So, you might remember my little splurge at Whole Foods last week...that cute little $7 bottle of deliciousness. Hard to resist in the moment, but after consuming the entire bottle in about 2 seconds flat, I immediately thought - I have to figure out how to make this at home! Though, I made some modifications as I don't see the need to add oats (like Forager does to this particular drink), as I thought it made it a little gritty. But the rest - creamy cashews, cacao, vanilla and naturally sweetened with dates? Yes please.
Unlike some other nut milks, cashew milk blends up pretty thick and creamy, so it really feels more like "whole" milk, which I love. If you are more a fan of 2% or skim, you can add a little more water to get the consistency how you prefer. Another added bonus, you don't have to do a ton of draining and straining (like you would with homemade almond or coconut milk).
Your results may be even more spectacular than mine if you happen to own a fancy blender. (Vitamix or Blendtec? - settle the debate for me!) Currently, I am rocking an Oster blender circa 2008, it just won't kick the bucket. The thing is like a bad ex-boyfriend - it's loud, unpredictable, not very nice, and when you ask it to do something, it does a half-ass job. But at the end of the day, it's still there, so you keep going back. I have been patiently waiting for a reason to invest in a new kitchen appliance, and hoping all the furious blending I did this week would help to fry that bad boy. No such luck yet!
Ok, enough with my blender drama. If you happen to be like me and have a crap blender and/or want your cashew milk to be extra smooth, pour the cashew milk through a fine mesh strainer over a bowl a few times:
Another key to cashew milk is to soak the cashews for a loooong time, preferably overnight. Or at least a few hours in warm water if you are impatient like me. But overnight would be the best bet. After the cashews are soaked, be sure to drain to discard the soaking water and rinse generously with cold water. Also, soak the dates too. Those don't need the overnight treatment but at least an hour in warm water.
But once all the soaking prep is done, the hard work is done. Just throw everything in the blender and enjoy. I found this recipe to make about 5 cups, so plenty of leftovers. The cashew milk should remain good in the fridge for up to 3 days. The milk will settle a bit but just give a shake (or another swirl in the blender) and it will be good as new again. This cashew milk is vegan, naturally sweetened, paleo-friendly, and toddler-approved! Hope you love this homemade alternative as much as we did!
Cashew Chocolate Date Milk
Prep time: Soak for 4-8 hours
Blend time: 2 minutes
- 1 cup raw, organic whole cashews
- 3 cups filtered water (add a little more as needed)
- 3 or 4 Medjool dates, soaked and pits removed (depending on how sweet you prefer)
- 1 Tablespoon organic vanilla extract
- 3 Tablespoons cacao powder (or you could sub cocoa powder but might be a little less sweet)
- Pinch of fine sea salt
- Pinch of cinnamon
- In a medium bowl, soak your cashews in enough water to fully cover them overnight. Or at least 4 hours!
- In a small bowl, soak the dates for an hour-ish in warm water.
- Drain the cashews and rinse well with cool water. Add cashews to the blender.
- Add the dates (make sure pits are removed)
- Add the water, vanilla, cacao powder, salt and cinnamon. Blend!!
- Check consistency and add a bit more water if you want. Strain the cashew milk through a fine mesh strainer over a large bowl if you want a smoother texture. Store in a glass container in the fridge to chill.
- Or just pour a tall glass straight from the blender and enjoy!
- Consume all (any?) leftovers within 3 days.