Almond Milk

Posted by on May 27, 2010 | 8 comments

1 & 1/2 cups raw almonds, soaked 8 – 12 hours
6 cups cold water
4 & 1/2 medjool dates (more or less)
3/4 tsp pure vanilla extract

  • Put everything in vitamix, turn on, immediately turn dial to 10, flip to high speed & blend for 2 minutes.

Done!

______________________________________________________________________________________

SIDE NOTES:

~ I use (& highly recommend) raw, unpasteurized almonds from www.livingnutz.com.

~ Soaking – Soak your almonds in room temperature water in a covered glass jar or bowl, on the counter. The water will become brown & sludgy looking. It’s good to rinse & refill the jar with fresh water once or twice during the 8 – 12 hour period if you think of it, but not mandatory. If you’re soaking over night (as I sometimes do), obviously don’t worry about that step. Also, if you’re around, give the jar a jiggle every now & then as you pass by to assure even water distribution among the almonds. Once the soak time is up, rinse thoroughly (discarding the soak water) & drain.

~ If not using a Vitamix, you should soak the dates (after you cut in half & remove pits) for about 30 mins. Processing dates is hard work for the average blender. After they’ve soaked, you might want to cut them into smaller pieces before blending (alternately, consider substituting honey, maple syrup, or other pliable sweetener). Also, if not using a Vitamix, it’s likely you’ll have to strain the milk.

 For those avoiding certain foods, this recipe falls into the following categories:

Dairy Free, Gluten Free, Egg Free, Nut Free, Sugar Free, Vegan, Grain Free, Raw

Keep in mind, if eating raw, you need to seek out truly raw (unpasteurized) almonds, and use vanilla bean instead of extract.  If eating gluten free, be careful choosing your vanilla extract.

~ If using vanilla bean instead of extract, the vitamix will blend skin & all. For other blenders, you’ll need to open up the vanilla bean and scrape out the inner, tiny, vanilla seeds.

~ Mason jars work well for storing the almond milk.

______________________________________________________________________________________

For those deeply entwined with the details (& controversies) of nutrition, read on. All others run the other way…..

~ Almond skins? Way back when…. I wouldn’t have even bothered trying to make almond milk in the first place if someone told me I had to peel the almonds. I’m telling you now that you don’t. Either way yields delicious, nutritious, almond milk. I used unpeeled almonds for over a year in the beginning. I started peeling by accident at some point, as some of the skins were practically hanging off after soaking (the skins slip off pretty effortlessly after they’re soaked – the longer they soak, the looser the skins). From that point on, each time I made almond milk, I’d peel more & more of the almonds, until somehow, I was peeling all of them. All you do is squeeze an almond between thumb & fingers & the almond usually pops right out. It takes me roughly 7 minutes to peel a heaping 1/2 cup of almonds. It didn’t go that fast in the beginning, but it’s like typing, the more you do it, the faster you get.

In all honesty, I didn’t want to bring up the almond skins, as it’s a confusing topic (and somewhat embarrassing admission). However, due to the video w/ peeled almonds in plain sight, I couldn’t very well ignore it. Being vague is not my style, obviously =) Although we may be the nutty minority, I know there are others who ponder these things…..so….this is for you……..

There are reasons both for and against peeling almonds.

Reasons to peel:

~ Peeling the almonds improves their digestibility….. Almond skins contain tannis (tanic acid) which are very astringent, can make the almonds difficult to digest, and can interfere with mineral & protein absorption.
~ Some feel the texture, color, and taste of the milk is better when using peeled almonds.
~ Peeled almonds will still sprout, and therefor still contain vital nutrients and enzymes.

Reasons not to peel:

~ Almonds are a whole food, and should be consumed as such – skin and all.
~ Studies have shown the antioxidant content of almonds to be concentrated within the skins.
~ Some feel that the tannis from the almond skins, for the most part, end up in the soak water which is drained & discarded (rinse your almonds well after soaking!).
~ Just not doing it – nope.

So there you have it. There really is no right or wrong. Do what works for you.


  • http://www.rawkingout2010.blogspot.com sharon

    Hi Diane! I make Almond milk every couple of days :) Looking forward to checking out your blog..I’ve been observing an (almost) all raw diet, and recently completed a 10 week class called Life Force Energy. It’s a class based on raw and living foods and the Hippocrates approach to optimum health. I’m going to be gearing my business more towards health educating in the near future :) I’ve also started a blog on my raw food preparation so check it out….http://www.rawkingout2010.blogspot.com :) Hope to catch up with you soon :) xoxo sharon

    • http://dianeschnier.wordpress.com Diane Schnier

      Sharon, if we lived closer, I’d imagine we’d be clinking glasses (filled w/ raw almond milk of course) in a toast to good health. Kudos to you! =)

  • Jesus Saves

    I just got a Vita Mix last month. I have been on line looking for sites with recipes, etc. I found yours! I love it! You cook much like I do, using dates as sweetener, making things from scratch, lots of veggies, and ALMOND MILK!! I tried store bought once, NASTY! I made this recipe, I peeled my almonds, and PERFECTION!!! I know it takes a lot of time to keep this site, work, thought, etc. with a family too! So thank you for doing this. This not only has blessed me, but my family and many others who view and use your ideas!
    May Jesus bless you and your family!

    • http://dianeschnier.wordpress.com Diane Schnier

      You are quite welcome. I’m so glad to know you find the website useful. I’m also very appreciative of your appreciation! I do donate quite a bit of my free time to sharing ideas and information that I consider important, and I must say, it does feel good to get such a warm thank you and pat on the back. It’s a wonderful reminder to me of how I make a difference, as well as encouragement to help me continue to strive. And now I have a lump in my throat! Thank you so much, and my very best to you and yours…..

  • Jesus Saves

    Hello Diane!
    Love my Vita Mix, have no idea why I waited so long to get one!

    I have a question about soaked almonds; those that the peel comes off really easy and the ones that the peel is so attached you have to use a finger nail or a knife to get it started to peel it off. The peel then comes off in pieces. I soak almonds with a bit of salt more then 12 hours, changing the soak water as the day goes on. I rinse them well.

    My first experience with making almond milk, the raw whole almonds had been in a vacuumed seal bag in the freezer for over a year. (My tummy does not like raw whole almonds). This older batch of almonds of course made WONDERFUL ALMOND MILK! Those peels came off like ZIP!! The raw almonds just purchased are not coming off (I soaked them). Now I am concerned that the skins will not do well for me in the Almond Milk.
    My question is this, do almonds that are ‘fresher’ then others have a stronger attachment with the skins, or is just hit and miss?

    Thank you again for all your great work here on the info, recipes, and answering our many questions!

    May Jesus bless you and your family!

    • http://dianeschnier.wordpress.com Diane Schnier

      That’s a good question. My almonds always turned out pretty much the same (in every batch, there were those that had loose skins that came off easily & a handful where it took more effort). I don’t think that storing the almonds longer will make a difference in how easily or difficult the peels come off (though I don’t know this for sure). The only thing for you to do is experiment & find what works for you. As mentioned, I made almond milk for about a year not peeling them at all without any problems, but of course, everyone is different. Try one batch leaving the skins on and see if it bothers your stomach. This way you’ll know for sure what works best for you. Good luck! :)

  • Barbara

    I saw your video a few weeks ago, but was only now able to find a location near enough for the medjool dates (got my Vitamix about seven weeks ago). Soaked the almonds overnight, popped them out of their skins and Yahoo! the recipe worked perfect! I am so pleased as I did not want to purchase the store-bought variety with the extra ingredients. This is also very empowering to know that I can make my own almond milk with only minimal ingredients! Thank you for all your experimenting to come up with this easy recipe!

    • http://www.realfoodtastesgood.com Diane

      You’re welcome! Very glad to know you’re enjoying the recipe. And congrats on your Vitamix purchase. I hope you enjoy yours as much as I do mine. I wish you the best… =)