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This cinnamon-vanilla rice drink is a frothy Mexican classic. Rice flour offers a nice shortcut, eliminating the customary need to soak grains of rice overnight and grind them. Condensed milk gives the blend sweetness. For a spiked version, stir in a little rum.

  • Prep:
  • Total Time:
  • Servings: 4

Source: Martha Stewart Living, May 2011


  • 4 cups whole milk
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 1 can (14 ounces) sweetened condensed milk
  • 1/2 cup rice or almond flour
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup dark or light rum (optional)
  • Ice cubes
  • Ground cinnamon and cinnamon sticks, for garnish


  1. Bring whole milk and cinnamon stick to a simmer in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Remove from heat, and transfer to a bowl. Whisk in condensed milk, flour, and vanilla. Refrigerate for at least 30 minutes.

  2. Strain mixture through a fine sieve, and stir in rum if using. Divide among 4 ice-filled glasses. Garnish with ground cinnamon and cinnamon sticks.

Cook's Note

Strained horchata can be refrigerated for up to 3 days.

Reviews (9)

  • ndmag2013 22 Dec, 2013

    I followed this recipe except for the whole milk. I had 2 percent. The taste was great but me n my boyfriend (both of us are horchata lovers!!!!)thought it was waaaaaay too thick!!!!! I diluted it with water and it tasted much better. My mom makes it with rice which she first toasts of a cast iron skillet. Hers is great but this recipe is my recipe now. It was definately a time and labor saver. this is a must try recipe n you can adjust to your liking.

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  • charlotter1210 10 Oct, 2012

    the first time i made this it was not really horchata AT ALL. I would suggest using almond flour instead (traditional horchata uses it), and rice milk. stir in some ground cinnamon as it simmers, and only use about half of the recommended sweetened condensed milk.

  • thef0xinsocks 21 Jun, 2012

    (continued) you can make a simple syrup with the sugar and some extra water, vanilla and cinnamon sticks. Let it simmer awhile (5 min) to let the cinnamon infuse. Strain the rice water to remove the rice and add the simple syrup

  • thef0xinsocks 21 Jun, 2012

    This is not authentic Horchata in the least. It is much too thick and is not made with milk, but rather water with a splash of milk. This recipe would be better for making ice cream. 1 cup of long grain rice, 4 cups of water, 1 cup of milk, 2 cinnamon sticks, a vanilla bean and 3/4 - 1 cup of sugar. Horchata is a rice infusion so using rice flour is a bit much. Just blend the water and rice in a blender for about a minute then stick it in the fridge at least 4 hours to overnight.

  • jennifer guenthner 28 Feb, 2012

    Made this twice. First time, too creamy & sweet, like melted vanilla ice cream (not always a bad thing).
    Second time=fabulous, with changes: we skipped the whole milk & condensed milk. Instead: 4 c nonfat milk plus 1/2 c half and half (its what we had on hand), 1/3c sugar plus 1/4 c powdered milk (to sort of approximate condensed milk). Cooled it on counter for 1 hr, strained it with standard sieve til we got to the bottom grit, tossed the grit. Put the cinn stick back in to increase flavor.

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