Cashew Milk


As I grow older, I’ve noticed that I have a harder time digesting cow’s milk and end up with a bunch of weird reactions. In particular, my monthly PMS breakouts are worse and painfully cystic when I’ve consumed too many dairy products, so I’ve been trying to find tasty alternatives. I love soy and almond milk, but I’ve been reading about some scary additives (like carrageenan) and though I usually pshaw those types of hyped up warnings, I figure I should stay on the safe side.

A few weeks ago, when I was chatting with a friend, I noticed her swigging a creamy liquid that she kept shaking up. It turned out to be cashew milk, and I was intrigued. Cashews are my favorite nuts! Why didn’t I think of cashew milk before? Alas, the stuff is not readily available at even my uber granola, natural foods market.


Did you know that it’s super easy to make cashew milk? This was a happy discovery as I had cashews and water on hand, and that’s all I needed! Using my trusty Vitamix (though any blender will do since cashews are softer than your average nut), I just blended one cup of cashews with 3 cups of water for about 40 seconds. Some recipes suggest soaking the raw nuts overnight, but I didn’t bother.

In fact, I didn’t even use raw cashews. I got the “less salty” kind from Trader Joe’s and the result was a thick, milky beverage that tastes like liquid cashew butter. Adding a sweetener would perhaps be advisable, but I actually like the slightly salty undertones. Action shot:


I’m starting to feel like a televangelist for Trader Joe’s, but I seem to constantly have memorable experiences there. About a week ago, I was having a bummer of a day as it happens sometimes. I’d just placed all my grocery bags in my trunk sporting an Eeyore-esque expression, and was about to go return the cart, when a young man happened to be approaching from my right. He smiled pleasantly and said, “Here, let me take that for you,” and rolled my cart away to the designated area. He wasn’t an employee, and I was looking pretty unsexy (yoga pants, frizzy bun, no make-up, grumpy, cystic acne) so I wasn’t having a cougar moment or anything — he was just being nice. That tiny act of kindness completely lifted my bad mood, and I drove home hoping that K will grow up to be a considerate young adult like that.

But I was talking about cashew milk. It’s taking me a bit to get used to, but I really like it in my coffee as you can see below. I also made a cashew hot cocoa and that was definitely yum. And I bet cashew milk chai using my go-to recipe would be divine…it’s got potential, this one. Lots of potential.


26 thoughts on “Cashew Milk

  1. That monthly breakout….. It’s a curse. I’m in the same boat. I was once in the momentum of making my own soy milk as the supermarket version tastes too sweet to me. I stopped doing it because the production couldn’t keep up with my consumption. But adding a little here and there can truly go a long-er way. Good idea! I will be thinking of you when I soak some soy beans tonight. 😀

  2. I have made almond milk before at avoid carrageenans. It takes some searching, but there are a couple soy milks out there with no carrageenans added too (I think even Trader Joe’s has one…a non-refrigerated one that is organic). I am going to try cashew milk! I love cashews.

    1. I did find a Silk brand soy milk without carrageenans, which was awesome and I’ll have to check the non-refrigerated ones at TJs. I was surprised to see that it’s impossible to find almond milk without the additive…but I think the cashew milk will make a lovely replacement. Thanks Anna!

  3. Mmmmm that sounds yummy. I went off dairy for a year because Hawthorne was sentisive to it, but gradually worked it back in recently. Now I’m wondering if I should avoid it for my own sake! So sad. It’s my fave. Blerg.

    1. K had lactose intolerance when she was a baby, so I had laid off the dairy for a long time but it was HARD. Then I worked it back in too until this last year. Funny thing: I had some regular cow’s milk the other day and I didn’t like it at all — it’s almost been a year since I’ve cut out milk, though I still have a little bit of cheese and butter here and there.

  4. Your photos make it look so great! I like all those shades of white an pale tans. I am not much of a milk drinker, but It looks fun to make and try.

    Slightly salty might remind me of this saltly soy milk soup I used to have. It is a Chinese recipe and you dip some salty deep fried salty donut ina sesame seed bun into the hot soy soup. Ok, this looks and sounds really gross when I type it all out.

    Your new discovery looks like a real treat though! I hope you are enjoying one of those nice drinks right now. Cheers!

    1. Hmmmm…I’m trying to wrap my head around the salty donut in a sesame seed bun. Is it a donut within a bun? I’ve tried/heard far worse, Max!

      The cashew milk is definitely growing on me though I think I’ll try raw cashews and a tiny little bit of sweetener for the next batch just to experiment. Thanks, Max!

  5. Thank you sanae for this post. For the last month I have been off dairy–first milk and then all dairy products because our new baby is having some issue with my intake of dairy. this is such an excellent idea. I am at this moment off to soak cashews.

    oh, and i agree with Max above that the photos are lovely.

    1. We had the same issues with baby K! It’s so hard when their tiny bodies have reactions to dairy, isn’t it? I hope the cashew milk helps, Asmita!!

    1. Give it a try, Kristi! If you like cashews, you’ll definitely love the milk. It’s pretty decadent in my opinion 🙂

  6. My vegan girlfriend makes her own nut milks too, and swears by them. So glad you find it yummy – although not super hard to make, it’s disappointing to go through the work only to discover you really don’t like the taste. When Lilah was little, I fed her hemp milk for its nutrients. Not sure if has the carrageenan issues though.
    Awesome Trader Joes story:) Especially since every one of us moms has felt the twinge of fading into oblivion and then the thrill of being noticed!

    1. I like hemp milk a lot! As far as milk alternatives go, oat milk isn’t bad either, but I think most commercial products have carrageenan in them these days? In small doses I’m sure it’s no biggie. Oh, I’ve been doomed to oblivion for decades, Lucinda, so yes, even though the dude had no designs on me, it was nice to be treated with such chivalry 🙂

  7. I have tried hard to find a different kind of milk for me, my children drink oat milk and it helps a lot with their neverending coughing. But for me its impossible, i used to drink semi-skimmed milk but now I’m again with the supper creamy dairy fresh milk….

    1. Oh…super creamy fresh milk sounds amazing! I had a little extra dairy a little while ago, and I started to break out in a rash! So, so sad…

  8. Oh Sanae, I must try this. Tia is allergic to dairy and is also extremely lactose intolerant. I have become more and more lactose intolerant with age, too! I got off of dairy after having Iris because she was super fussy and I wasn’t able to go back on until I got pregnant. I tend to digest dairy well during pregnancy but even this past pregnancy I couldn’t digest it too well. I can only do it in tiny bits now. So Tia and I drink both almond and soy milk, but cashew is also my favorite nut. Can’t wait to try this.

  9. mmmmmmm….I just looked at your chai recipe- I have to try it, I love chai! I come from a long line of dairy allergic people and haven’t had any myself for almost 4 years now. I used to have really bad acne, eczema, migraines…all gone now 🙂 I don’t have a real blender, just an immersion blender but maybe that would work if I soak the cashews first, I’ll give it a try. We drink coconut milk- I get the So Delicious Brand which is organic and doesn’t have carrageenan but it does have xanthan gum and guar gum which i think are not that great either. Anyway, nice post (I get all excited when I see new dairy alternatives!)

    1. The chai recipe is really, really good. It takes a bit to gather all the ingredients, but it sounds like you do some Indian cooking, so I bet you already have a lot of the stuff. It’s amazing how much dairy affects my skin. I have a deep love for cheese and sometimes I just can’t resist. Cheese and ice cream. My skin invariably reacts though so I really want to buckle down and totally cut it out. And yes, I think an immersion blender would work with cashews if you soak them! 🙂

      1. Have you tried Coconut Bliss ice cream? It is sooooo good, I feed it to dairy eating people and everyone always likes it. My favorites are Mint Galactica and Chocolate Hazelnut Fudge 🙂 yum!!

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