Protein In 8 Oz of Milk

Nutrition Facts for a Glass of Skim, Reduced Fat, and Whole Milk

By: Jeremy Fox, CNC, CPTUpdated: March 28, 2024

Do you know how much protein is in your milk? Sure, you can look it up in a calorie counter app, but the nutritional content of milk varies drastically depending on which kind you buy.

So I’ve poured through nutrition databases to find precise information about milk’s protein content and nutrition facts that you won’t find anywhere else.

Protein in 8 oz Milk

Milk Fat Percentages

As you probably know, there are several different types of milk with varying amounts of fat. And the milk fat content is indicated by the name and a percentage on the label.

For example, whole milk has 3.25% fat, reduced-fat milk has 2%, low-fat milk has 1%, and skim milk has 0%. Furthermore, each kind of milk has different nutritional values based on the fat content.

The chart below shows the protein in 8 oz of milk at various percentages.

Protein In 8 oz Milk by Percentage

As you can see, the protein in 8 oz of milk is about 8 grams regardless of the fat percentage. So each type of milk provides about 1 gram of protein per oz.

However, the fat content incrementally increases as the percentage goes up. And that means higher-fat milk also has more calories per 8 ounces.

You’ll also notice that the total height of each bar gets taller as the milk fat percentage goes up, like a visual representation of the total calorie content.

8 oz Milk Protein & Nutrition

Next, I’ll walk you through the detailed nutrition profiles of each type of milk, including the macros, calories, and vitamin content.

Whole (3.25%) Milk Nutrition

Eight ounces of 3.25% whole milk contains 7.7 grams of protein and 8 grams of fat. Unfortunately, that fat adds up to almost 150 calories in just an 8 oz glass!

On the plus side, whole-fat milk is more flavorful and may help you feel full and satisfied. And it naturally contains more micronutrients such as vitamin A and vitamin D.

Reduced Fat (2%) Milk Nutrition

By comparison, eight ounces of 2% reduced fat milk contains around 8.1 grams of protein with 4.9 grams of fat. And the calorie content comes in at around 120 per 8 oz serving.

2% milk is popular because it has a good balance of flavor and nutrients while cutting down on fat and calories. So this may be a good choice if you are watching your fat intake but still want the benefits of drinking milk.

Protein in 8 oz Milk Pinterest

Low Fat (1%) Milk Nutrition

On average, eight ounces of 1% milk contains 8.2 grams of protein with 2.4 grams of fat. Based on calories per gram of protein and fat, that equates to around 100 calories per 8 oz.

1% milk (1% milkfat) is lower in fat than whole and 2% milk. Therefore, it still contains some of the nutrients found in milk but with fewer calories and less fat.

Fat-Free (Skim) Milk Nutrition

Finally, eight ounces of fat-free skim milk contains 8.3 grams of protein with just 0.4 grams of fat. With that minimal fat content, skim milk has just 86 calories per 8 ounces.

Therefore, skim milk may be a good choice if you are trying to limit your calories and fat while maximizing your protein intake. But be aware that it may not be as satisfying as other types of milk.

Related: Calculate Your Ideal Protein Intake

Table 1. Nutrients & Protein In 8 oz Milk By Percentage
Percent Fat Protein Fat Carbs Calories Calcium Vit A
Skim, Fat-Free, 0% 8.3g 0.4g 12.5g 86 299mg 37 IU
Low Fat, 1% 8.2g 2.4g 12.7g 102 305mg 115 IU
Reduced Fat, 2% 8.1g 4.9g 12.4g 123 295mg 251 IU
Whole, 3.25% 7.7g 8.0g 12.3g 149 276mg 395 IU

Table 1 above summarizes the nutrition information we just covered with some additional details. For example, you can see how the carbs stay about the same between types of milk.

In addition, most of us know that milk is a good source of calcium, and that doesn’t change with the reduced fat versions. But what does change is the amount of vitamin A, which drops quickly with fat reduction.

To put it in perspective, the Recommended Dietary Intake (RDI) for Vitamin A is 700-900 International Units (IU) for adults. So fat-free milk has just 5% of your daily Vitamin A, while whole milk has about 50%.

Still, you can buy milk with added Vitamin A and Vitamin D if you want more nutrition in reduced-fat milk.

Lactose In 8 oz Milk

According to the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases, approximately 65% of the global population has a reduced ability to digest lactose after infancy. And it is estimated that approximately 30-50 million people are lactose intolerant in the United States.

Therefore, the lactose content could be on your mind when choosing between different milk varieties. However, while the macro and micronutrients in milk vary by fat percentage, the lactose content stays pretty much the same.

Since lactose is a form of sugar, the lactose content of milk is roughly equivalent to the total carbohydrates. Therefore, the lactose content of milk is not affected by the fat content.

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Protein in 8 oz Milk vs. Other Sources

Milk can be a good source of protein. But how does it compare to lean meat? The table below shows the protein content of 8 oz of fat-free milk compared to 8 oz of other foods.

Keep in mind we’re comparing the liquid state of milk vs the solid state of meats. Plus, I didn’t include a column for carbs since none of the other foods have any.

Table 2. Protein in 8 oz Milk vs. Other Sources
  Protein Fat Calories Protein:Calories
Chicken Breast 56.0g 3.0g 240 0.867
93% Ground Turkey 42.6g 18.6g 338 0.504
Pork Chop 46.6g 21.6g 378 0.493
Atlantic Salmon 46.0g 30.6g 458 0.402
Fat-Free Skim Milk 8.3g 0.4g 86 0.386
Sirloin Steak 45.6g 32.6g 472 0.386
80% Ground Beef 43.6g 50.8g 633 0.276
3.25% Whole Milk 7.7g 8.0g 149 0.207

The table above makes it easier to see that 8 fluid oz of milk is not nearly as nutrient-dense as 8 solid ounces of meat. But the protein-to-calorie ratio column is helpful to see how each food ranks as a protein source.

This column represents the calories from protein divided by the total calories. So the higher the number, the more efficient the protein source.

And you can see how skim milk is about equal to a sirloin steak in terms of protein per calorie. At the same time, whole milk comes in last place below 80% ground beef.

Pork Chop Protein Comparison Chart

More High Protein Food Nutrition Facts

Now you know how much protein is in various types of cow’s milk. And you’ve seen how it compares to other protein sources in terms of calories and nutrition.

You also got a snapshot of the nutrition facts for some other high-protein foods. But like milk, protein content can vary depending on the type of each food you purchase.

So check out these related articles to learn more about the nutrition in your favorite foods.

Steak Protein by Cut of Meat

Salmon Protein by Species

Pork Chop Protein per Ounce

Tilapia Protein Raw vs Cooked

Chicken Thigh Protein Boneless vs Bone-In

Chicken Breast Protein With or Without Skin

If you’re up to speed on the macros and calories in foods, then check out some of my other fitness-related content below!

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By |April 25, 2023|Nutrition|0 Comments
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