(Used in this project: Circle Tags in Maisie style.)

My husband and I are hosting a Cinco De Mayo fiesta at our house this year, so we thought it’d be fun to whip up our favorite Mexican beverage for the occasion – Horchata! One thing I love about this drink is that it can be made in so many different ways. For example, you can experiment with different types of rice, or you can add a handful of your favorite nuts to change the flavor profile. I even like to add a little rum or brandy for the adults at the party!

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Homemade Horchata
• ¾ cup rice (I used long grain white)
• 4 cups water
• 1 or 2 cinnamon sticks
• ½ cup – 1 cup sugar
• 1 tsp. vanilla extract
• 2 cups water, milk, or coconut milk

Pour the rice in a blender and pulse until it resembles a coarse crumb. Add the 4 cups water and the cinnamon stick(s), and let sit in the refrigerator overnight.

Blend the mixture (cinnamon sticks included) for 2-3 minutes until completely pureed. Add the sugar and the vanilla extract, and blend again until completely combined. Check for sweetness.

Strain the mixture with a cheesecloth or fine mesh sieve into a pitcher. Add the two cups water, milk, or coconut – depending on your preference – and stir. Pour in mason jars over ice, add a straw, and garnish with a bit of cinnamon. To make your beverage glasses even more festive, add some ribbon and personalized tags from Evermine! For my glasses, I used spice colored tags in the style Maisie.

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*For adults: add a splash of rum or brandy!

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Lindsay (114 Posts)

Lindsay is a writer/blogger from Oregon who loves crafting, cooking, gardening, and simple living. You can find her writing about all of this and more on her blog A Wooden Nest.


  1. Lindsay, I’ve been reading your posts on making things with vanilla – is there a way to scrape the seeds and store them so I can use the pods? Also, wondering if you have any ideas on the following – I have been searching for a vanilla curd recipe and can never find one. I recently found a rhubarb curd recipe where you heat the rhubarb with sugar and water, then puree, and use this to make the curd. I was thinking of subbing in vanilla beans and seeing if this will work. Any thoughts? I am not sure of the ratio of vanilla bean to the water/sugar, so I’ll have to experiment. Thanks!

  2. Hey Meg. I’ve actually never been in a situation where I need to save the seeds from a vanilla bean. I always use the seeds right away, and then use the leftover pod for vanilla sugar, extract, or something else. You might try freezing them in an airtight container though.

    As for your second question, my understanding is that you need an acidic component to produce a curd (lemon curd, lime curd, etc.). Otherwise, what you’re making is really just a custard. There’s a discussion on this topic over on Chow.com if you’re interested: http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/797619

    Hope that helps! Take care.

  3. Thanks for the info. I did not realize about the acidic component, but I guess this does make sense now that it’s pointed out. I guess this explains why I can never find a recipe for one! I like to use curds and jams to flavor homemade yogurt, which is why I was looking for a vanilla curd. I was asking about using the pods because I saw your vanilla extract and vanilla sugar recipes and wanted to make them, and thus did not have a recipe for the seeds, since these both take the pods. Sounds like it’s probably best to find a recipe for the seeds – maybe a custard in place of my curd…

  4. Hello!!
    Just now I discover your blog and it’s AMAZING!!!
    You know, I’m from Spain and in the summer, I just have horchata and gazpacho, no blod!!! Hahahhahaaa..
    But horchata (In Spain) is made of “CHUFAS”, water and sugar.
    The other options are just a vegetable milk with sugar..
    I can send you some chuffs and the spanish version so you can try.. 😉
    Big hug!!

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