It’s about time I post this recipe… I had been thinking about making my own almond milk for some time, and finally last week I decided to give it a try. The result? Spectacular. Amazing. Creamy. A Creamy-Vanilla-Caramel dream (did I mention there’s no caramel added?). This recipe makes about one and a half litres or 7 cups which I was sure would last me a week or so…boy was I wrong. This milk is so much creamier than any other almond milk I’ve bought… it’s a treat just on it’s own! This week I’ve had it on top of my “The Farmer’s Grain-Free Muesli“, I’ve used it in my RAW “Chocolate Sun Warrior Fudge Brownies“, and I’ve mixed it in my daily protein shakes (which make them taste more like a dessert)… yes, it’s time to make another batch!
Now before I decided to take on the challenge of making homemade milk (which sounds hard just hearing the words), I thought it was going to be a time-consuming mission. Not at all. This ended up being such a simple recipe, I am happy to say I now plan to make this on a weekly basis (unless I keep going through it at the rate I am, it may end up being more like a daily one)… did I mention the benefits too?
- Less expensive then the store bought stuff
- Better for you because there is no bad stuff added
- Tastes 100% more delicious and creamy then what you buy at the store
- and it’s “Homemade” – which means whenever you have guests over who you decide to share a glass of your creamy-dreamy-almond milk with, you have full bragging rights.
Another benefit of making your own almond milk is, you also get the tastiest almond meal that you have ever tried, which you can then use in other recipes like gluten-free/grain-free cakes, cookies, protein bars, etc.. and that stuff isn’t cheap either! I don’t like to waste food, so I love that I can use every bit of the ‘left-overs’ for this recipe in lots of other recipes.
I should mention that you will need a cheese cloth bag to use as a strainer. I have tried using a wire mesh one which was messy and clumsy, and for this recipe it makes it so much easier to have a bag that you can squeeze and strain every last bit of that milky goodness out of the almond pulp! Plus, it reminded me of the good ol’ cow-milking days…I always liked milking cows. Anyways...
Homemade Creamy Caramel Almond Milk
Dietary Info: GF/DF/SF/PA/V (and vegan)
Makes 1.6 Litres/7 cups
- 2 c. raw almonds
- 4 medjool dates, pitted
- 7 c. filtered water
- 2 tsp. vanilla bean paste or 2 whole vanilla pods, chopped
- 1 tsp. cinnamon
- 1/4 tsp. nutmeg
- a few pinches of sea salt, to taste
- Place almonds and dates in a large bowl and cover with 2-3 inches of filtered water. Cover and let soak overnight. (I’ve done this when I’m not feeling as patient, and got away with soaking for 2 hours, but if you can plan ahead for this it’s better to have the full soaking time.)
- Rinse almonds and pitted dates under water, and transfer to blender. Add 7 cups unfiltered water and vanilla bean paste (or pods) and blend on high for about a minute, or until creamy and smooth.
- Place two bowls side by side on counter – one large, one medium. Take the large bowl and place your cheese-cloth bag over it. Carefully pour milk from blender into the cheese-cloth bag. Holding the top of the bag securely, carefully begin to squeeze the bag, allowing all of the milk to come out of the cloth. I found that starting my ‘squeeze’ near the bottom, then working to the middle, and then finally the top allowed me to get as much milk out as possible, but just do what works for you. When you’ve squeezed all the milk from the pulp in your cheese-cloth, empty almond pulp to smaller mixing bowl. I repeated this process in batches, about 3 times for this recipe. It just made it easier having a smaller amount of pulp that I could fit my hand around to squeeze.
- Once you’ve finished straining all the milk from the pulp, transfer the milk to your (now empty) blender.
- Add cinnamon, nutmeg and a couple pinches of sea salt (I used 1/8 tsp.) and blend on a low setting until spices are well combined.
- Pour into a large glass jar, preferably one that has a lid, as you will need to shake this each time before serving as the milk settles and separates when it’s been sitting for awhile. Refrigerate. Will last 3-5 days (if you don’t drink it all by then!).
Enjoy over your favorite muesli, granola, serve with homemade cookies, or use in your recipes!
(almond pulp before)
Here’s whats leftover. About 2 cups of almond pulp. Want to know how to make almond meal or almond flour out of this? It’s super easy.
- Preheat oven to 125 degrees (about 50 degrees Celsius).
- Spread almond pulp on an un-greased baking sheet in a thin, even layer. I do this with my fingers, it’s easier to break up any chunks that way.
- Place the tray in oven, and bake at low temperature for between 2-4 hours. Check at about 2 hours, give it a stir and break up any chunks you may have missed and check on dryness. If not completely dry, return pan to oven another hour or two.
- Once almond pulp has dehydrated completely, place the dry almond pulp/meal in food processor and blend until a fine flour texture.
- That’s it! Store in an airtight container with your other flours and use it in recipes as you wish. (If you haven’t already, take a nice big whiff of the flour before you put it away… it smells amazing, and tastes just as good too!)
(almond pulp after baking)
(almond pulp after baking & blending in food processor = almond meal/flour!)
Special Dietary Needs:
Gluten Free/Grain Free = GF
Dairy Free = DF
Sugar Free = SF
Paleo Approved = PA
Vegetarian = V
The above codes for specific dietary requirements will be found under each recipe title.