We’re just wild about the health benefits that almonds have to offer! High in calcium, zinc and protein, almonds are packed with nutritional benefits. Tests have shown that almonds can even lower the risk of heart problems. In fact, a study published by the American Heart Association found that the monounsaturated fat in almonds can help lower blood cholesterol. They’re also a fantastic source of magnesium, vitamin E, calcium, potassium, phosphorus and iron.
Though we do love munching almonds by the handful for a healthy and filling snack, we also enjoy making homemade almond milk. Unlike many brands of store-bought almond milk, homemade almond milk is free of artificial flavors and sweeteners, and does not contain stabilizers that can give the milk a thick, gloppy texture. Homemade almond milk is slightly sweet and quite creamy, with a delicate flavor that pairs wonderfully with cereal, coffee and baked goods.
To start, pour two cups of raw almonds in a bowl and add just enough water to cover the almonds. Soak the almonds for eight to 12 hours, or until they’re softened and plump. Drain the water from the almonds and divide the batch in half. Dump half of the almonds into your blender pitcher.
Add 3 cups of cool water, 1/2 tablespoon of organic agave syrup and 1 teaspoon of pure vanilla extract, if you want to make vanilla almond milk. Blend the mixture until it is mostly smooth, then pour it through a fine mesh strainer to strain out the crushed almond pulp.
Repeat the process with the second cup of almonds. (Most standard blenders can’t handle the full batch at once without making a big mess!)
Store the homemade almond milk in a covered container in the refrigerator. It will keep for four to five days. Make sure to give it a shake before pouring it; because homemade almond milk contains no thickeners or stabilizers, it will separate in the refrigerator.
Most importantly, enjoy!