Nut milks can offer some great variety, that requires minimal effort to make. You will need four pieces of “equipment”
- Nut bag
- 1 litre mason jar
When making nut milk you have the option of making the milk very thick and creamy, or a more thinned out milk, based on your preference and purpose.
Why I make my own nut milk
In recent years, with so many turning to healthier alternatives, and with the increase number of people suffering from lactose intolerance, almond milk has become all the rage. Various almond milk options are readily available in grocery store chains, and now majority of coffee shops offer almond milk as a milk substitute for your latte. Seeing the demand to more sustainable and healthier food is great, and the fact that large enterprises are making these options available shows the large shift that it has made. Even though these products are so accessible I still prefer to make my own and here are 3 reasons why:
#1 Fresh is best
“… to avoid the nut milk going rancid preservatives are added to the nut milk to maintain freshness…”
When making nut milk at home the expected shelf life stored in the fridge milk is about 5-7 days. When looking at nut milks at the grocery store you will see that the expected shelf life can be 1 month (if not more). This is a concern for me because ultimately nuts are comprised of healthy fats, and fats easily turn rancid. In order, to avoid the nut milk going rancid, preservatives are added to the nut milk to maintain freshness so that the produce can leave production, travel various miles to your grocery store and then home with you. By now we have all heard how abundant and harmful preservatives can be, so I find it best to reduce my exposure where I can. Since making your own nut milk does not take much time or effort, this is an easy place to reduce your preservative exposure.
#2 More nourishment
“Oxidized fat or damage fat can be detrimental to your health because the molecular structure of the fat has been altered.”
By making your own nut milk you are assuring yourself that you are selecting the most premium ingredients, that are clean, and non damaged. As I stated above fats easily turn rancid. Fats become rancid in states of light, heat and exposure to air. When you think about the production of commercial nut milk there are several touch points that will expose the nut milk to heat, light and air all increasing the chance of damaged fats. Damaged fats can have a very detrimental effect on our health and should be avoided at all cost. Avoiding damaged fats is the reason why we should always be using raw nuts, instead of roasted. (…of course I’m going to give a bit of a science lesson now)
Oxidized fat or damage fat can be detrimental to your health because the molecular structure of the fat has been altered. Fat is used in many areas of the body such our cell membranes and our brain! You will eat fat and then the liver will breakdown the fat into building blocks and ship them to various areas in the body that are in need. When damage fats are present the body will still use these facts to build your internal tissues, however this will have consequences as nutrients and wastes will be able to enter and exit properly. In addition, your brain is made up of 12% fat (mainly cholesterol), the second largest component after water (77%). One use for fat in the brain is as a protection around your nerve cells. The fat will ensure that nerve signalling are transmitted at a speedy rate, as this governs your every thought, movement and sensation. (yes, healthy fat is darn well important!)
The effort to make your own nut milk is so minimal that the potential risk of damaged fats is just not worth it!
“Each type of nut will offer it’s own abundance of nutrients”
Have you ever heard the saying variety is the spice of life? Well in this case, variety in nut milks is the spice for your taste buds!!! (Lame, I know- but really there are so many options!!)
Why should you be limited to only nut milks accessible in the grocery store? By making your own nut milk you are able to try so many different flavours such as coconut, cashew, macadamia, brazil nuts, and even a combination of nuts. Not only is this variety great for your taste buds, but also very beneficial for your body. Each type of nut will offer it’s own abundance of nutrients that will not be available in another, and this will provide your body will an array of building blocks to choose from.
And now finally, what you have been waiting for….
How to make your own nut milk at home
There are 5 easy steps to follow:
- Choose your favourite nut and soak 1 cup in filtered water. Follow the Activating Nut Guide below.
- By soaking the nuts in water and salt, you are making the nuts more easily digestible. The soaking process will break down and remove the phytic acid, so you are able to absorb all the nutty goodness.
- Drain and rinse the nuts until water runs clear.
- Blend your nuts, water, and ingredients in a blender
- When deciding on a nut to water ratio, keep in mind that when you use more water is used you will get a larger volume of milk but it will be less creamy and thick consistency. You may want to make a less creamy consistence when using the milk in smoothies. This will be more cost effective, and less calorie dense
- Thick and creamy milk use 1:2 nut to water ratio. i.e. 1 cup of nuts, to 2 cups of filtered water. Great for lattes, and drinks.
- Thinner milk use 1:6 nut to water ratio. i.e. 1 cup of nuts, to 6 cups of filtered water. Great for smoothies, and in recipes.
- I find a happy medium is to use a 1:4 nut to water ratio. Alternatively, you can make the thick and creamy milk, and then dilute with filtered water when making smoothies and recipes. i.e. Use 1/2 cup of creamy, thick nut milk to 2-3 cups of filtered water.
- Place your nut bag in a bowl (to catch the liquid) and pour your nut milk into the nut bag. Using your strong bicep power, squeeze all the liquid from the nut pulp in the nut bag. (Not what to do with the extra almond grounds? Why not try this scrumptious cookie recipe, you won’t be disappointed!)
- Using a fennel, fill your mason jar with the nut milk and store in the fridge for 5-7 days.
Try this delicious Cashew Milk
I would love to hear from you when you give these tips a try!