Almond milk is creamy and flavorful, a delicious addition to any lactose-free kitchen. However, in El Salvador at least, its scarcity and high price can often make it a coveted yet unattainable good. But it doesn’t have to be this way! With this easy recipe, you too can enjoy this beverage from the comfort of your own home without investing much time or money.
Contrary to popular belief, you don’t need complicated tools or exotic ingredients to make almond milk. And although the initial investment in a large bag of almonds can seem like a lot (from $12-$18), the savings are incredible. Even if you’re making almond milk once a week, a large bag can last up to 3 months or more. My only advice for this recipe is that you set aside enough time to prepare it; if you want to add almond milk to your morning cereal, leave the nuts soaking in water the night before. Afterwards, the active part of the preparation process only takes about 5 minutes.
Careful: since this milk isn’t pasteurized, it should be consumed within 3 to 5 days, so you’ll have to keep making it 😉 That’s also why I recommend making it in small weekly batches, unless you happen to live with lots of people who happen to drink a lot of almond milk – otherwise it’ll go bad 😦
You’ll need the following:
- 1/2 cup of almonds, whole or sliced
- 3 cups of water
- 1/2 teaspoon of vanilla extract
- sweetener to taste*
- cinnamon to taste (optional)
- A blender
- A loosely woven cloth, cheesecloth, or a nut milk bag in order to drain the mixture**
* I use stevia but brown sugar, agave nectar, honey or really anything you prefer also works
**I swear that when I started making almond milk at home I only used a bit of leftover cloth from a sewing project and it worked perfectly. Once I even had to use a strainer and the milk came out grainy but it turned out fine!
- Use some of the water (about 1/2 a cup) to soak the almonds for 4 to 12 hours before using preparing your milk. The longer the almonds soak, the creamier your milk will be.
- After they’ve soaked, throw out the almond water and rinse them in a little more water.
- Combine all your ingredients (almonds, water, vanilla, cinnamon and sweetener) in the blender and let it run for at least 30 seconds, if not a full minute. Honestly, the quantities here are just a suggestion; you can add less water so that the milk is thicker, for example. You’re also welcome to experiment with other seasonings like strawberry extract, cloves or nutmeg.
- Pour the mix from the blender slowly through your cloth or bag, allowing the milk to drain into a large, deep bowl. Save the leftover almond paste in the freezer for use in future recipes.
- That’s it! Enjoy your milk in a smoothie, with granola or tea.