homemade almond milk, four ways.

Let’s talk about almond milk!

As you may or may not know, I don’t particularly care for plain milk. My tummy doesn’t particularly care for plain milk, either. Some people call it lactose intolerance, but I prefer the term “milk poisoning.”

Oh, you better believe I consume my fair share of dairy products. Butter? By the ton! Ice cream and milkshakes? All of them, in my mouth, immediately, if not sooner. But if I don’t want to succumb to the awfulness that is milk poisoning, I have to take these magic little pills before I dive face-first into an ice cream sundae. Milk pills, as I call them, are truly a miracle of modern science. But I don’t want to take them every day!

Enter the humble nut milk. Good lord, do I love me some nut milk! I know that “nut milk” isn’t the prettiest phrase in the English language, but it’s damn tasty stuff. Coconut milk, walnut milk, cashew milk, hazelnut milk, pecan milk…they’re all incredible. They’re like my children, it’s impossible to pick a favorite!

For the record, I don’t have children yet. But I’m pretty sure you’re not supposed to play favorites with them, right?

Anywho. Almond milk was the first nut milk I ever tried, and I’m basically a big fan of the stuff. Nuts are expensive and almonds are typically the most affordable of the bunch, so it’s what I make quite often. It’s simple!

Basically, you soak raw, unsalted nuts in water overnight, pulverize them in a blender the next day, and strain the milk from the solids. Add your sweetener or flavor of choice if you like, and bam! You just made nut milk, my friend. I’m pretty impressed.

I’ve included some flavor variations in this recipe–vanilla, chai, cinnamon and chocolate. They’re all delish, but you let your imagination run wild, guys. Think of almond milk as a template for your dreams. If you dream it, you can do it.

Wasn’t that inspirational? Don’t you want to climb a mountain or give a rousing speech now?

…Or at the very least, make some gee dee almond milk?

I bet pistachio milk would be incredible too, as would macadamia! I love me some macadamia nuts, but it’s a bit out of my price range to buy them just to make milk. I’d rather fold toasted macadamia nuts into cookie dough, or dip them in dark chocolate and see how many I can stuff in my mouth at once. That’s a really fun game.

Hey! When you make this almond milk, save the solids. Stow ‘em  in an airtight container and stash them in the fridge, and I’ll show you what you can make with them tomorrow. Kitchen magic. Stay tuned, ’cause it’s happening right here!

Almond Milk, Four Ways

Yield: 4 cups almond milk

Ingredients:

For the Plain Almond Milk

1 cup raw organic almonds
3 1/2 cups filtered water
1 tablespoon agave nectar
1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
Pinch of good kosher salt

For the Vanilla Almond Milk

1 cup raw organic almonds
3 1/2 cups filtered water
1 tablespoon agave nectar
1 tablespoon pure vanilla bean paste (substitute pure vanilla extract)
Pinch of good kosher salt

For the Chai Almond Milk

1 cup raw organic almonds
3 1/2 cups filtered water
1 tablespoon agave nectar
1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
Pinch of good kosher salt

1 whole star anise
2 whole cardamom pods
1 whole cinnamon stick
2 whole cloves
1 whole allspice

For the Cinnamon Almond Milk

1 cup raw organic almonds
3 1/2 cups filtered water
1 tablespoon agave nectar
1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
Pinch of good kosher salt

2 whole cinnamon sticks
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon

For the Chocolate Almond Milk

1 cup raw organic almonds
3 1/2 cups filtered water
1 tablespoon agave nectar
1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
Pinch of good kosher salt

1 tablespoon good cocoa powder (I prefer unsweetened)

Directions:

Basic Almond Milk Procedure

Place the almonds in a large bowl. Fill the bowl with water just until the almonds are covered, and allow them to soak overnight.

After the almonds have soaked overnight they should look a bit plumper. Strain them into a colander and rinse with fresh water. Allow them to drain for 1-2 minutes.

Place the almonds in a blender or food processor and add the filtered water. Blend or process on high speed for 2-3 minutes, or until the almonds are completely pulverized and no large chunks remain.

Add the agave nectar, vanilla and salt and pulse once more to combine.

Line a fine mesh strainer or sieve with a piece of cheesecloth and place over a large bowl.

Strain the mixture from the blender into the bowl. Gently bring the ends of the cheesecloth together and squeeze the solids lightly to get as much liquid out as you can.

Pour the strained almond milk into a clean glass jar with a tight fitting lid and screw the cap on.

Transfer the almond milk to the fridge, where it will keep for up to three days.

Before drinking, give the jar a light shake to redistribute any fine sediment that may have settled on the bottom. You can eliminate as much sediment as possible with multiple passes through a strainer and cheesecloth if need be!

Place the almond meal solids into an airtight container and place in the refrigerator, and I'll show you what to do with them tomorrow!

For the Almond Milk Flavor Variations

Make the almond milk as above, and add your flavors of choice before pouring the finished product into jars.

Some of the flavors, such as the Cinnamon and Chocolate will naturally separate a bit in the fridge. No worries, just give the jars a vigorous shake before drinking!

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12 Responses to “homemade almond milk, four ways.”

  1. #
    1
    Jeanette — April 9, 2012 at 9:47 am

    I’ve made homemade almond milk, but not with all these wonderful flavorings that you suggest. Can’t wait to see what you have to say about using the solids.

  2. #
    2
    Lauren — April 9, 2012 at 10:29 am

    I am loving the sound of all of these!

  3. #
    3
    Brian @ A Thought For Food — April 9, 2012 at 2:00 pm

    I haven’t even made it one way yet. But you can bet your butt it’s on my list! I’m in love with that second batch of shots there. Awesome!

  4. #
    4
    Katrina @ Warm Vanilla Sugar — April 9, 2012 at 4:51 pm

    I’ve been meaning to make homemade almond milk for a while so I’m so happy you posted this! Yum!

  5. #
    5
    DessertForTwo — April 9, 2012 at 9:22 pm

    I’ve been wanting to make my own almond milk, but haven’t yet. You’ve given me the push I need! Thanks :)

  6. #
    6
    Alison @ ingredients, Inc. — April 10, 2012 at 4:22 pm

    love this post!

  7. #
    7
    rivergirl — April 10, 2012 at 5:44 pm

    I am really enjoying your posts/recipes! Thanks for sharing!

  8. #
    8
    Kiran @ KiranTarun.com — April 10, 2012 at 6:23 pm

    LOVE homemade nut milk — this actually got me thirsty :D

  9. #
    9
    Gabbie — April 11, 2012 at 11:34 am

    I had no idea how easy it is to make this stuff at home! *mind blown*! as always, you are amazing and a life saver. <3

  10. #
    10
    Allie — June 7, 2012 at 10:42 am

    For the chai, do you just put the whole spices into the jar to steep, or do you actually blend them up with the almonds? I have a Blendtec blender, which could handle the latter.

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