The Best Similac Alternatives

By: Suzanne Renee' - Updated December 21, 2023 - 18 Minute Read

The Best Similac Alternatives | The Milky Box

The national shortage of baby formula in the U.S. began in February of 2022 and has cast an urgent spotlight on parents’ difficulties meeting their babies’ basic nutritional needs.

The shortage stemmed from when the food and drug administration warned consumers not to use or purchase specific powdered formulas, including Alimentum, Similac, and Ele-care made by Abbott Nutrition. Since the recall, the affected have been pulled from the shelves, but stores have been unable to restock them. Families are left scrambling to find safe and healthy alternatives to meet their little one’s daily needs. 

In this article, let’s investigate European baby formulas to help parents discover a powdered baby formula that is readily available and meets all nutritional requirements.

Similac Baby Formula

When selecting a formula for your baby in the United States, there is no question that Similac was at the top of the list for many families until recently.

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has investigated consumer complaints of bacterial infections in four infants who consumed powdered infant formula produced in Abbott Nutrition’s facility in Sturgis, Michigan. All four infants had to be hospitalized, and the bacterial infection may have contributed to two patients’ deaths.

This leads to the prompt decision to recall worrisome products and a prompt pulling from store shelves. After the tough call back, the FDA encouraged the importation of safe infant formula to meet the dire needs of families.

Toxic Ingredients in Baby Formula

The investigation into US baby formulas has shined a glaring light on the lack of regulations and oversight.

We now see that Food and Drug Administration guidelines are fundamental for all American baby formulas and do not restrict how carbohydrates, proteins, and fats should be included in infant products.

It is very disappointing that US formula manufacturers can list chemicals, fillers, and unnatural preservatives as their main ingredients under the Food and Drug Administration.

Dangers for Babies and Animals

Parents have also been alarmed at the questionable animal practices in American farming, including the use of hormones, steroids, and non-medical antibiotics. American dairy animals live in crowded and unclean living environments, and even within farms that advertise organic practices, these animals see little natural pasture time.

American-Made Baby Formula

Perhaps the biggest surprise when it comes to American Baby Formula is that there are four major producers of baby formula in the US. Pharmaceutical companies own three of the four. This has just recently become known to the general public. 

Many households now question whether money is the bottom line for these companies instead of American children's health and well-being. We tend to agree.

European Baby Formula Standards

American families have found quite the opposite when looking toward the EU for a better bottle of formula.

European baby formula companies are often started to meet the nutritional needs of their children. To this day, under the watchful eye of the European Union, these companies use only the absolute best in natural foods, never adding harmful chemicals, fillers, or altered ingredients.

European infant guidelines consider every aspect of soil composition, animal welfare, labeling, and final production.

Best Formula for Babies and Animals

European regulations meet the highest levels regarding animal husbandry and care. Hormones and steroids are never used for bulking, and antibiotics are introduced only when a medical is necessary.

Dairy animals live and eat in organically maintained pastures with certification standards going above and beyond the United States standard of care.

What are the Best Similac Alternatives for your Baby?

There is no question when it comes to infant nutrition, ingredients matter! Proper development depends on each component of your infant's baby formula. Each detail from sourcing to your manufacturing should be clean without harmful pesticides, soy, GMOs, preservatives, non-lactose sugars, or heavy metals.

Proper oversight and strict regulations are necessary to ensure that your baby receives the nutritional support they deserve without the worry of toxic ingredients.

Why US Parents are Choosing European Baby Formula

Bottled nutrition intended to be an alternative or substitute for Similac® should closely mimic breastmilk, be safe, and should meet every digestive need.

Infant formulas require strict guidelines and standards. This is easily met by EU certification, which is much more comprehensive and regulated than the U.S. program.

The most striking differences include that the farm’s location must accompany the organic label, there can be absolutely no traces of pesticides or chemicals used in farming, and gentle animal welfare ideals are included as part of the regulations.

Baby Formula Most like Breastmilk

European formulas are full of pure and simple ingredients that start with 100% grass-fed milk and end with a formula as close to breast milk as possible.

Strict guidelines for sourcing, more options for digestive worries, and a choice between milk-based formulas and vegan-based alternatives are just a few of the positive attributes that families find when choosing European Baby Formula.

The Best Similac Alternatives and Substitutes

European baby formulas design powdered nutrition to meet every digestive and nutritional need. Starting at birth all the way through the toddler years, best organic baby formulas support your little one developmentally and cognitively. 

Similac Organic Baby Formula

Similac Organic | The Milky Box

Similac Organic Baby Formula is advertised as complete nutrition for your baby, made with wholesome organic ingredients. It is Similac’s only certified USDA organic formula. This formula leaves out palm oil and adds DHA, lutein, and vitamins for brain and eye development. The major drawback to this powdered nutrition is the addition of soy.

Similac Alternative: Kendamil Organic Baby Formula

Kendamil Organic Baby Formula is lovingly formulated in the English Lake District, packed full of full-cream nutrients in ratios that mimic breast milk. Kendamil uses balanced organic vegetable oils for Omega-3 and 6 LCPs and plant-based DHA for brain development.

Kendamil is the first ever organic formula globally to include a verified presence of Human Milk Oligosaccharides (HMOs), the complex carbohydrate that exists in human breast milk.

Comparison Note: Kendamil Organic leaves out palm oil like Similac Organic but goes the extra step and leaves out the harmful ingredient soy.

Similac Pro-Advance® Infant Formula

Similac Pro-Advance | The Milky Box

Similac Pro-Advance® Infant Formula has the human milk oligosaccharide (HMO) and is advertised as complete nutrition designed to strengthen your baby’s immune system. This Similac brand is made without palm oil or fish oil and has a blend of DHA, lutein, and vitamin E to help support your baby’s brain and eye development.

Unfortunately, we see the presence of soy in two forms.

Similac Alternative: Kendamil Classic Baby Formula

Kendamil Classic Baby Formula has 100% British whole milk from grass-fed cows. Even though this formula is not organic, it is locally and ethically sourced and includes plant-based DHA and 3’GL milk oligosaccharides (HMO).

Families love the simple ingredients, vegetarian-friendly DHA, and proteins and nutrients that closely mimic breast milk. As with Kendamil Organic, this classic formula has perfectly balanced nutrition to support cognitive, eye, and body development.

Comparison Note: Kendamil Classic, like Similac Advance, is free of palm oil and fish oil and does not contain soy in any form, unlike the cost-cutting competitor.

Pure Bliss™ by Similac®* Infant Formula

Pure Bliss Formula | The Milky Box

Pure Bliss by Similac Infant Formula claims to be crafted in a European manner that starts with fresh milk from grass-fed cows. This US baby formula has no artificial growth hormones or antibiotics and is non-GMO. Pure Bliss also has DHA and ARA, nutrients like those found in breast milk that support brain and eye development.

We continue to see the Similac's trend of adding soy in several forms to this formula.

Similac Alternative: Lebenswert Organic Baby Milk Formula

Lebenswert Organic Baby Milk Formula is simple nutrition with natural properties similar to breastmilk, including DHA and ARA. Full of essential nutrients, such as vitamins C, A, D, B, and zinc, to give your baby a healthy body and immune system, and lactose is the main carbohydrate for healthy energy. This European baby formula nourishes your baby as they grow without non-sugars, GMO ingredients, or toxic chemicals.

Comparison Note: Lebenswert Organic is 100% Bioland Certified (organic), and Pure Bliss does not use organic ingredients.

Sensitive Baby Formulas 

Special digestive or nutritional needs call for unique baby formulas. Relief for little ones with lactose intolerance and food allergies requires exceptional ingredients.

Sensitive baby formulas lend extra support to aid digestion and absorption for even the most delicate system.

Similac Sensitive Infant Formula

Similac Sensitive | The Milky Box

Similac Sensitive Infant Formula is this brand's answer for fussy and gassy babies due to lactose sensitivities. This sensitive formula continues to tout support for brain and eye development but alarmingly uses corn syrup as the main ingredient which is high on the glycemic index and quickly increases blood sugar.

Sadly, corn syrup alone is well known to cause potential health problems, but when soy is added as well, there is a great chance that there will be concerns that are carried from infancy into adulthood.

Similac Alternative: Jovie Goat Milk Baby Formula

Jovie Goat Milk Baby Formula is A2 nutrition made from organic goat milk and designed with a smaller protein that is easier to digest. Jovie goat milk formula gentle curd is more accessible to absorb than traditional cow’s milk formula, soothing gassy tummies.

Rich in natural vitamins and minerals, this European baby formula also delivers folate. Jovie's goat milk is certified EU organic and contains nutrients like vitamins A, B, C, D, and E, minerals, and essential fatty acids (DHA and ALA).

Comparison Note: Similac Sensitive contains unwanted and unnecessary soy and non-lactose sugars. Jovie Goat leaves both out, as well as palm oil and coconut oil.

Similac Pro-Total Comfort™ Infant Formula

Similac Pro-Total Comfort | The Milky Box

Similac Pro-Total Comfort™ Infant Formula is a non-organic formula with HMOs to mimic breast milk. It uses corn maltodextrin, a starch, as the main ingredient placing the hydrolyzed protein beside the non-lactose, unwanted sugar.

Similac tries to answer the need for colicky babies and little ones that build up gas in their tummies due to a struggle to digest lactose. Unfortunately, with toxic ingredients, this formula may do more harm than good.

Similac Alternative: HiPP Comfort Baby Formula

HiPP Comfort Baby Formula is designed to soothe the digestive system of infants who experience flatulence, colic, and constipation and have a family history of food allergies.

HiPP decreases the lactose in this formula and the chance of milk and other allergies by using hydrolyzed proteins without reducing their nutritional value. This European baby formula contains vitamins A & C for bone health and Omega-3s and Omega-6s.

Comparison Note: Similac continues with unwanted soy and non-lactose sugars. HiPP Comfort’s main ingredient is lactose, which does not have these undesirable components.

Similac® for Spit-Up, Easy-to-Digest Infant Formula

Similac for Spit-Up | The Milky Box

Similac® for Spit-Up, Easy-to-Digest Infant Formula

has been designed to reduce spit-up frequency. This specialty formula is manufactured for reflux due to lactose sensitivity.

We do not recommend this American baby formula because corn syrup, sugar, and soy oil are the main ingredients. This formula may help in the short term but can cause long-term health concerns such as obesity and diabetes, and gastric worries.

Similac Alternative: HiPP Anti-Reflux (AR) 

HiPP Anti-Reflux Organic Baby Formula helps reduce acid reflux and spit-up in infants. Made with all-natural ingredients that soothe digestion and support healthy growth and development. This European baby formula contains locust bean gum, which makes the formula creamier and easier for babies to digest and reduces the chance of spit-ups.

As with all HiPP baby formulas, the main carbohydrate is lactose, followed by vitamin D for better calcium absorption and bone strength, vitamins A and C for a healthy immune system, and Omega-3 and 6 LCPs (DHA and ARA) for brain development.

Comparison Note: Similac's use of corn syrup, sugar, and soy oil falls far beneath the HiPP AR nutritional bar. We are most appreciative of Hipp’s use of locust bean gum to settle digestive worries.

Similac® Alimentum® Hypoallergenic Infant Formula

Similac Altimentum | The Milky Box

Similac® Alimentum® Hypoallergenic Infant Formula is for little ones that have a family history of food allergies. This is a hypoallergenic formula for infants that is designed for protein sensitivity.

Alimentum reduces excessive crying due to cow's milk protein sensitivity in most infants within 24 hours. It is corn-free and lactose-free and has no palm oil. DHA & ARA supports brain and eye development.

Mostly water (87%), sugar, and starch Similac again has the right idea but uses inferior ingredients that can be more harmful than helpful in the long run.

Similac Alternative: Bébé M Organic Vegan Baby Formula

Bébé M Organic Vegan Baby Formula provides all the essential nutrients for babies prone to allergies and lactose allergies.

Bébé Mandorle is an organic certified, 100% vegetable-based infant formula produced without animal products or by-products.

Bébé M Stage 1 is designed to have a nutrient content identical to traditional lactose-based baby formula, including vitamins and minerals (yes, this includes calcium!), all from plant sources. Lactose-free, plant-sourced, omega-3 DHA and Icelandic lichen (not sheep wool) for Vitamin D enrich this unique baby formula.

Comparison Note: Similac tries to aid in digestion and absorption with this hypoallergenic formula but nutritional falls short against Bébé M’s non lactose organic offering.

Similac® Soy Isomil® Infant Formula

Similac Soy Isomil | The Milky Box

Similac® Soy Isomil® Infant Formula is a soy-based formula. The main ingredients are soy, soy oil, and non-lactose-based sugar and is marketed for fussiness and gas. The most befits are those with lactose intolerance and galactosemia.

The formula should only be used when no other choice is immediately available. Soy in daily use has been linked with a number of health worries that impact your child today and in the future.

Similac Alternative: Prémibio Vegan Baby Formula

Prémibio Vegan Baby Formula is unique nutrition that can comfort even the most sensitive babies that suffer with lactose intolerance without harmful ingredients. Lactose-free and vegan formula based on hydrolyzed rice protein is the first infant formula that is also gluten-free and palm oil free.

Combining naturally complementary ingredients, Prémibio covers all your baby's needs, including proteins and essential amino acids, vitamins, and minerals for physical and cognitive growth.

Comparison Note: Baby formulas without lactose can aid with worrisome digestion issues. Organic Prémibio does not need to use harmful ingredients such as soy to provide the perfect formula.

A2 Milk 

A2 milk is a variety of cows' milk that mostly lacks a form of β-casein proteins called A1, and instead has mostly the A2 form. A2 formula has recently been addressed as a gentle and healthier version of regular milk or formula. 

The major benefit is being easier for little ones with milk intolerance and milk allergies to digest.

Similac Organic with A2 Milk Infant Formula

Similac Organic A2 formula | The Milky Box

Similac Organic with A2 Milk Infant Formula is the only organic infant formula in the US that is made with A2 milk. This baby formula is non-GMO and has no artificial growth hormones or palm olein oil.

The A2 alternative in the Similac line and once again misses the mark by including soy as one of the top ingredients.

Similac Alternative: Holle A2 Organic Baby Formula

Holle Organic A2 Baby Formula is soothing nutrition for

Babies that may experience discomfort, inflammation, and digestive issues benefit. A simple switch to a Holle A2 cow’s milk baby formula can start a path to relief.

As with all Holle baby formulas, families will never see preservatives, soy, sugar, maltodextrin, or GMOs used on organic contents.

Comparison Note: Holle Organic settles sensitive digestive systems with organic ingredients leaving out any soy ingredients.

The Best Similac Alternatives: Quick Guide 

Similac Alternatives quick guide | The Milky Box

The Best Baby Formula Options

Families can be confident that baby formulas are available to meet their little ones’ developmental and digestive needs regulated to ensure clean, pure nutrition only.

With the most extensive assortment of infant nutrition, The Milky Box is confident you will find the perfect formula to support your baby’s health and growth today and in the future.

Frequently Asked Questions

Why were Similac products recalled? 

Similac products have been recalled because the bottle caps on some of their baby formulas may not have sealed completely, resulting in spoilage and consequently, severe harm to infants. 

How long will Similac shortages be expected?

Due to recent recalls in the formula industry in the United States, there is a continued shortage of formula supplies.

Why should you choose European formula as an alternative to Similac?

European baby formulas include goat milk, probiotics, they're free of GMOs, and often their primary sugar is lactose.

EU regulations are more prescriptive on which ingredients can be used in food, European formulas include more organic and natural ingredients.


Please be aware that this information is based on general trends in babies, and it is not medical advice. Your doctor should be your first source of information and advice when considering any changes to your child’s formula and when choosing your child’s formula. Always consult your pediatrician before making any decisions about your child’s diet or if you notice any changes in your child.

Breastfeeding is the best nutrition for your baby because breast milk provides your child with all the essential nutrients they need for growth and development. Please consult your pediatrician if your child requires supplemental feeding.

Suzanne Renee' is an accomplished professional with extensive expertise in the area of infant nutrition, dedicated to promoting the health and wellbeing of children. She started this journey as a foster parent. Suzanne has emerged as a strong proponent of the European baby formula and has become a full time writer of the subject. In her free time, she enjoys camping, hiking and going to church.

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Reviewed by Dr. Eric Wood, ND, MA

Dr. Wood is a licensed naturopathic doctor, with a doctorate degree from the Canadian College of Naturopathic Medicine in Toronto, Canada. He received his post-graduation certification in Mind Body Medicine at Harvard University.

With 15 years of experience, Dr. Wood is an Associate Professor of Holistic Nutrition at the American College of Health Sciences in Portland, Oregon. Dr. Wood is an educator, clinician, author, media figure, consultant, and owns his own holistic (naturopathic) medical practice in Ft. Lauderdale, Florida. Dr. Wood is currently researching and drafting books on cancer and pediatrics.

Outside of the medical profession, Dr. Wood loves singing with the Miami Lyric Opera and is an avid musician in South Florida. He also loves spending time with his wife and kids.