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How to Make Atole, a Hot Mexican Beverage

Updated on September 21, 2011

This is such a popular beverage in Mexico and Central America, but I haven't seen it gain popularity in the U.S. as fast as horchata. Unlike horchata, this atole is meant to be served warm, making it great for winter or a rainy morning. It's rich, flavorful, and so satisfying. For something similar and just as easy and impressive, check out this recipe for horchata.


4 1/4 cups of water

1 cup masa harina (Mexican corn flour mix). You'll find this in the international section of the grocery store. If it isn't there, its cheap and easy to order online.

24 fl. oz. evaporated milk (2 cans)

1 cup granulated sugar

2 teaspoons vanilla extract

3 cinnamon sticks

Optional: ground cinnamon for a garnish


1. Blend 3 cups of water and the masa harina until smooth.

2. Pour through a fine mesh sieve into a medium saucepan. Discard the solids.

3. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low, cook, stirring frequently with a whisk for 5-8 minutes, until the mixture is thick.

4. Stir in evaporated milk, remaining water, sugar, vanilla extract, and cinnamon sticks.

5. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low and cook, stirring frequently, for 5-8 minutes until the mixture has thickened some more.

6. Remove cinnamon sticks.

7. Serve hot, with a pinch of ground cinnamon to garnish.

Don't Forget to Mess Around

Add a little bit of your own twist. Chop up some fruit and toss it in the pan the second time you boil the atole, or stir in a few tablespoons of your favorite hot chocolate powder. I love atole with instant coffee powder. Some fruits that go well with atole are strawberries, peaches, and pineapple, but be creative.


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    • stephaniedas profile image

      Stephanie Das 6 years ago from Miami, US

      You're welcome. It is a stick-to-your-ribs drink, so I'm sure you'll enjoy it. I hope he likes it. Thanks for checking it out!

    • Leslie Jo Barra profile image

      Leslie Jo Barra 6 years ago

      My husband mentions this every now and then. Now I can make it for him for the holidays! Thanks!

    • stephaniedas profile image

      Stephanie Das 6 years ago from Miami, US

      Yes, its quite rich and surprisingly filling. I've had some Mexican and Guatemalan friends who used to drink it for breakfast. Their mothers made it for them before school. Thanks for the feedback :)

    • Lamme profile image

      Lamme 6 years ago

      This seems very interesting. The masa harina and evaporated milk seems like it would be very rich. I'm certainly going to have to try this as well as your recipe for horchata. Thanks for some unique new ideas!