Is Almond Cow machine worth the purchase? In this article, you will find an Almond Cow review and a comparison with a high-speed blender. What makes better plant-based milk?
Whether you love to make your nut milk at home or are simply curious about new kitchen equipment, your question might be: is the Almond Cow worth the purchase?
I have been using the Almond Cow machine for about two years now. Not every day since I also sometimes buy plant-based milk in the store or use a different method to make plant-based milk. My first recipe made with the Almond Cow was this Banana Bread Milk.
While I do have an Almond Cow machine affiliated discount code (BIANCA) for you, this post was not created in collaboration with Almond Cow or any other products I’m about to mention.
WHY MAKE PLANT-BASED MILK AT HOME?
Making your milk at home can be cost-effective and sustainable as there is no waste (packaging). After making plant-based milk at home, the pulp can also be used in other recipes.
Some prefer the flavor of homemade plant-based milk and store-bought plant-based milk can sometimes contain as little as 2% of the actual nuts, seeds, or oats.
If you decide to say goodbye to store-bought versions, there are many options available to you. And the Almond Cow is one option. The Almond Cow is a popular option with a stunning Instagram page and website. But can a high-speed blender (such as the Vitamix) do the same? In other words, is the Almond Cow worth it?
THE ALMOND COW MACHINE – WHERE TO BUY AND WHAT TO KEEP IN MIND
The Almond Cow machine is a good size kitchen equipment, so keep that in mind. It takes almost as much space on my counter as my high-speed blender, but it’s more portable.
The Almond Cow is currently available for $195. However, if you are located outside the U.S., keep in mind that Almond Cow does not prepay any duties, taxes, or import fees, so the price can be higher upon delivery.
A few of their other products are also available on Amazon (such as their organic cashews), but the Almond Cow is currently only available via their website.
WHAT DO YOU GET WITH THE ALMOND COW
When ordering the Almond Cow, you will receive the following:
- The metal container /base is the container where your final product will be, and you can pour from it.
- The collector cup is where you will drain the milk.
- Metal filter basket: this goes inside the base.
- The top: this is where you can turn on the machine to start a cycle.
- One power cord.
- Some small items to clean the Almond Cow, such as a sponge and a little brush.
HOW DOES THE ALMOND COW WORK?
On the Almond Cow website you can find a nice illustration explaining how the Almond Cow works. It’s pretty simple.
Whatever plant-based milk you make, the Almond Cow website recipe section does not recommend soaking the nuts first. Soaking the nuts will make them easier to blend, so this implies the knives and power of the Almond Cow should be powerful enough.
Fill the base with water to the line where it says ‘’MIN’’ or ‘’MAX’’; this is between 5 ½ cups and 6 ½ cups of water.
Place the ingredients in the filter basket and screw the filter basket to the top of the almond cow. The filter fits about 1 to 2 cups of nuts, seeds, dates, or oats, but you don’t need to fill the basket. The more nuts, seeds, or oats you place in the basket, the richer and creamier the milk will be.
Place the top on the base and press the logo on top. The logo will light up, and a cycle will start. One cycle is 60 seconds with intervals. The knives will blend and then rest. The light on the top will flash during the cycles. After one cycle, check the consistency. Almond Cow recommends running it for 1-2 cycles; this can depend on whether you are blending hard nuts or soft oats.
Strain. The light on the top will stop flashing when the Almond Cow has finished its cycle. Strain the milk by placing the filter basket in the plastic collector cup for 5-10 minutes until it stops straining.
Drain the milk and store in the refrigerator. You can keep the pulp from the collector cup and use it for other recipes.
WHAT I LIKE ABOUT THE ALMOND COW
- The overall look and feel of the base is sturdy, and the Almond Cow will probably last long. I find that the Almond Cow looks aesthetically pleasing in my kitchen. Just be sure to clean the outside of the base too.
- Depending on the size of your blender, the Almond Cow is about the same size. Maybe a little bit smaller.
- You can easily move it around because the power cord is detachable. So, the Almond Cow does not have to have a fixed place in the kitchen like a blender.
- The price is reasonable ($195) if you compare it to a high-speed blender which generally starts at around $300.
- The Almond Cow is easy to clean.
- You don’t have to use your hands to juice the milk like the blender + nut milk bag method. The straining process is easy and clean.
WHAT I DON’T LIKE ABOUT THE ALMOND COW
- After placing the ingredients in the filter basket, you will need to screw the filter basket to the top of the Almond Cow; this should be easy, but it’s often not. Especially if I want to make creamier milk and use more nuts, the filter basket has a hard time fitting in the knives attached to the top. In my opinion, this is the biggest issue with the Almond Cow. You can see me struggling here at 1.05 min. It took me longer, but that part was cut from the clip.
- While the Almond Cow is easy to clean, you will also need to clean the outside of the base to keep it shiny.
- The base needs a minimum amount of liquid, but the minimum is about a full 5 cups. That’s a big batch of milk and doesn’t make it a perfect option for smaller portions.
- The milk is thinner compared to a blender method, using the same amount of nuts and water. The quality and taste are good, though, but the consistency of the milk is a bit different. The pulp is also moister compared to the blender method.
THE ALMOND COW PULP
Whenever I compare plant-based milk methods, I like to mention the consistency of the milk, but also the pulp, such as in this article. Like with a juicer, the pulp says a lot about the quality of the method. I prefer a method where the pulp is as dry as possible.
As I mentioned above, the Almond Cow is pleasant to use because you don’t have to use your hands to milk the mixture. The Almond Cow uses gravity to separate the nut pulp from the liquid in the collector up. After the cycle is finished, you only have to place the filter basket in the collector cup and wait for 5-10 minutes. You will be left with the pulp in the metal filter basket.
Because the Almond Cow uses gravity and doesn’t involve any squeezing, it is no surprise to me that the pulp is wet. Squeezing a nut milk bag cannot be compared to letting the pulp sit and strain in a cup.
But the pulp is also less smooth and contains small chunks of nuts. The pulp is probably chunky because the Almond Cow is not that powerful or needs more than the recommended 1-2 cycles.
The good thing about this is that the pulp is of better quality if you want to use it in other recipes. When I make milk in the Almond Cow, I add a sweetener to the pulp, and I can make cookies in the oven. The pulp from the blender tastes less like the nuts, seeds, or oatmeal I used.
But all in all, as I mentioned, the pulp should be dry and a left-over product. You want to use as much of the product as possible and be left with as little as possible in the pulp.
THE HIGH-SPEED BLENDER METHOD
A high-speed blender such as the Vitamix is a more common kitchen appliance. While the Vitamix blender starts around $300 for a reconditioned model, some other brands are also great for a lower price. See my recommendations below.
There is no specific Vitamix model or specific high-speed blender brand you need to make plant-based milk, also for milk with harder nuts, such as almonds.
I own a Vitamix blender, which I bought new ten years ago, and it still works great.
HOW TO MAKE PLANT-BASED MILK IN A BLENDER
Like with the Almond Cow, you can soak the nuts or dates you are using before blending. I do this when I think about it or when I know the nuts are too hard. The soaking will make it easier for your blender to do its work. But if you have a high-speed blender, you can often skip this step.
I recommend soaking the nuts if you are making nut milk in an average/not-so-powerful blender.
Place the ingredients in the blender with water. You can make as much or as little as you wish. So, for example, you can use a large amount of nuts and little water if you want. As long as it fits in the blender, it works.
Blend on high speed for 1-2 minutes.
Place a nut milk bag or a cheesecloth over a bowl and pour the mixture from the blender into the nut milk bag and squeeze to filter the mixture. Serve or store in the fridge.
Remove the pulp from the nut milk bag and save it for later in recipes.
WHAT I LIKE ABOUT THE HIGH-SPEED BLENDER METHOD
- A high-speed blender is a multipurpose kitchen equipment. Therefore, it’s not a fair comparison since the Almond Cow is marketed as a ‘’plant-based milk maker designed specifically for making plant-based milk from any nut, grain, or seed’’. But it is still worth mentioning that while you might pay more for a blender, you also have a more versatile kitchen equipment.
- You can make a small or big batch with a blender, whatever you need. This means that you can, for example, make a quick 1-cup serving or a larger bottle for the week.
- A blender allows for less water than the Almond Cow, which results in creamier milk.
- The final product is thicker than when using the Almond Cow.
- A blender is easy to clean. There is no need for a special sponge or brush. Fill the blender up with warm water (and soap) and blend on high for 30 seconds; rinse, and you are done. The nut milk bag is also rinsed off quickly under running water.
- Overall, it’s faster. From placing the nuts in the blender or filter basket to cleaning, the blender method is slightly faster than the Almond Cow.
WHAT I DON’T LIKE ABOUT THE HIGH-SPEED BLENDER METHOD
- Of course, the biggest downside of getting a blender only to make plant-based milk is that it’s pricey. High-speed blenders can be anything between $300 and $1000. But again, it’s a multipurpose kitchen equipment. And as I mentioned, any model will be good enough to make plant-based milk with. Having this in mind, a $300 model blender is not so expensive compared to the Almond Cow, an unique kitchen equipment just for making plant-based milk.
- It takes a bit of kitchen real estate. Most blenders are bulky and not made to be moved around the kitchen. The power cord is also attached to the blender. My blender has a permanent place in the kitchen.
- You can’t walk away. A blender doesn’t operate with cycles but works by manually switching the machine on and off when you think it’s done.
- It’s slightly messier because you need to strain the milk through a nut milk bag. With the Almond Cow machine, you don’t need to get in with your hands, if you know what I mean. But both the metal filter and the nut milk bag are easy to clean.
THE HIGH-SPEED BLENDER PULP
The difference is significant when it comes to the pulp. With the blender method, you will need to squeeze out the pulp from the nut milk bag so the pulp will be denser in terms of color and more delicate in terms of texture. The pulp is also drier compared to the Almond Cow.
With the blender method, you have a nut pulp as it really should be; the pulp is the fiber.
The pulp is more delicate and doesn’t taste like nuts or seeds, more like a bland flour. But you can still use it for other recipes, such as cookies, porridges, or smoothies.
A high-speed blender such as a Vitamix
A blender can be used to make a small or a larger batch of plant-based milk. The result is a very creamy plant-based milk and a dry and fine pulp. It is easy to clean and a versatile kitchen equipment, but the price is higher than the Almond Cow. Overall, from placing the nuts in the blender or filter basket to the cleanup, the blender method is a bit faster than the Almond Cow.
The Almond Cow machine
The Almond Cow is a unique piece of kitchen equipment that only makes plant-based drinks. It’s easy to relocate in the kitchen, and the price is lower than a high-speed blender. Just like a blender, it’s easy to clean. The plant-based milk is slightly thinner, but that’s not very noticeable. Finally, the pulp is moister and tastes like the ingredients you used in the Almond Cow.
If you are still in doubt about what to do after reading the above, two more affordable and good alternatives are available.
A smaller powerful blender is a great option. I own a small but powerful blender, and it does the job. Quite often, even without soaking the nuts. The Nutribullet, KitchenAid blender, or the Ninja blender are a few options. They all cost less than the Almond Cow (less than $200).
These options are a good alternative if both a high-speed blender and the Almond Cow are not an option for you.
If you have been on the fence about buying an Almond Cow machine, I hope the above will give you a good idea of whether it might be worth the purchase. There are pros and cons to both methods.
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