Making homemade nut milk at home is an easy and rewarding process. One of the key parts of making homemade milk is straining the pulp to get a more commercial or smooth texture. You could use a few different techniques to strain the milk, but this blog post highlights the showdown of nut milk bag vs cheesecloth. 

What is a Cheesecloth?

A cheesecloth is a lightweight, loosely woven cotton fabric used in food preparation and household tasks. Its primary use is for straining liquids, such as separating curds from whey in cheese-making, hence the name. 

Cheesecloth is the gauze of cooking. It is used for many things, such as bundling herbs, making spice bags, and covering fermenting products. Due to its versatile, breathable, and durable nature, cheesecloth is utilized in crafting, cleaning, and even as a prop in artistic projects.

cheesecloth straining nut milk

Pros of Using a Cheesecloth  

Here are some of its pros if you’re considering using cheesecloth to strain your nut milk. 

  • Multiuse: As highlighted above, cheesecloth has many uses, which can make it desirable. You can also use it for milk and other things around your home. 
  • Easy to find: A cheesecloth can be found anywhere from online to your local grocery store.
  • Can be cut to size: You can make a cheesecloth your own by cutting it to the exact size you need. If you’re making a smaller batch or want to work with less fabric, you can. 
  • Easy pulp removal: Removing the pulp once the milk is straining is much easier since the cloth opens all the way. This pulp can be added to smoothies to add fiber and nutrients.

Cons of Using a Cheesecloth

While there are pros to using cheesecloth, there are also some cons. Here are the downsides to straining nut milk using cheesecloth. 

  • Leaves a trace: Because cheesecloths are made from cotton, there is a risk that the fibers can get into milk. 
  • Messy: Cheesecloth is just that, a cloth, making it harder to clean and work with, unlike a nut milk bag with structure and a drawstring.
  • Expensive: A cheesecloth is an expensive option, especially if it needs to be replaced often.
  • Staining and flimsy: Repeated use of a cheesecloth can cause wear and tear and stain the material. 

What is a Nut Milk Bag?

A nut milk bag is a fine mesh bag with a drawstring used to strain homemade plant-based milks, such as almond or cashew milk. It separates the liquid from the solid pulp from the outside of the nuts (the brown part of almonds). Ensuring a smooth and creamy consistency. 

Nut milk bags are also used for other straining tasks in cooking, like making cold brew coffee or straining juices. They are reusable, easy to clean, and made from materials like nylon or cotton.

Pros of Using a Nut Milk Bag

Making nut milk using a bag designed specifically for the tasks gives it a list of pros. Here are some of the pros;

  • Fine straining: A nut milk bag has the perfect mesh size for straining nut milk to separate the pulp from the liquid portion. 
  • Reusable: Can be used over and over. *I’ve had mine since 2018! 
  • Durable: It is relatively durable and doesn’t fall apart or get as much wear and tear as cheesecloth.
  • Design: a nut milk bag has a wide opening, rounded corners, and drawstring to help prevent spills from pouring and reduce waste.

Cons of Using a Nut Milk Bag

While there are pros to using a nut milk bag, there are cons. Here are a few;

  • Tougher to clean: A nut milk bag doesn’t open all the way, making it messier to turn inside out to clean. However, it doesn’t mold. 
  • Variable sizes: Nut milk bags can be of different sizes depending on the brand. Reading the measurements to ensure the size is correct helps you choose the size you need.
  • Staining: Similar to a cheesecloth, repeated use of a nut milk bag can cause discoloration and staining. 

Nut Milk Bag vs Cheesecloth

All in all, it comes down to personal preference on what you use. Both have slight learning curves but can easily be used to make nut milk. Nut milk bags are designed to make nut milk and have a few features that make the process easier and can save money over time. 

The Best Nut Milk Bag

I’ve been making nut milk for the last decade, and if I’m not using a machine, I prefer to use a nut milk bag.

The “Pro Quality Nut Milk Bag” from Ellie’s Best is a crowd favorite and highly rated. It’s made of food-grade BPA-free nylon. I got two of these in 2018, and they’re still going strong! You can save 10% off your purchase using the code RHYAN10 at checkout.

Final Thoughts

You can save a killing by making it at home instead of buying a $5-6 jug at the store. While there are some differences between store-bought and homemade milk. There is room for both, and using a nut milk bag or cheesecloth can make your nut milk-making journey successful.

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