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Okay, so we’re cutting out dairy on the AIP, nuts and grains too … so what’s left for options when it comes to “milk” on the AIP?

Great question! I’m going to keep it plain and simple – you have 4 options during the elimination phase of the AIP: Coconut Milk, Tigernut Milk (Tigernuts are not nuts, they’re tubers), Avocado Milk and Banana Milk.

All four of these can easily be made at home, and quality additive-free coconut milk (NOT coconut “beverage”) can be found in lots of stores these days (warning – be sure your coconut milk contains nothing but coconut and water – no other ingredients, emulsifiers or thickeners like guar gum, locust bean gum, etc. You can find additive-free coconut milk using my shopping resources – click here, and some brand recommendations here.)

While there are variations of these recipes available online, the following are the basics.

Coconut Milk:

4 Cups Hot Water 
1 1/2 to 2 Cups Unsweetened Unsulphured Shredded Coconut
Optional Sweetener: 1/2 to 1 tsp Honey or Maple Syrup to Taste or 1 unsulphured pitted date to sweeten 
Optional Flavor:  1/2 tsp Organic Vanilla Extract (not flavor), 1/2 cup pureed fresh or frozen strawberries

Place hot but not boiling water and coconut in a high-speed blender. Blend on high speed for several minutes until thick and creamy.
Using a large bowl to catch the milk, pour the mixture through a nut milk bad or fine mesh sieve lined with cheesecloth and allow to strain.
Once cool enough to handle, use your hands to squeeze out as much milk as possible.
Once you have extracted all of your milk add any optional flavoring and store in the refrigerator in a glass jar for up to 3 days. 
NOTE: you will want to use a wide mouth jar so you can scrape any coconut cream off the top that forms after refrigeration for use in other things, or simply shake to reincorporate

Avocado Milk:

2 Cups Filtered Water
1/2 Cup Diced Avocado (ensure it’s not over ripe and does not have any dark spots)
Pinch of Sea Salt
Optional Sweetener: 1/2 to 1 tsp Honey or Maple Syrup to Taste or 1 unsulphured pitted date to sweeten 
Optional Flavor: 1/2 tsp Organic Vanilla Extract (not flavor) 

Combine water, avocado and a pinch of salt together in a blender or use an immersion blender. If you want a slightly sweet taste, add the sweetener of choice from above, blend and test the flavor, adjust if necessary. 
Serve chilled.
Note: Best consumed or used right away in a recipe

Banana Milk:

2 Cups Filtered Water
1 Banana (ripe but not over-ripe)
Pinch of Sea Salt
Optional Flavor:  1/2 tsp Organic Vanilla Extract (not flavor) or a Pinch of Cinnamon

Combine water, banana and a pinch of salt together in a blender or use an immersion blender. If you want a slightly sweet taste, add the sweetener of choice from above, blend and test the flavor, adjust if necessary. 
Serve chilled.
Note: Best consumed or used right away in a recipe

Tigernut Milk:

4 Cups Hot Water (Plus more for soaking)
1 Cup Tigernuts
Optional Sweetener: 1/2 to 1 tsp Honey or Maple Syrup to Taste or 1 unsulphured pitted date to sweeten 
Optional Flavor:  1/2 tsp Organic Vanilla Extract (not flavor) or Cinnamon

Place tigernuts in a bowl and cover with warm water, allowing to soak for 24 hours.
After 24 hours, drain and place in a high-speed blender. Add 1/2 a cup of the hot water and blend for 3 minutes. If the mixture is too dry during this time, add a little more of the water and scrape the sides.
Add remaining water and blend for 10-15 minutes.
Using a large bowl to catch the milk, pour the mixture through a nut milk bad or fine mesh sieve lined with cheesecloth and allow to strain.
Once cool enough to handle, use your hands to squeeze out as much milk as possible.
Once you have extracted all of your milk add any optional flavoring and store in the refrigerator in a glass container for up to 3 days. 

BONUS TIP: Don’t waste the pulp! You can dehydrate it and you have tigernut flour! Simply spread the pulp on a large, rimmed baking tray and place it in a 160 to 175 degree oven for 4-6 hours or until dry. Be sure to stir it a few times during the drying process. Once it has completely dried pulse it in a food processor until it is the consistency of powder or flour. If you can’t get it completely fine, that’s not a problem – tigernut flour tends to be a little gritty. You can choose to sift it to get rid of any larger pieces.

Learn More:

Want to know the ins and outs, what’s and whys of eliminating dairy and options for reintroductions when the time comes? Check out the following articles.

The Great Dairy Debate
Why I Don’t Need to Worry About Calcium
Goat Milk and the Benefits of A2 Dairy
The Best Dairy Choice for Growing Children