3 months ago I would have rolled my eyes at the idea of making my own, it seemed like too much work. HOW WRONG I WAS!! It's WAY better, WAY cheaper and WAY less environmental impact. I am doing it in a basic Ninja smoothie blender, not even using an expensive fancy blender!
I live in the country and wanted to make my Iced Capp Smoothie (my obsession since Mid-Dec) over the holidays and was running out of Cashew milk and didn't want to make the trek to town and waste that gas just for that! I had some almonds in the cupboard, so I made my own. It was delicious. It was easy. I did it a few times to finish up my almonds.
THEN I bought cashews. OH MY!!! SOOOOO much easier, tastier & cheaper and I'm committed to continuing this! Cashews do not require straining, almonds do. I have way too many pulverized and blended almonds to use up in another way! If Almond Milk is your desired milk, read on, I will detail that too!
CASHEW MILK - THE STATS
50g of Cashews + 1 date + 3 mins effort + a basic Ninja smoothie blender = 4 cups of ultra creamy cashew milk! Seriously! I could easily have gotten 6-7 cups of cashew milk that would be closer to the store-bought, but the ultra-creamy is soooo good in my Iced Capp smoothie.
1kg bag of raw cashews from Costco was $14.99. Next, I will purchase them at the local bulk no waste store!
Cost for my 4 cups of ultra-creamy cashew milk was 75 cents or .20 per cup. For standard Cashew it would be about .13 per cup!
1 kg of Cashews will make 80 cups of ultra-creamy or 120+cups of standard!
The Cashew milk I was purchasing was approx $3.75 for 2 L (8 cups) ~.47 per cup!
The cost saving is significant although the environmental impact of not purchasing all those plastic-coated 2L cartons is MASSIVE, this is what will have me continue!
For standard cashew milk, each 1kg of cashews will eliminate 15 2L cartons from the world & save you $40!!
READY? ENOUGH BACK STORY ALREADY, let's do this!! INGREDIENTS
50g Raw Cashews - rinsed OR a quick soak and toss the water!
1 Date (optional but delicious!!)
~1/2 cup water (just enough to cover the nuts - too much water and you won't get as smooth of a blend with a cheap/basic blender!)
STEP 1: Combine ingredients in your magic bullet or similar. If you're in a hurry - Blitz for 30 seconds to break into small pieces. Let this sit a couple hours (to overnight) so the cashews soak. NOTE: you can simply soak the cashews whole if soaking overnight, although I've found that letting them soak AFTER breaking them down makes the process SO MUCH FASTER when you're in a time crunch!
STEP 2: AFTER SOAKING
Put your soaked cashew slurry back into blend mode for 2-3 mins. After it's silky smooth, pour into your glass jar you'll be storing it in, and add more water to your desired consistency. It's JUST THAT EASY!!
OR - Enjoy the thick Cashew Cream! Here's a shot of this deliciousness before I added extra water! This is 2 cycles of my Ninja Blender - so 2 mins! These were an overnight soak of whole cashews. The dark flecks are the dates. My daughter eats this by the spoonful! It makes a delish drizzling sauce too!
Almond milk is much the same process although the almonds don't all process down, so you need to strain your almond milk using thick layers of cheese cloth or a nut milk bag. I'd always soak a few hours and then TOSS the dirty water. Traditional recipes say 1 cup Almonds to 5 cup water but that seemed too wasteful to me. I tried 4 different ways to get as much Almond milk as possible. Using 1 cup of almonds I was able to get 8 cups of thin almond milk, by soaking and straining twice. I was still left with 3/4c of almond pulp to use up each time, and even when I used less water during my blend (and used my big but non-fancy blender) I never got an ultra-creamy result!
I also had this weird ugly soaking liquid that has never happened with my cashews, and this could be because I was not using organic almonds, although the cashews I'm using are not organic, yet. If you are going to make your own almond milk please consider using organic because non-organic almonds are tied to mass kills of bees due to chemical applications to the almonds - google it, you'll likely be as horrified as I was!!
Learn more here about soaking nuts and seeds!
Happy Cooking & Eating! XO Dana K
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