Sunflower Seed Milk

February 15, 2013

This homemade sunflower seed milk recipe is really easy, loaded with nutrients, and tastes fresh and delicious. Drink chilled, or use in smoothies and desserts.

This homemade sunflower seed milk recipe is really easy, loaded with nutrients, and tastes fresh and delicious. Drink chilled, or use in smoothies and desserts, or pour over oatmeal and other cereals.

Sunflower seeds are loaded with antioxidants and anti-inflammatory agents. They’re a good source of protein, fiber, essential fatty acids, calcium, iron, zinc, magnesium, potassium, manganese, selenium, and vitamins B and E. Like pumpkin seeds, these sensational seeds also contain significant amounts of tryptophan to alleviate anxiety and aid sleep.

Sunflower seeds have a high fat content and are subject to rancidity. Always purchase from a supplier with a high turnover to ensure maximum freshness and quality, and store in a sealed glass container in the fridge. Soak them to neutralize enzyme inhibitors and unlock their full nutrient potential. Learn more about the benefits of soaking here.

You can enjoy sunflower seed milk unstrained. But, most people find it too full-on this way. It does have a distinct seedy flavor that’s not for everyone I sweeten it and flavor it with vanilla extract. It also tastes delicious with some raw cacao powder and cinnamon.


Sunflower Seed Milk

This homemade sunflower seed milk recipe is really easy, loaded with nutrients, and tastes fresh and delicious. Drink chilled, or use in smoothies and desserts.

Prep Time 10 minutes
Total Time 10 minutes
Servings 3 cups
Author Tess Masters


unsweetened sunflower seed milk:

sweetened milk (unsweetened milk, plus below):

chocolate milk (sweetened milk, plus below):


  1. To soak the sunflower seeds, place them in a glass or ceramic bowl or large glass jar, and cover with filtered water. Add 1 teaspoon Celtic sea salt and splash of fresh lemon juice or apple cider vinegar, cover the container with a breathable kitchen towel, and allow to soak at room temperature for 8 hours. (For more information on soaking read here.)
  2. Drain, and discard the soaking liquid (do not use this to make the milk). Rinse the sunflower seeds several times to remove the anti-nutrients and enzyme inhibitors. 
  3. Throw the rinsed sunflower seeds, water, and salt in your blender, and blast on high for 30 to 60 seconds, until the nuts are completely pulverized. Use whole milk to maximize nutrition. Or strain for a smoother, more commercial-style milk for use in recipes.
  4. To strain, place a nut milk bag or knee-high piece of sheer nylon hosiery over the opening of a glass bowl, jar or jug. Pour the milk into the bag, twisting the bag closed, and gently squeezing it to pass the liquid through. 
  5. Rinse your blender container, and pour the strained milk back in. Add the vanilla, sweetener, and any flavorings, and blast again, until smooth and creamy. 
  6. Store the milk in a sealed container in the fridge. Activated sunflower seed milk (made with soaked sunflower seeds) will keep for 2 to 3 days in a very cold fridge. Un-soaked sunflower seed milk will keep for about 5 days. 


Comments 18

  1. Are there any drastic benefits that almond milk has that sunflower seed milk doesn’t? Almonds cost 2x as much as sunflower seeds, so I’d like to switch to sunflower seed milk! Any reasons not to?

    1. I really love the nutritional content of almonds. However, sunflower seeds also contain a lot of nutrients. I totally see your point about the cost. I don’t like to drink any one “mylk” every single day or week. I think nutritional diversity is really important. Perhaps strike a nice balance and make almond milk once every couple of weeks, sunflower seed milk every week, hemp milk, etc and mix it up. Try the pumpkin seed milk too. That is great.

  2. Thanks a lot for the great recipe. Would’ve been so nice, though, if calories & basic nutrition facts could have been listed. 🙂

    1. Thanks for your comment. I don’t do nutritional profiling on my recipes as I am not a nutritionist. There are some fantastic third-party programs you can use for my recipes. My favourite websites are cronometer, fitday, and nutritiondata. Nutricalc is also an amazing software. WHFoods is also a fantastic place to get the nutritional profile of whole foods.

  3. Doesn’t it tast a bit bitter? It’s definetly worth a try, since it’s less expensive than almondmilk…
    And just for the ones who don’t own a nutmilk bag or cheescloth: a big coton handkerchief works really good as well.

    1. Great tip about the hanky! I have never noticed sunflower seed milk tasting bitter. However, it does have a very distinct flavour, unlike almond milk which is very mild. I really love it. You can always mix almonds and sunflowers for an exotic milk, and to make things more affordable. But always soak them separately.

      1. Made some yesterday and yes, it has a distict flavour (but not bitter) which -I just found out- suits chocolate. So a perfect excuse to drink more hot cocoa 🙂

  4. Question… I’m using this recipie for my very food allergic babe (50+food allergies and counting). I’ve never made a nut milk before and I want to get it right the first time. Step 1, soaking the seeds… I bought the ones you linked, they are already sprouted and dried, correct? So, when I soak them, do I drain and rinse as well? And they still get soaked for 12 hours even though they have already been through the sprouting and drying process? Thanks so much for the recipes on this site. Many of them can be adjusted for my babe and I’m excited to finally have a “milk” replacement and even more excited to finally have an icecream treat that he can have! We are trying the mint one just as soon as we make sure the sunflower milk won’t bother him!

    1. Lori Beth – I am so sorry I missed your question. I had a bug in my comment notifications. If you have purchased sprouted sunflower seeds, you only need to soak to soften the sunflower seeds to blend. So, just a couple of hours is fine. To soak, place them in a glass or ceramic bowl and covered with filtered water, and soak at room temp. Rinse thoroughly, discard the soaking liquid, and then add fresh filtered water to the blender to make the milk. I hope this helps.

  5. Just curious- Is there a reason you re-blend with the additions after straining? I always just add sweetener / vanilla along with my nuts or seeds.

    1. I just find it yields a slightly richer flavor. But, to save time you could absolutely throw everything into the blender and then strain.

  6. Just tried this recipe and it’s great! Made the unsweetened version since I like to add mylk to my morning coffee and I loved it. Thank you so much! I’ll be trying the pumpkin seed milk next.

  7. I always make creme of soups such as mushroom, spinach, chowder with homemade cashew milk and I am wondering if sunflower seed milk would taste ok? I just purchased 25 pounds organic sunflower seeds and am storing in deep freeze. I’m having a hard time sourcing affordable organic cashews.

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