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Autumn-Inspired & Outrageously Delicious Homemade Almond Mylk

Autumn-Inspired & Outrageously Delicious Homemade Almond Mylk

Remember the days when soy milk seemed like the only alt mylk around? Oh, how things have changed! These days, most coffee shops offer multiple varieties of dairy-free mylks, and if you’re lucky, you can even find a local shop that makes its own nut mylks from scratch! I must admit, this has become my top priority when scouting out new cafes. Sometimes you just have to embrace your foodie ways. Hey, that rhymes!

And since my bank account is not a fan of spending upwards of $6 on a matcha latte made with in-house nut mylk on a super regular basis, I opt for homemade drinks most of the time. Also, let’s be real: I’m a huge fan of playing Alchemist in the kitchen. While nut mylks may be making a name for themselves out there in the real world, most baristas will look at you funny if you ask them to toss some adaptogenic herbs into the mix. Literally “doctoring” up my drinks always - just ask my people. So, it’s with a joyful and creative heart that I take you into my kitchen and teach you my nut-mylking ways.


Today’s ingredient of choice is the subtly sweet, increasingly versatile, often California-bred, much beloved almond. Besides being undeniably delicious, almonds are rich in protein, healthy monounsaturated fats, iron, calcium, phosphorous, potassium, magnesium, zinc, and Vitamin E. The list goes on. I was surprised to discover that almonds are also the only nuts that alkalize the blood, which is all the more important considering the increasingly acidic nature of the modern diet. According to Ayurvedic tradition, almonds foster our capacity for understanding, revive our spirituality, and bolster reproductive ability. From the perspective of Chinese Medicine, almonds have a predilection towards the Metal organ system. In other words, they impact the Lung and Large Intestine most dramatically. This is especially relevant as we begin to transition into Autumn, the season of the Metal element.

With a mildly warming and sweet nature, almonds aid in the relief of lung qi stagnation and moisten dryness in the large intestine. They can help to transform phlegm, alleviate cough, and “lube the tubes”. So, if you’re suffering from a cough, struggle with asthma accompanied by weakness/fatigue & white or clear phlegm, or constipation due to dryness (infrequent, small, hard stools), consider incorporating more almonds into your diet. However, not all almonds are created equal, and moderation is key as always. You should avoid excessive consumption of almonds in conditions of dampness (i.e., sluggishness, thick greasy tongue coating, edema), and pay close attention to the source of your almonds, as well as the state in which they’re consumed. Organic, raw, soaked or sprouted, and naked (the almonds, silly) is best! Let’s look at why...

Drinking the mylk of almonds is an especially nutritious, gut-friendly, and delicious way to benefit from the powers of these nuts. When you soak almonds (as well as other nuts, seeds, legumes), as you will in this recipe, you help to begin the breakdown of phytic acids, the storage form of phosphorus found in many plants, which inhibits many of the enzymes necessary for proper digestion, and interferes with our ability to absorb certain minerals present in the foods we eat. 

Soaked & skinned almonds.jpeg

Removing the skins is an even more effective way to avoid excessive phytic acid consumption, and prevent irritation of the gut lining. This step in the process has become a sort of meditation for me, gently slipping the skins away one-by-one and grinning with satisfaction as the slippery flesh underneath playfully pops into the bowl with a youthful pizzazz. Just as we transition out of our sun-kissed Summer bodies into the purity & twilight of Autumn, soaked almonds shed their skins to reveal the luminous ivory gem within. I like to keep some of the whole, soaked naked almonds aside for drying & snacking on later. Yum.

You’ll want to use raw organic almonds when making this mylk. Sounds simple enough, right? Wrong. “In response to outbreaks of Salmonella in 2001 and 2004 traced to raw almonds grown in California, the Almond Board of California and the USDA have created a mandatory program requiring all raw almonds to be sterilized through one of several treatment processes that the industry generously describes as “pasteurization.” What this amounts to is a lack of truly raw almonds on the market, and an abundance of almonds chemically sprayed with propylene oxide as a means of “sterilization”. Luckily, organic almonds will not undergo this fumigation process, but they are still pasteurized using a steam method. If you want to avoid the chemicals, opt for organic, or seek out a source of truly raw, unpasteurized almonds from your local farmer or online. If you want to learn more about the madness of almond sterilization and the sketchy,  misleading “raw” label, check out this article:

Okay, okay, it feels like I’ve exhausted the educational purpose of this post, and should probably get around to giving you, my glorious reader, the recipe you’ve been so patiently waiting for! (But, my friends, make sure you conserve some of that blog-fan endurance & enthusiasm for the content following the recipe, because, spoiler alert: I’ll be showcasing my favorite way to enjoy your finished product!) You’re the best. Here goes:


  • 1 cup raw almonds, soaked
  • 3 1/2 cups filtered water
  • 2 to 4 pitted Medjool dates, to taste
  • 1 whole vanilla bean, chopped or 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • Small pinch fine sea salt


  • Place almonds in a bowl and cover fully with filtered water. Soak the almonds overnight (about 8 to 10 hours).
  • Get some deep zzz’s knowing that the morning promises to be full of deliciousness!
  • Wake up excited to get into the kitchen!
  • Rinse soaked almonds, and drain well.
  • Add almonds into the blender along with approximately 3 cups filtered water, pitted dates, salt, and chopped vanilla bean (or extract). A 1:3 ratio almonds to water is typically best, however, feel free to adjust based on your personal creaminess preference (less water = creamier milk and vice versa. duh).
  • Blend on the highest speed until liquefied (about 1 minute).
almond mylk blender side view.jpeg


  • Place a nut milk bag over a large bowl (I like to use a 1 quart glass Pyrex measuring cup since it has a funneled edge and a handle which makes transferring it into jar(s) so much easier) and slowly pour the content from the blender into the bag. If you don’t have a nut milk bag (which you can easily purchase online), you can use cheesecloth or a fine mesh colander, but you’ll likely have to strain it a few extra times. 


  • Squeeze the bottom of the nut milk bag until you’ve extracted as much liquid as you can. Congrats, you’ve gotten a small workout today already! (Pro tip: you can use the fresh or frozen leftover almond pulp in oatmeal, homemade granola, smoothies, and baked goods. Or you can dehydrate and grind it up to make almond meal/flour)
Almond Mylk final from above landscape.jpeg
  • Pour the strained liquid into a large glass jar (think mason jar or glass milk bottle) with a lid. It will stay good in the fridge for about 4 days (honestly I’ve never had any left after 3 days because it’s that good). The mylk will separate after sitting still for a while, so make sure you shake it up again before drinking.

This mylk is delightful all on it’s own, but I like it best in my lattes and smoothies. Check out my almond mylk Adaptogenic Minty Matcha Latte below. It’s full of healing wonder, unbelievably yummy, and freaking stunning if I may say so myself.


The Fire of Summer & A Soothing Smoothie Recipe to Beat the Heat!

The Fire of Summer & A Soothing Smoothie Recipe to Beat the Heat!

We are now fully in the midst of the Fire season, aka summer. Fire represents all things joyful and soulful: passion, creativity, spontaneity, inspiration, charisma, drama, and connection. Fire is a tricky element in that it fuels any number of wonderful, magical qualities in our lives, but it has a tendency to burn so brightly that it can transform into an entity that rages out of control (think anxiety and insomnia) or burns itself out completely (think depression and adrenal fatigue).

The Fire element is connected to the Heart organ network in Chinese medicine, which means that it is intimately involved in the physical functions of our Heart (i.e., circulation) as well as the mental-emotional aspects (i.e., love, joy, and empathy). The associated color is red, the sound is laughter, and it houses the mind-spirit and opens to the tongue. The connection to the tongue is one reason why kind, compassionate speech is healing both for others and for oneself. Both our thoughts and words matter in Chinese medicine.

The sparkling, fun, optimistic nature of Fire is contagious, but we must be cognizant of the need to tend to our Fire element to ensure that it remains within a healthy, balanced range. As we move deeper into the fire of summer, we we may notice a flaring of our own internal heat. An excess of heat in the body can manifest as: fever, inflammation, insomnia, irritability, anxiety, restlessness, mania, flushing, skin rashes and acne, hypertension, constipation, nosebleeds, acid reflux, and more.

One of the key ways in which we can assist our bodies during times of seasonal transition is through our diet. Just as the plants that grow and thrive shift with the seasons in response to changes in the environment, so must we. As we tune into the cycles of nature, and recognize these cycles within ourselves, we can begin to match our internal rhythms to those of the greater ecosystem in which we live.

Indigestion can easily occur during the summertime, so a lighter, fresher, more diverse diet is best. While Chinese Medicine often advises against the consumption of cold, raw foods, this is the time of year when it is appropriate to incorporate more foods that are cooling in nature. These are foods that have a cooling & calming effect on the body, and are often sweet, bitter, or astringent. We can use cooling foods to balance the heat of summer, while also incorporating a variety of foods that align with the increased energy and activity of the season. Consciously adapting our diet to one that calms the digestive fire during the summer season can assist us in maintaining a state of emotional calm, while increasing our capacity to handle stress, properly absorb nutrients & eliminate waste, and to look & feel radiant.

Choosing seasonal & locally grown fruits and veggies that can be found at the farmer’s market or delivered via your local CSA is always a great way to follow the cues of nature. Some examples of foods that can help cool & hydrate your body during the summer are: zucchini, cucumbers, romaine lettuce, kale, spinach, broccoli, cauliflower, bok choy, cabbage, daikon radish, seaweeds, watermelon, apricot, cantaloupe, peach, citrus, asparagus, sprouts, bamboo, white mushroom, snow peas, summer squash, watercress, mung beans, fish, cilantro, mint, dill, parsley, basil, and cumin.  Sip on water or coconut water infused with slices of lemon and cucumber and fresh mint leaves throughout the day. Foods to avoid this season are rich, greasy, fried, and spicy foods, as well as excessive alcohol, caffeine, and meat consumption.

Eat in moderation, chew each bite thoroughly, and practice gratitude for that which nourishes you. Be aware that over-consumption of any food, especially cooling foods, can lead to indigestion, sluggishness, bloating, & loose stools, so it is often wise to incorporate a small amount of warming herbs or spices to assist in the digestive process. For example, try adding fresh ginger or cardamom to a smoothie or mealtime tea. Try the following smoothie recipe to start your summer day off right!


Soothing Summer Smoothie Recipe:

Add the following organic (& ideally locally grown) ingredients to your blender. Blend, garnish with a fresh mint sprig, and enjoy in small, delight-filled sips!

1 persian cucumber (sliced into rounds)

¼ large fennel bulb (sliced) + several pinches of fennel leaves

1 celery stalk (chopped)

1 large carrot (chopped; raw or steamed & then frozen)

1 large handful of greens (baby spinach or kale is nice)

½ white peach (optional depending on your desired sweetness)

½ cup blueberries or raspberries (frozen or fresh; also optional)

Juice of ½ a lemon or lime

Handful of fresh mint

1 small knob of fresh, peeled ginger

1 large handful of sprouts (I like sunflower & broccoli sprouts, but feel free to explore)

1 tablespoon of chia, hemp, and/or flaxseeds.

½ tablespoon bee pollen

1-2 teaspoons adaptogens, such as moringa powder, tocos, or chlorella.

1 cup Coconut water, kombucha (flavor options are endless these days, but do yourself a favor and try the Love or Happiness flavor from Brew Dr. Kombucha - both of which are perfect for the season of the Heart!), water, or any mixture of the 3.

If you like a creamier smoothie, you can try adding ⅓ avocado and/or replacing 1 or more of the above liquids with a nut mylk.

You can also add a scoop of collagen peptides for some extra protein and gut support. We like Vital Proteins wild-caught marine collagens, or their vanilla & coconut water pasture-raised, grass-fed collagen peptides.