Corn is a staple food in many cultures, and it has been the basis of many traditional drinks for centuries. In this article, we’ll take a look at two of the most popular traditional drinks made from corn and explore their history, ingredients, and methods of preparation.

Corn is a widely used grain in many traditional cuisines around the world. In various cultures, corn is not only consumed as food, but it is also used to make some popular traditional drinks. In this context, two traditional drinks that are made from corn are chicha and atole. Both of these beverages are significant in different parts of the world and are consumed for their distinct flavors and nutrients.

## Chicha: The Traditional Drink of the Andes

Chicha is a fermented drink made from maize that has been a traditional drink in the Andes for thousands of years. It is typically made from purple or white corn, which is first soaked in water, and then boiled with cinnamon, clove, and other spices to make a sweet and aromatic mash. The mash is then cooled and mixed with a starter culture of saliva, which contains the necessary bacteria to ferment the drink.


  • Purple or white corn
  • Cinnamon
  • Clove
  • Saliva starter culture


  1. Soak corn in water
  2. Boil corn with cinnamon and clove
  3. Cool mixture and add saliva starter culture
  4. Ferment for several days

Chicha has a slightly sour, slightly sweet flavor and is often consumed during festivals and other celebrations. It is also sometimes used in religious ceremonies.

## Atole: The Sweet Corn Drink from Mexico

Atole is another traditional corn-based drink that originates from Mexico. It is a warm, thick, and sweet drink that is typically served for breakfast or as a dessert. Atole is made from masa harina, a special type of corn flour that is used to make tortillas.

Key takeaway: Corn is a versatile staple food that is used in various traditional drinks around the world, such as chicha, a fermented drink made from maize in the Andean region of South America, and atole, a warm and sweet drink made from masa harina in Mexico. These corn-based drinks are not only delicious but also nutritious and culturally significant, often consumed during festivals, ceremonies, and shared with family and friends. Making these drinks at home is easy and fun with simple recipes that require basic ingredients and methods of preparation.

## Corn-Based Drinks Around the World

While chicha and atole are two of the most well-known corn-based drinks, many other cultures have their own versions. In Korea, for example, there is makgeolli, a traditional rice and corn drink that is often consumed with spicy foods. In Nigeria, there is ogi, a fermented corn drink that is typically served for breakfast.

Key takeaway: Corn-based drinks, such as chicha and atole, have been a part of traditional cultures for centuries and are not only delicious but also nutritious. These drinks contain essential vitamins, minerals, and other beneficial components while also being a symbol of cultural significance and identity. Making these drinks at home with simple recipes can be a fun and easy way to experience traditional cultures.


Makgeolli is a traditional Korean drink made from rice and corn. It is typically served in a bowl and consumed with spicy foods. Makgeolli has a slightly sweet and sour flavor and is often enjoyed by people from all walks of life in Korea.


Ogi is a fermented corn drink that is popular in Nigeria. It is typically served for breakfast and is made by fermenting corn in water for several days. Ogi has a slightly sour and slightly sweet flavor and is often served with milk, sugar, or other sweeteners.

## The Nutritional Value of Corn-Based Drinks

Corn-based drinks are not only delicious, but they are also nutritious. Corn is a good source of carbohydrates, fiber, and vitamins. It is also rich in minerals such as magnesium, potassium, and phosphorus.

Chicha is a good source of probiotics, which are beneficial bacteria that help maintain a healthy gut. Probiotics have been shown to improve digestion, boost the immune system, and reduce inflammation.

Atole is a good source of calcium, which is essential for strong bones and teeth. It is also rich in antioxidants, which help protect the body from damage caused by free radicals.

Key Takeaway: Corn is a versatile ingredient that has been used for centuries to make traditional drinks around the world. Chicha, a fermented drink made from maize, is a popular drink in the Andean region of South America, while Atole, a warm and sweet drink made from masa harina, originates from Mexico. Other corn-based drinks around the world include Makgeolli in Korea and Ogi in Nigeria. These drinks not only have cultural significance, but they are also nutritious and easy to make at home.