food for the mind

In the Kitchen

Activated Almond Milk with Spirulina


  • 1/2 cup organic raw almonds
  • 32 oz of alkaline water (7-8 pH)
  • 3 dates
  • 1/2 tsp spirulina such as Pure Planet
  • 1 cardamon pod
  • 1 inch vanilla bean
  • handful of spinach leaves
  • pinch ‘pink’ salt


To make activated almond milk, soak nuts in water for 3 hours or overnight. Once the nuts are soft, rinse the almonds in water and remove the skin.

Put peeled almonds into blender with the filtered water and blend for 60 seconds. Using a fine mesh strainer, pour the almond milk through the strainer into a glass canister.

Return the almond milk to the blender. Add dates, vanilla bean, cardamon pod, spirulina, spinach leaves and ice. Blend for 30 seconds.

Pour into glass bottles or Mason jars. The almond milk will keep for 3 days.

If you’ve mastered making almond milk – almonds, water, dates and blend – it’s time for an upgrade. By soaking your organic almonds for 3 hours or overnight the almonds are converted to a living food with greater nutrient bioavailability. The process of soaking the almonds removes the protease inhibitors which stops the nuts from germinating. Concurrently, it increases the protein content, decreases the fat content and enables greater absorption of the almond’s minerals, including calcium and magnesium. All of this, with very little effort – just add water – the food scientists will be jealous.

Once you’ve soaked the nuts, slip off the almond skin and use the activated almonds to make the almond milk. As this is an upgrade, seek out an alkaline-enhanced water (Fuji, Wholefoods 365 and Mountain Springs) as the body functions better in an alkaline state. A pH between 7-8 is best. Anything above 8 is too alkaline and will make you thirsty.

If I’m making a lighter almond milk, I strain the nut milk to catch the pulp. These days I use a fine mesh strainer versus a nut bag. The nut bags are messier and one is never available when I want to make the nut milk. You can buy a strainer on amazon for less than $10. If I’m making a richer nut milk, I don’t strain it – I simply add the nuts, water, dates and superfoods together.

The vanilla and spirulina combination is one of my favorites. Spirulina is a blue-green algae which is incredibility rich in chlorophyll and beta carotene. Both are powerful antioxidants and help protect the body and brain from free radical damage. Chlorophyll also enhances vitality as it oxygenates the blood. It’s also a liver protectant and helps remove heavy metals from the body. I’ve written more about the benefits of chlorophyll here. While vanilla may have some health properties, the amount you are using will be too small to induce any effect. I use it more for taste.

This is a perfect afternoon pick-me up as the dates provide a hint of sweetness to help assuage sugar cravings while the spirulina helps abate afternoon fatigue that often sets in.

This recipe has four servings and it will last for 3 days if stored in the refrigerator in an air-tight glass bottle.


Photo Credit: Dana James

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