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What is Atole?

Atole is a traditional warm and thickened beverage that originates from Mexico and other Latin American countries. It’s often enjoyed during the cooler months or as a comforting drink on various occasions.

The main ingredients used in atole are masa harina (a type of corn flour) or cornstarch, water or milk, sugar, and sometimes cinnamon, vanilla, or other flavorings. It’s typically prepared by mixing masa harina or cornstarch with water or milk and heating the mixture until it thickens. Sugar and other flavorings are added to enhance its taste.

Atole comes in various flavors such as vanilla, chocolate (made with cocoa), strawberry, cinnamon, and more. It has a smooth, creamy consistency and can be served as a breakfast drink or alongside meals. Its comforting warmth and richness make it a popular choice during festive occasions or as a soothing beverage during colder weather.

In some regions, atole is accompanied by tamales or sweet bread, forming a classic combination for breakfast or snacks. It’s a versatile beverage that can be adjusted in sweetness and thickness according to personal preferences and variations in regional recipes.

Atole recipe background

Atole has been a staple in Mexican households for centuries. It’s a traditional beverage often paired with tamales or enjoyed on its own.

  • Origin: Mexico
  • Primary Flavors: Corn, cinnamon, vanilla
  • Recipe Type: Beverage

Why make this recipe?

  • Ultimate Comfort: Like a warm embrace in liquid form.
  • Versatile: Sweet or savory, it adapts.
  • Family-Friendly: A hit for all ages!

What does Atole taste like?

Creamy with a hint of natural sweetness, Atole offers notes of corn, cinnamon, and vanilla for an overall cozy experience.

What is in Atole?

Corn masaBase
Cinnamon StickAromatic
Vanilla ExtractFlavor

Equipment required for this recipe

  • Saucepan
  • Whisk
  • Measuring Cup
  • Strainer


  • 2 cups milk or water
  • 1 cup corn masa
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract


  1. Prep Liquid: Heat milk or water in a saucepan.
  2. Add Masa: Whisk in corn masa to avoid lumps.
  3. Flavor Time: Toss in the cinnamon stick.
  4. Sweeten: Add sugar to taste.
  5. Stir: Keep whisking until it thickens.
  6. Vanilla: Last but not least, vanilla extract.
  7. Strain: Remove cinnamon and any lumps.
  8. Serve: Pour into cups and enjoy!

How to serve Atole

  • Glassware: A large mug, the cozier, the better.
  • Garnish: A sprinkle of ground cinnamon tops it off.

What to serve Atole with

My recommendations and tips

  • Consistency is key: Adjust thickness with extra milk or water.
  • Swap sugar for piloncillo for a more authentic flavor.

Atole storage ideas

  • Fridge: Keep for up to 2 days.
  • Reheat: Stovetop is best; microwave if in a hurry.

Potential ingredients substitutes

  • Corn Masa: Cornstarch can work but alters the flavor.
  • Milk: Plant-based milk for lactose intolerance.

Nutritional Information


Frequently Asked Questions

  • Can I make Atole dairy-free?
    • Absolutely, use plant-based milk or water.
  • Is Atole gluten-free?
    • Yes, it’s corn-based, naturally gluten-free.


Atole is more than just a drink; it’s a taste of Mexican culture and comfort wrapped into a delightful cup. It’s perfect for any occasion, from morning breakfasts to festive celebrations. Time to stir the pot and serve some warmth! 🍵