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Horchata (Rice Milk) with Xiotilla Cactus

Adapted from a traditional Oaxacan recipe by Abigail Mendoza. The rice is traditionally ground to a paste on a stone metate, but it can be successfully ground in a blender.

Makes 10 glasses


    3 cups- water
    1 cup- rice, preferably Mexican medium grain or standard long grain
    1- stick cinnamon (preferably Mexican), 2 inches long and 1/2 inch wide, broken in 4 pieces
    2- large ripe red cactus fruits or 6 small native xiotillas (substitute 1/2 cup finely diced cantalope)
    2 1/4 quarts- cold water
    1 cup- sugar or to taste
    1 cup- toasted pecans, chopped


  1. Soak rice in 3 cups water for 3 hours
  2. Strain rice and discard water.
  3. In a blender, combine in batches 1/4 cup rice, one of the four cinnamon pieces, and 2 cups cold water. Process from low to high speed.
  4. Pour liquid through a medium strainer into a large jug or small bucket.
  5. Repeat blending process until all rice and cinnamon are ground.
  6. Cut cactus fruit in half and scoop out pulp. Mash with a fork or potato masher.
  7. Mix rice mixture with remaining cold water. Add fruit and sugar.
  8. Add 1 tablespoon chopped pecans to each glass before serving.
  9. Serve with a spoon.

Recipe compliments of the Casa Sagrada

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