Atole de Maizena (cornstarch and milk atole)

This easy atole de Maizena drink is creamy, easy to make, and the perfect beverage for the coldest months. Serve for breakfast or for an afternoon snack with your favorite pastries.

Atole de Maizena, aka cornstarch and milk atole served in two cups.

What Is Atole de Maizena?

Atole de Maizena is a popular Mexican drink made of cornstarch, milk, vanilla, and cinnamon.

The recipe is one of the many versions of atole, a thick drink traditionally made with nixtamalized corn masa.

In this version, the drink is made using cornstarch instead of masa and then flavored with cinnamon, vanilla extract, and sugar.

In Mexico, is pretty common to find Maizena cornstarch brand flavored and ready to mix with milk to make atole.

There are different flavors such as strawberry, pineapple, guava, and vanilla to name a few. But today I want to show you how to make it with unflavored cornstarch.

Cornstarch Atole de Maizena served in two cups. Seen from above.

I love this recipe as it reminds me so much of my mother who will make it almost every morning during the cold season for us to drink before going to school.

Here are other valid reasons I truly enjoy this Mexican drink recipe:

  • Hearty: There’s just something comforting in classic flavors like vanilla and cinnamon. This drink is cozy, warming, and a family favorite!
  • Fulfilling: This recipe really works and is one of the most fulfilling drinks to start your day, it will keep you satisfied for hours.
  • Easy to Make: Mix, stir, and enjoy. Can’t get easier than this!

Ingredients Needed

  • MAIZENA: You can use this brand if you want or use any type of cornstarch available to you. You can also use a packet of flavored Maizena.
  • MILK: For a creamy drink, use whole milk or substitute with your favorite plant-based milk.
  • SUGAR: Use regular white sugar or your favorite sweetener.
  • VANILLA: Vanilla extract gives an amazing flavor to this drink.
  • CINNAMON: Use a stick of Mexican canela or 1 teaspoon of cinnamon powder.
Ingredients for Atole de Maizena labeled with names and displayed on a concrete surface.

How To Make Maizena Atole

Place one cup of milk in a bowl or a large cup. Add the Maizena cornstarch (or the packet) and whisk until everything is nicely combined and there are no lumps in the mixture.

Add the remaining milk to a pot with the cinnamon stick and sugar. Place on the stovetop over medium heat.

While stirring constantly, bring the milk to a gentle simmer. Allow the milk to infuse with the cinnamon for 2-3 minutes.

Add the cornstarch mixture slowly and while stirring to prevent atole from forming lumps.

Keep simmering for 1 more minute or until the atole starts to thicken. Add vanilla extract and mix well.

Cook for a little bit more or until the drink has a thick and smooth consistency.

Serve atole de Maizena in mugs and enjoy it alone or with your favorite pastries or tamales.

Useful Notes

  • If you want to use a packet of flavored Maizena leave out the sugar because the powdered mixture contains sugar already.
  • Make sure to stir all the time to prevent the milk mixture from sticking to the bottom of the pan.
  • Do not remove the cinnamon stick, even from the leftovers. The longer it sits in the mixture, the more flavor will add.
  • If you want to add a nice yellow color to this drink, add a few drops of organic food coloring.

Recipe Variations

Want to give a spin to this recipe? Here are some options to customize it and make it more flavorful:

  • Chocolate: Dissolve half a tablet of Mexican chocolate or 1.5 tablespoons of powdered cacao into the milk.
  • Spices: Play with warm spices like anise star, cloves, or nutmeg, to add an amazing taste and flavor.
  • Sweeteners: Swap regular sugar with piloncillo or muscovado sugar, those two sweeteners add a nice smoky taste to this filling drink.

How To Serve

Mexican atoles are known for being the best accompaniment for tamales, so here are a few recipes to pair this drink with:

Also, you can serve this cornstarch and milk atole with sweet Mexican bread such as Polvorones or Cortadillos.

In Mexico, is very common to dip warm bolillo rolls in atole. Try it, the salty bread goes perfectly with this sweet drink.

How To Store And Reheat

You can store atole de Maizena for up to 4 days in the fridge in an airtight container. I don’t recommend freezing it.

As it cools down, atole will develop a skin on the surface, to prevent this you can stir from time to time. Then transfer the cooled drink to a jar or container and store it.

To reheat, place cornstarch atole in a pot or saucepan over medium heat. Warm up while stirring for 3-4 minutes. Or you can also serve it in mugs and reheat it in the microwave in 30 seconds intervals.

Watch The Video

Atole de Maizena recipe.

Atole de Maizena (cornstarch and milk atole)

author Maricruz
4
This thick, sweet, and hearty Atole de Maizena drink is perfect to start your day. Mexican atole is so easy to make and everyone loves its taste!
prep 2 minutes
cook 10 minutes
total 12 minutes

Ingredients 

  • 4 ½ cups whole milk (divided)
  • 1.6 oz unflavored Maizena cornstarch (read notes)
  • ½ cup sugar
  • 1 cinnamon stick (or 1 teaspoon powdered cinnamon)
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Instructions
 

  • Add 1 cup of milk and Maizena cornstarch into a bowl or cup.
  • Whisk until there are no lumps left.
  • Place a large pot over medium heat and add the remaining milk, sugar, and cinnamon stick.
  • While stirring constantly, bring the milk to a gentle simmer and let the milk infuse with the cinnamon for 2-3 minutes.
  • Add the cornstarch mixture slowly and while stirring to prevent atole from forming lumps.
  • Stir for 1 more minute or until the atole starts to thicken.
  • Add vanilla extract and mix well.
  • Cook for a little bit more or until the atole has a thick and smooth consistency.
  • Serve atole de Maizena in mugs and enjoy.

Notes

  • If you use a packet of flavored Maizena leave out the sugar because the powdered mixture contains sugar already.
  • Make sure to stir all the time to prevent the milk mixture from sticking to the bottom of the pan.
  • Do not remove the cinnamon stick, even from the leftovers. The longer it sits in the mixture, the more flavor will add.
  • If you want to add a nice yellow color to this drink, add a few drops of organic food coloring.
Nutrition Information
Calories: 327kcal | Carbohydrates: 50g | Protein: 10g | Fat: 10g | Saturated Fat: 6g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 0.3g | Monounsaturated Fat: 2g | Cholesterol: 37mg | Sodium: 117mg | Potassium: 464mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 40g | Vitamin A: 497IU | Vitamin C: 0.03mg | Calcium: 385mg | Iron: 0.1mg
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3 Comments

  1. 5 stars
    I loved this recipe! I am hooked on atole since a coworker brought some to the office and shared it with a few of us. The texture, the taste, I love everything. Sadly she didn’t want to share the recipe but she told us the name so I looked up and found your blog. Oh my, I am so glad I did! You have so many recipes for atole that I didn’t know where to start hehe
    So I made this atole de maizena because I had all ingredients in my pantry. Thank you so much!

  2. 5 stars
    This recipe is amazing! I made it yesterday for me and my 5 yo son, he loved it and now he’s asking for more. Thank you, your maizena atole is so easy to follow! I’m
    Going to share it with my sister and my mom right way, I’m pretty sure they will love it too!

  3. 5 stars
    Super yummy! Atole is one of my fav Mexican drinks. Can’t wait to share this recipe with my mom, she love atole too!