Tribest Soyabella SB-130 Soy Milk Maker – Full Review
The Tribest Soyabella SB-130 Soy milk Maker and Coffee Grinder is much more than its admittedly lengthy name suggests. On a raw food diet? It makes raw nut milks from almonds, cashews, and other nuts in just about 30 seconds. Like hot soy milk? Tribest’s Soyabella takes about 15 minutes to deliver, as long as you’ve soaked your beans long enough. It also makes hot soups, porridge, and rice paste you can transform into rice milk, and like many other soy milk makers on the market, it makes great-tasting nut milks using the hot milk setting.
While this isn’t the easiest soy milk maker to clean, cleanup is still simple compared with the type of cleanup that’s involved in the old-fashioned soy milk making process, and the fact that there are different attachments that allow you to make all kinds of tasty creations more than makes up for the few minutes you’ll spend cleaning up afterward.
In the event you’re interested in milling your own flour, you should know that the milling accessory isn’t just useful for grinding coffee; it’s also great for milling oats, wheat, and other grains to make fresh flour from whole ingredients. This is a really nice feature and one that sets the Soyabella SB-130 apart from most other soy milk makers. This having been said, read on for some additional pros and cons that come with owning the Tribest Soyabella SB-130.
Loaded with Features
If all you want is fresh soy milk, this might not be the machine for you, because let’s face it, this particular soy milk maker does all sorts of things. It has both hot and cold functions so you can make hot soy milk, almond milk, and other nondairy milks, and though the grind function is a bit noisy, I think it’s nice to be able to grind coffee and mill grains using the same appliance you use to make fresh milk. I also used the grind function to mill a few different spices including dried basil, peppercorns, and cinnamon, and I liked the results although I have to say the peppercorns and cinnamon made quite a bit of noise at first. Listening from another room wasn’t so bad and clued me in that the spices were good to go.
Good Metal Filter
There are quite a few filter-free soy milk makers out there, and while they are nice, I have to say that I like the fact that the Soybella SB-130 has a fine, metal filter as it does take a bit of the work out of the process of making nondairy milks at home. One word of warning, you have got to clean the filter right away, or you’re going to spend some time scrubbing. I fill up the sink with hot, soapy water while the soy milk maker is running, and after emptying it of the okara or other leftover fiber, I pop it into the sink, so no real scrubbing is involved. The filter does a good job of clearing the liquid out of the fiber, and if you’re interested in making your own meat substitutes, the okara that comes out of the Soybella is perfect for that. I usually put mine in the freezer and make a big batch of meat substitute once I have enough.
Not all the fine “grit” comes out of the soy milk, which is something I find pretty much universal among home soy milk makers. It doesn’t bother me, but if you don’t like it, you can put a strainer with a couple of layers of cheesecloth over the pitcher you use to store your soy milk in and get the last little remnants out.
Easy to Use
If you’ve ever made soy milk at home on the stove, you know it’s a labor-intensive process that requires lots of patience and tons of skimming, not to mention close monitoring that pretty much prevents you from accomplishing anything more than the task at hand. All home soy milk makers have this procedure beat, but the Soybella is a little easier to use than some others I’ve tried. All the accessories snap into place quickly and easily, and the settings are self-explanatory, making this machine one that’s pretty much foolproof.
Fast Heated soy milk Process
I really like how fast the Soybella SB-130 does its job. It takes about 15 minutes to make hot items, which is an average of five minutes less than a number of its competitors. The cold “grind” process, which is used for making raw nut milks, grinding coffee, milling flour, and doing other grinding jobs around the kitchen, takes about 30 seconds or so to complete. Noisy, but not bad.
This is a really nice-looking soy milk maker, in my opinion. It has a modern, sculptural look that makes leaving it out on the countertop instead of looking for a good hiding place a workable option. Besides its good looks, it’s durable, with a stainless steel interior and strong blades that are so sharp that other reviewers have actually complained. I personally like the super-sharp blades, because they’re part of what makes this soy milk maker work as well as it does, as quickly as it does. Just be careful when you’re handling them, because it is pretty easy to cut yourself if you’re not paying close attention. Definitely keep the blades out of reach of kids.
Makes Soup and Other Foods
Like a lot of other soy milk makers on the market, the Soyabella SB-130 is capable of making lots of different foods. It has your breakfast porridge covered, it makes great rice paste, and it does a really nice job on thick, hot vegetable soups such as split pea and butternut squash. If you like the idea of making quick, simple meals without making much of a mess, you are going to enjoy trying new recipes with the Soyabella. Do be careful about boil-overs, as they can happen with this machine. I’ve seen reviews where users have complained, but in my experience, starting out with a super-clean filter and adding no more ingredients than recommended is enough to prevent problems.
“Can I use the Soyabella to make homemade tofu?”
Yes! You will need to get some coagulant as well as a tofu box or another container that’s appropriate for making tofu, as you can’t do it inside the soy milk maker’s chamber.
“Does the soy milk maker get hot during the cooking cycle?”
No. I it gets a little warm, but that’s it.
“Does using this machine help you save money over buying nondairy milks at the store?”
Yes, definitely, even if you are using organic soybeans and other high-quality ingredients. You’ll have to factor in the cost of the machine, the cost of all your ingredients, and maybe even the cost of your time (which is pretty negligible with this machine) as well as the cost of transportation to and from the store, which is an expense you probably have anyway! I figured out that it cost me about 40 cents to make a liter of vanilla soy milk made with a little organic sugar, which is way less than the price of commercial soy milk with all sorts of “interesting” additives.
“I have seen some really horrible reviews about the Soyabella, basically saying that the milk tastes bad, the blades are too sharp, and there are a lot of electrical parts that won’t work if they get wet. What’s your opinion?”
My experience is that this machine does just what the manufacturer says it will. Yes, the blades are way sharper than some other soy milk makers, but I think that sharp blades are part of what makes this machine work as well as it does. As for exposed electrics, there are elements that snap together, that will take a few days to dry out if you get them wet. Just be careful cleaning, maybe use a towel to cover those up if you’re concerned they may get wet, and you are not likely to encounter any problems with it.
As for the milk tasting bad, that’s definitely operator error. Fresh soy milk tastes nothing like the stuff you get from the supermarket, and neither does fresh nut milk. I make different flavors like chocolate, vanilla, and spiced nutmeg, and I really like the results. Use a recipe to begin with and then add / subtract ingredients to customize so you like the end results.
“Should I soak my ingredients before using the Soyabella SB-130?”
For the most part, you’re going to want to soak your ingredients for several hours before making soy milk or nutmilk. Be sure to follow the instructions or use a recipe and you should be fine.
“How much milk / soup / etc. does this soy milk maker make at once?”
You can make about a quart of finished product at a time. If you want to make more than that, you can run two or more cycles.
The Tribest Soyabella soy milk maker is easy to use. It’s versatile, allowing you to make a number of things and potentially save quite a bit of money by buying in bulk and creating finished products at home instead of relying on food manufacturers to do it for you. It is reasonably priced, offering good value, and it performs as advertised. If you like the idea of controlling what goes into your soy milk, nut milk, and other foods, you are very likely to appreciate everything this handy kitchen machine has to offer.
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