When first I gave up dairy there weren't a lot of options in the shop for substitutes. I didn't like soya milk, I tried rice milk and almond milk which tasted a bit better, but quickly became an expensive habit. I made my own almond or coconut milk but this became quite a big task that needed repeating every few days, I just wasn't physically able to keep it up. I also didn't like the wastage, because I couldn't use the discarded grounds quick enough in recipes, and so, I stopped making that. I began buying tins of coconut cream to add to my warm beverages, recipes, dinners, and things like that. it worked great until I realised how many additives where in the can! (Fast forward and I feel so much healthier without the cans!)
In the supermarket today there are so many varieties of alternate milk, nut milk, coconut milk, in cartons and fresh in fridge. When I first began on my healthy eating quest I would have thought this was wonderful! Today I look at the packed aisle and I know that the additives in those cartons and the piddly 2.5 to 3 percent actual nut that is used is a pure rip off and really not a healthy option at all!
Although I enjoy drinking tea black now, I still like my coffee to be a little creamy, and I need to drink my morning coffee! So what do I do? I make my own coconut butter on nut butter, let it set in little chocolate moulds and then put a pretty little morsel in my coffee or melt one in some boiling water to add to soup or whatever I need in. It is super easy, they don't go bad and they melt pretty easily.
When you do the comparisons, financially you're laughing, it takes me about 10 minutes to grind the nut butter in my coffee grinder (make sure you keep grinding until it has a smooth oily look) and set it in the moulds. They won't go bad and so can be made in advance, and ready to use when needed. And, if you are looking to duplicate what you buy in the shop, one of these in a litre of water would compare. Just melt it in some boiling water, add another litre of water, and shake before you pour. Of course I would not be so stingy as this and use at least a tablespoon per cup of water ;) The other benefit is you can use clean organic nuts or shredded coconut, with no additives, thickeners, emulsifiers, flavours...MSG... yep, you'd be surprised how much of that is hidden in pre-packaged milks!
The crazy thing I never liked about pre-packaged almond milk was its tendency to move in my coffee cup like it was growing and dancing.... Like some weird science experiment lol This does NOT happen by adding nut butter. Plus there is a natural sweetness from the nut butter, I use no sweetener in my coffee at all any more. You will notice sediment at the bottom of your cup, but I think it's delicious and drink it up or swish my cup to incorporate it with each mouthful..who needs an emulsifier, we have an arm and a hand, or a spoon, or we can put it through a sieve first if we are sensitive to the texture. Hey presto no waste, you're getting all the nutrient from the whole nuts, not throwing half away.
Through all my experimentation, this has worked the best for me by far, nicer, easier to keep up making it, easy to use, cheap, and no waste that's a big thumbs up for me!
....and they are SO cute, fun to make and pretty to use! Yay for cute fun things!
and I still get to enjoy my coffee...cooooffffeeeee.....