Fall Beverages

Need cold and hot nonalcoholic beverages for your next gathering? Look no further than Golden Milk and Switchel. Get beverage recipes at TwiceasTasty.com.
I first tasted golden milk at a yoga retreat in Costa Rica. Who knew that a warm beverage would be so delicious in that hot, tropical climate? But it was the perfect drink to follow an intense day of working our bodies.

When I moved from just writing about good food on the Twice as Tasty blog to making it for live events, I needed cold and hot beverages, alcoholic and nonalcoholic, to fit every season and occasion. Golden milk immediately came to mind as a warm, alcohol-free brew. I enjoyed it under the hot sun, but it’s just as delicious for fall holiday family gatherings and parties when snow is coming down. For home use, I make just the paste and keep it on hand so that I can make a mug or two at a time. For a gathering, you can prepare a full batch; place it on the table next to a chilled switchel, and you’ll find people happily swapping between the two.

Need cold and hot nonalcoholic beverages for your next gathering? Look no further than Golden Milk and Switchel. Get beverage recipes at TwiceasTasty.com.
Ready to give it a try? Full details are in the recipe below, but here are the basics:
You need just 4 main ingredients plus some peppercorns and honey.
1. Grate the ginger and turmeric.
2. Blend them into a paste.
3. Heat the paste in soy milk, sweetening to taste.
4. Strain and enjoy.

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Golden Milk

  • Servings: 8 cups
  • Difficulty: 2
  • Print
6 inches fresh gingerroot (about 4 tablespoons when grated)
6 inches fresh turmeric root (about 4 tablespoons when grated)
4 tablespoons coconut oil
12–16 whole black peppercorns
up to 2 quarts unsweetened soy milk
up to 4 tablespoons raw honey

Make your paste: While wearing gloves, peel the ginger and turmeric using the side of a spoon or, if needed, a small knife. Use a ginger grater or fine grater to grate the ginger and turmeric. Add the gratings to a small food processor, along with the coconut oil and peppercorns, and grind into a smooth paste. Store for up to 2 weeks in the fridge.

When ready to serve, pour 1 cup of soy milk into a medium saucepan, and then whisk in 1-1/2 tablespoons of turmeric–ginger paste. Bring the mixture to a gentle boil, stirring so that it doesn’t burn or boil over. Reduce the heat to a simmer and cook, stirring often, for 5–10 minutes, until golden. Remove the mixture from the heat and stir in the honey to taste until it is dissolved. Lay cheesecloth in a small fine-mesh sieve set over a wide mug, and pour the golden milk through to strain. Serve warm. Makes 8 cups per batch of paste.

Tips & Tricks
  • For home use, I add the paste to milk as I’m ready to drink it. To make full batch for a holiday event, use 2 quarts of nondairy milk and up to 4 tablespoons of honey or other sweetener, straining it into an insulated pitcher.
  • Turmeric’s bitter taste is reduced by boiling the root. That’s one reason I prefer a nondairy milk here: cow’s or goat’s milk can scald and burn when boiled. You can use either, but keep a careful eye on the pot to get the temperature just right.
  • You’ll get the most benefit and best flavor from freshly grated turmeric and gingerroot, but in a pinch you can substitute dried powders: start with 4 teaspoons ground turmeric and 1 teaspoon ground ginger, and then adjust to taste. Soy milk can have as much protein as cow’s milk, but you can try almond, cashew, or coconut. Ghee is an alternative to coconut oils.
  • You can also dress up this warming beverage with other spices. Add a stick of cinnamon, some cardamom seeds, or a vanilla bean to the pot. Don’t skip the black pepper; it helps your body absorb the turmeric. If you’re serving a party, you can leave whole spices in, letting them continue to flavor the mix over the evening.
  • I think switchel (see below) offsets golden milk nicely; the former is tangy and light, the latter rich and creamy. If you’re preparing both, you can grate all of the ginger in one go.


Need cold and hot nonalcoholic beverages for your next gathering? Look no further than Golden Milk and Switchel. Get beverage recipes at TwiceasTasty.com.

Twice as Tasty

Need cold and hot nonalcoholic beverages for your next gathering? Look no further than Golden Milk and Switchel. Get beverage recipes at TwiceasTasty.com.Switchel is essentially a shrub without the juice of macerated fruits or vegetables. This makes it quicker and easier to prepare. “Cocktail Whisperer” Warren Bobrow notes that it can go by the name of Haymaker’s Punch, since it became popular among thirsty farmers working under the hot sun. He claims that it originated in the Caribbean, but every switchel recipe I’ve seen uses apple cider vinegar, and apples are difficult to grow in rain-heavy tropical climates. So perhaps those original Caribbean versions used a vinegar from another, more predominant fruit. And although I prefer the flavor of the maple syrup listed here, islanders likely used a different sweetener.

So feel free to experiment just as you would with a shrub. Out of maple syrup? Try honey or agave. Want a more complex flavor? Stir in a tablespoon of blackstrap molasses. Too strong? Dilute the brew with some additional water. You can use it in small doses as a mixer for a new cocktail.

Ready to give it a try? Full details are in the recipe below, but here are the basics:
You need just 3 main ingredients plus a lemon and some water.
1. Add all the ingredients to a quart jar.
2. Refrigerate the blend for at least 4 hours.
3. Strain, if desired, and enjoy.

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Switchel

  • Servings: 1 quart
  • Difficulty: 1
  • Print
1/2 cup apple cider vinegar
3 tablespoons maple syrup
1-1/2 inches fresh gingerroot (about 1 tablespoon when grated)
pinch of salt (optional)
1/2 lemon
3 cups water

Add the vinegar and maple syrup to a 1-quart glass jar. Use the side of a spoon or small knife to peel the ginger, and then grate it with a ginger or other fine grater. Add it to the jar, along with the salt, if using; squeeze in the lemon juice and then add the lemon half. Fill the jar with water, seal it, and shake to distribute the ingredients. Refrigerate at least 4 hours and preferably 24 hours, shaking occasionally.

Remove the lemon half; if desired, decant into a bottle, straining out the solids. Shake again before serving. Switchel will keep 1 month or longer in the refrigerator. Makes 1 quart.

Tips & Tricks
  • Switchel is even easier to make than Golden Milk, because you don’t need heat. The flavors blend better the longer it sits, so try to make it a day before you plan to serve it.
  • Quality makes this recipe. Choose raw organic vinegar, organic Grade B maple syrup for its minerals, and an organic lemon because you’ll be releasing oils from the peel. Filtered or spring water is best; only use tap water if your source is untreated.
  • Many switchel recipes use more sweetener and less ginger and vinegar. I’m a vinegar lover, so I appreciate the tang in this blend. If you find it too powerful, add another tablespoon of maple syrup to your next batch.
  • The raw ingredients can maximize this drink’s health benefits, but if you need a batch straight away you can add some heat for a similar flavor. Bring the ginger to a boil in the water, and then let it steep 20 minutes before combining everything, squeezing the juice from the lemon into the mixture. It can be cooled to room temperature, iced, or served hot as desired.
  • I make most shrubs as a concentrate and dilute them with seltzer when serving, but switchel is ready to drink as is. If the flavor is too strong straight from the jar, combine equal parts switchel and soda water.
  • For a quick cocktail, pour 2 ounces of rum, bourbon, or brandy into an ice-filled rocks glass and top with switchel. A splash of bitters or some muddled mint can also be delicious here, and soda water can replace some of the switchel if you don’t like the original balance.


Want to play with more variations? Twice as Tasty is teaching these techniques in a workshop held in your own kitchen, among friends—and with my personal help. Click here to learn more.

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