How to Make Cashew Milk

How to Make Cashew Milk

I’ve recently become obsessed with cashews. I’ve been adding them to smoothies, making sauces from them, and even using them in hummus. The greatest thing I’ve figured out how to make so far is homemade cashew milk. As somebody who is sensitive to both soy and almonds, learning to make cashew milk turned out to be a total lifesaver. This stuff is my new favorite “milky” beverage, and it’s super easy to make.

Why make cashew milk, besides the fact that it’s so yummy? Lots of reasons! Cashew milk is a non-dairy milk, which means it contains no lactose. In its most basic form, it’s made from filtered water and cashews. Cashew milk is easily digested by most folks who are lactose intolerant. Because you’re making it at home, you have total control over the ingredients– the sweetness level, the texture, the fat content and the overall flavor. For those who keep kosher, it’s a terrific substitute for dairy milk in recipes that you would like to keep pareve. I much prefer cashew milk to chemical-filled and preservative-laden non-dairy creamers. No strange additives in this milk, it’s all natural!

Cashew milk has lots of health benefits. Unlike dairy milk, it is cholesterol free. Cashews are high in B vitamins, copper and magnesium. They also have a lower total fat content when compared with other nuts. About 75% of the fat in cashews is unsaturated fatty acids, primarily oleic acid, the same monounsaturated fat found in olive oil. That means the fat found in cashews is heart-healthy, and can help lower your risk of stroke and heart disease.

Best of all, I’ve found cashew milk to be creamier than most other non-dairy milks. I love that it doesn’t taste overwhelmingly like cashews… in its pure unsweetened form it makes a fine substitute for plain milk. When using it on cereal or in my tea, I like to give it a touch of sweetness (throwing a whole date into the blender works great, or use honey, stevia or agave nectar). Adding a little vanilla and salt rounds out the flavor. I’ve also added cinnamon and nutmeg before, which gave a nice effect. Depending on what you plan to use your cashew milk for, you can experiment and adjust the ingredients to taste. A nut bag will help you strain the milk to achieve a thin, grit-free texture; if you don’t have one and don’t want to order one, a fine mesh strainer, clean tea towel or multiple layers of cheesecloth will work just dandy.

Have you made your own non-dairy milk at home? Would you like me to post more tutorials on other types of non-dairy milks like almond, coconut and oat milk?

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How to Make Homemade Cashew Milk on TheShiksa.com #recipe #cooking #tutorial

Ingredients

  • 3/4 cup raw unsalted cashews
  • 3-4 cups filtered water, plus more for soaking cashews
  • 1 1/2 tsp honey or agave nectar, or one whole pitted date (optional)
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla (optional)
  • Dash of salt (optional)

You will also need

  • Blender or food processor, fine mesh strainer or nut bag or clean tea towel or cheesecloth, 1 quart glass jar or storage container
Prep Time: 8 - 10 Hours
Total Time: 8:05 - 8 Hours 5 Minutes
Servings: About 1 quart cashew milk
Kosher Key: Pareve
  • Place raw cashews in a bowl and cover with cold water. Allow to soak for at least one hour up to overnight, then drain and rinse.
  • Combine soaked cashews and filtered water in a blender.
  • For a whole milk texture, I use 3 cups of water to 3/4 cup cashews. For a thinner texture, feel free to add more water-- you can adjust the texture to taste. The more water you add, the lower in fat the milk will be per serving; however, you don't want to add too much liquid or it will turn watery. Best to add water in small batches till the texture seems right to you. Blend on low, then slowly raise the speed to high for 1-2 minutes till the milk is completely smooth and no chunks of nuts remain. If desired, add sweetener, vanilla and/or salt to taste, then blend again to combine (if using a date, make sure you blend till it's completely pulverized). Feel free to adjust the sweetness to taste.
  • Strain milk through a fine mesh strainer, tea towel, cheesecloth or nut bag into a storage container. A nut bag will work best for keeping your milk smooth and chunk-free. I usually strain the milk into a quart mason jar, which works perfectly with the 3 cup to 3/4 cup ratio of water to cashews.
  • If using a mesh strainer, you will need to agitate the solids a bit to let all the milk drip through. I don't scrape them (this can push the solids through the strainer), but I do gently stir and move the solids around to make room for the liquid to come through. Similarly, if using a nut bag, you will need to gently squeeze the bag till all of the milk seeps through.
  • Once you're finished straining the milk, you will have a small amount of solids left. I like to mix this light cashew paste with sweetener and a little cinnamon-- we eat it like a pudding. You can also spread it on a piece of toast. It's delish!
  • Transfer milk to the refrigerator and chill thoroughly. It should keep for 3 - 4 days if refrigerated. I usually shake mine a bit before pouring to make sure it's well blended.
  • Use anywhere you would use milk-- in coffee or tea, on cereal, or as a milk substitute in recipes.

Comments (58)Post a Comment

    1. Hi Becca, the process and liquid to nut ratio amounts are slightly different for both almonds and hazelnuts. The main difference with almonds is that you must soak overnight at least– 1 hour won’t do it. I will post a recipe for almond milk next week, stay tuned!

  1. how do I love thee? let me count the ways. I make everything from scratch. I am very anxious to make this. thank you so much for showing this 75 year old great granny another made from scratch. hugs <3

  2. Very interesting to me because I don´t drink cow´s milk, almond or soy milk. I love cashews so I might try this sometime. Speaking of nuts, any chance you might do a piece on pistachios? The history of pistachio production in U.S., health benefits, and maybe a recipe for pistachio baklava?

  3. Excellent - 5 starsExcellent - 5 starsExcellent - 5 starsExcellent - 5 starsExcellent - 5 stars
    Sounds wonderful. Just tried a recipe for cream of broccoli soup that added cashew cream as an option. I omitted because I was out of cashews. Will now head to the store to stock up and try your recipe for the milk.

    Also, yes ….. more recipes for non-dairy milks would be much appreciated.

    Thanks, so much.

  4. If you make the ratio a bit heavier, warm to 108 and add your yogurt culture, use a vegan one of course, then place the warm cultured milk into a thermos for the night and you will wake up to cashew yogurt for breakfast. Love your latest recipes! The perfect ‘milk’. Another blend that is very good is walnut/cashew. Just be sure and soak the walnuts overnight and rinse and drain well.

    1. Marian, I have tried rice milk but it seems bland or to thin. Do you have a process or recipe I could try?

  5. wow this brings back memories – when my son (now 27:-) ) was a baby i used to make almond milk. if i recall, it was advised to soak, rinse, let them “almost sprout” (spread out on a clean towel for a few hours), peel, and then grind.

  6. Is the process of making milk from oat meal/oats similar? I have a box of it that I’m short on ideas on how to use up.

  7. This sounds so good! I am lactose intolerant and drink Lactaid Milk, but I would love to try something different. I don’t care much for soy milk, and I LOVE cashews. I will definitely try this.

  8. Excellent - 5 starsExcellent - 5 starsExcellent - 5 starsExcellent - 5 starsExcellent - 5 stars
    New uses for old things – I have a yogurt cheese funnel strainer (good for making Greek-style yogurt before it became popular) that works great for separating the liquid from the solid. I was even able to squeeze the solids without worrying that they would pass through the strainer.

  9. Excellent - 5 starsExcellent - 5 starsExcellent - 5 starsExcellent - 5 starsExcellent - 5 stars
    Thanks, Tori, for another great idea.
    I can not drink regular milk, so I absolutely will try this.
    I am so glad I subscribed.

  10. I am lactose intolerant But do not like soy milk but I love cashews.I always buy salt free cashews can they be used in place of raw cashews? I do not even know where I could get the raw cashews
    I am 86 yrs old and love the way you diagram to show how to make everythingell Bless you Shalom….

    1. Hi Jo, I have always used raw cashews, not roasted. I’m not sure how it will turn out with the roasted ones… I wish I knew! If you try it let me know how it works for you. :)

  11. I am not Tori but, a lot of the larger stores that have health food sections have bins with raw cashews in them. You can also ask one of the store attendants to show you or another place may be in the cooking isle next to where they sell pecans and walnuts. I hope you find them. They may not say non roasted not really raw as they all have to be blanched but not roasted. Yes, salt free is what you need as well.

  12. I just threw 1 cup of cashews and three cups of water in my vitamix. Turned it on, moved it to 10 and then on high for a minute or two. Then, since I wanted it now, I dropped several pieces of ice in and turned it back on until the ice was broken down.

    Then, I drank it. :-)

  13. Excellent - 5 starsExcellent - 5 starsExcellent - 5 starsExcellent - 5 starsExcellent - 5 stars
    What is the reason you soak? I throw almonds/cashews and water right in my vitamix get delicious milk. I never soak. Is that because it’s a vitamix? Also, I don’t strain my cashew milk. Again, maybe the vitamix does a better job blending it and doesn’t need straining? Although for sure, my almond milk needs it. (I’m lazy, so I’ve pretty much switched to cashew milk exclusively.) Thanks for the date idea for sweetness! Going to try that tomorrow!

  14. Hello Tori,

    I have started making cashew nut milk but have one problem with it.

    I do strain it through a nut milk bag but when I add it to my coffee it separates out from the coffee within seconds and won’t stay mixed in.

    Is this to be expected? I don’t understand why it won’t stay mixed in, in the same way that dairy milk does.

    Regatds,
    Barry

    1. Hi Barry– nut milks do tend to separate when added to other beverages, particularly homemade nut milks. The particles that make up nut milk are larger than dairy milk particles, so some separation will always occur. If you’re looking for a product that won’t separate in your coffee, I recommend locating a good natural non-dairy creamer. I’ve had good luck with So Delicious Coconut Milk Creamer. Hope that is helpful!

  15. I found that when you add half the water (2 cups water/ 1 cup soaked cashews) and blend first for a few minutes, then add the other half of the water (2 cups) and blend some more, you don’t need to strain. You end up with perfectly smooth milk this way..but you do need a good blender.

  16. Very good - 4 starsVery good - 4 starsVery good - 4 starsVery good - 4 starsVery good - 4 stars
    Hi Tori – I have another question about the separation of the milk from beverages like tea or coffee. When cow milk separates, it means it’s gone bad. My question is – is it ok to drink the cashew milk in chai when it separates? Is it because it’s not supposed to be heated to a boil? I find that when it’s cold it’s ok. Btw I just made my first cashew nut milk this morning – the plain taste is a good substitute for cow milk I have to say. If it’s safe to drink when it’s separated I would say it’s not a big problem. Thanks and love your site.

    1. Hi Khim, in my experience homemade nut milks tend to separate even when they’ve just been freshly made, so I don’t think it’s a good gauge of whether the nut milk is good or bad. Nut milks are heavier and denser than regular milks, so they never mix in quite as smoothly unless they’ve been treated with additives like some store-bought nut milks are.

  17. Very good - 4 starsVery good - 4 starsVery good - 4 starsVery good - 4 starsVery good - 4 stars
    Thanks – good to know the store bought ones may mix better because of addictives. I will keep experimenting till I get the right consistency.

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