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Homemade Horchata with three cinnamon sticks
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4.5 from 2 votes

Agua de Horchata (Rice and Cinnamon Drink)

Milky, yet dairy free Mexican classic drink is made with rice, sugar, cinnamon, and vanilla and served ice cold. It is sweet and refreshing.
Prep Time10 mins
Cook Time5 mins
Soaking8 hrs
Total Time8 hrs 15 mins
Course: Drinks
Cuisine: Mexican
Servings: 4 to 5 cups
Calories: 819kcal


Thin Simple Syrup:

  • 2 cups water
  • 1 cup sugar


  • In a medium saucepan combine sugar and water. Over low heat allow the sugar to melt, stirring until sugar has dissolved. Allow to cool.
  • In a food processor or coffee grinder, pulverize the rice so it is the consistency of ground coffee.
  • In a large saucepan over high heat, bring the water to a boil. Remove from heat; add rice, cinnamon stick, and cloves. Cover and let soak for eight hours or overnight at room temperature.
  • After soaking, break the cinnamon stick in half, and place the water, rice, broken cinnamon stick, and cloves in a blender. Puree for 2-3 minutes.
  • Pour the liquid through a fine strainer lined with a double layer of cheesecloth, into a pitcher. Squeeze the excess liquid and discard the solids.
  • Stir in the vanilla and 2 cups of the thin simple syrup.
  • Cover and refrigerate until you’re ready to serve. Stir before pouring and serve over ice.



  • No canela - If you don't have canela substitute with a teaspoon of ground cinnamon. 
  • Cloves - whole cloves add a distinct pungent warm flavor, but can be omitted from this recipe. 
  • Vanilla extract – I recommend Mexican vanilla for the best flavor.
  • Food processor: A food processor is great to pulverize the rice, but this step can be skipped, and is not necessary.
  • Blender: A high-powered blender will be needed to blend rice and cinnamon stick.
  • Cheese cloth or a fine mesh strainer: You need to strain the rice mixture after you blend it to avoid a grainy texture. I like to use cheesecloth and a strainer, but you can also use a nut bag
  • Vitrolero: A vitrolero (glass barrel jar) is the traditional way to serve aguas frescas, but feel free to store and serve in a pitcher or glass milk bottle.
  • How to store: Refrigerate horchata and serve within 5 days of preparing. 


Calories: 819kcal | Carbohydrates: 211g | Protein: 3g | Fat: 1g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Sodium: 107mg | Potassium: 159mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 173g | Calcium: 47mg | Iron: 7mg