I Tried Making Homemade Almond Milk in My Juicer… And You Should Probably Read This Before You Do, Too

Photo: Stocksy/Nadine Greeff
With plant-based milks, like almond and oat, gaining more popularity on (what feels like) a minute-to-minute basis, finding new ways to make it at home sounds like a brilliant plan. You can save money and time when you DIY, and you never have to worry about finding yourself out of stock when your dairy-free friends stop by for coffee.

However, not all homemaking methods are equally effective. Just like an “As Seen on TV” ad, my expectations for making homemade almond milk in my juicer were high, but the reality was a bit more humbling. In a recent TikTok video by @shaynateresetaylor, the food blogger makes a large batch of fresh almond milk in a few easy steps using her juicer. The kitchen gadget is shown pulverizing the almonds into a silky-smooth beverage that appears to rival any store bought version.

As I recently invested in a new fancy juicer myself, I knew I had to give it a go. To embark on my homemade almond milk-making journey, I gathered my supplies together (just two ingredients: almonds and water) with high hopes that this would be an easy, breezy situation. Although I did achieve making almond milk in my juicer, I’ll admit it was a battle between expectation versus reality. However, that’s not to say it was a futile experience altogether. With one critical modification and a few key pointers, you’ll quickly (and not-so-messily) be on the right track to making delicious homemade almond milk in mere minutes.

Before you get started, don’t make the same mistake that I made

Although I have a powerful juicer for extracting the liquids from fruits and vegetables, my particular model isn’t the most nut milk-friendly design—which I learned the hard way. Basically, the key to making almond milk at home is all in nailing the fine emulsion created by blending soft, soaked almonds with water at a high speed. Unlike Shayna Taylor’s handy-dandy machine, which features a convenient valve that releases any juice or liquid into a container upon opening, mine created a lovely pool of water that seeped all over my counter instead (yay!).

What could I have done differently, you may ask? After I was done cleaning up the mess, I quickly (and rather rashly) concluded that I should have just used a different type of juicing machine. However, upon further reflection, I realized that this all could have been easily avoided. Instead of pouring the almonds and water into the hopper with the machine off and letting it sit for a little too long, I tried working in smaller batches and safely kept the machine running as I added more and more. The result? Fresh almond milk. The moral of the story is to do a quick trial run to make sure what type of juicer you’re working with to avoid any kitchen mishaps.

@shaynateresetaylor Whats your fav vegan milk? #almondmilk #almondmilkrecipe #nutmilkrecipe #makingmilk #almondmilkplease #oatmilk #veganmilk #juicingrecipes #dairyfree ♬ Gimme! Gimme! Gimme! (A Man After Midnight) - ABBA

So, how do you actually make almond milk in a juicer?

Taylor starts the recipe by soaking raw almonds overnight in cool water. The next morning, she strains and rinses them before transferring the almonds to a large bowl. Next, she adds cool filtered water in a one-to-one ratio of water to almonds and adds a ladleful at a time into the juicer’s hopper while it’s on. As the almonds are juiced, one container collects the pulp; meanwhile, the other is filled with fresh milk.

To ensure the milk is super smooth and clump-free, Taylor transfers the mixture into a nut bag (you can also use a clean kitchen towel) over a large bowl to strain any small particles. Lastly, once the milk is ready, she transfers it into a sealed container and stores it in the refrigerator to enjoy all week long.

A few key pointers for making this recipe a success

1. Soaking the almonds is imperative, but if you forget, try this easy workaround

Although Taylor recommends soaking raw almonds overnight for the best results, if you forget to do this vital step in advance, there’s no need to worry. You can easily do a “quick-soak method” by submerging the nuts in very hot water for about one to two hours. If you have even less time to spare, you can also bring a medium pot of water and almonds to a boil. Once the surface begins to bubble rapidly, turn it off, and let it sit for 15 minutes before draining, rinsing, and juicing as you would do with the almonds soaked overnight.

2. Give it a flavor boost with spices, vanilla, or dates

If you’re looking to take things up a notch, Taylor suggests adding flavor-boosting ingredients like dates, cocoa powder, or berries to add a little pizzazz to this simple recipe. I added a bit of agave, cinnamon, vanilla extract, and a pinch of pink Himalayan salt for my batch.

3. You should definitely use the almond "pulp" to make baked goods

By now you may be wondering what you should do with all of the pulp. Good news: This BOGO recipe produces fresh almond milk *and* pulp that can be used to make delicious almond flour, like this recipe by Minimalist Baker, for making freshly-baked gluten-free goods like cookies, crackers, and bread. Bye, bye, bye, food waste.

4. No juicer? No problem

Last but not least: If you don't have a juicer, a high-speed blender will work just fine. Instead of the juicer separating the pulp for you, a blender will require a little more hand-squeezing power to wring out the milk using a cheesecloth or nut bag. However, the results will be almost the same.

How much money do you really save with homemade almond milk?

Now, let’s add up the costs. Is making homemade almond milk a real money saver? Four cups of almonds will yield about two cups of milk, costing roughly $6.35 in total. However, store bought brands like Malk offer three and a half cups of almond milk that retails at about $5.49.

So the answer is... not exactly. The savings aren’t significant when it comes to juicing almond milk at home. After considering the moisture loss from the juicing process, the manual labor, and the time, buying it at the store might still be your best bet. That being said, making it at home does give you the advantage of a super fresh product that you can flavor as you please. The decision is yours! But keep in mind that fresh almond milk goes bad fairly quickly due to the lack of preservatives. As such, you'll want to use up every last drop before it spoils.

How to make homemade almond milk (in a juicer) recipe

Yields 2 servings

4 cups raw almonds
4 cups filtered water

1. In a large bowl, soak the almonds in filtered water overnight.

2. Once soaked, strain and rinse the almonds. Transfer back to the bowl, and add four cups of filtered water.

3. With the juicer on, add ladlefuls of the almond-water mixture, working in small batches at a time.

4. Strain the almond milk using a cheesecloth or nut bag.

5. Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator.

Can't decide which alternative milk is your fave? This might help:

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