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Perfecting Oat Milk: Crafting a Pure, Additive-Free Alternative

Oat milk, have you heard of it? It’s hard not to, considering it’s been a major trend for years now. With more and more people turning away from traditional cow’s milk, oat milk has risen to the top as one of the most popular milk alternatives. And I have to admit, I’ve fallen into the oat milk craze myself. But you might be wondering, why do I sound a bit skeptical about it? Well, here’s the thing. Just like any other trendy, mass-produced item, oat milk is being manufactured, packaged, and shipped worldwide. So, while many of us choose oat milk to be more sustainable and vegan-friendly, our carbon footprint is on the rise with every carton we purchase. And if that’s not reason enough to consider making your own milk, how about the fact that these store-bought versions often come loaded with added sugars, gums, and preservatives?

But fear not; this is where this post comes in. Making oat milk is one of the easiest tasks, even for the most novice home cook. Real oat milk has minimal ingredients and boasts numerous health benefits. Did I also mention just how affordable and quick it is to make?

Oat milk, a remarkable plant-based milk alternative crafted from rolled oats and water, not only pleases the palate but also aligns with a sustainable lifestyle. When you create your own oat milk at home, you get to enjoy a delicious and nutritious beverage while actively reducing your environmental impact. Oat milk production consumes significantly less water compared to other alternatives like almond milk.

Oat Milk Recipe

Oat milk is a delicious and nutritious plant-based milk alternative that is easy to make at home. This recipe requires just two ingredients: rolled oats and water. You can also add sweetener and vanilla extract to taste, but they are optional.
Prep Time 5 minutes
Total Time 15 minutes
Servings 4 Cups

Equipment

  • 1 Blender
  • 1 Nut Milk bag or fine mesh strainer
  • 1 Bowl

Ingredients
  

  • 1 cup Rolled Oats
  • 4 cups Filtered Water
  • 1-2 Tbsp Maple syrup or your preferred sweetener Optional
  • 1/2 Tsp Vanilla Extract Optional
  • 1/4 Tsp Salt Optional

Instructions
 

  • Combine the rolled oats, filtered water, and optionally the sweetener, vanilla extract, and salt in your blender. Customize the recipe to your taste preferences by adding these optional ingredients.
  • Blend on high for 30-45 seconds, or until the oats are transformed into a smooth, creamy concoction.
  • To ensure optimal filtration, it's a good practice to rinse the nut milk bag or fine mesh strainer with cold water before using it. This step helps remove any oat residue and prevents the oat milk from clogging the filter.
  • Carefully pour the oat milk mixture through your chosen filtration method – the nut milk bag or fine mesh strainer – into a bowl.
  • Squeeze the nut milk bag or use the strainer to extract every last drop of oat milk.
  • The residual oat pulp can either be discarded or repurposed in other recipes such as muffins, pancakes, or smoothies.
  • Transfer your freshly prepared oat milk into an airtight container or jar and store it in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.
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Troubleshooting Tips:

  • If the oat milk appears too slimy, avoid over-blending the oats. If you’ve already over blended the oats and your oat milk is slimy, here’s what you can do:
    • Strain the oat milk through a very fine mesh strainer lined with cheesecloth. This will remove some of the slimy texture.
    • Add a bit of cornstarch or xanthan gum to the oat milk and blend until smooth. This will help to thicken the oat milk and reduce the sliminess.
    • Use the oat milk in a recipe that calls for a thick consistency, such as pancakes, muffins, or ice cream.
    • Prevention tip: To avoid overblending the oats in the first place, blend for only 30-45 seconds, or until the oats are smooth. You can stop blending and check the texture of the oat milk at any time.
  • Why is the oat milk not straining effectively?
    • There are a few possible reasons why your oat milk might not be straining effectively:
    • The oats were over-blended. This can make the oat milk slimy and difficult to strain.
    • The nut milk bag or fine mesh strainer you are using is not fine enough.
    • There is too much pulp in the oat milk.
      • How to fix it
        • To fix this problem, you can try the following:
        • Use a finer mesh strainer. You can also line a fine mesh strainer with cheesecloth for an even finer filter.
        • Strain the oat milk twice. This will help to remove more of the pulp.
        • Let the oat milk sit for a few minutes before straining. This will allow the pulp to settle to the bottom of the bowl, making it easier to strain.

Variations:

  • Oat Milk Cream: Create oat milk cream by blending oat milk with a touch of cornstarch or xanthan gum until it thickens. Customize the flavor with your choice of sweeteners and additives.
  • Oat Milk Ice Cream: Turn your oat milk into ice cream by freezing the mixture in an ice cream maker or a shallow dish. Remember to stir it every 30 minutes to prevent ice crystal formation. Once frozen, you can embellish your ice cream with toppings like chocolate chips, nuts, or fruits.

Recipes:

  • Oat Milk Pancakes: For oat milk pancakes, combine oat milk with flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and a sweetener of your choice. Mix just until combined and cook on a hot griddle or frying pan until golden brown.
  • Oat Milk Muffins: Whip up oat milk muffins by combining oat milk with flour, oats, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and a sweetener of your choice. Add in extras like chocolate chips, nuts, or fruit if desired. Mix until just combined, then bake in a preheated oven at 375 degrees Fahrenheit for 20-25 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.

Resources:

  • List of Sustainable Oat Milk Brands:
    • Oatly
    • Elmhurst Milked Oats
    • Planet Oat
    • Good Karma
    • Califia Farms
    • Ripple Foods
    • Forager Project
    • Malk
    • Minor Figures
    • Oat of Sweden
    • Oatly Barista Edition
    • Oatly Organic
  • Some More Tips:
    • When choosing an oat milk brand, be sure to look for the following certifications:
    • USDA Organic: This certification ensures that the oats were grown without the use of synthetic pesticides and fertilizers.
    • Non-GMO Project Verified: This certification ensures that the oats are not genetically modified.
    • Rainforest Alliance Certified: This certification ensures that the oats were grown on farms that meet certain environmental and social standards.
    • Fairtrade Certified: This certification ensures that the oat farmers were paid a fair price for their crops.
  • Nutritional Value of Oat Milk: Oat milk is a nutritious plant-based milk alternative that is packed with vitamins, minerals, and fiber. It is also a good source of protein and healthy fats.
    • One cup of unsweetened oat milk contains the following nutrients:
      • Calories: 120
      • Protein: 3 grams
      • Fat: 5 grams
      • Carbohydrates: 16 grams
      • Fiber: 2 grams
      • Vitamin D: 20% of the Daily Value (DV)
      • Vitamin B12: 50% of the DV
      • Calcium: 350 milligrams (35% of the DV)
      • Iron: 2 milligrams (10% of the DV)
    • Oat milk is also a good source of other vitamins and minerals, such as magnesium, potassium, and phosphorus.
  • Sustainability of Oat Milk: Oat milk is a sustainable plant-based milk alternative with a number of environmental benefits. It requires less water and land to produce, and generates fewer greenhouse gas emissions than other types of milk, such as cow’s milk and almond milk. Oat milk production also has other environmental benefits, such as reduced soil erosion, improved soil health, and increased biodiversity.

    To reduce the environmental impact of your oat milk consumption, choose sustainable oat milk brands, buy in bulk, choose recyclable or compostable packaging, and support brands that are committed to social responsibility.

Conclusion

Creating your own oat milk is an easy and fulfilling experience that lets you enjoy a tasty, healthy, and eco-conscious plant-based milk. As you follow the tips, try out different versions, and play with the recipes we’ve shared, think about sharing your oat milk creations with us on social media @greenspacesblog. It’s a great way to connect with our community, spark conversations, and encourage others to dive into the world of oat milk-making. So, join in the fun, embrace the process, and savor the goodness!

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