Homemade Oat Milk – Easy, Fast, Cheap

by Angela (Oh She Glows) on January 10, 2013

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When I mentioned that I was working on a homemade milk post many of you asked for a low-cost and nut-free homemade milk recipe. I decided to put myself to the challenge. Homemade Oat Milk, it is!

First, I’ll show you how I made it with step-by-step photos and at the end of my post I’ll share my thoughts on flavour, price, texture, and overall pros and cons.

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Ingredients I used:

  • 1 cup steel-cut oats
  • 3 cups filtered water
  • 1.5-2 tbsp pure maple syrup (or other liquid sweetener or pitted dates), to taste
  • 1 tsp pure vanilla extract
  • scant 1/4 tsp fine grain sea salt (enhances flavour)
  • 1/4 tsp ground cinnamon (optional, but nice)


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You will also need a blender (any blender should work as we don’t need to blend the oats super smooth), a fine sieve, a large bowl, a small bowl, and measuring spoons/cup. I haven’t tried this oat milk with cheesecloth or a nut milk bag yet, but if anyone does please leave a comment and let us know how it goes.

Don’t let all the step-by-step photos fool you into thinking this is lengthy to make – it takes just 5 minutes once your oats are soaked.

Step 1: Rinse and drain 1 cup of steel-cut oats. I’ve heard you can also use oat groats. Place oats into a bowl and cover with water. Soak for around 20 minutes. You can soak longer (even overnight) if desired. Not only does soaking help soften the oats, but it also makes them easier to digest.

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Step 2: After soaking, rinse and drain the oats very well. This step is very important because you want to rinse off any of the oat slime that has occurred from soaking. Yes, oat slime is a thing…it happens.

Step 3: Scoop oats into your blender and add 3 cups water. I prefer using 3 cups of water as opposed to 4 cups because it yields a creamier/thicker milk. Feel free to add more water if you wish, just know the more water you add the thinner your milk will be.

Step 4: Cover with lid and turn the blender on a low speed, increasing the speed gradually, and blend at the highest speed for about 8-10 seconds only. You don’t need to completely pulverize the oats.

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Step 5: Place a fine sieve over a large bowl and pour the oat milk very slowly into the sieve. You might have to do this in a couple batches depending on the size of your sieve.

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Step 6: With a spoon, gently push down on the oat pulp so the milk flows through. This helps push the milk into the bowl, leaving the oat pulp behind in the sieve.

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Step 7: Scoop the oat pulp into a small bowl and set aside. Clean out your blender and sieve with a good rinse of water until no pulp residue remains.

Step 8: Place sieve over top of your blender and pour the milk in once again and strain.

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As you can see in the bottom left photo, straining twice gets even more pulp out yielding a smoother milk. I usually strain it 3 times or so, but it’s not necessary if you are time-crunched.

Step 9: Rinse out the bowl and sieve once again. Strain the milk through the sieve into the bowl (optional). If you don’t want to strain again, simply add in your mix-ins and blend on low.

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Step 10: I whisked in 1.5 tbsp maple syrup, 1 tsp vanilla, 1/4 tsp fine grain sea salt (enhances sweetness), and 1/4 tsp cinnamon. These mix-ins turn your oat milk from bland to hmm-this-could-be-decent-when-cold.

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Step 11: I strained my milk one last time into a clean blender. Then I poured the milk from the blender into a clean mason jar for storage in the fridge. Note: Homemade milk does separate (remember there are no added emulsifiers!), so be sure to give your milk a very good shake (or stir) before using. No biggie. A little non-dairy milkshake never hurt anyone. I just don’t want you to be alarmed when you see the heavier ingredients sitting at the bottom of the jar.

This should last in the fridge in a sealed container/jar for 4-5 days. Use it in smoothies, oatmeal, cereal, baking, or drink it straight. If you want to use it in a savoury recipe, you can omit the sweetener, vanilla, and cinnamon.

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Taste Report:

The flavour of this oat milk is much like I expected; it tastes like oats. Shocking, I know. The biggest challenge I had when testing this recipe was getting it creamy enough. I tried 1/2 cups steel-cut oats with 4 cups water and then 3/4 cups steel-cut oats with 3 cups water. I found both end results to be too watery. Using 1 cup of steel-cut oats to 3 cups of water was my favourite ratio (so far). If you play around with the recipe, I’d love to hear your versions too.

Keeping in mind that this homemade milk is free of emulsifiers and thickeners, I was fairly impressed with the texture. Is it just like store-bought milk? Of course not, but I do think it’s a decent option with a clean ingredient list. It’s much easier on the wallet too!


  • Very low cost (a batch using steel-cut oats cost me about 50 cents – or less if you can get a deal on oats)
  • Nut-free so good for those with allergies
  • Quick to make
  • You don’t need a nut milk bag or cheesecloth
  • Clean up was easy, even with all the spilling I seem to do…
  • Decent, but not mind-blowing, flavour



  • Not as creamy compared to homemade almond milk
  • Slightly watery (although this is improved when using 3 cups water instead of 4)


All in all, I feel that the pros outweigh the cons with this homemade oat milk. It’s so cheap to make and that is a huge plus for me. I personally don’t drink much milk by the glass so I think this will be just fine when added to cereal, smoothies, oatmeal, etc. But so far, I’ve been sipping the jar straight from the fridge, letting out satisfied mmm’s and dribbling milk down the front of my shirt. Eric, as always, is quite confident he married a weirdo.

Update: I tried the milk with some Nature’s Path cereal and it tasted a bit like cinnamon toast crunch, probably thanks to the cinnamon in the milk. yummy!

I also made a trial using cooked steel-cut oats and the milk turned out super slimy. I didn’t rinse the oats after cooking, but maybe I should have? I’m going to stick with the non-cooked method.

Odds are that some of you won’t like this milk at all, but it’s also likely that some of you will really enjoy it and appreciate this as a cheap, at-home alternative to the store-bought stuff. I’m quite anxious to see what you think and I welcome your feedback in the comments!

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What can you do with the leftover oat pulp? I suggest saving it and mixing it into oatmeal and smoothies. If you have a dehydrator, I assume you could also dehydrate the pulp and then pulverize it in a blender to make flour. If anyone has any other ideas, leave ‘em below.

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Have you ever made homemade oat milk or tried a store-bought version? Do you make your own milks at home? If so, what’s your favourite recipe?

Catching up in this series? See: Vegan How To: Introduction (Why this series?), Part 1: How To Make The Transition, Part 2: Replacing Dairy

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{ 56 comments… read them below or add one }

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Sarah August 16, 2017 at 11:48 am

I looked through the comments, but there are a lot … just wondering if anyone strained this through a nut milk bag & if that reduces the number of times it needs to be strained? –Thanks.
My husband just got back from Finland and said he saw oat milk there quite a bit (in specialty coffee drinks and at the grocery store). He liked it and is eager to have some at home. I’ve never seen it in stores here, plus figure it’s better to make from scratch anyways, so I’m looking forward to trying this recipe.


Sarah August 27, 2017 at 9:20 am

I made this with rolled oats and its slimy. Awful! Maybe because the milk was room temp? I’m super bummed. But try try again.


Angela Liddon August 28, 2017 at 1:13 pm

Oh, I’m so sorry to hear you didn’t like the end result, Sarah! Unfortunately, oat milk does tend to be a bit slimy in general (I’ve found so even with steel cut), but it might help you out to read back through some of the reader comments above to see if there are any tips and tricks for minimizing that texture. I seem to recall a lot of discussion about it back when I first posted the recipe. I hope this helps!


Mamansimple September 11, 2017 at 1:05 pm

I made this a week ago with steel cut oats. It wasn’t anything SUPER delicious but it was pretty good. Like you said, a bit watery compared to other milks. Then today I made it with whole oat groats (ie not cut). I’m not sure why this would have made a difference, but the taste was really bland and watery. Disappointing. Anyways, that’s just my experience. Thanks so much for the recipe, guess I’ll stick with cut oats!!


Laura September 25, 2017 at 5:24 pm

I’m not so fond of this as just milk, but it makes really, really good yogurt!


Carrie August 18, 2018 at 12:05 pm

Before food sensitivity testing, I used to make homemade Greek yogurt with the crock pot and then straining with cheese cloth. How are you preparing the yogurt using oat milk?


Isabella October 16, 2017 at 8:18 am

I feel like all the filtering took forever and I thought I’ll just stick to my homemade cashew milk BUT my coffee this morning was the best ever!!!! I soaked the oats for 18 hours and used all the leftover oat pulp to make oat-pancakes for the kids this morning, they loved them! Thanks.


Sarah October 28, 2017 at 11:23 am

I made it after trying fancy barista quality oat milk at a La Colombe. I love the flavor and am happy to have it around. Soaked it for twenty minutes because I really wanted an iced latte. Will try soaking next batch over night.


Angela (Oh She Glows) October 28, 2017 at 2:39 pm

Hey Sarah, I’m so glad you enjoyed it! I need to make it again soon. :)


Howard November 23, 2017 at 1:48 pm

I’m doing this with ordinary old fashion Quaker oats from Costco… 1 cup to 3 of water, and making yogurt out of it. I like throw a large hand full of sunflower seeds in before blending. Experimenting with tapioca starch for a thickener, I’ve been able to get decent results. I mix the Bob’s Red mill tapioca flour, the only tapioca starch I could find, with a small very small amount of water and whisk smooth, then whisk into the oat milk, and heat to sterilize the milk for making yogurt. Quart jars submerged in water with the Sous Vide set at 180F, and it thickens nicely. Most recently I also added chia seed when blending, and made the mistake of also using tapioca starch…… Well maybe not a “mistake”, but the thick almost porridge texture is a bit over the top, as I wanted a thinner product, more like kefir. I’ll be trying more experiments with Chia, and I will also be buying a 50 pound bag of oats from the local elevator. I’ve also played with using malted barley and malted wheat…. intended for brewing, as well as rice, but I find the Oat milk the best of the grain milks to my taste.



Sarah Drovandi December 6, 2017 at 5:02 pm

What can you do with the left over oats?


Angela (Oh She Glows) December 7, 2017 at 7:47 am

I wonder if you could make oatmeal or add the soaked oats to chia and yogurt?


Joyce October 18, 2018 at 7:34 am

I love this milk and for the water, use half of it as ice cubes to keep the soluble fiber (slime) from forming. I also use 4 cups because it seems like it thickens as it sits in the refrigerator. I love it, plain! I make yogurt out of it, so creamy and smooth. You can also buy Oatly Oat Milk if you don’t have the time to make the oatmilk.


MIX: 1-2 tsp calcium water into a half gallon oat milk (Ca water comes in Pomona’s Pectin)

HEAT: To 140 degrees F

COOL: To 108-110 degrees F

MIX: Take small amount of cooled oat milk, mix in 2-4 tsp pectin in a blender and blend for almost a minute.

MIX: Mix in 1 package of yogurt yeast.

STIR: Blended oatmilk back into the rest of the cooled oat milk. Pour into yogurt maker and set for 12-15 hours.

POUR OFF : Liquor on the top and save to put in cookies, oatmeal etc., chill remaining yogurt for at least 3 hours.


Angela (Oh She Glows) October 18, 2018 at 8:17 am

Thanks so much for sharing Joyce!


scotswoman December 8, 2017 at 11:11 pm

I’m putting my left over oats into patties with freekah, lentils and beans!! and also I would eat them tomorrow morning with cinnamon, raisins and grated apple for breakfast! Yum!


scotswoman December 8, 2017 at 11:07 pm

I have at last made the oat milk! Very creamy and delicious, doing as you suggested 3 cups water to 1 cup oats. I didn’t use as much salt maybe 1/8th teaspoon, maybe my teaspoon big, but thought 1/4 would make it too salty. Depends on your taste really. It is quite sweet, just going to find out how many points on weight watchers now!! Thanks for great posting,


Angela (Oh She Glows) December 9, 2017 at 10:25 am

Hey there, So glad you tried it out! It’s been ages since I’ve made it…will have to revisit it soon. :)


DeAnn Eidem January 15, 2018 at 10:50 pm

Hi Angela! I love your recipes!
We just made this for the first time. We liked it but…it wasn’t quite creamy & rich enough for our taste, so at the end we added about 1 T avocado oil and 1/4 tsp guar gum to help it stay suspended, and blended to combine. I’m not sure how well it will remain suspended…probably will still need a shake or two before using, but it tastes fantastic! Thank you so much!


Angela (Oh She Glows) January 16, 2018 at 8:57 am

Hey DeAnn, Thanks for the recipe love!
And thank you for sharing your tweaks…I’d love to hear how it does after sitting. I agree with you though that it’s not rich enough. I love the store-bought Califia milks for richness!


Mangalika January 16, 2018 at 11:03 pm

I grind 4 Tbsp. instant oats in the grinder into a powder and add bananas, raisins and cinnamon powder and blend it altogether which gives me a nice b’fast smoothie. I sometimes have it for dinner too. Instead of going through the above process to make oat milk, I simply grind my oats to powder, add enough water and simply stir it well to make oat milk. If you wish you can blend the oat powder and water too. You can add the other ingredients like cinnamon, sugar or maple syrup for sweetness to it. Try it out – it involves much less hassle.


Ashley January 22, 2018 at 11:26 am

Hi Angela, I just wanted to let you know that this is by far the most detailed site on oat milk! There’s so many videos out there on how to make oat milk but you explained from end to finish so well and you included pros and cons!! Thank you and I’ll give this a try soon!!


Angela (Oh She Glows) January 23, 2018 at 8:27 am

Hey Ashley, Oh wow, thank you! I’m so glad you like the detail in the post. :)


shiva claire January 24, 2018 at 5:42 am

thanks for the great recipe! the leftovers make a great skin scrub/mask!


Birte February 1, 2018 at 12:12 pm

I’ll have to give it another try with steel cut oats. I used quick oats before and I boiled them – the result was super slimy :(
So steel cut and no boiling will be my next try! Thanks for pre testing it for me :)
Love your recipes! It made my food intolerances bearable! So thank you thank you thank you!


Angela (Oh She Glows) February 2, 2018 at 3:43 pm

Thanks so much for your feedback and recipe love…and I’d love to hear how it goes with steel cut!


Leslie E Perez February 3, 2018 at 11:05 am

Would anybody know the nutrition facts on this homemade milk? Both of my kids can’t have dairy, but are on the smaller side so they need their calories. Thanks


Jess February 3, 2018 at 8:14 pm

Just made it using a food processor (my mini blender was too small), and a nut milk bag. It came out great! No lumps/chunks etc.. like my first attempt. 😊 The oats are a blend of various oats and flax seed, wheat germ etc.. for added nutrients. No fillers or other nasty stuff..thank you!


Angela (Oh She Glows) February 5, 2018 at 9:10 am

Hey Jess, So happy to hear that you enjoyed it! Thanks for letting me know.


Janet February 10, 2018 at 2:41 pm

This oat milk is really good . Thank you for the recipe . I made porridge with the pulp and look forward to making it again soon !
No more bought milk fir me .😁


Fritzi February 21, 2018 at 5:04 pm

Thank you for this easy to follow recipe. I haven’t even added any of the recommended salt, honey, cinnamon, etc and it already tastes enjoyable. I’m hoping the remaining oat mush will turn into overnight oats…


Rachel Rose Dring March 6, 2018 at 4:05 am

Will try and make this ASAP! Thank you for sharing! Here in London oat milk can be over £2 and the ingredients are 10% oats, water and salt! So I am thinking next step make it, and love that you added the cinnamon etc. Will let you know how it goes! X


Angela (Oh She Glows) March 6, 2018 at 9:06 am

Hey Rachel, I’d love to hear how it goes! Thanks :)


grace tsang March 9, 2018 at 11:04 am

‘slime’ shouldn’t be rinsed off. probably why your oat milk isn’t as creamy as it should be.


DB March 15, 2018 at 10:36 pm

I purchased a carton of oat milk (Pacific Foods brand) from a health fooid store. I heated it up to make Golden Milk, aka Turmeric milk. I enjoyed the oat milk a lot that I decided to google on how to make your own. A lot of people make their oat milk with rolled oats and water, but recommend you cannot heat it or it will get thick and unpleasant for drinking. I did not experience that with a Pacific Foods brand. My question is, has anyone heated up this milk from this particular recipe? If so, can you tell whether it heated well?


Ev September 1, 2018 at 11:45 pm

I just made a fresh batch of this oat milk because I wanted some hot cocoa…used it with my square of chocolate in the microwave…didn’t get thick or icky…stayed the way I made it. :)


Melanie March 19, 2018 at 7:36 pm

I have been trying different oat milk recipes and they all turn out slimy.
I mix my milk before drinking it and there is always a residue on the bottom.
I thought that you could heat up oat milk, the slime happens when I heat it up.


Jess Brand March 21, 2018 at 2:12 am

Hi I made this, or something like it yesterday. I did not throw away the soak water (I didn’t want to lose any good nutrients – maybe that was a bit precious?!) but used it instead to blend the oats. Then I strained through a sieve, put the pulp aside, and strained a second time through a cheesecloth which collected the fine grains, and I understood, then, what you meant by oat ‘slime’! As we aren’t to give birds bread, but oats these days I put the slime out for the birds and used the set-aside pulp to make porridge. By adding 1/2 teaspoon of cinnamon, I didn’t need to add sugar/sweetener (I’m off sugar at the moment). a dash of the oat milk helped to loosen it up a bit, and I topped it with soy-kefir. It was very nice, so thank you for the recipe idea.


Stephen April 2, 2018 at 4:10 am

Not good…. I’ve found 3 cups actually would’ve yielded a very thin milk, I thought this was the case and so gradually added the water. 2 cups was more than enough! Maybe personal preference, but I don’t think so. Thanks for the idea though.


Angela (Oh She Glows) April 3, 2018 at 2:43 pm

Thanks for your feedback Stephen!


Andree April 15, 2018 at 3:02 pm

Can I put nutritional yeast in my homemade oatmilk?


Sara June 23, 2018 at 12:18 pm

It would make it taste cheesy, salty, and savory. Is that what you are looking for?


Lisa August 9, 2018 at 12:02 am

I made this pretty much as directed using only 2 dates and 1/2 Tablespoon of maple syrup. Using steel cut oats, discarding the soaking water and then THOROUGHLY rinsing, really helped cut down on the “oat slime” I experienced wtih another recipe. I put mine in a nut milk bag and it turned out great. I like the 3:1 ratio. Thanks for posting this.


Angela (Oh She Glows) August 9, 2018 at 7:01 am

Hey Lisa, I’m so glad this worked so well for you. I agree that thoroughly rinsing is so helpful. :)


Miri Freimanis August 12, 2018 at 12:26 pm

Just love this recipe! So easy to make. I freeze it, too and it turns out great once thawed for making my hot millett cereals. Tastes great and what a relief to find this recipe as I no longer can drink the ones from the stores due to an allergy to a common additive they use. I tried soaking oats for 20 mins. and overnight and found no real difference in taste or texture. I don’t even strain as many times as recommended and it still works out! Thanks so much for this excellent recipe!


Jane Marson August 19, 2018 at 2:36 pm

Just made Oat Mylk as it’s expensive at the store and not that great. I like Oat Milk as I find it the closest to real milk in taste. I used Organic Oat Groats (perhaps 1/2 cup) – soaked them overnight. Rinsed these really well with a strainer. Put them in the blender with 1 1/2 (distilled) cups water, good dash of vanilla essence and 2 pitted dates. Put them in the Vitamix blender and blended a good while. Put some cheese cloth over a strainer, which was put over a small-ish glass bowl in sink. Poured this well-blended milk over the cheesecloth/strainer. Squeezed out cheesecloth into the mylk and voila! Great mylk/milk!!


November August 22, 2018 at 2:21 pm

I just made this!
I soaked it for a couple of hours since I read a comment that time doesn’t make a lot of difference. Rinsed it, but not TOO thoroughly since I hoped a small amount of “slime” would make it a bit creamy, and not too thin. In the blender I added the salt, maple syrup and I also added a bit of coconut oil (since the best tasting store brands have it in them!) and some shredded dried coconut. Mixed it, strained it, and and, and again… and a couple of times more. It was a little slimy and tasted quite strong, but my simple solution was to add more water until it was perfect! I haven’t tried the original recipe but I really like the creamyness that the hint of coconut and oil added. I immediately made a cup of hot chocolate and it is amazing and rich in flavour! Thank you so much for this recipe!


Angela (Oh She Glows) August 22, 2018 at 5:44 pm

Thanks for your review…I love your tweaks! :)


November August 22, 2018 at 2:23 pm

By the way, I have been willing to make this for a while now, but today it happens to be World Plant Milk day, so it was the ideal moment! :)


Persiasblossom September 11, 2018 at 3:45 pm

Does the soaking process happen in or outside of the refrigerator?


Angela (Oh She Glows) September 12, 2018 at 7:06 am

It’s really up to you! I usually just soak on the counter whenever I’m soaking grains, nuts/seeds, or beans :)


Viki September 17, 2018 at 3:54 am

You need to put a bit of oil in! It tastes just like the shop one then. I only add salt and oil and strain it through the nutmilk bag and it’s always perfect!


Angela (Oh She Glows) September 18, 2018 at 7:12 am

Oh great tip, thanks! Which kind of oil do you use?


Leslie Kannan September 19, 2018 at 3:01 pm

I made some delicious crackers with the pulp. 1 cup oat pulp, 1 cup barley meal, 1/2 cup whole wheat flour, 1/4 cup cooking oil, 1/2 tsp salt, 1/4 tsp soda, 1T everything bagel seasoning (Trader Joes). Make a stiff dough, roll it out then chill in the freezer; cut out crackers and bake at 375/30 minutes


Angela (Oh She Glows) September 21, 2018 at 8:08 am

Hey Leslie, that’s so cool! I love your idea of using the pulp for crackers…thanks for sharing!


Tina November 5, 2018 at 11:04 am

I don’t know what I’m doing wrong. I make it exactly as written and it tastes great cold. Then I put it in my coffee and heat it a bit and it turns thick and undrinkable. I’ve read these reviews where people say it doesn’t happen for them. I’ve tried both rolled and steel cut oats but it happens with both. I really enjoy oat milk but if I can’t put it in my coffee, I can’t use it all before it goes bad and it’s too time consuming to make every day. Any suggestions?


Angela (Oh She Glows) November 6, 2018 at 9:16 am

Hey Tina, Oh that’s a bummer for sure! I’m not sure as I don’t think I’ve tried it in coffee yet. I have found in the past that homemade nut milks separate in coffee and aren’t great in hot drinks (that’s why all the store-bought ones have emulsifiers). If anyone has any tips for adding this to coffee or tea I would love to hear them too!


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