Commercially made almond milk mostly is made of water, thickeners/gums/stabilisers, a very small amount of almonds, and usually some kind of sweetener. Even unsweetened types still have the additives, as do commercially made coconut milk beverages in the cartons, often used in cafes. If you are on a special diet, e.g., low FODMAP or for SIBO, these additives are not recommended. Personally, I do not like the taste of these either to be honest.
Luckily, there is a trend towards the provision of house-made almond milk in Australian cafes, along with a trend for freshly made unsweetened almond milk being available from some small businesses for cafes. Luz Almond milk and Inside Out produce unsweetened milks (check their websites for availabilities). Inside Out also produce an almond milk sweetened with Natvia.
This is very helpful for those of us on special diets for when we are out and about, on the road, and catching up with friends. It can be a mission to find these places sometimes. Also, a natural sweetener is added by some places, e.g. dates, so if you are following a completely sugar free diet, from experience, it is worth checking this beforehand before trekking to these places!
Here is my list of places that provide almond milk without the additives:
1. Naked Treaties, Byron Bay – this lovely little cafe have an unsweetened house-made almond milk option which can be used for hot drinks.
2. The Eatery on Jonson, Byron Bay – this cafe have advised me that they have a house-made almond and coconut milk available for hot drinks, which has some honey added to it. I haven’t tested it due to the added sweetener.
3. Thr1ve, Brisbane CBD – the friendly and obliging staff at this cafe made me a beautiful decaf latte on house made unsweetened almond milk, which I was very grateful for. I had been walking around for a hour trying to find something I could have while on a day trip to Brisbane. Gramercy cafe do make their own almond milk, however they add dates and macadamia nuts to it, the staff politely advised me. I trekked over to Felix Espresso and Winebar, who advertise they stock Luz Almond milk. I was abruptly told by the staff that they only had the sweetened Luz Almond milk, and this was only available for smoothies. Perhaps not a good option to visit if you have special dietary requirements…..I finally found Thr1ve and was well looked after by their staff.
4. The Paleo Cafe, Paddington, Brisbane – unsweetened Luz Almond milk is available here for hot drinks, which has a lovely creamy taste. The staff here have always been happy and obliging with my special dietary requirements.
5. Marie Anita’s, Burleigh Heads, Gold Coast – this nice cafe have unsweetened house-made almond milk available for hot drinks. I did find it a bit watery though. I had a hot chocolate, just made with cacao and almond milk (which I make myself at home, and have had at Naked Treaties and the Paleo Cafe, Paddington, and I quite like it as I have grown used to having things without any sweetener. The key is having creamy almond milk), and it tasted like the almond milk was quite weak. It was made with kindness though, which always makes a huge difference to the experience.
6. Street Bean Espresso, Mosman, Sydney – the friendly staff here happily made made a decaf latte on Inside Out Almond milk, which was nice and creamy, when I was in Sydney on a day trip recently.
7. There is a lady at Mullumbimby Farmers Markets that makes almond milk, hazlenut milk, and brazil/almond/hazelnut milk from activated nuts. She sells it fresh, and it tastes lovely. No hot drinks are available. There is also a stall selling almond milk from activated organic nuts at the Gold Coast Organic farmers markets.
I have also heard Organics at Home, Palm Beach, Gold Coast make their own almond milk from activated almonds, however I haven’t tried it as they don’t offer decaf coffee, and I also haven’t double checked if they put any sweetener it in.
There are many nutritional benefits of fresh almond milk, including that it provides significant amounts of Vitamin E, magnesium, protein, monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats. I make my own at home using activated, pesticide free nuts and never use the commercially made products with additives – these wouldn’t have significant nutritional benefits since the actual almond content is so low, often around 2-4%. I hope the information in this post is helpful – if you don’t live locally, check your own local cafes for almond milk availability…and please share if you can, to help those who travel!