand 3.29, or Deans 1% Lactose Free 4.29. Sometimes I will get Silk Original Coconut Milk or Silk Almond Unsweetened or Double Dark Chocolate Milk 4.69 ea. They are all in the half gallon size. I live in MN but I also shop in ND where the Walmart is. In our area dairy products are regulated by the Dairy Board and they set minimum prices on dairy products the stores sell. The stores are also not allowed to take coupons for most dairy products like yogurt and cottage cheese. This doesn’t apply to the coconut and almond milks though.

  7. We don’t have a lot of options here. I buy our store brand (kroger or safeway) organic in non-fat & whole. 1/2 gallon is $2.69 ($2.50 on sale often) or $2.99 if I get thewhole with DHA. I’m surprised that the wal-mart brand is almost $1 more! Costco runs about the same price as the grocery store, but is too far away & they only carry 1%.

  8. We live in central MA and buy our milk from a local farm. It generally runs for $2.10 for a half gallon in a glass bottle. Initially the cost was more expensive because I had to pay $1 deposit on each bottle but now I bring them back with me and it’s only the $2.10. I buy a mix of whole milk (for myself and the kids) and skim milk (for my husband) because he drinks so much milk each week. I also buy a half gallon of whole to make yogurt (which is cheaper than buying it at the store). Yes, It’s almost double the cost than if I bought a whole gallon of milk at the grocery store, but I like the fact that we’re reducing the amount of plastic we use each week by going with glass and the kids love seeing the cows when we drive up to the farm. It also feels good to be supporting a local small dairy farm πŸ™‚

  9. Elizabeth says:

    We buy skim for the majority of us at $2.99 a gallon (our stores compete). But, my toddler drinks rice milk because of his allergy and I pay $3.29 per half gallon. I am determined to learn to make it on my own!

  10. 2% – can’t remember the price. Love Braum’s milk but cannot get it here in Florida. Used it when we lived in OK.

  11. Me and my kids stopped drinking cow’s milk a few months ago, and this morning I bough two half gallon cartons of almond milk for $3.38 each.

  12. We buy organic whole milk for DD and organic skim for DH and I. It’s about $3.29/half-gallon carton. πŸ™

  13. I live in Oregon and I buy organic, non-homogenized milk, non-fat milk. It is actually delivered to my door once a week in the old-fashioned glass 1/2 gallon bottles. I pay $4 a half gallon and it’s worth every penny!

  14. Whole milk here! There is *nothing* that compares to using whole milk in cooking – unless of course, you use cream or half-and-half. πŸ™‚

    It’s around $2.60 a gallon here in Colorado Springs, but higher in Denver, according to some of my Denver Bargains readers. It has been rising; we saw milk for $1.99 a gallon for a long time!

  15. I buy organic, whole milk for $5.99/gal (1 gal lasts us 1-2 wks, since it’s just my husband and I, and a baby who doesn’t drink cow’s milk yet). We used to buy raw milk from a local Amish farm and it cost us $26/mo for 1 gal/wk, which works out to about $6.50/gal.

  16. I buy organic skim or sometimes 1% milk. Its around $3.29 for a half gallon. For some reason our fridge will not keep milk fresh for more than 2 days in plastic jugs so I have to buy 2 half gallons instead of one gallon. I will have to start buying 1 whole and 1 skim soon since my baby will be switching from formula to milk in June. Luckily my toddler will drink anything, whole one day and skim the next.

  17. I buy skim most of the time. We buy from a local (non certified) organic dairy farm for $5.99/gallon. (We live in Nashville) I also buy coconut milk for my youngest who doesn’t seem to handle cow’s milk too well yet.

  18. Every week we buy 2.5 gallons of raw whole organic milk in refillable glass containers from Dutch Meadows Dairy in PA. Cost around $3.50 per half gallon, plus a $2.50 deposit per bottle. Worth every single penny to know that we are getting a whole, natural food from it’s source and are not contributing much to the landfill/recycling stream. Plus it’s deeelicious!

  19. Nonfat milk from Costco is now $4.05/2 gal pack. Best price in our area [Oregon].

  20. We buy soy milk because my husband has type I diabetes–and cow’s milk is pretty high in carbs. It’s expensive!

  21. We get one gallon raw milk ($3.59) and 1 quart of raw cream ($1.50) delivered weekly in Missouri. While my kids will drink ‘regular’ milk at other people’s houses, etc. I doubt we will ever go back to pasteurized and homogenized milk… too many benefits with raw milk. On occasion when we use non-dairy milks, I make sure they do not list Carageenan in the ingredients.

  22. Cafe Chibita says:

    We buy all kinds of milk…:P
    …from Costco…$5.69 (?) for two gallons of Crystal Whole Milk and $4.99 for two gallons of Crystal Fat Free Milk…
    We used to drink 1% instead of Fat Free, but since we’re cheap and Costco doesn’t sell 1%…we’ve converted to Fat Free. The whole milk is mostly for my fiance’s dad…but I use it sometimes to bake and my fiancΓ© uses it to mix with the fat free milk when he wants his coffee creamier…

  23. We buy directly from a local farm through a co-op I organized about a year ago. They sell to local stores also but it’s cheaper and frayed directly from them. They do a partial pasturization (low heat) and don’t separate or homogenize (only sell whole) to maintain the health and integrity of the milk. I learned from them that homogenization actually alters the molecular structure of the milk which makes it difficult for our bodies to process and causes us to absorb things we shouldn’t. We have toured the farm numerous times and even become friends with the owners. Direct from the farm we pay $3.50 a gallon or 3 for $10. At the store it is sold for $4.99.

  24. I buy whole milk. Usually Land’O’Lakes brand because it is hormone free unlike the other brands I can find in our stores. This week it was $4.15 a gallon at the grocery store, but Walgreens always has it for the cheapest price, this week it was $3.29. Overall, milk has gone up about $0.30 in the past couple weeks.

  25. we use fat free (skim) milk. i pay $2.48 gal.

  26. I buy whole milk. I’m the main milk drinker here, and I like a big glass of it with dinner. Lower fat milk is just not the same. Milk is around $4 a gallon here in Burlington County, NJ.

  27. Merrilee says:

    I always buy 2%, no RSBG (or whatever it is). I think it is Crystal Farms (in NorCal). For me it tastes better. It costs $2.19 per half gallon, in a cardboard container. Milk in the plastic is cheaper, but I don’t like the taste, it goes bad quicker, and I am concerned about plastics leaking stuff into my milk.

  28. In Maryland – We almost always buy skim. Prices range from $2.69 – about $4.00 at the local grocery stores for generic brand milk. Most stores are about $3.50. But one store is always high. and another store prices milk low to attract customers.

  29. We buy 2% in whatever brand is cheapest at the store we happen to be at. Today we went to Walmart and paid $3.63 a gallon for the Walmart brand. Dairy Fresh brand is over $5 a gallon though, I can’t imagine paying that much for milk. If we had to pay that much I seriously doubt we’d drink as much as we do now. Also, I rehydrate non-fat dry milk when I need more than a couple of tablespoons of milk for baking or cooking.

  30. Kim Kauffman says:

    I buy coconut milk. I’m breastfeeding and my daughter has a milk protein allergy. I actually prefer it now to cow’s milk. Not sure what she’ll drink if she doesn’t grow out of it by the time she’s ready for milk….

    • @Kim Kauffman,
      we like coconut milk over here too πŸ™‚ When your daughter is old enough give almond milk a try-my kids can’t stand the taste of cows milk anymore, after drinking almond milk for a while (especially the Silk dark chocolate king mmmmm πŸ™‚ )

  31. Mary Johnson says:

    Either skim, 1%, or 2% is what I buy, depending on what has the latest expiration date. Usually it’s 3.25+ dollars per gallon. We’re in South Alabama. Plus there’s tax on groceries. This was a shock to me when I moved from Kentucky. Milk is much less expensive there (2.50 per gallon and no taxes on grocery items). I will sometimes buy Silk, if there is a really good sale and I have coupons. πŸ™‚

  32. The only Reason I buy Milk is for cooking and I buy Whole Milk. When I was eating Milk and Cereal and Drinking Milk Regularly I’d by non-fat, but I just find that the extra fat in the milk is better for cooking.

  33. Ok, I think we need to move. Up in Canada I’m paying between $4 & $5 a gallon for regular old store brand milk, skim for 1/2 of us and whole for the other half. I’d love to do raw milk, but you can’t actually buy that in Alberta unless you have a cow share, which would cost us something like $60 a week for the 4 gallons we drink a week!

  34. Skim milk for $2.99/gallon in Anchorage, AK. But that’s Wal-Mart and the Great Value brand. Stores here definitely compete, and a gallon of whole milk will be as much at $6/gallon depending on brand. Local milk is the most expensive.

  35. 2% Prairie Farms @ 3.29 a gallon.

  36. The kids drink skim or 1%. We usually buy from Publix ($3.49) or BJs ($2.79), and both are hormone free. I actually use almond milk (Silk Pure Almond, unsweetened–can be as much as $3.25/half gallon but I paid $1.50/half gallon on sale and froze cubes for later use) for smoothies and such for all of us, and in anything that I make or eat, since I found there was a correlation to severe headaches I was having and my dairy intake.

  37. We have a cow share for 1 gallon a week at $40 a month. We also supplement with 1/2 gallons of homestead creamery whole. It isn’t homogenized and has the cream top. It is $2.99 a half gallon bottle with a $2 glass bottle deposit, but I usually just return the previous weeks bottles when getting more.

  38. Hey there,

    I’m from Canada and here in Ontario I buy Neilson 2% milk and it’s $4.39 for 3L

  39. I have a little one around so we buy two different kinds. I buy organic and I buy two 1/2 gallons of 1% and 2 1/2 gallons of whole milk each week. It’s $3.19 per 1/2 gallon.

  40. Stephanie says:

    We use skim milk from Braum’s. Love it!

  41. We buy:
    – 2% Friendly Farms (Aldi) milk for yogurt, 1 gallon = $1.99-$2.69,
    – organic soy milk for my husband (1/2 gallon = $2.39), and
    – almond milk (1/2 gallon = $2.79ish) for me.

  42. Elizabeth says:

    I ususually buy fat free milk. Here in WNY it is $1.89 a gallon.

  43. Michelle Edwards says:

    I buy store brand milk because I have to buy about 3 gallons a week. My daughter has issues with dairy fat and has to have fat free milk and cheese(she goes through a gallon a week). My two boys drink whole milk (they go through a gallon every three days!)I typically pay $2.50 a gallon because one of the stores will have it on sale 2 for $5. If it is not on sale I pay $2.89.

  44. Julie Huey says:

    3 members in our family are either sensitive/allergic to dairy or soy. So, we either drink Lactaid lowfat milk or Almond Breeze almond milk at Winco. If Winco runs out of Almond Breeze, we get Trader Joe’s almond milk. We chose the two almond milk over other brands/types due to their superior taste.

    All 3 types of milk are found in the dairy section (i.e. not the shelf stable-carton-type). Those, in our family, who are not sensitive/allergic to soy, flavor their milks with a little bit of Silk Chocolate soymilk.

  45. It depends on where I buy my milk. I’ve been trying to stick to hormone free, organic milk that comes from pasture raised cows so that tends to add to the cost. I typically buy either Nature’s Farm or Whole Foods 365 Organic fat free milk which ranges between $3.70 – $4 a half gallon.

  46. June Grogan says:

    I buy 2% milk from Kwik Trip (gas station) where it’s .99/half gal in the bag! I have to bring the bag home and pour it into a pitcher, but it’s worth it as we go through a gal of milk a day! And they have a punch card, so for every 10 gals I buy, I get a dollar off a gal (or basically a half gal free!!) At the grocery store, milk is usually around $3.50/gal, give or take .50/gal each week. Oh, I’m here in SE WI.

  47. Terry Muller says:

    I also buy only Braums milk in Shawnee, OK. Just got 2 gallons yesterday and paid $3.59 for each. ALWAYS get skim unless grandson is coming for a visit then get whole.

  48. We buy 1% organic milk. Every once in a while my daughter asks for vanilla soy milk as well.

  49. We buy skim milk for most of the house and 1% for my husband. It costs us $1.89 a gallon. We used to only buy Wegmans brand, but then discovered that Sam’s Club sells Byrne Dairy for the same price and Byrne Dairy is hormone-free. (We are in western NY)

  50. I buy Silk Coconut milk at Walmart. If I do not buy this, I will buy Almond Dream. I love the 35 calorie unsweetened version. This is great for smoothies and cooking.

  51. We buy Smith Brothers Milk- it is RBST free and is delivered to our door once a week- it is 24 hrs from cow to carton and my kids complain if we run out and have to buy ‘store’ milk…. I pay almost $3 for a 1/2 gal, and they do offer organic for closer to $4 but I can’t quite go there yet…

  52. Skim milk is what I buy. In NW PA this morning at Wal-Mart it was $4.12 per gallon.

  53. Karen Aubrey-Garrett says:

    We buy from Happy Cow Creamery in Pelzer, SC because it’s natural whole milk, not homogenized, and only lightly pasteurized. Plus I like the owner, Farmer Tom. He’s built a self-contained dairy farm & is teaching others how to do it. His employees like working for him. We pay $4.25 for a gallon.

  54. We buy organic whole milk and it’s $5.99 a gallon. Yikes!

    Our whole family recently switched from 1 % to whole and we love it. I have actually lost weight since making the switch and it tastes so much better.

  55. I live in VA, military family. Usually I buy it at the commissary for about $2.83/gal, but when I have to go to WalMart it’s been about $2.99 and Farm Fresh is closer to $3,90. I drink Skim and the rest of the family drinks 2%.

  56. I buy Kirkland Fat Free milk from Costco @ $2.18/gal. Because it is a screw top, it lasts longer – I found pull tops or paper cartons spoil quicker. If I can’t get to Costco, then I’ll buy at BJ’s Warehouse for $2.38/gal. Half gallons at my local ShopRite cost more.

  57. We buy Braums 1% milk. It’s the only kind of milk that my children will drink. If I pick up milk elsewhere, they complain. I’m not crazy about milk, but I will drink Braums brand. So, we stick with the better stuff. I guess Braums is higher in some areas because we are only paying $2.49 a gallon right now.

  58. We buy 1%, it runs $2.99-3.39 a gallon, in Connecticut.

  59. Kimberly in NC says:

    Does anyone know of any sources of raw milk close to Iredell County, NC? I’m envious of those close to Amish dairy farms!

  60. We buy whole milk and we buy Braums milk because it does taste much better. We are in SW Missouri and we are currently paying $3.29 for a gallon.

  61. We are a military family living overseas and it is cheaper to get our milk at the commissary then to get it on the economy (about $5.50-7) . We buy 1% and can only get 1/2 gallons. This past week I paid $1.97 per half gallon but it has been up to $2.11 from time to time.

  62. We buy’Braums” skim milk, taste like the real thing, and is about $3.39 at the moment for 1/2 gal. or “Organic Valley ” skim milk on sale about$ 2.99 1/2 gallon at a milit. base.

  63. We buy organic whole milk w/the cream for $4/gallon. We make butter from the cream so that we have organic butter w/out an additional cost. I’m in Indiana.

  64. I live in the Toronto area of Ontario, Canada and I buy 2% for my 3.5 year old, myself and my husband and whole milk for my 20 month old. I buy regular milk as Canada has much more stringent requirements for milk production and there isn’t a lot of difference between organic and non-organic milk here. I pay $4.47 for a gallon of 2% and $5.47 for a gallon of whole milk. Sometimes I will get 2% on sale for $4/gallon and whole is usually always a $1 more a gallon. When I lived on the East Coast of Canada (in New Brunswick) the milk prices are governed by a milk marketing board (which is a joke – it just equals higher prices because yet another level of bureaucracy is involved). I would pay anywhere from $2.99 to $3.59 for a HALF gallon of 2% or whole milk. Considering how much milk we drink, I am grateful that the prices are quite a bit lower here πŸ™‚

  65. BeingJennifer says:

    I usually buy 2% Friendly Farms from Aldi from $1.89-2.99. This week I got it for $2.59. I read on someone’s blog that to save money they buy whole milk and cut it with water. Woo! That will save some major change!! I also buy whatever I have great coupon/sales deals for like Silk Almond Milk or SoDelicious Coconut Milk or Smart Balance Lactose Free Milk. I’m lactose intolerant so I take a pill to eat most dairy. We’re pretty flexible though.

  66. We’re in Washington, and we get whole milk at $1.98 to $2.49 right now per gallon. I usually buy whatever is cheapest, although, I like the Darigold 1/2 gallon boxes that are more expensive simply because they stay good forever. It makes me wonder what’s in them, though.

  67. Raw whole milk from a cow share co-op. It’s $5 a gallon here in Alaska.

  68. We buy Skim Milk either store brand or local brand (Swiss, usually) and it’s about $3.20 – $3.70 a gallon depending on the store. Organic milk (Horizon) usually runs $5+ per gallon.

  69. We buy Land O’ Lakes skim milk. CVS is hands down the cheapest in town at $3.59 a gallon. Our grocery stores sells it for $5.51 FOR THE EXACT SAME PRODUCT, DELIVERED FROM THE SAME TRUCK! I also live in a state with a milk stableization law that it can never be sold below a certain price so there is NEVER a sale on milk in my state.

  70. I buy milk straight from the cow on a dairy farm. We have a lady in our church that makes a run to the dairy once a week. Several of us chip in and give her our orders and she delivers to us. I get the 2% with cream that will separate and float to the top. We always have to shake our milk before using. It is soooo good!! Even my kids complain when we don’t have it. I pay about $3.50 a gallon but I do give her some gas money on top of that. All in all I probably pay about $4 a gallon (including her tip).

    If she is not here for a week, I will go to Braum’s and buy my 2% milk. The closest thing to buying it fresh!!

  71. We do Myenbergs goats milk for about 3.50 a gallon or coconut milk.

  72. We usually get fat free, but occasionally 1%. We don’t drink a lot of milk either.

    A few months back we tried raw milk from our local organic coop, but didn’t like it at all. I don’t know if all raw milk tastes like this, but it tasted very beefy. Almost like drinking grass fed beef. I love grass fed beef (we buy grass fed beef in bulk straight from a farm), but I don’t like drinking it. πŸ˜›

  73. I’m late on this one, but just saw a reference to it on today’s posting. We used to use 2% years ago, had whole raw when DH worked on a dairy farm, use whole since kids. After reading Nourishing Traditions, I will never buy lower fat milk again. If I could, we would still get the whole raw (which was free), but as another commentor mentioned, it is not legal to sell in Canada. Even the cow share, where you are part owner of a cow, and its milk, not just the milk, can be a legal nightmare. When this post was new we were paying 3.97 for a 4 liter jug of homogenized, pasturized, whole milk, slightly less than a gallon. Four months later, its 4.95. It never goes on special, is only marked down by 50% when within a day of expiry date. Organic is nearly double that at 8.97. We had been using 3 jugs per week but have been cutting back to two.

    • @Karen, Thanks for leaving your thoughts. I enjoyed reading them even though this is an older post. All dairy products have gone up a lot over the last few months here in Oklahoma also.

  74. I buy either 1% or 2% wherever it is cheapest and hormone free. Sometimes Walgreens will have 1 gal for $2.89–and it is a local brand that puts coupons out–so combining the sale price with coupon gets a gallon for $2.34–which is the cheapest in this area (central Iowa).
    I would LOVE to find a dairy farmer to get milk from—but that is illegal in Iowa. πŸ™

  75. We get half-gallons of 2% milk at Braums. I think it costs a little under $2 per half gallon, but not sure. My mom picks it up for us since we don’t have a Braums near by. It is so good! … I actually ran across this page while looking to confirm the price.

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