Atole de elote is a warm, thick, and sweet Mexican beverage made with corn kernels, cinnamon, and milk. This corn atole is perfect to serve as breakfast or snack and is also the ultimate complement for tamales. Let me show you how easy is to make!

Atole de elote is a Mexican and Central American traditional beverage made with fresh corn, sugar, and water or milk. Elote in Mexico means fresh corn so many recipes include this ingredient, from savory to sweet recipes.

Corn atole holds a special place in my heart—it’s a cherished memory from my childhood. In my home, it was a staple, especially alongside tamales or pan dulce.

You see, in Mexican culture, we have this undeniable love for the sweet, comforting flavor of atole. From classics like Maizena atole to modern flavors, this drink is beloved by anyone!

Atole de elote served in clay cups.

Ingredients

  • Corn: I am using sweet canned corn for convenience, but if you can find fresh corn go with it. Another option is to use frozen corn.
  • Sugar: Brown sugar just adds the perfect smoky flavor, you can substitute with piloncillo, or use white sugar in a pinch.
  • Milk: Whole milk adds creaminess to this corn atole. I am using also water, feel free to use only milk or even only water for a lighter drink.
  • Cinnamon: This is a key ingredient! It adds a delicious earthy aroma and taste. You can use cinnamon sticks or cinnamon powder if that’s what you have.
  • Corn starch: Used to thicken the drink, you will need first to dissolve it in cold water to prevent it from forming lumps. Also, if you use fresh corn, you don’t need this ingredient as fresh corn has enough starch to thicken this atole de elote.
Atole de elote ingredients labeled and displayed on a marble surface.

How to Make Atole de Elote

Place 3 cups of water in a pot, add the cinnamon stick, and place on the stove over medium-low heat. Bring to a gentle simmer.

Simmering water and cinnamon in a pot.

While the water and cinnamon are simmering, add the corn to a blender, pour in the milk, and blend until you have a smooth runny mixture.

Tip: The more you blend, the smoother your atole will be.

Corn and milk blended mixture.

Add the brown sugar to the pot with water and mix to dissolve well. Then, add the corn mixture while mixing with a wooden spoon.

Adding the corn mixture to the pot while mixing with a wooden spoon.

Allow corn atole to gently simmer while stirring for about 5 minutes.

Mix cornstarch with 4 tablespoons of water and whisk until combined. Slowly add the corn starch mixture to the pot while stirring and then allow to simmer until the atole reaches your desired consistency.

Corn atole cooking on a pot.

Your atole de elote is ready when the mixture is thick enough to coat the back of a wooden spoon.

Recipe Tips & Notes

  • My experience when making this atole using canned corn is that usually takes longer to thick, usually 15-20 minutes for a thicker consistency or about 10-12 minutes for a thinner texture.
  • If you want to add other aromas and flavors you can experiment with adding vanilla extract, anise star, nutmeg, or even a dash of cocoa powder for different flavor profiles.
  • If you prefer a smoother texture on your atole de elote, strain the corn mixture through a fine-mesh sieve to remove any solids.

How to Serve This Corn Atole

As with many other types of atole, this drink is the perfect pairing for tamales or sweet pastries.

It can be as a breakfast or as a merienda (late afternoon snack) and is usually served hot in a clay cup called jarrito or jarro that helps to keep it warm for a long period.

Here are my recommendations for serving corn atole drink:

Atole de elote closeup.

Store & Reheat

What I love about making atole de elote is its convenience—especially on those bustling mornings when time feels like a scarce commodity.

Now, when it comes to storing the leftovers, here’s my little secret: once the drink has cooled down completely, I ensure it stays creamy and perfect by giving it a gentle stir every so often. That way, no pesky hard skin forms on top.

Then I pour the corn atole into a trusty pitcher with a nice, snug lid. Then, pop it into the fridge—it hangs out there comfortably for up to 3 days, just waiting for that perfect moment to be enjoyed again.

When ready to enjoy it again you’ve got two options! Pop it into mugs and let the microwave work its magic in 1-minute intervals. Or, transfer it to a saucepan and let it gently warm up over medium heat. Don’t forget to give it some love—keep stirring to ensure that warmth spreads evenly.

And voilà! You’ve got yourself a delicious, comforting cup of corn atole ready to make even the busiest mornings feel a bit more manageable.

More Atole Recipes

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Atole de elote recipe.

Atole de Elote (corn atole)

6 servings
Atole de elote is a warm, thick, and sweet Mexican beverage made with corn kernels, cinnamon, and milk. Is perfect to serve with tamales or pan dulce.
prep 5 minutes
cook 20 minutes
total 25 minutes

Ingredients 

  • 1 -10 oz can of sweet corn (drained)
  • 2 cups milk
  • cups brown sugar
  • 1 stick cinnamon
  • 3 cups water
  • 3 Tablespoons corn starch (combined with ½ cup cold water or milk)

Instructions
 

  • Add water to a pot with the cinnamon stick. Place the pot over medium heat and bring to a boil. Let it simmer for a couple of minutes to infuse the water.
  • Add corn to a blender, pour in the milk, and blend until you have a smooth runny mixture.
  • Add the brown sugar to the pot with water and mix to dissolve well.
  • Add the corn mixture while mixing with a wooden spoon.
  • Allow corn atole to simmer for 10 minutes while stirring constantly.
  • Slowly add the cornstarch mixture to the pot while stirring to prevent lumps.
  • Cook until the atole thickens to your desired consistency.

Notes

  • If you want to add other aromas and flavors you can experiment with adding vanilla extract, anise star, nutmeg, or even a dash of cocoa powder for different flavor profiles.
  • If you prefer a smoother texture on your atole de elote, strain the corn mixture through a fine-mesh sieve to remove any solids.
Nutrition Information
Serving: 1 serving | Calories: 150kcal | Carbohydrates: 28g | Protein: 4g | Fat: 3g | Saturated Fat: 2g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 8mg | Sodium: 133mg | Potassium: 191mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 17g | Vitamin A: 155IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 113mg | Iron: 1mg
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Recipe Rating




6 Comments

  1. Where can I get those cups you served the Atole de Elote drink in?? I know someone that would love to have them!

    1. Hi, you can find them at any Mexican pottery store or also in Amazon. They are called “jarros” or “jarritos”.

  2. 5 stars
    LOVED IT! And loved that I could make it with pantry staple ingredients. My wife just told me she want this atole de elote for breakfast at least in the weekend so she can enjoy it at bed. Thank you for the easy recipe.

  3. 5 stars
    Can’t stop going through your posts and wondering what to do next. You have so many delicious Mexican recipes! I wish I can make one every day hehe 😉

  4. 5 stars
    I just made your mazapan atole and came out delicious! My next will be this recipe and can’t wait! thank you so much for all amazing recipes in this blog.

  5. 5 stars
    I am always checking if you post new recipes and when I saw this atole de elote in your feed I jumped right away and made myself some because I had all ingredients in my pantry. Thank you so much, it wasn’t thickest as I thought will be and I loved that. My husband said he expect me to do more during winter and the kids LOVED it!