Soy milk has become so mainstream that it’s now very easy to find. Every coffee shop and most restaurants now offer it as an alternative to cow’s milk. Health food stores are fully stocked with a wide variety of soy milks in different flavors. I’ve tried most of the products on the market. They are good, inexpensive and quite convenient. If you have the time though, I encourage you to try making soy milk at home. You will be delighted with how fresh and delicious homemade soy milk tastes. It’s truly wholesome goodness and the best part is you know exactly what went into it. Enjoy!
Notes on the recipe, tips and tricks
Soy beans are relatively inexpensive but pay a bit more for the organic non-GMO soy beans. You can buy them in bulk at most health food stores. Most Asian and American grocery stores sell them packaged in bags of 8 oz or 1 lb. (I like Bob’s Red Mill Organic Soy Beans.)
Shelling the soy beans is an optional step. You may see some of the shells floating in the water while soaking. You can remove them if but it’s not necessary. We are not saving the pulp to make any additional dishes. (I’ll share some recipes for what to do with the residual soy pulp called okara in future recipes.)
General rule of thumb, use 1 cup water for every 1 oz of soy beans. If you prefer a thicker richer soy milk, reduce the water. If you prefer a lighter soy milk, add more water. Also, I use spring water instead of tap water.
Soak the beans for at least 8 hours. I usually soak them overnight and then make the next morning. The soaking time doesn’t have to be exact. If you’d like to accelerate this process, soak in boiling water for about 3-4 hours.
I have the Vitamix 7500 which has a very powerful motor. It blends the beans very quickly and the below blend times are based on my machine. If your blender is less powerful, it will take a bit longer. On a smaller machine, don’t blend continuously but blend for about 20-25 seconds, let the motor rest for about 15 seconds and then continue until the beans are finely blended.
I have tried a variety of nut milk bags but this is my favorite from NutNet. It’s super strong, durable and very easy to clean. The size of the bag is also perfect for this recipe!
Use a large pot to cook the soy milk. The milk has a tendency to over boil very quickly so keep your eyes on it. A trick to try: If the milk is boiling vigorously and about to spill over, sprinkle a few drops of cold water on the soy milk. This will cool it down quickly and prevent it from boiling over. (If you look at the video closely, you’ll see I have a cup of water on the stove for this very reason.)
Adjust the sugar levels to your liking. The below recipe uses a minimal amount. Use a sugar substitute like Splenda or Stevia if you prefer.
The Pandan leaves add a lovely aroma to the soy milk. It is optional and you can use any essence that you like such as vanilla or coconut.
As this has no preservatives, refrigerate any remaining amounts. The soy milk is good for up to 1 week in the refrigerator.
Watch the video below for instructions.
1 1/3 cup (8 oz or 1/2 lb) organic soy beans
8 cups water
1/4 cup sugar
6-8 Pandan leaves
Put the soy beans into a large bowl. Sift through the beans and remove ones that are mis-shapened and/or have black spots on them.
To wash the soy beans, fill the bowl with water and gently swish the beans around in the water for 1 minute. Pour off the dirty water. Repeat this washing process two more times or until the water is clear.
Fill the bowl with water and let the beans soak for at least 8 hours.
Wash the rehydrated beans one more time and drain.
Pour the beans into a blender and add 2 cups water (or just enough to cover the beans). Starting on a Low speed, gradually increase the speed to High and blend for 1 minute. Add another 2 cups of water and blend on High for another minute. (Note: The total water quantity is 4 cups.)
Place the nut milk bag into a large bowl or cup. Pour the soy milk into the nut milk bag and then seal the opening. Firmly squeeze the bag to extract the soy milk. Continue until all that is left is the pulp. Pour the soy milk into a large saucepan.
Transfer the pulp back into the blender along with 4 cups water. Blend on High speed for 30 seconds. Again, pour the soy milk into the bag and repeat the milking process above. Pour into the saucepan.
Heat the milk over Medium Low heat. Skim the foam from the top and discard. Stir the milk every few minutes to keep it from burning. When it comes to a gentle boil, reduce the heat and simmer on Low for 10 minutes.
Add the sugar and Pandan leaves and stir until the sugar is dissolved. Continue cooking on Low heat for another 10 minutes.
Turn-off the heat and allow the milk to cool for 15 minutes.
Strain the soy milk and skim off the foam again.
Serve the soy milk hot or cold.
Yields: 6 cups