This homemade Horchata recipe is so easy to prepare, made with rice, milk, vanilla, cinnamon, and water. It’s my take on the popular favorite.

Do you love Mexican recipes as much as I do? Check out my versions of Tacos Al Pastor, Elotes, or Tres Leches Cake.

Two glasses of Horchata in a glass with ice and topped with two cinnamon sticks and a sprinkle of cinnamon.

We love to make homemade Horchata at our house because I usually always have the ingredients I need, and it’s easiest enough for my kids to do. Plus, horchata is an extra fun addition to taco night. I can’t say this recipe is authentic, but it’s my take on it and I think it tastes incredible. (Here’s an authentic Horchata recipe from Isabel Eats.) Let me know how you make horchata, in the comments below!

What is Horchata?

Horchata (pronounced or-CHAH-tah) is a popular Mexican drink that is often described as a sweet rice milk beverage. Horchata is made out of rice, milk, vanilla, and cinnamon and is served in many Mexican restaurants.  There’s an important balance to the creamy rice and cinnamon flavors found in horchata and this homemade horchata recipe is my favorite.

How to Make Horchata:

Blend: Combine the rice, hot water, and cinnamon sticks in a blender and blend until the rice and cinnamon sticks are roughly ground. Add the remaining water and blend again. Pour contents into a pitcher or container with a fitted lid and refrigerate overnight (or at least 8 hours).

A blender filled with rice, hot water, and cinnamon sticks to make homemade Horchata.

Strain: Pour the rice mixture into a fine mesh strainer or cheesecloth over a pitcher and discard the rice.

Horchata being poured into a glass through a fine mesh strainer.

Finish Horchata: Stir in the milk, vanilla, cinnamon, and sugar (to your preference). Chill until ready to serve. Stir well before serving and serve over ice.

Two glasses of Horchata topped with two cinnamon sticks and a dusting of cinnamon and a bottle behind it.

What is Hochata de Chufa?

Horchata de chufa is popular in Spain and it differs from Mexican horchata (or horchata de arroz) in that Mexican horchata is made with rice and horchata de chufa is made with chufa (also known as tiger nuts).

Recipe Variations:

Vegan: To make this recipe vegan, simply substitute equal parts almond milk for the milk in the recipe.

You may also like these Mexican recipes:

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Horchata in a glass of ice topped with a cinnamon stick.
Prep 8 hours
Total 8 hours
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  • 1 1/2 cups uncooked long-grain white rice
  • 2 Mexican cinnamon sticks
  • 4 cups hot water
  • 2 cups milk , or almond milk
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • ⅓ – 1/2 cups granulated sugar , to taste


  • To a blender, add rice, 2 cups of hot water, and 2 Mexican cinnamon sticks. 
  • Blend until the rice and cinnamon sticks are roughly ground. Add the remaining water and blend again. 
  • Pour contents into a pitcher or container with a fitted lid and refrigerate overnight or for at least 8 hours. 
  • Pour the rice mixture through a fine mesh strainer or cheesecloth, into a pitcher. Discard the rice. 
  • Stir in the milk, vanilla, cinnamon, and sugar (to your preference). Chill until ready to serve. Stir well before serving and serve over ice.


Serve this with one of my favorite Mexican meals.


Calories: 269kcalCarbohydrates: 53gProtein: 6gFat: 3gSaturated Fat: 2gPolyunsaturated Fat: 0.2gMonounsaturated Fat: 1gCholesterol: 10mgSodium: 42mgPotassium: 185mgFiber: 2gSugar: 15gVitamin A: 137IUVitamin C: 0.1mgCalcium: 136mgIron: 1mg

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I originally shared this recipe April 2016. Updated July 2019 and April 2023.

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About The Author

Lauren Allen

Welcome! I’m Lauren, a mom of four and lover of good food. Here you’ll find easy recipes and weeknight meal ideas made with real ingredients, with step-by-step photos and videos.

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    1. Great question! In this recipe, we discard the rice after blending it with water because the purpose of the rice is to infuse the water with its flavor and creaminess. Once the rice has done its job, it has become soft and has released its starch into the water, which gives the horchata its characteristic texture.

      While you may be able to find other uses for the rice, it’s typically not used again in traditional horchata recipes. However, if you want to reduce food waste, you could try adding the leftover rice to other dishes such as soups or stews for added texture and flavor. Thanks for asking!

    2. I’ve made coconut milk/cream from a coconut before. With the leftover coconut meal, I dried it in the oven and ground it up once it was completely dry and I ended up with coconut flour. I’m thinking you could do the same with the leftover rice in this recipe. Or you could also make rice pancakes/waffles (old Farm Journal recipe).

  1. 4 stars
    I know this as “Horxata”, it is pronounced the same but, most English speaking nations will get it wrong. “Horchata” is easy for Scots, Irish and Germans to say because they have the ‘achlaut’ sound (look up the German word “ich”, or Scottish “loch”). It is not a “ch” as in “church” or “chocolate” as you suggested in the article. Anyhoo… going to try this drink tomorrow. Thanks for the info.

    1. For your information, it’s always been HORCHATA with a CH.. 🤦 pronounced OR-Chah-Tah
      You’re welcome for the info and hope you enjoyed the HORCHATA

    2. I live in South Florida with many Mexicans, and they pronounce it OR-CHA-TA. Go into any Mexican restaurant or fruit stand and they have Horchata.

  2. I was wondering if it’s possible to over soak the rice. I have ti go on a trip this weekend and I was planning to let the rice soak over the weekend. Would this work out ok?

  3. Great recipe, but not sure why anyone would add 2 tsp ground cinnamon. It just sits there. I had to scoop it all out.

    1. America is just obsessed with cramming cinnamon into everything, usually for no good reason other than they saw some other American do it. A little goes a very long way regarding cinnamon. It does not belong in everything.

      1. This is a traditional Mexican drink. Every traditional, Mexican run, Mexican restaurant I have been to sells it and there’s always a good amount of cinnamon.

        1. Soy Mexicano y deja decirte que esta receta no es correcta
          La horchata no lleva leche si no leche condensada para darle la testura cremosa
          Esta persona no sabe como hacer horchata

          1. La horchata tambien se puede hacer con leche. Tambien hay horchata en America Central, de donde yo soy. En que partes de Mexico la hacen con leche condensada? yo nunca la he probado asi.

  4. Thank you for the Horchata recipe…this is the first time ever that I made this drink…. I’ve always loved the drink, and was surprised how easy it was to make!! My family loved it too
    Thank you again💙. Victoria

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