Almond Milk

When it comes to milk, I’m fairly comfortable in my present state of readiness. I finally discovered a couple of palatable powdered milk options and so I’ve stocked up on that when it’s on sale, which brings its cost down to about 99 cents a gallon. It takes up quite a bit of space; but given the fact that I can make yogurt, ricotta cheese, sour cream, and buttermilk from it, I’ve been fine with that requirement.  I was drinking my powdered milk regularly and using it for all of my cooking and baking needs until I read “The Untold History of Milk” by Ron Schmid.  I became a convert to drinking whole, raw milk from that time on.  

It’s more expensive, of course, and it won’t be available to me in the midst of a shortage on food or some other similar scenario, but I believe that I’m taking advantage of the health benefits of raw milk while I can, and I’ll rely on my alternatives later—assuming that I don’t ever get in a position in which I can have my own dairy cow.  However, recently I was discussing dairy-free options with an astute friend of mine, who’s fiercely loyal to a world of nutrition. She and her family live mostly dairy free and she makes her own almond milk. She offered to share some of the fruits of her labor with a group that I was a part of, but I told her that I felt bad asking her to do that because I was certain that almond milk was so costly. But boy am I glad that she set me straight! I was shocked when I realized that I had a completely wrong impression of the expense required to make one’s own almond milk!  Did you know that only ¾ cups of raw almonds are needed in order to make just under a gallon of almond milk? Who would have thought that given the high price we pay for almond milk off the shelves of the grocery store?  So today I thought I’d share with you what I learned so that you have yet one more option in addressing this aspect of self-reliance.

First of all, remember that I’m all about multi-purpose/multi-solution items. If I have to take up space with a particular item, I really try to make sure that it will meet several needs in order for me to give it a piece of rent-free living space. Raw almonds fit the bill in that regard. They are so incredibly nutritious when sprouted; they are an easy snack, and I use them frequently in cooking. They are also a great gluten-free option for folks who really struggle with that.  But hey, now I’ve learned how easy they are to use in making a wonderful alternative to regular milk! As an added bonus, almond milk doesn’t come with the pasteurization, homogenization, chemicals and hormones pumped into it, that’s so characteristic of our mainstream milk. So it meets that important criteria for me as well—which I can’t say of my powdered milk supply—unfortunately. In the past when I’ve been able to get the cartons of almond milk for just pennies periodically, thanks to coupons, I have used the almond milk in my smoothies and on my hot cereal. I personally think it tastes great in many of the way’s I’ve used it, but it’s not something that I personally would want to drink straight with a piece of pie or a cookie. Fortunately, I don’t have those moments of indulgence often enough to feel put out and in discovering the price factor, I’m more than happy to find other ways to use it successfully as well!

Frankly, you don’t need me to give you a recipe or instructions on how to make almond milk.  There are plenty of folks much more seasoned than my “newbie” self that are readily accessible on the internet.  If you do a search on You Tube, you’ll find some very competent persons demonstrating how to make the almond milk with nothing more than soaked almonds (until they have doubled in size—which means more nutrition as well) boiling water, a blender and some cheesecloth—note to self, get more cheesecloth. My friend actually has a machine that does all of the blending and draining for you so other than the time required to soak her almonds, it is very little effort for her.  Such a gizmo may end up on my next Christmas list depending on how much wattage it uses. I’m sure I could see my way to allocate hard-to-come-by electricity in the event of a power outage to use the contraption periodically—especially with the trade off of the quality nutrition. Additionally, there are several experienced bloggers who have written plenty on the topic of making almond milk as well as a whole lot of great ways to use it.  A simple search on the internet yielded perfect instructions in the very first links that popped up. So I recommend you check out those options when you can and then actually practice making it once or twice BEFORE you are in a position in which you need to live off of it.  You don’t want to stress yourself mentally in the midst of a crisis when you could have made an easy task familiar and non-taxing with a little bit of practice and practical application.

Personally, I’m just tickled to find out that something which I already love to indulge in as a snack and in casseroles and such, can so easily meet some of my “milk” needs for such a nice price. I’m presently purchasing raw almonds regularly at my local Winco for an average price of $3.89 a pound.  The key in all of this is purchasing RAW almonds. Only raw almonds will sprout and produce the kind of almond milk that you want. I understand that acquiring raw almonds may be easier said than done for some of you because the “initialed powers that be” have seen fit in their infinite wisdom to process most of our almonds for us.  But if you’re unable to find some raw almonds locally, there are dozens of options for delivery, or perhaps even with a little bit of driving which you can put into your schedule on a quarterly basis. Either way, I’m excited to have learned of this solution and hope you are too.


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Comments

Thanks for the almond milk note - my Grandson is lactose intolerant. Also, where are you getting your raw milk? I would love to be able to switch over. I am in Northern Davis County.

Real Foods, but you may actually have some dairies up there where you can get it.

I heard that California has recently made a law that all almonds are now processed in some way, making them no longer completely "raw" (passing under a laser because they're scared of E. Coli). Is this true? Can I really trust the "raw" almonds sold in grocery stores?

It's actually an interesting question. I was able to get a hold of some FDA statistics a long time ago when I first started using raw almonds. And the occurrences of e.coli were SO low I couldn't believe it was even a fuss. But then I researched who funded the study...it's was a private organization that made it's money based on eliminating potential viruses and bacteria from the food system. Gee. I wonder what conclusion THAT study is going to have?
If you do research on e.coli and from where it stems, it's awfully challenging to imagine how almonds would be in the same realm as that virus.
Anyway, I get my almonds from Winco and yes, they do sprout so they haven't been rendered useless.

Kellene,
I have been using almond milk for quite a while now, but it is the Silk brand. The label doesn't list any bad things on it. I am dairy intolerant too, so knowing how to make my own almond milk will be wonderful. Thanks for another great idea.

my hubby like the almond milk. Silk is too sweet for my taste, so I use it in smoothies. Can make it with my Blendtec It is well worth the bucks it costs. From nut milks to rice milk. Makes great smoothies, and even grinds wheat for flour, then can makes a mean pizza dough in it!

"I’m presently purchasing raw almonds regularly at my local Winco for an average price of $3.89 a pound."

These are the pasteurized ones, right? My understanding was that truly raw almonds cannot be sold at grocery stores unless they're imported from outside California.

Robyn at www.greensmoothiegirl.com does a group buy each year, and the primary purpose of the buy is to get unpasteurized almonds. The 2010 group buy just ended, but it's good to keep in mind for next year. This year the almonds were $3.65/pound through the group buy. Last year we got them for $3/pound.

What is the recipe you found that uses 3/4 cup almonds for almost a gallon of almond milk? The lowest ratio I've ever seen is 1 cup almonds to 4 cups water. Does the recipe you found have something else in it to allow you to use less almonds? It gets a little expensive using the 1:4 ratio, though still cheaper than grass-fed raw milk or store-bought almond milk!

My Winco is not in California. And yes, they are unpasteurized, I BELIEVE, because I've had no problem sprouting them.
The recipe is from the friend that I refer to in the article.

Kellene,
This is an issue I've studied for years, since the pasteurization law went into effect nearly 4 years ago. I'm not just spouting off here.

If you're talking about a Winco in Utah, I can tell you with 99% certainty that you are buying pasteurized almonds. Almonds imported from Spain are the non-pasteurized option, and they are usually $12/pound or so. All almonds will swell up when soaked, pasteurized or not. But the almond would not actually grow. It is very difficult to test this, because it's very difficult to get an almond to produce an actual sprouted tail. It usually requires soil and specific moisture and temperature conditions. Some people have had success when almonds accidentally dropped into their compost pile :-D It's nothing like sprouting wheat, that's for sure!

Can you give us the recipe?

I don't doubt that you know what you're talking about Katie. That's why I said that "I BELIEVE" that they are not pasteurized. If they sprout for me, then I'm comfortable with not having to spend atrocious sums of money and still end up with nutrition. The ones I purchase at Winco DO sprout for me.
I didn't offer a "Preparedness Pro Recipe" because I haven't made it all by myself--my friend has and she rattled off what she did. This is why I directed folks to do a search on the internet. Easy enough.
I'm going to have to get some information from you on this pasteurization stuff. Sounds like another part of the duplicitous world that needs to be further explored.

Wait a sec... how do you know they've sprouted? You've gotten actual growing tails from them? As far as I understand that's the only way to know.

Yes indeedy--cute little tails. This is from the very first batch I ever purchased at Winco. (It was on sale so I bought lots!) :-)

Can you send me a picture of your almond sprouts/tails? I have never seen anyone be able to grow them before, and I am very excited about this!

I read this exchange about whether the raw almonds from the store are really raw and sprout-able: "If you’re talking about a Winco in Utah, I can tell you with 99% certainty that you are buying pasteurized almonds...All almonds will swell up when soaked, pasteurized or not. But the almond would not actually grow. It is very difficult to test this, because it’s very difficult to get an almond to produce an actual sprouted tail." -Katie

I was confused and curious. I went and bought some raw almonds at Winco and soaked them in an attempt to sprout them. I can tell you that right now I am looking at little green tails on my almonds. Katie... maybe you should get some almonds from Winco and try it! :)

Thanks Megan. I get "challenged" on here quite a bit and lately I've just decided to heck with it. I already work plenty hard without having to "take pictures", cite every single source like I would have to do for some thesis statement etc. So I just ignore them now. So I greatly appreciate another person's point of view. Just for that, I'm sending YOU a sprouting kit! Message me through our contact page and give me your address and I"ll send it off to you. Thanks!

Yes, Kellene, I was excited to read the article to find the steps and the recipe your friend used, but found neither except for a "Do a search on YouTube." Could you follow up with an actual recipe/instructions? Thank you SOOO much!

I guess I'm going to have to refund the money that you paid for accessing this site, huh?
There are times when I provide detailed information if I feel that I have a component to offer that isn't clear or covered already abundantly; but there are some times in which I feel it's best to go the self-reliant route and encourage folks to look for themselves.

Where is a recipe?

This sounds so easy that I am going to try this. Thanks for another easy do it yourself idea.

How do you store your raw almonds? Long term and short term,
thankyou

In a 1/2 gallon mason jar using the foodsaver attachment to seal them properly.

Kellene,
I love almond milk, and soaked almonds. Yummy! I have a question that is off topic, but I was not sure where to post it, I hope you don't mind. I just listened to your radio show from last night. I was wondering if you take the cleanse continuously or if it is good to go off it occasionally. If so how long on and how long off?
Thanks so much.

Given everything that we are exposed to daily, I do it daily. It has so many other positive side effects it's just as important to me as my vitamins.

I think the fear of Raw food has been way overblown but sadly it is getting a lot harder to find these types of raw foods.

Thank you, Kellene! I've been buying the expensive almond milk and look forward to making my own. I've been out of town and am just catching up with your blog and broadcast and want to thank you for all your work and all the info you give us. I feel God led me to you and that you're blessing me (and many others) so much. My church counsels us to be self sufficient but up until recently I thought that food storage was about all I could do for preparedness since I'm in the suburbs and can't move to either Utah or a farm. So I appreciate that you address much more than food storage! I finally started the liver cleanse and am excited to see what happens (I'll let you know in a few weeks). Because of you, I'm sprouting, saving money on food with my food saver, taking DE, hopefully getting healthier and definitely becoming more informed and more independent. So please ignore the critics (they can hang out elsewhere) and know that what you're doing is very much appreciated and I hope the blessings you bring us return to you too!

kellene - how do you make sour cream from powdered milk? I haven't heard of that one.

Just do an internet search on that Jeannette. There are plenty of options.

So grateful to find that you can make your own almond milk~ DH finds that almond milk sits better than cow's milk for him and me being on a low carb way of eating appreciates that it is much lower in carbohydrates.
Off to search for the how to's!

Love almond milk. Looked for an alternate because of an allergy to milk. Bought a machine to make soy milk but its hard to find soybeans that are not scientifically polluted. lol Will now try to find more good almonds. Have just planted two trees but they are tiny and just hope they make it through this winter. Thank you

There is a machine? That will make almond milk for you?!?!? Tell me more about this I must know more! Thanks!

Have you any research on what brand machine is best for making soy/rice almond milk?
Also, regarding milk, you may want to read "The China Study" by Colin Campbell.

My friend who got me on this in the first place says "SoyaPower www.soyapower.com They now have a SoyaPower Plus model that looks even fancier!"

California is the major producer of almonds. You can buy 100 pounds of raw, unpasteurized almonds from a grower at a time. The grower technically is supposed to keep track of whom they sell to. I put all of my almonds into a second refridgerator. I make my own almond milk. I use 1 c. soaked almonds and 4 c. water, blend them in my vitamix, and use a jelly bag to strain the milk. You can squeeze the bag to get the remaining milk. You can dehydrate the remaining solids to use as a flour. I am planning on planting a few almond trees this spring so I have my own supply of raw almonds! Stores can sell almonds that have been heat treated and still call them raw. You may still get those almonds to sprout. They don't have to form a tail, just open one up, and see if the sprout is beginning to form.

Now they call pasturized almonds 'natural almonds' and so far, only the Spanish Almonds still have legal right to say 'raw' on the label. I don't have a Winco, or I'd go ask em if they are California or Spanish Almonds!

I do know that California is fighting the pasturization law, as they are loosing money on people looking for truely 'raw' almonds. Thank you for all your work!

Anyone who has been hospitalized with bloody diarrhea and excruciating abdominal pain lasting for weeks, caused by eating raw nuts contaminated with salmonella or e.coli, will not likely eat another raw nut or recommend doing so. Just google salmonella + any nut name, or e coli and any nut name, to see how common these epidemics have been, and how many people have died or been permanently harmed from these illnesses. That's why responsible nut farmers and packagers pasteurize nuts.

*sigh* I'm sorry, but that argument just doesn't hold any water with me any more than the gloom and doomers' diatribe does about raw milk. I am in full support of NON-pasteurized milk and any other kind of non-messed-around-with foods. If you look at the actual evidence as reported by CDC, USDA, and FDA , there are actually 100 TIMES more cases of people DYING from consuming or taking foods and drugs that are wholeheartedly approved by the FDA and USDA than the few instances of someone suffering from food poisoning due to non-pasteurized foods--and even then, such instances as to the ACTUAL cause of injury or death is questionable as it's easily manipulated to reflect what the Big Money wants it to reflect. The "Beware of Non-Pasteurized" marketing campaign is the same ole mantra that they try to use about firearms in the home; attempting to scare parents away from owning firearms because of the miniscule number of children dying or suffering other physical harm from a firearm accident when in fact more children actually die or suffer harm from 5 gallon round buckets than do from firearms. More teenage boys die or are injured from high school football injuries than from a firearm accident in the home, yet you'll never hear the mass media or any politician attempt to eliminate the sacred cow of high school football. The fact of the matter is, no child dies from a firearm accident. They die because firearm safety rules are not adhered to. The same can be said of beneficial food such as raw nuts and raw milk.

I have a line on unpasteurized, sprouted, organic almonds. however, they are dehydrated. Will these almonds produce milk? I'm quite the newbie to this, and in the past I've used store bought almonds... unbeknownst to me they were pasteurized... even though the label said "raw".
Either way I will be ordering them, but would love to get some feedback before I potentially waste a LB of almonds.

Nope, I wouldn't expect them to produce milk even after you reconstitute them. I have found unpasteurized almonds at Winco for really good prices throughout the year. If you've got on near you it would be a good resource.

Anyone know if Costco almonds are considered raw or not? I buy them and freeze them.

They are not. You can still get the milk from them, but I prefer to use unprocessed almonds. I get mine from Winco.

Thanks....next time I'm in Utah County I am going to go check out Winco and find some raw nuts.

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