Put Your Nuts in the Blender: Making Nut Milk with my Inner 12-Year-Old

Almond Milk!

A couple of friends asked me recently how I make my nut milk, and I thought it could be a good candidate for a blog post. Nuts are tasty and full of nutrients. And nut milks are a great alternative for those of us whose stomachs turn at the thought of drinking milk from a cow (either for ethical reasons or purely physical ones).

Milking nuts is surprisingly easy. At least it was a surprise to me. Here’s how you do it:

The ratios are 2.5 cups nuts to 6 cups filtered water to make about 6 cups of nut milk.

Nut milk bag nestled in a 4-cup measuring cup.

First, you soak your nuts. Almonds need about 12 hours, cashews about 8. It’s recommended to change your nut soaking water at least once during that time frame, but I am usually sleeping while my nuts soak, so I generally skip that step. Hazelnuts and Brazil nuts don’t need to be soaked because they lack some enzyme inhibitor the other nuts have that soaking eliminates. Or something like that. This time I used almonds, so I soaked them.

Next, rinse your nuts well under running water.

Ready for squeezing.

Place your nuts in the blender (oh, dear, please be careful!) with the filtered water and a pinch of salt. If your blender isn’t large enough to accommodate your nuts and the 6 cups of water, make the nut milk in two batches (3 cups of water and half of the soaked nuts). If you are putting the resulting nut milk into a single container, you’ll be mixing the two batches anyway, so you don’t need to be exact on the ratios.

Turn the blender on high and process until your nuts are entirely broken down. In the meantime, place your nut milk bag into a bowl or large measuring cup. A nut milk bag is a finely woven mesh bag you use to squeeze the milk out of the nut pulp. If you don’t have a nut milk bag, you can use several layers of cheese cloth, it just requires a little more coordination.

Pour the milky nut mixture into the nut milk bag.

Squeezing (photo courtesy of my daughter).

Holding the bag over the bowl or measuring cup, squeeze the liquid out. It’s easiest to work your way down the bag, squeezing as you go.

Nut milk pulp.

Once you’ve squeezed all of the liquid you can out of the nut pulp, you can either discard the nut pulp, compost it, or save it in your freezer with the intention of making a raw cake, which you’ll never actually do and instead you’ll find frostbitten nut pulp in your freezer two years from now and just end up throwing it away then.

And there you are! You can drink the milk as is, or add sweeteners or seasonings (like vanilla). I like it in smoothies or chai or coffee or cereal. Or raw chocolate mousse. Maybe someday I’ll blog how to make that. It requires Irish moss. Mmm…Irish moss…

I originally learned to make nut milk from the Cafe Gratitude cookbook, I Am Grateful, and I basically still use their recipe although I sometimes change it up a bit with other recipes I’ve found. If you’re curious, that’s also where the raw chocolate mousse recipe is. And the raw coconut cream pie (no nuts in that one!).

Where to buy nut milk bags:

Pure Joy Planet

Cafe Gratitude (this is the one I’m using in the picture)

5 comments

  1. Pingback: Writing, no. Muffins, yes. « Imperfect Happiness
  2. Lea · March 22, 2011

    Girl, almond paste is one of the most expensive (and tasty) baking substances on earth… use it for filling in layer cakes!

    Like

    • CJ · March 22, 2011

      Huh. I might have to give that one a try. Maybe a little honey…the wheels are turning.

      Like

  3. abigailvr · February 24, 2011

    Do you filter out the pulp for cashew milk too? That’s the only one I make and I never filter it. Actually, I’ve fallen out of the habit of making it and I need to get back to that! Maybe your post will inspire me. That and the D3 in cow’s milk making me break out.

    Like

    • CJ · February 24, 2011

      I filter them all. I know there are people who don’t filter the milks made in the VitaMix because the pulp is so fine, but I’m funny with textures and can’t stand the chalky/gritty feeling. I can stand it unfiltered if I use the milk in a smoothie and can mask it with lots of other textures. But in my coffee? No, thanks.

      Like

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