Ladies! We all know the benefits of plant-based milks. But if I told you how easy it is to make your own, you’d go nuts, lol -see what I did there?
1. Nut Milks. Let’s start with the nuts because they’re super easy and all the same recipe you just switch out the nuts/seed for whatever kind of milk you want. I prefer cashew milk and sunflower seed cream for cooking and baking rich things. I like almond milk best for cereal and sweets like smoothies, hot cocoa, and chocolate milk.
- First, throw your nuts or seeds of your choice into a jar, cover with water, and let soak overnight (or at least 4 hrs). I read somewhere that if your pressed for time you can boil the nuts for 15 mins, strain, and rinse. However, to retain the most nutrients and enzymes it’s best to soak them. Next, drain and rinse the soaked nuts, place in a blender, cover with water, and blend. The beauty with making it yourself is you can make it as thick or thin as you like depending on how much water you add. I like to make it thick to make cream based sauces. For thicker creams, I only cover about 1/2 to 3/4 of the nuts. For a milk-like consistency I cover the nuts completely to the top, blend, check the consistency and add more water if desired. Better to add little bits of water at a time -you can always add but you can’t take away. Lastly, you can add flavor if you like. If I’m using the milks to cook or bake I skip this step. Otherwise, add a dash of salt, a dash of sweetener, and a few drops of vanilla extract (if desired), and blend one last time. Store in a sealed jar in the refrigerator.
Voila! Easy, nut milks free of preservatives and additives, and customized to your tastebuds and cooking needs! You’re welcome.
2. Coconut milk. There’s a few ways to make coconut milk. You can make it from a can of coconut cream or from shredded coconut.
- Canned version: Grab a can of coconut cream, and blend 2 parts of water to one part of cream (more or less depending on desired thickness). So, blend one can of the cream, refill the can with water twice and blend. You can add a dash of salt, a dash of sweetener, and a couple drops of vanilla extract to taste if desired.
- Shredded coconut version: Cover one 8 oz package of shredded coconut flakes with 4 cups of warm water and soak for 15-30 mins. Blend well. Pour over a strainer lined with cheese cloth or a thin towel into a container, squeeze out the excess, and blend the strained contents again until creamy. Repeat this 1-3 times until you attain the desired consistency. Again add salt, sweetener and/or vanilla to preferred taste. Place in sealed container and refrigerate.
3. Oat Milk. One of my favorites to drink by itself or in smoothies.
- Blend one cup of uncooked oats (I use rolled oats, but you can also use steel cut) and about 3/4 cup of warm water until smooth. Pour over strainer lined with cheese cloth or thin towel and squeeze cloth to drain excess milk into a container. Add a dash of salt, sweetener (I like a dash of maple syrup in this one), and/or vanilla extract to taste. Store in a sealed container and refridgerate.
4. Rice milk. Personally, I’m not a huge fan but some people are and it is a great alternative for those with nut allergies.
- Blend 1 cup of cooked rice with 4 cups of water until completely smooth. Blend in a dash of salt, sweetener, and/or vanilla to taste -add all three along with some cinnamon to make dairy-free horchata. Place in sealed container and refrigerate
There you have it. Four easy, natural milk-alternatives you can make yourself. Hope you enjoy!