How To Make Plant-Based Milk At Home
With the growing popularity of plant-based living we are clearly headed towards a much needed world of equality for animals. However, this trend has several people confused as to what about the staple of most people’s diet – Milk? Milk has long been considered an essential source of calcium and protein, especially for vegetarians but it comes with it’s own serious downsides.
So, when switching to a plant-based diet, it is only a matter of finding the right options and making the right choices to rebalance your intake of nutrition. And the right options and choices lie in plant-based milks. Although, one shared complaint amongst all new vegans is the cost of such options. To remedy that, here are some easy recipes that you can use to make plant-based milks at home.
Soy milk is arguably the most popular alternative to regular milk and tastes almost the same. The texture is a bit lighter than the regular counterpart as soy milk is low in fat, but that’s a bonus for your health. Studies have proven that soy milk helps support muscle growth, organ health and is rich in Omega-3 fatty acids which the body cannot produce on its own. It’s a cinch to make at home and ends up being cheaper than milk.
- Soak soybeans in water overnight.
- Drain the soybeans, remove the outer skin and blend with water until almost smooth. Start with a cup and then keep adding more water until the consistency of milk is achieved.
- Strain the blended mixture using a cheesecloth or a fine-mesh strainer and pour it into a saucepan.
- Bring the collected soy milk to a boil and keep stirring. You may start to see some froth develop at the surface, you can skim that out and use it to make soy cream later if you like.
- Cook over medium heat until it starts to resemble milk. You can add more water if it gets too thick.
- Pour the soy milk into a jar and let it cool. The flavor might be strong so you can add some cane sugar, vanilla extract or blend some dates in for some flavor.
Probably the next best thing after soy, some like Almond Milk more than soy milk because of the creamier texture. Almond milk is loaded with Vitamin E, which is an important neural antioxidant and it has more calcium than regular milk.
- Soak almonds in water for 1-2 days.
- Peel the skin off the almonds by hand or with an almond peeler. Make sure all the skin comes off.
- Blend the white almonds with water and add more until the consistency of milk is achieved.
- Strain the mixture with a cheesecloth or fine mesh strainer to remove the almond pulp. You can save the pulp and use it to make your desserts or cookies healthier in another recipe.
- Pour the almond milk into a jar and let it cool in the fridge. It should last well for 2-3 days.
Cashew milk has a sweet, creamy flavor profile that very strongly resembles milk. It has a softer mouthfeel than almond or the other kinds of nut milk and is naturally sweet due to the cashews. Though it tastes incredible, cashew milk is less popular because of the relatively higher oxalate content. Consuming too many cashews can lead to chronic health problems and kidney stones. Nonetheless, it’s a recipe you can make once in a while if you’re ever missing real milk but don’t want to cheat.
- Soak raw cashews in water for at least 4 hours.
- Drain and rinse cashews and blend with 4 cups of water. The cashews may still be hard towards the core so start the blender on slow and speed it up as the creamy mixture starts to form. Ensure that the cashews are completely pulverized
- Remove and strain the mixture with a mesh cloth.
- Store the mixture in a covered container in the refrigerator. It should remain good for 3-4 days.
Coconut milk tastes very close to milk and has a sweet nutty flavor to it. It’s also an incredibly versatile cooking ingredient that goes in many traditional Asian recipes like Khao Suey.
- Add freshly grated coconut and a cup of water to a blender and blend until a smooth consistency is achieved.
- Remove the mixture and strain out the coconut mesh using a cheesecloth. You’ll likely have a lot of leftover pulp because coconut takes time to dissolve with water. Just add it back to the blender with some more water and keep repeating the process.
- Pour your coconut milk into a closed container and store it in the fridge. Use within a week.
Making plant-based milk at home is easy and cost-friendly. Plants are an equally rich source of protein and in some cases, an even richer source for other nutrients like Calcium and Vitamin E. Going plant-based has never been easier.