Recipes so tasty you will want to eat your fill—and so healthy you actually can!
I decided to make my own almond milk after perusing the nutritional labels on the commercially produced varieties at the grocery store. I found myself asking, "How does almond milk have just one gram of protein per cup?" After some fancy math, I determined that there are only four almonds in one cup of commercial almond milk. That meant I would be paying around thirty cents for four almonds, some water, a little thickener, a little emulsifier, and some supplemental vitamins. Guessing the thickener and the vitamins compensate for lack of almonds!
Initially, I purchased a nut milk bag and used whole almonds. If you have tried such nonsense, you know the straining part itself is messy. Then, there is the attempt to rinse out and wash the bag—also messy. And, what to do with all that leftover almond pulp? (I tried making granola with mine. Epic fail.) So, in an attempt to simplify what was an ordeal for me, I turned to slivered almonds, thinking I could skip straining, as the skins had already been removed during the blanching/slivering process. It worked, and I really liked the flavor—crisp and bright and not nearly as bitter as the milk I had made with whole almonds. It works well in cooking and baking; also in smoothie and ice cream recipes. It contains twelve nuts per cup and triple the amount of protein in the commercial varieties. But, best of all, it steams and foams up beautifully for my morning latte!
|Prep time||Ready in||Yields|
1 quart (8 cups)
- 7 1/2 cups water, separated
- 1 cup slivered almonds (see blender tip below)
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- Sweetener of choice (1-3 tablespoons)
- Vanilla (1/2-1 teaspoon)
- Dates add a caramel flavor (2-4 medium-sized)
- Both Vitamin D gel caps and Vitamin B-12 tablets can be added without affecting flavor or color.
- Add 5 1/2 cups water and slivered almonds to blender. Start blending on low, transition to high as nuts being to emulsify. Blend for 3 minutes on highest setting.
- Add the remaining 2 cups of water to storage container(s), dividing evenly, if using more than one container. Add blender contents, again dividing evenly, if using more than one container.
- Refrigerate. Use within a week.
Tips & Tricks
- Using a blender: If you do not have a high-speed blender (Vitamix or Blendtec), you will need to soften your almonds by soaking in water for four hours or overnight. Make sure to drain and discard soaking water before adding. I have a Vitamix myself and have been using/abusing it daily, for several years, to blend absolutely everything, and it has yet to fail me. They are an expense, but after burning through two moderately-priced blenders the year prior to purchasing, it has been a bargain!
- Foam: A significant amount of foam will form during blending. Adding only 5 1/2 cups of water to the blender gives the foam some room, preventing a mess.
- Storage: I store my almond milk in the two Rubbermaid one-quart containers pictured below. Initially, I purchased a single two-quart container. It was cumbersome, requiring both hands to pour without spilling. I highly recommend the quart containers. They are a bargain, easy to handle, and can squeeze into slivers of empty space in a packed fridge.
- Sediment: As the almond milk sits in the fridge, sediment will collect on the bottom(s) of your storage container(s). Should you want to maximize nutrition and consume every nut particle, give the container a shake before using it. Or, if you feel your milk is a little too gritty, just pour and leave the sediment settled. (You can always use that last gritty bit in a smoothie.)
Questions & Answers
Question: How do I make walnut milk the same way as you do with cashew/almonds?
Answer: I would suggest trying the same method followed by straining through a nut milk bag or fine mesh sieve, (as walnuts have skins opposed to cashews or blanched almonds). Let me know how it works!
© 2017 Stacy Becker