Making Vegan Milk Starter Guide
Next time you are in a grocery store, read the ingredient label on a container of almond milk or soy milk. Wow! Do you know what all that stuff is? Neither do we. Making your own means you are in complete control of what goes into your tofu. Carrageenan? Apparently it’s a linear sulphated polysaccharide. Oh.
There are some options here, depending on what you like.
- Starter Kits – If soymilk is what you want, check our soymilk making kit as a great starting point. We also offer the two most popular flavors besides soymilk as dedicated kits: Almond and coconut. If you are ready to take the plunge and try everything, check out our Deluxe Vegan Milk Making Kit.
- Ingredients – The basic ingredients for most vegan milks are simply water and the base ingredient like almonds, rice, hemp hearts, soybeans, and more. You can experiment with all sorts of sweeteners and flavorings.
- Natural Thickeners – The biggest difference most people notice between store-bought and homemade vegan milks is the store bought milks are all much more thick and creamy. This isn’t because they come that way, they have added artificial thickening agents. While some of our customers like the thinner vegan milks, if you are a fan of the thicker and creamier milks we recommend using all natural thickening agents like chia and flax (read more about these as natural thickeners here). Chia is our favorite, because it is almost flavorless, while flax does alter the flavor a little. They make your vegan milks rich, thick and creamy. You can control the exact level of thickness by how much chia or flax you add.
There are lots of reasons to make your own vegan milks, not the least of which is the fun you can have experimenting with countless flavors and varieties.
- Taste & Experimentation – We offer a wonderful selection kits and supplies to make your own vegan milks: soy, almond, coconut, oat, rice, flax, cashew and hemp. Mix, match and experiment with countless sweeteners and flavorings like vanilla, chocolate, cinnamon, agave, dates, berries, stevia, maple syrup, protein powder and more. It’s fun and delicious!
- Control – Possibly the most important reason to make your own is controlling your ingredients. The ingredient label on store-bought products doesn’t always tell you what you need to know. Check out this article for more information on some of the ingredients in store-bought vegan milks, including the mysterious and ambiguous “natural flavors”, which can mean anything from protein hydrolysate to animal-based extracts and a thousand things in between. Of course when you make your own, you can make sure you include all organic ingredients.
- Savings – The cost of making your own isn’t always drastically different over store-bought items, such as almond milk and hemp milk, but in some cases like soymilk, the savings are significant.
Soymilk is a little different than other vegan milks because there are machines available to automate the process, they will also do rice milk. You can absolutely make your own soymilk using a blender and vegan milk strainer bag, but if you want to get more automated, be sure to check out the Soyabella soymilk machine.
In the early days of wheatgrass there was really only one option of a juicer that would extract juice from grass. Today, there are at least 20 juicers that will do wheatgrass. We have narrowed it down to our very favorites. We carry a huge selection of manual and electric juicers that will juice wheatgrass, including our favorites below. Wheatgrass has to be pressed and squeezed for maximum yield. A standard centrifugal type juicer will just spin it really fast, chew it up and get out very little juice. Masticating juicers with augers that squeeze and press at a very low rotation per minute are the very best. The best part about masticating auger based juicers is that they will also juice fruits, veggies, and make things like baby food and ice cream. Below is a list of our favorites.
Tofu is made from soymilk, so making your own tofu is the next logical step. Check out our tofu making starter guide to learn more.