This is currently my favorite caffeinated iced drink by far (that horcatta iced latte I was obsessed with was pretty sick too). It sure beats any iced latte drink you can order at SBux. Although I was thrilled that Starbucks recently started offering almond milk option, it still comes out of a carton. Nothing compares to freshly made nut milk. Nothing! Even if you have access to a fancy-schmancy cafe or juice bar that offers freshly made nut milk in their drinks, their prices make me cringe. It's so much more economical to make it at home. Peeps, it only takes about 15 minutes (apart from the passive time for soaking the nuts ~ see note below re soaking). My recipe makes 1.5L of fresh milk or 6 cups worth which can then be savored over a week of lattes. That's a pretty solid ROI if you ask me.
Of course, you can also drink the nut milk straight up. It is so, SOoOoO delicious. But what isn't improved with a shot (or two) of nice strong espresso? I think you know the answer my friend. Cheers!
SOAKING THE NUTS: Per recipe directions below, the nuts should be soaked in water with a sprinkle of salt overnight (or 3-4 hours min). First of all, this step breaks down the nuts' enzyme inhibitors making them easier to digest and absorb. Secondly, the soaked nuts are much softer and easier to blend smooth in the blender. Nerd out further about soaking nuts, seeds & grains here.
SPECIAL EQUIPMENT: Nut milk bag for straining the milk. I have been using this one for a couple of years. Alternatively, you can triple-up a large piece of cheesecloth. In a pinch, I've also read that a thin (clean) cotton t-shirt work too.
MAKE AHEAD: Nut milk can be stored, tightly covered, in the refrigerator for up to a week.
Maple Almond-Cashew Iced Latte
Recipe makes ~1.5L of nutmilk which can be used to make 6 lattes.
1C raw unsalted whole almonds, soaked (see method below)
1/2C raw unsalted cashews, soaked (see method below)
1-2 shots strong espresso
2 tbsp pure maple syrup (optional)
1. Soak the nuts overnight or minimum 3-4 hours: place the almonds and cashews in a container large enough to hold them plus add approximately double the volume (~3C) of water and a pinch of salt. I use distilled water but cold tap water is fine too. Give it a stir or two just to dissolve the salt. Soak overnight or minimum 3-4 hours at room temperature.
2. Drain nuts and thoroughly rinse them under cold running water.
3. Place rinsed nuts in a high power blender (I use a Vitamix), add 6C or 1.5L of fresh cold water and blend for about 2 minutes, beginning on lower setting and quickly moving up to high. Or if using a Vitamix, use the smoothie setting (the one that looks like a single water droplet) twice i.e. turn it on again once it stops automatically the first time.
4. Sweeten according to your preference with pure maple syrup. I used 2 tbsp for the whole batch. Whiz again quickly to blend well. Taste it and add more maple syrup if you like.
5. Strain the nut milk through a nutmilk bag (or tripled-up cheesecloth or clean thin cotton t-shirt). Squeeze it all out into a wide-mouthed container with a pouring spout like the 4L glass Pyrex I use, pictured. I find this helps to catch all the liquid much more effectively with less spillage. After you've squeezed the bloody hell out of it, discard pulp in compost bin. (Feel free to google ways to use up the pulp. I gave up on this after spending much time drying the pulp out in the oven once, only to later read that most of the nutritional value has been depleted at the end of the process). I then transfer the nutmilk into a taller pitcher for storing in the fridge until ready to use. Nut milk can be stored in a lidded vessel in the fridge for up to a week.
6. To make the latte, pour 1 cup of nut milk into a glass over ice cubes. Add fresh espresso (I like 2 shots), stir and enjoy.
If you like this recipe, pin it to Pinterest! You can also leave me a comment below to let me know what you think of this post - I would love that. If you make the recipe and post it to Instagram, tag your post with #saltnpepperhere so I can peep you :)