Zero Waste (One-Ingredient) Nut Milk

Zero Waste (One-Ingredient) Nut Milk
4 Minute Read.

‘Nut Milk’.

It has a certain Je Ne Sais Quoi . . . Don’t You Think? Even better is the term: ‘Nut Bag’, which in actuality, has the ability to do so much more than squeeze the juice out of your nuts. All jokes aside, most of us grew up drinking milk, but over the years, we’ve either heard about the animal cruelty associated with it or learned about the not-so-hygienic byproducts of dairy milk. Or perhaps some of us have a dairy allergy, and simply can’t drink it. Whatever your reason for avoiding milk, there are tons of alternatives that have a lower carbon footprint, are cruelty free, and actually taste better than dairy milk.

Taking it one-step further, if you make your own plant-based (or nut) milk, it can be a completely zero waste process: from the store, to your kitchen, to the trash (or lack thereof). But how? By buying raw nuts from bulk bins at the grocery and using your own container to take them home, you eliminate all packaging. Once you’ve strained your milk, you can use the remaining pulp to make other things, such as almond flour or cashew cream. Nothing goes in the trash when making plant-based milk at home, and it only takes about 20 minutes.


But is it cheaper to make your own milk?

Yes. I did the cost comparison of making cashew milk vs buying it in the store. Here’s what I found: $1 will get you 10.7 oz of store-bought milk. That same dollar will get you 19.5 oz of homemade milk. That’s almost double the amount, and you know exactly what’s in it (ahem, nuts and water . . . that’s it!).

Here’s the breakdown:

  • $1 = 10.7 oz of milk (if purchasing So Delicious cashew milk at $2.99 p/32oz carton)
  • $1 = 19.5 oz of milk (if purchasing raw cashews in grocery bulk bins at $7.99 p/lb)

If you eat organic, its about the same price to make your own (at least in my grocery), but you are avoiding additives and packaging, which are two significant advantages. And in an attempt to cross all my T’s and dot all my I’s, I also compared the cost of store-bought dairy milk to making your own nut milk. $1 will get you 23 oz of dairy milk. That same dollar will get you 19.5 oz of homemade nut milk. The price difference isn’t as staggering as I thought it would be, and its important to keep in mind all of the antibiotics, hormones, and suffering that go into getting dairy milk on the shelves. I won’t go into detail here, but a quick google search will take care of it.


So what you’re saying is: it’s cheaper, cleaner, cruelty-free and zero waste to make my own nut milk ?!?! Let’s do this !

 

Image of a jar of nut milk surrounded by almonds on a marble countertop

One-Ingredient Nut Milk Recipe

Prep time: 20 mins       Total time: 20 mins

Yield:  A 64-ounce jar

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups raw nuts—soaked over night, drained and rinsed (almonds or cashews are ideal)
  • 5 cups water

Instructions:

  1. Place ingredients into a blender. Blend on high until smooth (approx. 45-90 seconds depending on the blender. If its a Vitamix, 40 seconds and you’re good to go)
  2. Pour mixture into a nut bag and strain into a bowl (if using cashews, you can skip this step altogether—the cashew pulp is so fine that it does not need to be strained)
  3. Store in the fridge (lasts for up to 2 weeks). Shake well before using.

Image of 3 containers which illustrate the steps for making nut milk


Here are my trusted nut-milk tools:

 

Image of a red Vitamix Blender

Vitamix Blender


Image of two nut milk bags and the paper envelope they are packaged inNut Milk Bags (for straining out the pulp)


Image of three Pyrex bowlsMixing Bowls (for collecting the filtered milk)


Image of a 64 ounce glass ball jar

Ball Jars (for storing the milk)


See My Eco-friendly Faves on Amazon


Notes:

  • You can add a few drops of vanilla essence if you’d like to sweeten it up.
  • If you have a bulk section in your grocery, you can buy the nuts without any packaging by bringing your own bag.
  • If using almonds, once you have squeezed out all the liquid, you can use the remaining pulp to make almond flour or smoothies, or you can simply add it to your morning yogurt/oatmeal.
  • This recipe is vegan, dairy-free, sugar-free & gluten-free
  • This recipe contains nuts

 

Image of almonds that spell out the word MILK on a marble countertop

milk and cookies anyone?

 

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