Homemade almond milk is a treat. If you’ve only tasted the store-bought variety, now is the time for an upgrade. Store-bought almond milk is like a cookie from a vending machine; fresh almond milk is like a warm, gooey cookie straight from the oven. It’s a whole different experience.
Raw, unpasteurized almonds are absolutely preferred when making almond milk, as the nutritional content is superior and the pasteurization process hasn’t compromised the almonds. Currently, the vast majority of US-grown almonds are pasteurized, either through high-heat steam processing, or a highly toxic fumigation treatment with propylene oxide (which the EPA has categorized as a probable human carcinogen). It is estimated that 68% of US almonds have been treated with propylene oxide. Steam-pasteurizing the almonds has its own problems: Almonds which have been steamed at a temperature of 200 degrees are not only lacking the nutritionally beneficial enzymes, but the heat treatment causes the omega 3 fatty acids to oxidize, thus producing free radicals.
Raw, organic almonds are rich in non-oxidized fatty acids, biotin, the potent antioxidant vitamin E, manganese, riboflavin, magnesium, and zinc.
Here’s how to make your very own almond milk:
1. Soak raw, unpasteurized almonds overnight in clean water.
2. Drain and rinse thoroughly.
3. Pour the almonds into a blender.
4. Add water.
5. Add in a splash of sweetener (I prefer maple syrup or raw honey), a dash of salt, and a sprinkle of vanilla.
6. Blend well on high speed.
7. Secure the nut straining bag with a heavy-duty rubber band to the pitcher, then pour the blended liquid through the nut straining bag. Chill the beverage in the refrigerator until cold.
The milk should last in the fridge, covered, about three days.