Almond Rice Horchata

Almond Rice Horchata

This Mexican-style aromatic dairy-free rice and almond drink is sweetened and flavoured with honey, cinnamon and vanilla - and is typically served on ice. You can also make it sugar-free. (See my original post on horchata, and my most recent one.)



Ingredients / Directions: 

1 c white rice
1 c blanched almonds
freshly grated zest from 1 lime
*1 cinnamon stick  OR 1 Tbsp cinnamon bark OR 1 tsp finely ground cinnamon
pinch of salt
6 Tbsp (or sweeten to your preference) light honey, agave syrup or your sweetener of choice
1 Tbsp fine vanilla extract

Rinse rice. Put rice, almonds, lime zest, cinnamon, and salt in a bowl and cover with 2 c boiling water. Allow to sit for at least 2 hours. If using a cinnamon stick or bark, remove them first, then blend ingredients till smooth. Put this mixture in the fridge over night. The next day, blend with another 2 c water on high for at least a minute. Add sweetener and vanilla and blend some more. Blend with 2 more cups of water. Strain over several pieces of cheescloth to remove the solids. **I don't strain my horchata, as I don't mind a bit of grittiness, and the solids settle to the bottom of the pitcher - before serving I stir the top half of the horchata in the pitcher with a spoon, not mixing the bottom of the pitcher so that the heavier particles stay at the bottom - and stir the total contents of the pitcher every night. Keep covered in a pitcher in the fridge for up to a week.

For a rich drink, enjoy as is over ice.
For a lighter drink, mix with water.
For "chocolate milk", mix in about a teaspoon of cocoa per serving.
Also great on ice with a shot of fine rum.
Makes an excellent dairy-free coffee creamer/sweetener.

*The cinnamon stick or bark will lend a more subtle cinnamon flavour than ground cinnamon. The Mexican ground cinnamon I use isn't as pungent as the cinnamon I had back in Canada, so if using a very aromatic ground cinnamon, you may want to start with 1/2 tsp, then add more if you want a more pronounced flavour.

**When there's only the thick dense starch left at the bottom of the pitcher, I re-use it to make more horchata by re-blending it with another 2-4 cups of water, more sweetener, vanilla, and cinnamon. I also use the bottom starch to make pudding by adding more water and cooking till it thickens. I would also like to try using the solids for baking, and to make almond pancakes or crepes...



That sounds so delicious. Do you think there will be any problems with using brown rice? Good idea to make the solid into pudding.

Hi Kaori, I'm not sure how

Hi Kaori,
I'm not sure how it would be with brown rice... definitely worth trying. Here's a healthy raw whole-grain/seed version with germinated/sprouted almonds I think would be great to try:

- natural (un-blanched almonds) that haven't been irradiated, soaked in room temperature water for about 12 hours, then drained.
- soak the almonds in 2c fresh room temperature water (rather than hot water) for another 4-6 hours, with rinsed fresh raw brown rice, salt, cinnamon, lime zest
- proceed with the recipe as directed

Please let us know how it goes if you concoct your own!