You may have tried some of India’s hearty and flavorful dishes before, but what about Indian drinks?
India is home to several traditional beverages which are sure to complement many cuisines. If you’re new to Indian drinks, we’ve listed some of the best recipes below, all of which are bursting with flavor!
Whether you’re after something rich and decadent, or a refreshing drink to keep you cool, you’re sure to find a beverage you love in our Indian drink recipe round-up.
Keep reading to discover some fabulous Indian drink recipes!
First on our list is a refreshing drink that’s made for warmer months!
Nimbu Pani is different from your regular lemonade, as it’s made from black salt, cumin powder, and lime juice. This drink is often enjoyed in North India, as it gives people a break from the intense heat in summer.
This is a very simple recipe, so give it a try! You’ll love how the spices complement the zestiness of the limes and add gentle flavors throughout the whole drink!
2. Indian Chai
We couldn’t create this recipe roundup without including Chai!
Chai is the Hindi word for tea, but authentic Indian chai is nothing like the tea you’re used to! Indian Chai is hearty and milky, flavored with gorgeous spices and sugar to add a pleasant sweetness.
You can choose to add all of the spices, or just the ones you are most fond of. Cinnamon, cardamom pods, and whole cloves are common favorites, but we’d recommend using ginger as it gives the tea a lovely warmth.
If you want a refreshing drink that’s easy to put together, give this one a go!
This creamy drink is made by blending yogurt, mint, and cucumber. Pepper, salt, and cumin add a gentle spice to the drink, but if you like things spicy, feel free to add green chili to the blender beforehand.
This is perfect for cooling you down on warmer days, especially if you add some ice to your glass before serving. Top each glass with cilantro leaves for a nice touch!
If you’re after an alternative to lemonade, paneer soda is great for serving at events!
The drink involves making a sugary rose-flavored syrup, which is then added to icy soda water. You’ll need to prepare the sugar syrup beforehand, but once you’ve made it, each drink takes just minutes to put together!
Paneer soda is ideal for dishing out at barbecues, as well as getting together with friends and family.
Mangoes are known as the fruit of India, enjoyed for their juicy texture and fruity flavor. Mango lassi is another popular Indian drink. It involves blending sweet fruit with creamy yogurt, cardamom powder, and sugar.
The yogurt makes this beverage incredibly rich, yet refreshing at the same time. However, if you prefer a less thick drink, feel free to add milk until it reaches desired thickness.
Make sure that you refrigerate this drink beforehand, as it tastes best when it’s cold!
Here’s another mango drink recipe!
Aam Panna is a tangy beverage that involves making a tangy mango-flavored syrup, then mixing it with lots of spices. Cardamom, black salt, pepper, and cumin give the drink a special savory touch, while the sugar makes it pleasantly sweet.
Make sure that your mangos aren’t ripe, as the fruit needs to be sour to give the drink its unique flavor.
7. Jal Jeera
Jal Jeera is a refreshing beverage that’s used in Ayurvedic medicine to deal with digestive issues. The drink is also known to improve the appetite, thanks to its lovely mix of tasty spices.
The recipe involves making a puree out of coriander and mint, then mixing it with cumin, black salt, lemon, and black pepper. The spicy mix is topped up with water, creating a savory, zesty beverage that’s full of flavor.
Cumin is full of fiber which is known for improving digestion issues, so try making this after a rich dinner or lunch. You may just notice a difference!
8. Assam Tea
Tea is well-loved throughout India, particularly Assam tea, which is enjoyed all over the globe.
Assam tea is an intense, vibrant black tea that has a nice malty taste. The tea’s namesake comes from the region where it is produced, Assam. This Indian district is the biggest tea-producing area in the world.
It’s easy to make this tea, as you only need to brew the leaves with hot water, then sweeten as desired. Date syrup and honey are nice additions, but Assam tea tastes great on its own too.
If the weather is warm, try making an iced version to cool yourself down!
Here’s another Lassi recipe! Lassi is a traditional Indian drink that has a cold yogurt base. Lassi can be savory, but this recipe blends strawberries, honey, and coconut milk to keep the overall taste sweet.
This drink swaps regular yogurt for the Greek version, as this makes the drink creamier. If you are using Greek yogurt, opt for light coconut milk, as this complements the sour notes from the yogurt well.
The strawberries and honey ensure that the drink is nice and sweet, but if you have a sweet tooth, feel free to add some more sweetener at the end.
This classic South Indian drink blends spices and zesty juice to make a refreshing lemonade. Panakam is often enjoyed to cool down during tropical months.
It’s also sweetened with jaggery, a sweet substance that gives the drink a unique flavor. Jaggery is also thought of highly in Ayurveda medicine, as it is believed to have amazing healing effects.
You’ll need a mortar and pestle to crush the cardamom and peppercorns, but if you don’t have this, opt for the powdered version instead. Don’t substitute jaggery for sugar, as the flavors are required to complement the spices.
Sattu is simply flour that’s sourced from roasted chickpeas. This drink is naturally cooling, but it’s often recommended for diabetics, thanks to its low GI and nutrition content.
This is a very easy recipe as the steps are so easy to follow. Simply mix water and sattu flour, then add seasonings as desired. That’s it!
Sattu is a savory drink, but you can add sweeteners to make it sweet, or ‘meetha’. Tasty additions include raw sugar, honey, and jaggery. Jaggery has a unique flavor that resembles molasses, giving the drink a pleasant malty quality.
The sattu flour may settle at the bottom of the glass after a while, but you can stir it again to combine everything once more.
12. Masala Chaas
Masala Chaas is a yogurt-based drink that has lovely spices running through it. Like many Indian drink recipes, it’s ideal to cool off with when it’s warm, but the spices give it a pleasant warmth that’s enjoyable in winter too!
You’ll be adding tasty spices, like cumin, chaat masala, and black salt, with yogurt and green chili for a creamy, yet powerful beverage! The chili does add a bit of heat, so take care if you’re not a huge fan of spice.
Top each glass with some torn cilantro for decoration, or opt for mint for a refreshing finish!
Last on our list, is the sweet, and certainly unique Falooda. This is a treat that you won’t forget!
The recipe combines layers of jello, rose-flavored syrup, milk, ice cream, vermicelli, and basil for a sweet dessert-like drink. Falooda has Persian origins but is very popular in India and other South Asian countries.
All of the different ingredients will make each bite interesting. You’ll notice different flavors running through every spoonful!
You’ll need to find vermicelli noodles for this recipe, as they have a firm texture that holds up well against the other creamy ingredients. It’s also best to use red-colored jello in this recipe, as it will stand out well against the thick ice cream.
Now you know the names of some classic Indian drinks!
All of these are perfect for cooling down in hotter weather, but the spices in some of the recipes have a warmth that’s enjoyable in winter too!
We hope you enjoyed reading through this recipe round-up. Have fun trying out all of these unique drinks – you might just find a new favorite!
Frequently Asked Questions
Chai is considered to be India’s national drink. The term ‘chai’ is the Hindi and Urdu word for tea, but Indian chai is very different from the tea you might consume at home.
Chai is full of tasty spices, like ginger, peppercorns, cardamom, and cloves, which are usually blended with milk, sugar, or cream. Chai is often enjoyed several times a day, particularly by guests that may come to one’s home.
India is home to a lot of different alcoholic beverages, but modern drinking culture is a lot different from what it once was. Alcoholic drinks were only permitted for elderly men, and only during significant traditional occasions.
Non-alcoholic beverages like coffee and tea were very popular during this time, and still are in the modern age. Many Indian citizens have since left these old taboos behind them to accept drinking culture.
Indian dishes are full of well-balanced flavors, but some drinks can enhance the overall feel of each dish. Creamy curries go well with lagers and red wine, as they have malty notes and acidity which contrast the richness.
Vegetable dishes are great with tangy cocktails like grapefruit Assam tea, as well as lighter, porter beer. If you love hot curries, fresh drinks like ginger beer and fruity cocktails complement the spices well.