If you have been using home-made soy milk from soya beans made by hand then you will know that the milk tastes good and it is cheap – but it is a time consuming process! A quick online search will throw up a number of electric soy milk makers which vary hugely in price. So is it worth making the transition and will the cost of the machine be offset by the time you save? Will the milk taste as good as if you made it by hand? Read on to discover how the MeanyGoat got on using a Soyabella for the first time!
Sources of Soya Milk:
Soy or soya milk is made from an extract of raw soya beans that have been ground up, filtered and the extract boiled to de-nature the natural toxins. These days you can get soy milk in three ways:
Buy it from the store - Soy or Soya milk is sold in cartons in most supermarkets and wholefood stores these days… but at a price! In the US you can buy it for around $1.50 a carton and in Europe for €1.10 but of course organic can cost double these prices
Make it by hand - Buy the yellow soya beans, soak them for 8 hours, remove the skins, grind them up, filter them and then boil for ten minutes. The whole process needs planning ahead and takes about 30 minutes of your time for each jug of milk you make. However, it will only cost around 30 cents!
Use a machine to make it - You still need to plan ahead and soak the beans and remove the skins… but after that it takes 30 seconds to get the Soyabella out of the cupboard, load it up and press the “on” button. Leave it for twenty minutes or so and come back to a jug of hot milk. You need to clean the machine immediately, but this only takes 2 minutes. Because of the built-in grinder you need fewer beans so the cost goes down to around 25 cents and you only use a maximum of ten minutes of your own time for each batch which includes cleaning the machine afterwards.
Time and Money:
Lets look at these three option in more detail to see how much the time and money soya milk really uses. These calculations are based on using three cartons of soya milk a week:
Source of Soy Milk
Cost per Carton
Shop or Store
Zero, you go shopping anyway
Home-made Soy Milk
78 hours (nearly 10 working days!)
Machine made Soy Milk
26 hours (just over 3 working days!)
If you invest around $100 in a Soyabella machine then you will break even in 6 months, and after that you save around $200 a year for just a few minutes of work a week. Looks like a “nobrainer” really!
So, we can save a lot of time and money by using a machine for your home-made soy milk. But is it really that easy and is it a good investment? How easy is it to use? Is it robust? Is it easy to clean?
What You Get
What You Get for your 100 bucks!
When you buy a Soyabella to produce your home-made soy milk you are buying a solid quality product made from stainless steel. The cheaper imported models tend to have flimsy construction and exposed heating elements. The Soyabella has a built-in grinder that grinds the beans up very finely. You also get two separate meshes, one for soy and nut milk and the other for rice milk. Finally there is a cleaning brush and a plastic stand included. Basically you get everything you need!The Soyabella looks like a kettle and is about the same size.
Here you can see the grinder and the mesh for making soy milk….
The controls are really simple… you are either making milk or you are using the grinder!
So how do I use the Soya Milk Maker?
Once you have soaked and removed the skins from the beans in the normal way then you just drain them and put them in the mesh container. Yake care to align it correctly and screw it on firmly or else it can get damaged by the grinder blades.
When you are ready just press the “Milk” button and you can leave the machine to complete the cycle. It flashes green and beeps at the end!
When the cycle is complete the milk and all the associated parts are very hot so you need to take care taking the machine apart. The soya beans are ground up really fine and end up resembling mashed potato! This white paste is called OKARA and can be used in cooking.
Pour the home-made soy milk into a jug, add a pinch of salt and maybe a spoon of sugar or honey and it is ready to use. Store in the refrigerator just like any other milk and just remember to stir it before use.
Use the left over OKARA to make pancakes, flat bread or just add it to whatever you are cooking to thicken it up. You can store it in the fridge for a couple of days before use.
How long does the Soy Milk Maker take to make the milk?
Once you have loaded the machine and pressed teh “Milk” button then the process is automatic and goes through stages of heating and grinding until the cycle is complete. If you start off with warm or tepid water then the cycle takes just over 20 minutes. If you start with cold water then it takes around 30 minutes and beeps at the end!
How much electricity does the Soyabella use to make a jug of soya milk?
Not much! The whole cycle takes just over 20 minutes and uses a frugal 0.08 units of electricity. In France this gives a cost of LESS THAN ONE CENT!! This device uses even less electricity than it takes to boil a kettle!
How do you clean your home-made soy milk machine?
It is really important to clean the mesh and all parts that have been in contact with the soy milk immediately in warm soapy water. If you don’t do this then the soya protein builds up and clods the holes in the mesh. However, it is a two minute job if you just get on with it and do it straight away!
Other Uses for a Soy Milk Maker:
Home-made soy milk can also be used to make tofu. This works out far cheaper than shop bought tofu as well!
Your soy maker should break even after about six months of use so it is certainly a good investment if you have a dairy free diet or regularly drink soy milk. However, it doesn’t end there! The Soyabella is very versatile and can also be used for the following:
Make Tofu - If you buy the accessories then on litre of soya milk makes around 160 gm of natural tofu
Make Nut Milk - This is even quicker to make than Soy milk since there is no heating involved. Just soak Almonds, put them in the mesh, fill with water and blast with the “Mill” button. It takes about 2 minutes to make a jug including the cleaning time. And boy, you know how much Almond and those other nut milks cost!
Make Rice Milk - There is a different mesh supplied to make rice milk using the standard method. Very cheap and easy!
Make Porridge - Not sure why anybody would want to do this but you can make porridge in the Soyabella… just don’t tell anybody from Scotland!
Make Soup - You can also make vegetable soup and broth… regulating how “lumpy” you want it!
Grind nuts, seeds and coffee – Great to make your own vitamin mixes from things like linseed, pumpkin and sunflower seeds…
All round this makes a pretty good investment that will save the savvy Frugalista both time and money as well as provide the basis of a healthy diet for the whole family. Take a frugal tip from the MeanyGoat and start using home-made soy milk rather than the stuff from the shops. If you like the taste then consider investing in a robust soya milk maker like the Soyabella that is both easy to use and clean.
If you want to know how to make soya milk by hand without a machine then check this out: