For a variety of reasons, mostly because I’m interested in living the most vibrant and healthy life I can, I have given up dairy. In most cases, it’s not a hardship, but once in awhile having some milk around to enhance a dish is a good thing. I like to pour some almond milk into my oatmeal, and I use it to make my smoothies more creamy than had I used water as the liquid base. I have learned that homemade almond milk makes a great substitute when recipes call for milk, and likewise cashew milk is terrific in place of crème.
Homemade Almond Milk for the WIN!!
I prefer to make my own almond milk (read the details about commercially made almond milk here) and over time have perfected my technique so that if I remember to soak the almonds overnight it takes less than 5 minutes to make a batch and clean up the mess.
The one thing that used to bother me about making my own almond milk was the apparent waste of the almond pulp. I hate to waste food, so I’ve been experimenting with different ways to use the pulp. Be on the lookout for more recipes that use almond pulp. I’ve discovered a myriad of creative ways to use the pulp that add nutritional value as well as great texture to many different dishes.
Homemade Almond Milk is easy to make.
In the meantime, you can buy yourself a nut milk bag here so you too can make your own almond milk. If you can’t wait for your nut milk bag to arrive, you can follow the directions below and use a FINE mesh sieve to strain the almond pulp from the milk.
How to make homemade almond milk
Step 1: Soak Almonds and then blend with water
Step 2: Use a nut milk bag (cheese cloth or a fine sieve will also work well) to strain the milk from the pulp.
Step 3: Store the almond pulp for another use. This banana bread recipe uses almond pulp.
Step 4: Enjoy your almond milk….or store it in a glass jar with tight fitting lid in the fridge.
- 1 cup raw organic almonds, soaked*
- 3 cups filtered water
Optional flavor enhancers:
- 2-4 pitted dates, 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract, 2 teaspoons raw cacao powder, 5 large strawberries, 2 teaspoons maple syrup, 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon, pinch of sea salt
- 1. Drain, rinse and drain again almonds that have been soaking (see below*)
- 2. Combine almonds and water in high speed blender and blend for about 1 minute.
- 3. Place a nut milk bag over a large bowl and slowly pour entire contents of blender into that bag. Lift bag, allowing milk to stream into bowl and then gently squeeze bag to release the remaining milk. Continue to squeeze until all the liquid and come out and all that remains in bag is dried almond pulp**. Do not throw away the almond pulp. See below for suggestions.
- 4. Store almond milk in glass jar with tight fitting lid for up to 4 days in the refrigerator. Freeze any unused almond milk in ice cube trays for future use.
- 5. Nut milk will separate easily so be sure to shake well before each use.
- 6. If you’d like to boost the flavor with one of the enhancers listed above, follow directions until step 2, then rinse the blender jar completely, add the almond milk + the flavor and blend on high for 30 seconds until well incorporated. Store in glass jar as instructed above.
*Soaking almonds is recommended in order to make all of their nutrients available for easy digestion. Cover almonds with cold, filtered water and soak 8-12 hours, or overnight. Continue with recipe as noted above. If you have forgotten to soak almonds in advance, use the quick method of pouring boiling water over almonds and leave them to soak for 30-60 minutes.
USES FOR ALMOND PULP:
**If you’re going to use the almond pulp within the week, store in the fridge in a glass container with tight fitting lid. Alternately, store in air tight container in the freezer until you’re ready to use.
Use as a thickener in smoothies.
Dehydrate (bake on low—200 degrees—for 30 minutes until dried out), grind in food processor and substitute for almond meal/flour in baked goods.
Add some in hummus or other dips/spreads to boost their nutritional value.
Mix into oatmeal along with berries, hemp seeds and a splash of maple syrup.
Replace ½ the flour in your favorite quick bread/muffin recipe with equal amount of almond pulp.
Mix with fresh aloe for a dynamite facial scrub!
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