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Almonds Every Which Way

If you’re nuts for almonds, here’s the first cookbook devoted to almond milk, almond flour, and almond butter. More than 150 recipes will help you further incorporate them into your meals.

Almonds have quickly become a key ingredient in Paleo, low-carb, gluten-free, vegan, and other alternative diets, as well as mainstream diets. They provide an excellent substitute for dairy and grain flours. And the list of health benefits they offer is long: They can reduce bad cholesterol, lower heart-attack risks, aid building strong bones, provide healthy fats, and assist in regulating blood sugar and insulin levels.

Author Brooke McLay offers recipes for all the basics. She describes how to make your own unsweetened almond milk, along with variations including vanilla, coconut, chocolate, and cashew almond milks. And she outlines a similar spectrum of almond butters and almond flours.

McLay then describes an astonishing array of almond-based recipes for breakfast dishes, including pancakes, waffles, bars, and granolas; breads, scones, and muffins; smoothies, shakes, and cocoas; snacks, appetizers, and side dishes; sandwiches; soups; dinners; and best of all, desserts.

A sampling of some of our favorite recipes are below.

Almond Butter Hummus
Almond Butter Hummus
Photo Brooke McLay, Franklin Bennett, and Melanie North

Almond Butter Hummus

Hummus has grown in popularity over the years, and for good reason—it’s delicious! This recipe adds creamy almond butter for a touch of natural sweetness and tons of flavor. Raw or roasted almond butter works equally well in this hummus. This recipe calls for roasted garlic, which is usually found in the olive bar, near the deli section of most grocery stores. If you can’t find it, feel free to omit it.Dairy-free, gluten-free, grain-free, vegetarian, vegan

Makes 16 Servings

  • 2 cloves roasted garlic
  • 1 (15-ounce) can garbanzo beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1/4 cup + 2 tbs. olive oil
  • 3 tbs. almond butter
  • 3 tbs. lemon juice
  • 1/4 tsp. salt
  • 1 tbs. finely chopped flat-leaf parsley
  • 1/4 tsp. smoked paprika
  1. Place the garlic, garbanzo beans, 1/4 cup of the oil, the almond butter, lemon juice, and salt in a food processor fitted with a metal blade. Pulse to desired consistency. Add more salt if desired.
  2. Garnish with a sprinkling of fresh chopped parsley and paprika.

Per Serving (1/16 Recipe)

  • Calories: 134
  • Calories from Fat: 30
  • Total Fat: 5g, 8%
  • Saturated Fat: 0g, 0%
  • Total Carb: 19g, 6%
  • Dietary Fiber: 4g, 16%
  • Sugars: 1g
  • Protein: 5g
  • Cholesterol: 0m, 0%
  • Sodium: 349mg, 15%

From Almonds Every Which Way by Brooke McLay. Reprinted with permission from Da Capo Lifelong, © 2014|

korean lettuce wraps copy
Korean Lettuce Wraps
Photo Brooke McLay, Franklin Bennett, and Melanie North

Korean Lettuce Wraps

Korean red pepper flakes can be found in Asian grocery stores and is nice to have in the pantry. The bright red flakes add a bit of heat, but not as much as you might suspect when first spooning big, bright scarlet flakes of red pepper. Typically, it’s purchased in extra large quantities, so if you’re new to this recipe and not sure if you’re a fan of Korean food or kimchi spices, feel free to omit the red pepper flakes and add 1/2 teaspoon paprika, 1/4 teaspoon cayenne, and 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes, instead. Vegan and vegetarian eaters can swap the steak for black beans or vegan ground crumbles and still enjoy the goodness of this dish.

Dairy-free, grain-free, paleo, vegan, vegetarian

Makes 6 servings

  • 3 tbs. white vinegar
  • 3 tbs. honey or sugar
  • 1/4 tsp. salt
  • 1/2 cucumber, peeled and finely sliced
  • 1/4 red onion, finely sliced
  • 2 tbs. avocado or coconut oil
  • 1 clove garlic, finely chopped
  • 1-inch piece fresh ginger, grated
  • 1 pound flank steak, sliced thin, or 1 ½ cups meatless crumbles
  • 1/2 cup soy sauce
  • 2 tbs. creamy almond butter
  • 2 tbs. Korean red pepper flakes
  • 1 tbs. sesame oil
  • 6 Bibb lettuce leaves
  • 1 tbs. sliced scallions

1.  In a small bowl, whisk together the vinegar, 1 tablespoon of the honey, and the salt. Add the cucumber and onion slices to the bowl. Set aside.

2.  In a large skillet, heat the avocado oil over medium-high heat. Add the garlic and ginger. Cook them until softened, about 1 minute. Add the steak and cook until browned, about 3 to 4 minutes. Add the soy sauce, almond butter, pepper flakes, remaining honey, and sesame oil to the skillet. Stir until the steak, or thawed meatless crumbles, is coated, then immediately remove from heat.

3.  Serve the steak in the Bibb lettuce leaves topped with the cucumber mixture. Garnish with sliced scallions, if desired.

Per serving (1 wrap)

  • Calories: 333
  • Calories from Fat: 138
  • Total Fat: 15.3g, 24%
  • Saturated: Fat 3.8g, 19%
  • Total Carb: 22.2g, 7%
  • Dietary Fiber: 3.0g, 12%
  • Sugars: 16.0g
  • Protein: 28.7g
  • Cholesterol: 47mg, 16%
  • Sodium: 2030mg, 85%

From Almonds Every Which Way by Brooke McLay. Reprinted with permission from Da Capo Lifelong, © 2014|

Vanilla Pie copy
Vanilla Almond Milk Custard Pie
Photo Brooke McLay, Franklin Bennett, and Melanie North

Vanilla Almond Milk Custard Pie

The basic almond milk custard makes a base for any flavor you desire. Craving banana cream, coconut cream, or chocolate cream pie? Start here, then follow the tips for turning this basic vanilla custard into the almond milk-based cream pie of your dreams.

Dairy-free, gluten-free, grain-free, paleo, vegan, vegetarian

Makes 1 Pie (8 Servings)

  • 1/3 cup honey, agave nectar, pure maple syrup, or sugar
  • 1 tbs. butter, Earth Balance, or melted coconut oil
  • 1 tbs. pure vanilla extract
  • 3 cups almond milk
  • 3 1/2 tbs. arrowroot powder or 1/4 cup cornstarch
  • 1/4 tsp. salt
  • 1 prebaked Almond Flour Pie Crust

1. In a large saucepan over medium heat, whisk together the honey, butter, vanilla, and 2 cups of the almond milk. In a small bowl, whisk together the remaining 1 cup of almond milk with arrowroot powder. Slowly add this mixture to the saucepan, whisking constantly until the custard begins to thicken. If you’re thickening it with arrowroot, you don’t want the custard to boil. If you’re thickening it with cornstarch, the custard will need to come to a boil in order to thicken properly. You’ll know when your custard is ready because it will become the consistency of pudding.

2. Remove from the stove, whisk in the salt, and allow the custard to cool before spooning into your prepared pie crust.

Cover and refrigerate until chilled, about 2-3 hours.

Per Serving (1/8 Recipe, Custard Only)

  • Calories: 259
  • Calories from Fat: 193
  • Total Fat: 21.5 g, 33%
  • Saturated Fat: 19.0g, 95%
  • Total Carb: 17.0g, 6%
  • Dietary Fiber: 2.0g, 8%
  • Sugars: 11.5g
  • Protein: 2.1g
  • Cholesterol: 0mg, 0%
  • Sodium: 87mg, 4%

Custard Cream Everything
Turn this easy vanilla custard into all of your favorite cream pie fillings with a few easy mix-ins.

  • Banana Cream Pie: Whisk two ripe, smashed bananas and 1 tablespoon rum flavoring into the vanilla custard as soon as you remove it from the heat.
  • Coconut Cream Pie: Whisk 1 cup toasted, finely shredded coconut and 1 teaspoon coconut extract into the vanilla custard as soon as you remove it from the heat.
  • Chocolate Cream Pie: Add 3 tablespoons chocolate chips and 3 tablespoons cocoa powder to the saucepan when you add the butter and honey.
  • Lemon Cream Pie: Instead of the initial 2 cups almond milk, use 1 ½ cups, and before adding the arrowroot mixture, stir in 1/3 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice and 1  tablespoon fresh lemon zest (1 teaspoon lemon extract will boost the flavor even more). Heat until thickened, as per original recipe instructions.
  • Key Lime Cream: Instead of the initial 2 cups almond milk, use 1 ½ cups, and before adding the arrowroot mixture, stir in 1/3 cup freshly squeezed lime juice and ½ tablespoon fresh lime zest to the vanilla custard recipe. Tint with a drop or two of natural green food coloring, if desired.

From Almonds Every Which Way by Brooke McLay. Reprinted with permission from Da Capo Lifelong, © 2014

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