If you’re looking for a dirt-cheap, nut-free dairy alternative, you’ve come to the right place. With a handful of oats and a pinch of sea salt, you can whip up your own batch of creamy, earthy oat milk that’s perfect for a bowl of cereal, a cup of coffee, or wherever you’d normally use cow’s milk.
Here, we’ve given you two ways to make oat milk: one raw, one cooked. The cooked version is made without a blender–we’re looking at you, chef with the extra-tiny kitchen. Keep in mind that while you can blend the raw version in a food processor, food processors aren’t watertight, so you’ll have to add some of the water at the end and mix it in by hand (to avoid splashing).
Raw Oat Milk
Raw oat milk has a grassier flavor and more of a bite than cooked oat milk. You may wish to sweeten it up a bit, or just use it in dishes where it’s not the main focus.
1. Soak 1 cup of rolled oats, oat grouts, or steel-cut oats for at least 20 minutes, or up to 12 hours. (Soaking makes the oats more easily digestible.) Drain, rinse, and drain again.
2. Add to blender, along with 3 cups water (use more water if you want a thinner milk). Blend until creamy and smooth.
3. With a sieve, strain the oat milk several times. You can save the oat pulp!*
4. Whisk in 1/4 tsp. fine grain sea salt, to enhance the flavor. You can also sweeten with vanilla extract and agave, if you prefer a flavored milk.
5. Store your oat milk in a jar in the fridge. The milk may separate a bit in the fridge–no worries, just shake it up before using. Enjoy!
Cooked Oat Milk
This milk has a milder flavor than raw oat milk. It’s also made without a blender! You can store this version in a jar in the fridge, too.
1. Combine 1 cup rolled oats with 5 cups water, a dash of sea salt, and a teaspoon of vanilla extract (if using) in a saucepan.
2. Bring to a boil. Cover and simmer for 45 minutes to an hour.
3. Strain well! Reserve the oat pulp for another use.*
4. Sweeten to taste, if desired.
* Oat pulp is extremely nutritious, so fold it into a batch of banana bread, eat it like porridge, etc.