Golden Milk comes to us from Ayurvedic Medicine. Ayurveda, “The Science of Life”, is perhaps the oldest healing system. Ayurvedic medicine is a holistic system which seeks to balance the bodies energies to heal and maintain health. Moreover, like Traditional Chinese Medicine, its healing principals depend largely on diet, lifestyle, and herbs and spices. Known in India as Golden spice and even The Golden Goddess, turmeric is one of the staples of Ayurvedic Medicine.
We have written extensively here about the health benefits of turmeric, especially as the spice benefits the brain and as a potential protective agent against Alzheimer’s disease. In fact, many of our favorite recipes include this magical spice.
Below are several recipes. Each recipe has some variations as well. The ingredients in Golden Milk are available in most grocery outlets. High quality and organic spices are also available at various online stores. We recommend Banyan Botanicals and Spicely Organics.
What is Golden Milk?
The original Golden Milk recipe was probably just turmeric and milk. That’s cow’s milk or goat’s milk. Most (not all) of the recipes I see favor milk alternativess, like almond milk or coconut milk. I often make mine with dairy milk, but always organic whole milk. The choice is yours. Moreover, modern recipes have also added several ingredients to improve taste, but also effectiveness.
Obviously the most essential ingredient in these recipes is turmeric. Followed by ginger. Both are strong anti-inflammatory agents, as is cinnamon. All of these spices have other important benefits as well. On the other hand, pepper and oil are important too. Why? Our systems have a difficult time absorbing turmeric. Just a touch of black pepper increases its bio-availability. Turmeric is not water soluble. It is soluble in oil, so the coconut oil or ghee helps us to get the full benefit.
We recommend here, as we do in all of our recipes, to use the best ingredients available to you. The ingredients here, including the spices, are all readily available in organic form.
A simple recipe for Golden Milk that uses powdered spices.
- 1 cup (240ml) organic whole milk or unsweetened alternate
- 1 tsp turmeric powder
- ½ cinnamon poweder
- 1 tsp coconut oil or ghee
- ½ tsp cinnamon powder
- 1 pinch of ground black pepper
- 1 tsp honey or maple syrup (optional)
- To make the golden milk, simply mix all ingredients except optional sweetener in a small saucepan or pot and bring almost to a boil. Keep mixture from reaching a full boil. Reduce the heat and simmer for about 10 minutes or until fragrant and flavorful. Remove from heat and add honey or maple syrup, or other natural sweetener if desired. Strain the drink through a fine strainer into mugs and top with a pinch of cinnamon.
- Golden milk can also be made in advance and stored in your refrigerator for up to five days. Simply reheat it before drinking.
You may prefer the fullness of flavor of this variation
I am seeing turmeric root more frequently in the stores I shop, but it can be a little hard to find. It does make a difference in the flavor, so get it if you can. Otherwise substitute with 1 ½ – 2 teaspoons turmeric powder. Turmeric Root is, generally, about the same size as ginger root. Maybe a little smaller. Therefore, the 2″ piece of turmeric should be twice as much as the 1″ piece of ginger. However, the turmeric I see in the stores are often about as big as a thick pencil. So — cut your 1″ piece of ginger. Then, approximate or weigh an amount of turmeric root that is twice as much by weight or volume.
- 2 ½ cups organic whole milk or alternate
- 1 stick cinnamon or 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon, more as garnish at the end
- 2 inches fresh turmeric (peeled and sliced)
- 1 inch fresh ginger (peeled and sliced) or ½ teaspoon ground ginger
- 1 tablespoon coconut oil or ghee
- Pinch of black pepper
- 1 tablespoon maple syrup or honey (or more to taste)
- Place milk, cinnamon stick, turmeric, ginger, coconut oil, and black pepper in a small saucepan.
- Cook, stirring frequently, until warm but not boiling.
- Give it a taste and add in your sweetener.
- Strain it into your cups or mugs.
- If preferred, sprinkle with ground cinnamon or ground ginger. Serve.