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Another Reason to Drink Sheep Milk


Years ago I remember reading Sally Fallon’s comment in Nourishing Traditions regarding drinking goats milk on a regular basis. She spoke of the lack of folic acid (also known as folate) and vitamin B12 contained in goats milk compaired to cows milk. While reading that statement I remember thinking… “what about sheep’s milk?” 

Well Fallon was correct. Goat’s milk contains only 2.4 mcg of folate per 1 cup of milk whereas cow’s milk contains 12.2 mcg of folate per 1 cup of milk. But get this, sheep’s milk contains 17.2 mcg of folate per 1 cup of milk! As for the vitamin B12, compare the results for 1 cup on milk: Goat’s milk: .2 mcg, Cows milk: 1.1 mcg, Sheep’s milk: 1.7 mcg. 

In case you are curious folate is necessary for forming new cells, especially during rapid cell growth which takes place in infancy and in utero. It plays an essential role synthesizing DNA and cell division. While pregnant, if a woman does not have enough folate in her body, neural tube birth defects and low birth weight in the baby are a common result. Lake of folate causes anemia since folate also helps in producing red blood cells. 

Vitamin B12 is essential for normal brain and nervous system function. It also promotes blood production. B12 is needed for the metabolism of every cell in the body. It works in correlation with Folate/Folic Acid for DNA synthesis and overall growth. Folic acid and Vit. B12 need to be consumed together for adequate absorption.

Please note: The following data results are taken from pasteurized milk. Results from raw milk will compare differently. See this chart for insight: Which do you Choose?

For related posts see: Drinking Sheep vs. Goat Milk 


Wikipedia, Folate

Wikipedia, Vitamin B12


24 comments to Another Reason to Drink Sheep Milk

  • julie m.

    Does sheeps milk have the same taste as goats milk? I just do not like the “aftertaste” of goats milk. And don’t know if it was they are eating and if so does it make a difference on if they are eating what they should be eating as opposed to what they are given for convenience? What is both their normal diet? Do they both eat the same thing?
    Thanks, Julie

  • I have not tasted sheep’s milk so I couldn’t say. I do know that goat’s milk will taste very different when the goats are fed certain foods. For instance last year my goats had access to lots of brush, bushes, trees and weeds. We did not have to supplement with any hay in the summer and their milk tasted incredible. No aftertaste!! This year they have weeds and we supplement with alfalfa hay and their milk tastes much different. More of a strange aftertaste and more goaty. I’ve heard others having trouble with the type of grain they feed their goats because some will greatly affect the milk.

    Sheep will eat weeds but usually go for the grasses and hay, while goats prefer tree leaves, bushes, bark, pine needles, weeds and hay.

    Some sheep cheese tastes allot like goats cheese to me, so I’m guessing sheep milk tastes a bit like goats. Hope to tell you soon after milking sheep!

  • Most people seem to find Sheep milk is more palatable than goats milk. Here at Woodlands Dairy we sell yoghurt made from both sheep and goat milk and the sheep milk is much milder and less of an “acquired taste”.

    I have found that some people have tried goats milk cheese and find it has a strong taste and they often carry that association over to the milk and yoghurt.

    It is certainly true that the pasture and feed that the sheep and goats graze on will affect the taste.

  • Dave H

    Sheep milk is creamier and a little sweeter than cow’s milk and does not have the same acidic aftertaste that goat’s milk has. this is one of the major stumbling blocks in trying to convince people to try sheep milk. Most have the perception that it is more like Goat milk when in fact it is much more like cow’s milk.

  • RW

    I also have not tasted Sheeps Milk but have had the chance to drink both RAW and Pasterized Goats Milk. I had not had any milk, other than Soy and Rice, for over 15 years. I’m serverly lactose intolerant. I was convinced by a Person that raised Goats to try Goats milk with the comments that many can tolerate it. She chills the Milk immediately after Milking the Goats. That RAW Chilled Goats milk tasted exactly as I remember the Gallons of Cows Milk I had drank as a kid.(No Pun intended). It almost brought Tears to my eyes. I’ve been drinking the RAW Goats milk ever since. The same can be said for Sheeps Milk Cheeses which I tried about a year ago. I made a Lasagne and used Soy Cheese for the Mozarella and Sheeps Milk Haloumi as the Ricotta Sub and severed it to my Family. No one could tell the difference from regular Cows Milk Cheeses. Down Side,the COST! Ouch!

  • How much does it cost to buy a baby sheep?

  • When I initially commented I clicked the -Notify me when new feedback are added- checkbox and now every time a comment is added I get 4 emails with the same comment. Is there any way you can remove me from that service? Thanks!

  • Maged

    To: Brian
    I bought a baby sheep from the farm it was $100

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  • Gayle Spears

    In case this might be helpful for someone… When my allergies were a bit worse than they are now, I
    was unable to tolerate any dairy products, including goat milk, but I could eat Pecorino Romano cheese which is made from sheep milk without any adverse reactions.

  • Randy Andres

    Hey, sheep milk is the best!!! It tastes way better than goat milk…we make sheep yogurt & feta…you can skim the cream off the top of the milk…its all yummy & it does not have the after taste like goat milk…

  • Murat Ulusoy

    Obviously what type of food you give to the milking animal effects the taste of milk a lot. I know this as the grandmother of my father could tell which mountain has the shepherd fed the animals on from the smell of the milk while boiling it. She knew the flora of the mountains around the village very well of course. And she hasn’t mistaken once among the four alternative places. Shepherds tried to fake her sometimes but all the time she insisted on her decision which was always right :)

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