Learn how to make cashew milk. It’s super rich and creamy and one of the easiest plant-based milks to make yourself because there is no straining involved!
Move over, my very popular Oat Milk. There’s a new plant milk in town.
Enter my trusty friends: weird lookin, buttery, raw cashew nuts, who, when blended with water, magically become super creamy, silky-smooth, delicious Cashew Milk.
Maybe it isn’t so new in town though. This recipe has been around on AVV for years and years, but I was so embarrassed by the awful pictures and the pretty terrible, newbie blogger who really didn’t know what she was doing post, that I couldn’t live with it any longer. Hence todays revamp.
I am all over this cashew milk. I had forgotten about it as it’s from all the way back in 2015, but when I revisited this recipe a few weeks ago with a view to updating it, I totally fell in love with making it again.
It is so easy. And quick. And it tastes so good. It really is so much nicer than store bought cashew milk. And you can make it as creamy as you like. I love being able to customize the thickness depending on what my intended use for it is.
Since then I have been making it on repeat and I don’t intend on stopping anytime soon.
So, what does Cashew Milk taste like?
Cashew Milk is mildly flavoured, naturally a little sweet, with a rich, slightly nutty, cashewy flavour and a really creamy mouth feel. It’s texture is pretty similar to cow’s milk. Smooth and fluid and not viscous like oat milk.
I really like both Oat Milk and Cashew Milk, but I think Cashew Milk has a better flavour and definitely a better texture. Oat Milk though is super cheap to make, and really low in fat and calories. It also tends to go down better with children and is perfect if you happen to have a cashew nut allergy or are allergic to all nuts.
But, oat milk needs straining.
Vegan milk that needs no straining!
Did I mention that when you make cashew milk, there is absolutely no straining involved? I love that! The cashew nuts are soft enough to blend up completely and utterly smoothly in the water.
So, this is homemade plant-based milk for people who have zero time for hanging around watching milk strain through a bag or sieve. Because, let’s face it, if you can make milk without any mess or fuss, why the heck wouldn’t you?
And because there is no straining, there is no leftover pulp, which means no waste. And no leftover pulp means that all the goodness and and fibre from the nuts remains in the milk. That can only be a good thing.
Are you a little concerned about this no straining business though? Slightly worried about floaty, grainy, little lumps in your cashew milk? Well, have no fear. A high powered blender like a Blendtec or Vitamix will have no issues at all with pulverizing the cashews into absolutely smooth oblivion. And even if you have a not so high powered blender, because the cashews are soaked first, they are soft before you even start, so with a little extra blending time, your milk will be silky smooth and lump free.
What do you need to make Cashew Milk?
To make Cashew Milk, you only need 2 ingredients. Cashew nuts and water.
But there are some optional extras which can be added to make it even better.
I really like to add a pinch of salt, because a tiny bit of salt makes everything better.
If you like your cashew milk sweetened, you can add one or two dates and blend them up in the milk, or you can use a drop of maple syrup instead. And if you like a hint of vanilla, feel free to add a little vanilla extract too.
How to make Cashew Milk
SEE MY VIDEO FOR A VISUAL GUIDE. FOR INGREDIENTS & FULL INSTRUCTIONS PLEASE SEE THE RECIPE CARD AT THE END OF THIS POST
Cashew Milk is incredibly easy to make at home. Here’s how:
- Soak the cashew nuts in water to soften, then drain and rinse. This step isn’t essential if you have a high powered blender, but it does result in a smoother, creamier milk so is recommended.
- Blend the soaked nuts up with water until completely smooth. Add sweetener (maple syrup or a date or two) and some vanilla extract if desired then decant into a bottle and store in the fridge
But hang on …. Because as it comes out of the blender, it’s all bubbly and lovely. So before you decant, I highly recommend making yourself a nice cup of coffee, then adding a good glug of the freshly blended cashew milk.
Because it’s all frothy from the blending action, it makes a really creamy, frothy cup of coffee.
Thank me later!
Cashew Milk Success Tips
– Raw cashew nuts are best for making cashew milk so don’t be tempted to use roasted cashews.
– Play around with the optional extras and the thickness (or thinness) to find what works for you. This milk is really customizable. Sweetened or unsweetened, thick or thin, it’s all down to you.
– Cashew Milk separates when stored. Simply shake it up before you use it and it will be back to its creamy, dreamy self.
– Homemade plant-based milks don’t last as long as store bought milk, so don’t make too much. This cashew milk will keep for a maximum of 5 days in the fridge. This recipe can be easily halved if necessary though so just make as much as you will need in that time.
– If you do accidentally make too much Cashew Milk, freeze the remainder in ice cube trays. Then you can pop out a cube or two at a time and thaw for coffee, or add the cubes straight into your blender for extra creamy smoothies.
Cashew Milk add-ins for different flavours
Love original cashew milk, but want to try something new?
How about some of these ideas to switch it up? Simply add them as you blend the cashew milk up!
- Vanilla cashew milk – Add 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract or 1 teaspoon of vanilla bean paste and some maple syrup or a couple of dates to sweeten
- Chocolate cashew milk – Add 1 or 2 tablespoons of cocoa powder with 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract and a dash of maple syrup or a couple of dates
- Mocha – Use cold coffee instead of water when making the cashew milk and add 1 or 2 tablespoons of cocoa powder, ½ teaspoon of vanilla extract and a dash of maple syrup or a couple of dates to sweeten
- Pumpkin Spice – Add 1/2 tsp pumpkin spice, 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract and a dash of maple syrup or a couple of dates for sweetness
- Golden Milk – Add 1 teaspoon of turmeric, ¼ teaspoon ground ginger, ¼ teaspoon of cinnamon and a pinch of black pepper, plus a couple of dates or a dash of maple syrup for sweetness
- Chai – Simply use cold, chai tea instead of water to make the milk, and add a dash of maple syrup or a couple of dates to sweeten
- Strawberry – Make my Vanilla Roasted Strawberries and add ½ – 1 cup of them to the blender when you make the cashew milk. Start off with only 2 cups of water this time though as the juicy strawberries will thin it out. You can always add more water afterwards to thin if necessary.
There are so many possibilities!
How to use Cashew Milk
Cashew Milk can be used in any way you would use regular milk.
Drink it straight up as it is, use it in your hot drinks,
pour it over your breakfast cereal,
But aren’t cashew nuts really expensive?
Cashew nuts do tend to be a little pricey, but 1 cup of cashew nuts makes up to 6 cups (1.4 litres) of cashew milk (depending on how thick or thin you make it).
To save some dollars, I buy large bags of cashew nut pieces or broken cashew nuts. I order mine from Amazon, but my local wholesale store and sometimes Costco, carry them. By buying them in pieces, or broken rather than whole, you save quite a lot.
These Yupik cashew pieces are the ones I buy from Amazon.ca :
They are only available in Canada though.
If you are in the U.S, these pieces looks like a pretty good deal:
Cashew Milk Nutrition
Because there is no straining involved when making cashew milk, the finished milk retains all of the nutrients, healthy fats and fibre from the nuts. Cashew milk is also naturally vegan, lactose free, dairy free, soy free and gluten free.
Store bought cashew milk tends to be fortified with vitamins and minerals, and because of that it has a higher amounts of some nutrients compared to homemade cashew milk. But it also almost always contains oil, preservatives, gums for thickening and sugar. It also contains way more sodium. I did a quick comparison, and Silk Cashew Milk contains 17 x more sodium per half a cup than my recipe does.
The benefit of making your own milk at home is that you get to control exactly what goes into it.
Store bought cashew milk contains less fat, protein and fibre than homemade cashew milk, and that’s because it contains less nuts than homemade versions. Commercial operations use smaller amounts of nuts to keep costs down, and then use ingredients like locust bean gum to thicken the milk. When made at home the nuts are what thickens the milk.
You can see the full nutritional information for my cashew milk just under the recipe below. Remember though, that the milk you choose is just one very small component of your whole diet and it makes up a tiny percentage of the calories and nutrition you consume overall.
Want more dairy alternatives?
For more great vegan dairy alternatives, check out these very popular reader favourites:
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- 1 heaping cup / 140 g raw cashew nuts (dry measurement)
- Up to 4½ cups water , divided - use only as much as you need to get the thickness you like
- I recommend soaking the cashews for the ultimate, creamy texture, but if you are in a hurry and you have a high powered blender, you can skip the soaking.To soak, put them in a container, cover with water, put a lid on the container and place them in the fridge for at least 2 hours or overnight. If you don't have a high powered blender, soaking is essential, and be sure to leave them overnight so they really soften up well. If you don't have a high powered blender and you forget to soak the cashews, you can do a rush soak, by covering them with boiling water and letting them soak for 15 - 30 minutes.
- Drain and rinse the cashews and put them in a blender. Add 2 cups of water. If you want to add any optional add-ins like a date or 2, maple syrup or salt, add them now then blend until completely smooth. Start on a low setting and gradually work up to high for ultimate smoothness.
- Check the texture. It will be quite thick. Like this it is great as a coffee creamer. Add more water gradually as needed, giving it a quick blend in between each addition. Once it is as you like it decant into a bottle and store in the refrigerator. It will keep for up to 5 days.