Genuine coffee lovers enjoy experimenting with their coffee and enjoying the different taste that using different sugars and milks brings and learning how to steam soy milk at home without making it curdle is a skill that is easily mastered.
By the time you have finished reading this article you will be able to make both steamed and frothed milk at home like an expert barista.
Keep reading as we dig down and get into the details of this tutorial.
How To Steam Soy Milk At Home With A Steam Wand
Steaming your soy milk at home is no different from making regular steamed milk. Just be careful of the milk temperature, more on this in a jiffy, so that you do not end up with curdled milk.
Use a heat sensitive stick, which you can find on amazon that will change color when your milk jug reaches 55C (130F).
Start by dipping the tip of the nozzle of your steam wand half an inch below the milk surface to create the milk foam. Once you have the maximum possible amount of foam, submerge the tip deeper to create a vortex of milk to mix some of the foam with the soy milk and create a rich velvet like texture.
Once ready pour slowly.
Read: Steaming vs frothing milk
Heat Is The Enemy Of The Perfect Texture
It is very important not to overheat your soy milk or any milk for that matter. Soy milk is more sensitive to heat than other milks as it causes the milk proteins to degrade at a lower temperature. When this happens, you will reduce the protein level which will in turn alter the balance of protein to acid in your soy milk.
…And when that happens you will end up with curdled milk.
Read: Boil milk for coffee
Acid – Public Enemy #1 For Soy Milk.
To retain the fruity and natural character of your coffee you need to be aware of the effect the coffees citric acids and malic acids will have on the soy milk. Acid is the arch-nemesis of soy milk.
Soy milk is high in proteins which react unfavourably with acids which lead to curdling and clumping. When you see curdling and clumping in your soy milk it is due to an imbalance between the proteins and the acids. You need more protein than acids, which when this happens you have rich silk like texture to your milk, and when you have more acids, your milk starts to get clumpy.
You need to be aware of the acidity of your coffee when you are thinking about using or making steamed milk. One solution if it is definitely the coffee, and you really want to make soy milk lattes, cappuccinos etc is to add a little baking soda to the coffee, the espresso shot.
The baking soda will help to tone down and neutralize the acidity of the coffee without affecting the flavor.
Read: Steamed milk
How To Steam Soy Milk At Home Without A Steamer
Start by pouring the amount of soy milk that you will be using into a saucepan and heat it gently. Don’t let it bubble or simmer, just heat it gently to below this point. once it starts to bubble or a few seconds like 10 to 20 seconds later while on a low heat.
Then pour your heated soy milk into a cocktail shaker and shake vigorously for a minute. This shaking aerates your milk and creates the foam you are looking for. Also this process of shaking the milk will help to create the rick silky texture.
Here is a quick recap.
- 1 Use cold milk, cold soy milk as your starting point.
- 2. Use only the amount that you need and no more. Pour into a saucepan.
- 3. Heat gently on a low heat until it starts to bubble, count 10 to 20 seconds and take off the heat.
- 4. Pour your heated soy milk into a cocktail shaker and shake vigorously for 60 seconds.
- 5. Pour slowly into your cup of coffee and enjoy. Pouring slowly is important.
What Is The Ideal Temperature For Steaming Soy Milk?
The ideal temperature for steaming soy milk is 55C to 60C (130F to 140F). If you steam your soy milk at a higher temperature you will destroy the proteins and milk fats and put the whole fat to protein ratios out of sync.
You can use a color changing temperature sticker and stick it to your milk jug to ensure that you are not out with this temperature range.
How To Froth Soy Milk At Home Using A French Press
You can froth your soy milk at home very easily. First heat your milk to 55C (130F) and not more than 60C (140F) then bring it off the heat.
Then slowly pour your heated soy milk into your French press and pump vigorously (bit not too strongly) to aerate the soy milk until you have fluffy soy milk froth.
Once you have that fluffy milk simply pour slowly into your coffee and enjoy.
What Is The Best Soy Milk For Frothing?
The top three brands for making top quality frothy soy milk and steamed soy milk are as follows:
- 1. Trader Joes Organic Soy Milk.
- 2. Organic EdenSoy Milk
- 3. Westsoy Oranganic Unsweatened Soy Milk.
Does The Type Of Soy Milk Matter?
No, there is no significant difference between the various types and brands of soy milk that are on the market be they organic or non-organic, sweetened or unsweetend. One brand that stands out is Barista as their milk is focused on baristas for making steamed and frothed milk.
Their soy milk option is higher in protein and fat to help prevent the curdling of it in an acidic environment.
Frequently Asked Questions About How To Steam Soy Milk At Home
Can Soy Milk Be Steamed?
Yes, steaming soy milk is very easy to do as long as you pay attention to what not to do and keep the milk temperature in the 55C to 60C (130F to 140F) degree range and ensure it does not curdle.
How Do You Steam Soy Milk Without A Steamer?
You can put your soy milk in a cocktail shaker and shake vigorously for a min or two and then heat it in the microwave. While technically not steamed, it is frothy and aerated. Alternatively, you can use your French press and pump the plunger vigorously to make frothy soy milk.
How Do You Steam Milk At Home?
Follow the step-by-step instructions below to steam your milk at home:
- 1 Fill your microwave safe container with the amount of milk that you need to steam.
- 2. Heat it for 20 to 30 seconds.
- 3. Pay attention to the time taken and check the temperature with a thermometer.
- 4. At 150F (65C) you have the ideal temperature.
- 5. Add to a cocktail shaker and shake vigorously for 60 seconds to make froth.
- 6. Add the froth to your coffee.
Can You Steam Silk Milk?
Yes, I’ve tried successfully and managed to steam Silk Organic Soy Milk for a range of milk based coffee drinks including latte, cortado, flat white and a cappuccino. The key to my success was a shorter steaming time and a slightly lower steaming temperature when compared to steaming regular milk.
What Kind Of Milk Is The Best To Steam?
Whole milk is the best kind of milk to steam for a wide range of coffee drinks due to the higher levels of milk fats and whey proteins and in better ratios. The quality of the foam is better and there is a slightly better quality
Final Thoughts – How To Steam Soy Milk At Home
Learning how to steam soy milk at home is easy regardless of using a steam wand or using your French press to aerate the milk, or even the shakerato technique with a cocktail shaker to force air into the milk.
Regardless of aerating the milk or steaming it, you need to be fully aware of not going over the 55C (130F) or 60C (140F) temperature range and maintaining the integrity of the proteins.
If your milk is still curdling, then try the technique of using a little baking soda to neutralize the acidity of your coffee before pouring the milk into your coffee.