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Delightfully Non-Dairy


different glass bottles of non-dairy milk

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Hemp, almond, coconut, oat — so many choices! Whether you’re working with a dietary restriction or simply feeling nutty, plant-based milk alternatives offer spectacular variety in taste, nutrient content, and consistency. If you’ve ever wondered how these creamy, cow-free beverages are made, preparing your own is surprisingly simple. No livestock required. Try these easy plant-based milking methods for cooking, baking, or sipping straight from the pitcher, and sport your homemade milk mustache with pride.

Before You Begin

  • Always use unroasted, unsalted nuts and seeds, or raw when possible, and filtered water.
  • Nuts and seeds produce better results after soaking, so plan to make these milk alternatives in advance. The amount of soaking time varies by nut variety.
  • Be sure to squeeze the pulp thoroughly; releasing all of the moisture will render the highest quality milk.
  • Thickness and consistency can be adjusted by increasing or decreasing the amount of water. For a creamier half-and-half or whole milk replacement, use less water. For a skim milk alternative, use more.
  • These recipes yield roughly 4 cups and keep for about 5 days refrigerated and sealed in an airtight container.

Tools Needed

different things you need to make non dairy milk


If you wind up hooked on the rich creaminess of home-milked nuts, there’s a wide array of gadgets and appliances to maximize your output. We recommend The Milk Maker from Almond Cow. They also have an e-book for more delicious recipes.
a bowl of non dairy almonds

Almond Milk


  • 1 cup almonds
  • 4 cups water


  • Soak almonds overnight.
  • Drain almonds.
  • Transfer to a blender. Add your water. Blend until almonds have liquified.
  • Strain to remove pulp.
macadamia nuts in a bowl

Macadamia Milk


  • 1 ¼ cups raw macadamia nuts
  • 4 cups water


  • Soak macadamia nuts for 2 hours.
  • Drain and rinse macadamia nuts.
  • Place your prepared macadamias in the blender with 4 cups of water. Blend until liquified.
  • Strain, serve, and store.

Make It Personal

Jazz up your DIY dairy alts with accents of sweet and spicy. To add a touch of sweetness, consider honey, dates, agave, stevia, or maple syrup. Incorporate tastes like cinnamon and turmeric, or spices like cayenne for a cooking time-saver. Try vanilla extract or cocoa for a smooth, sippable treat. For a stronger infusion, add these ingredients as you blend, but there’s no wrong time to top it off with some pizazz.

pistachios in a bowl

Pistachio Milk


  • 1 cup pistachios
  • 4 cups water


  • Drain pistachios.
  • Add to a blender, and blend until just crumbly. Keep an eye on them, blending too long will result in pistachio butter.
  • Pour in half the water, blend until smooth.
  • Add remaining water and any desired flavoring. Blend until thoroughly combined.


For a vibrant, green milk remove the papery brown inner peels before blending.
a bowl of Soybeans

Soy Milk


  • 1 cup dried
  • yellow soybeans
  • 8 cups water


  • Soak soybeans overnight.
  • Drain your soaked soybeans and peel off the outer skins.
  • Blend your beans in 6 cups water until smooth.
  • Strain this mixture into a sauce pan. Add two cups of water and simmer for 20 minutes, stirring and skimming for foam.
  • Remove from heat and let cool. Add any desired flavoring as it cools.

Save Those Nutrients!

The pulp you strain out may not be the best for milk texture, but it’s still packed with healthy fats and minerals. Any strained nut and seed remnants can be saved and used for baking, smoothies, or topping your favorite salad or breakfast dish. Simply stash them in an airtight container and keep in the refrigerator.

a bowl of non dairy oats

Oat Milk


  • 1 ⅓ cups rolled oats
  • 4 cups water


  • Soak rolled oats for 30 minutes in a bowl of lukewarm water — just enough to completely cover the oats.
  • Drain oats.
  • Place oats in a blender with 4 cups of water. Blend until liquified.
  • Strain, serve, and store.
coconut shavings in a bowl

Coconut Milk


  • 1 ⅓ cups raw coconut flakes
  • 4 cups water


  • Bring 4 cups water to a boil.
  • Remove from heat and immediately add coconut flakes. Allow coconut to soak in the hot water for 20 minutes.
  • Transfer to a blender and blend until smooth.
  • Strain, serve, and store.
hemp in a bowl

Hemp Milk


  • 1 ⅓ cups hemp hearts no soaking required
  • 4 cups water


  • Blend hemp hearts and water on high until completely liquified.
  • Strain, serve, and store.
cashews in a bowl

Cashew Milk


  • 1 cup cashews
  • 3 cups water


  • Soak cashews for around 3 hours.
  • Drain and rinse the cashews.
  • Place them in a blender with 3 cups of water and liquify.
  • Strain, serve, and store.

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Illustration by: Kendra Hirons