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golden milk in a mug surrounded by ingredients

Upgrade your day with this delicious and easy-to-make turmeric latte. Also known as golden milk or turmeric milk, a turmeric latte is packed with antioxidant and anti-inflammatory compounds to help you feel your best everyday. While a turmeric latte can be enjoyed at any time of day, I drink one an hour or so before bed every night. It helps me relax and wind down for the evening. Enjoy this creamy caffeine-free beverage hot or cold for a nourishing treat.

overhead of turmeric latte, golden milk

I was first introduced to turmeric lattes when I worked at Peacefood Cafe in New York. Before then, I had never heard of such a thing; turmeric is such a bitter earthy spice, it couldn’t possibly be good in a beverage. Turns out I was completely wrong. When blended with non-dairy milk, ginger, and cinnamon, turmeric’s bitterness is tamed, and its earthiness balanced. For years I’d enjoy the occasional turmeric latte in the evening, but for the last 6 week’s I’ve had one every single night with great results.

Why I swear by Golden Milk, aka turmeric lattes

  • I adore its rich earthy taste balanced with my favorite nourishing spices: ginger, cardamom, and cinnamon.
  • It has helped me reduce pain and inflammation in my body.
  • Helps me relax at the end of each day.
  • Easy to make, and the process has become a calming ritual that I value every night
  • Can enjoy at any time of day, especially when I’m craving an extra coffee but don’t want the caffeine

overhead of turmeric latte ingredients on a green tray

The many health benefits of a turmeric latte

Turmeric lattes are very good for you. Though how good does partially depend on the amount of sweetener, and the type of non-dairy milk you use. The spices at the core of this soothing beverage are anti-inflammatory and antioxidant powerhouses.

Anti-inflammatory

All of the spices in golden milk boast powerful anti-inflammatory properties. Inflammation is at the core of most disease and pain. The best way to reduce inflammation is to eat a diet that is low in inflammation causing foods like alcohol, sugar, red meat, dairy, and ultra processed foods. You can further reduce inflammation by consuming foods that provide anti-inflammatory compounds to the body, like turmeric and ginger. Turmeric is particularly rich in an anti-inflammatory compound called curcumin. Consuming just 1/4 teaspoon of turmeric each day can greatly reduce inflammation in the body. The absorption of curcumin can be boosted significantly (up to 2000%) be consuming with just a pinch of black pepper.

Antioxidants

The main active compound in turmeric that is responsible for its anti-inflammatory power, curcumin, is also a potent antioxidant. Antioxidants help to fight free radicals, and manage oxidative stress in the body; in turn reducing your risk for diseases like cancer and heart disease. Ginger, an important ingredient in this turmeric latte, is also known for its strong antioxidant potential.

Calming turmeric latte

The curcumin found in turmeric also helps regulate brain hormones and increase production of dopamine, seratonin, and noradrenaline thus reducing stress. Because of this turmeric lattes tend to have a calming effect and help you get a restful night of sleep.

Gut health

Turmeric, ginger, cinnamon, and cardamom all help reduce inflammation in the gut, and support healthy digestion.

Non-dairy milk

The milk you choose has a lot of impact on how healthy your turmeric latte will be. Highly processed non-dairy milks like Oatly are delicious, but full of sugar, oil, stabilizers, and emulsifiers. The maintain the integrity of this healthy drink, I recommend using a clean vegan milk. My favorite options are soy milk from West Soy or Trader Joes––these brands contain just 2 ingredients: soy beans and water. You can also find fresh soy milk at your local Asian grocery store. A homemade or clean (meaning just two ingredients) almond milk, cashew milk, or other nut milk is a fantastic option too.

Sweeten lightly

I recommend using just 1/2-1 teaspoon of agave nectar or other sweetener in golden milk. I love sweet drinks, but even natural sweeteners should be consumed in moderation, especially before bed.

hand pouring agave into turmeric latte

Origins of Golden Milk

Like so many great things, the turmeric latte comes from India. While turmeric is one of the core spices in Indian cooking (it’s the spice that makes curry powder yellow), for thousands of years it has also been used in traditional Indian medicine––ayurveda–– to treat arthritis and other pain, upper respiratory tract infections, skin ailments, and digestive issues. Haldi doodh, turmeric latte in Hindi, is a common hot beverage. Talking to Indian American friends, I learned that their mothers would especially prepare it when they were sick or coming down with something. In the last decade or so, America has also fallen in love with golden milk, and I’m here for it. Even Starbucks sold a version called, Moon Milk (love that name). And golden milk lattes don’t need to be reserved for when you’re under the weather, enjoy them daily for great health.

How to make a turmeric latte

This golden milk recipe is so easy to make. It takes just a few minutes!

  • STEP ONE: Add dairy-free milk to a small saucepan over medium-high heat and bring to a simmer. While the milk heats, add 1/4 teaspoon ground turmeric, about 1/2 teaspoon of grated fresh ginger, a 1/8 teaspoon ground cinnamon and ground cardamom, and a dash of black pepper and cayenne pepper.
    • * Don’t let the milk boil over! Reduce the heat to medium once it starts to simmer.
  • STEP TWO: Use a matcha whisk, small spiral whisk, or a milk frother to blend the mixture and get rid of any spice clumps.
  • STEP THREE: Sweeten, and stir once more before you pour your the golden milk into a mug. I like to finish my latte off with an extra sprinkle of cinnamon.

step by step photos of turmeric latte preparation

Turmeric latte ingredient variations

Non-dairy milk: Use your favorite vegan milk to make your latte. I find that Oatly and Califia oat milk makes the creamiest golden milk, however, these are both highly processed milks. I occassionally indulge in these, but I most often use plain unsweetened soy milk. Other great milks are coconut milk (use 1/2 cup of coconut milk and 1/2 cup of water), cashew milk (very creamy), and almond milk.

Sweetener: I usually sweeten my lattes with agave nectar. You can also use maple syrup, jaggery (South Asian palm sugar), or cane sugar. Vegans don’t usually consume honey, but if you do, I’d recommend choosing a local raw honey.

Fresh turmeric can be used instead of ground turmeric. Use about 1/2 teaspoon of grated fresh turmeric in place of fresh; and allow the milk to simmer for at least 5 minutes before serving.

Ground ginger can be used in place of fresh. Use 1/4 teaspoon of ground ginger in place of fresh.

When it’s hot outside, you may prefer an iced turmeric latte. To make it, combine all of the ingredients in a small pot over medium heat, just like you would the hot version. Allow it to cool completely before pouring over ice. You could blend the ingredients without warming them first, but the heat tends to draw more flavor and nutrition out of the spices.

fresh ginger in hand with microplane

Tips for making the best turmeric latte

  1. Keep fresh ginger in the freezer for easy grating. Yes, frozen ginger grates a lot easier than room temperature or cold ginger. If using frozen grated ginger, measure 1 teaspoon rather than 1/2 teaspoon.
  2. Use a microplane to grate the ginger, fresh or frozen, for a fine texture.
  3. To break up any clumped ground turmeric a matcha whisk or small spiral sauce whisk is best. You can also use these whisks to make your latte foamy. Alternatively, a milk frother works great too.
  4. Be careful not to let the turmeric latte boil over. Simmer for no longer than 5 minutes.
  5. The spices tend to collect at the bottom of the mug. Give your mug a twirl to distribute throughout as you enjoy the drink. If the spices bother you, consider straining the latte. I do this for my 5 year old and she loves it.

Some common questions

Is it safe to drink turmeric milk everyday?

Yes, according to Dr. Greger of Nutritionfacts.org and “How Not to Die” fame, the recommended amount of turmeric is 1/4 teaspoon a day.

Does turmeric latte have coffee in it? Does it contain caffeine?

Turmeric lattes do not contain caffeine. You can, however, add a shot of espresso to make it a real latte if you’d like.

What is a good time to drink turmeric latte? Does it keep you awake?

Turmeric lattes can be enjoyed any time of day, but I drink one an hour before bedtime every night. A golden milk latte will certainly not keep you awake. Turmeric actually helps reduce stress and supports healthy sleep.

iced turmeric latte in a tall glass

Trying to eat more turmeric? Try these recipes too!

Black-eyed pea curry

Sweet potato red lentil curry

Chickpea & Butternut squash tagine

5 from 3 votes

Easy Anti-inflammatory Turmeric Latte 

This deliciously sweet and earthy turmeric latte is a cinch to make. Enjoy it an hour before bed for maximum calming benefits.
Prep Time: 1 minute
Cook Time: 5 minutes
Servings: 1

Equipment

  • whisk, ideally a matcha whisk or small sauce whisk

Ingredients 

  • 1 1/4 cup plain unsweetend non-dairy milk
  • 1/2-1 tsp agave nectar or other natural sweetener
  • 1/2 tsp grated fresh ginger
  • 1/4 tsp ground turmeric
  • 1/8 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/8 tsp ground cardamom, optional
  • 1/16 tsp, about a pinch, of black pepper
  • 1/16 tsp, about a pinch, of cayenne pepper (optional)
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract, optional

Instructions 

  • Pour the soy milk into a small saucepan over medium heat.
  • Add the agave, fresh ginger, turmeric, cinnamon, cardamom, black pepper, and cayenne and whisk well to break up any clumps of spices.
  • Gently simmer the mixture for 2-5 minutes, careful not to let it boil.
  • Pour into a mug and enjoy warm.

Notes

Tips to make the tastiest golden milk
  1. Keep fresh ginger in the freezer for easy grating. Yes, frozen ginger grates a lot easier than room temperature or cold ginger. If using frozen grated ginger, measure 1 teaspoon rather than 1/2 teaspoon. 
  2. To break up any clumped ground turmeric a matcha whisk or small sauce whisk is best. You can also use these whisks to make your latte foamy. Alternatively, a milk frother works great too. 
  3. Be careful not to let the turmeric latte boil over. Simmer for no longer than 5 minutes.
  4. The spices tend to collect at the bottom of the mug. Give your mug a twirl to distribute throughout as you enjoy the drink. If the spices bother you, consider straining the latte. I do this for my 5 year old and she loves it. 
Like this recipe? Rate and comment below!

About Jenne

I’m a Georgia Peach living in Los Angeles (by way of NYC), with an insatiable love of sweet potatoes, travel, animals, and cooking. On Sweet Potato Soul you’ll discover hundreds of delicious and easy-to-make vegan recipes.

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7 Comments

  1. Thanks for the recipe! It’s the best turmeric drink I’ve tasted. I’m making it an evening habit.

  2. I have been looking a recipe using soy milk, since that’s what I drink. Then your video popped up like you were reading my mind. I just made this and all I can say is YUM. I love it so much I’m considering prepping spice mix ahead of time so I have it handy. Thank you!

  3. This was so delicious. And it was creamy and spicy with just a touch of sweetness. It was a nice change from a cup of tea.
    And it has so many healthy ingredients that you know you’re doing something good for your health!

  4. My new favorite drink. I loveee making tea at night with milk as my wind down routine after my daughter is alseep. I use tea bags for the convenience but this really was sooo easy to make. And it was absolutely delicious. So definitely replacing my tea bags with this. I also see myself making it throughout the day cause it was so good.

  5. This recipe is absolutely delicious and SOOO easy to make! This method saves so much time in not having to make a turmeric paste first! Truly my new favorite latte recipe!

  6. It’s a wet and windy night and this was the perfect warming drink. I used cinnamon sticks instead of ground cinnamon and green cardamom pods which I smashed slightly in the mortar and pestle. Will be making again and again!