Blue Corn Atole

Blue corn atole is a Mexican hot drink made with blue corn masa, piloncillo, and cinnamon. This beverage is perfect for breakfast and is naturally gluten-free and dairy-free.

Blue corn atole served in an enamel cup.

Atole Morado

Blue corn atole, known in Spanish as Atole morado or atole de maíz morado, is a hot corn-based bevarage originally from the municipality of Ixtenco, Tlaxcala. The recipe is mainly made by the Otomi people using native black corn, which over the years has improved to a very dark color.

The traditional recipe is made following ancient methods, such as selecting the blue corn cobs ahead to choose those with the more intense color, and then soaking them and grinding them the following days.

The last stage is to cook it with piloncillo and add the cobs to the mixture to achieve a darker color. The preparation of this beverage can take up to 36 hours.

Mexican blue corn atole served with powdered chocolate sprinkled.

But don’t worry, we are sharing today an easy recipe for this atole that can be made at home in just 20 minutes!

What is made of?

Our easy recipe for blue corn atole is made with only a few ingredients. Let’s see which ones and where to find them:

Blue corn masa: In central Mexico, you can find blue corn masa at the tortilleria store, in other countries you can use blue masa harina which is easily found at Mexican online stores under various brands. Mixing masa harina and water yields corn masa dough.

Various bags from different brands of blue masa harina.

Piloncillo: This is an unrefined Mexican sugar made from cane sugar. Is used in many traditional recipes and is also quite inexpensive.

Finding this ingredient in other countries is not hard, you might also look for it with other names, such as panela or panocha. In some countries in Asia, you can find a similar product called jaggery or gur.

Two cones of Mexican piloncillo placed on a small basket.

Also, if it is too difficult for you to find piloncillo, you can use 2 tablespoons of molasses, or as the last resource, brown packed sugar.

What is blue corn masa?

Blue corn is one of the thousands of varieties of corn that we can enjoy in Mexico, the purple color of its grains ends up turning into a deep and dark blue corn masa that we can often find in snacks and tortillas, however, its usefulness is the same as of yellow or white corn since we can prepare different types of recipes and drinks with it, such as this delicious atole.

Blue corn flour and masa prepared on a marble countertop.

Benefits of blue corn

Like many other blue foods, such as blueberries, blue potatoes, concord grapes, etc; blue corn is rich in antioxidants and anti-inflammatory properties. Compared to white or yellow corn, it also has less starch, which makes its glycemic index lower.

Read more about the benefits of blue foods.

Cobs of blue corn piled.

Now let’s make this easy recipe.

How To Make Blue Corn Atole

Start by making the blue corn masa mixture. So, place the flour into a bowl or container and mix thoroughly with 2 cups of water.

Mixing blue corn masa harina with water in a large cup.

You should end with a runny and lump-free mixture like the one in the photo above.

Next, in a medium stockpot, pour the remaining water and then add piloncillo, and cinnamon. Mix well until piloncillo dissolves and bring water to a gentle boil.

Cooking piloncillo and cinnamon in water.

Now add the blue corn mixture slowly, while mixing with a spoon to prevent the mixture from forming lumps.

Adding the blue corn masa harina mixture to the pot.

Cook at medium-low heat for about 10 minutes or until the mixture thickens to the point where it coats the back of the spoon.

Blue atole being made in a white pot.

Adjust with sugar or more piloncillo to taste and serve in mugs while is still hot. I like to serve it with a sprinkle of powdered dark chocolate.

Tips & Tricks

  • Low heat. Cook the mixture over low-medium heat to keep it from burning.
  • Keep on whisking. Don’t leave the pot unattended and keep whisking to create a smoother texture and prevent it from burning.
  • Add more flavor. Want more flavor on this recipe? You can boil a piece of anis star for a delicious aroma and extra flavor.
  • Make it creamy. If you want a creamier version of thos blue corn atole, sub the water with whole milk of your favorite plant-based milk.
Blue atole served on bowls with some powdered chocolate.

What to serve this drink with?

You can enjoy this atole morado for breakfast, like your regular coffee. For a fulfilling breakfast, we recommend serving alongside sweet pineapple tamales.

Pan dulce is also another nice option for serving this drink. My mother loved to drink this with molletes dulces too!

Storage and Reheating Tips

You can make this drink ahead or storage your leftovers in the fridge. Once cooled, pour blue corn atole in a glass container and keep it refrigerated for up to 4 days.

To reheat, add a splash of water to the atole, give it a good stir, then heat it up in the microwave or on the stovetop in a saucepan.

More Mexican Hot Beverages

Blue corn atole recipe with masa harina.

Blue Corn Atole

This Mexican hot drink is made with blue corn masa, piloncillo, and cinnamon. Perfect for breakfast and naturally gluten-free!
PREP 5 minutes
COOK 15 minutes
TOTAL 20 minutes
5 from 2 votes
Print Pin Rate
Servings: 6
Author: Maricruz

Ingredients 

  • cup blue corn masa harina
  • 4 oz piloncillo (or ½ cup brown sugar)
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 6 ½ cups water

Instructions

  • Place blue corn masa harina into a bowl, add 2 cups of water and mix well until there are no lumps.
  • Add the remaining water in a medium stockpot.
  • Add piloncillo and cinnamon, then bring to a simmer.
  • Cook mixing from time to time until piloncillo has dissolved and you can smell the cinnamon and chocolate fragrances.
  • Slowly, add the blue corn mixture, while mixing with a spoon to prevent the mixture from forming lumps.
  • Cook at medium-low heat for about 10 minutes or until the mixture thickens to the point where it coats the back of the spoon.
  • Adjust with sugar or more piloncillo to taste and serve in mugs.

NOTES

  • Low heat. Cook the mixture over low-medium heat to keep it from burning.
  • Whisk. Don’t leave the pot unattended and keep whisking to create a smoother texture and prevent it from burning.
  • Add more flavor. Want more flavor on this recipe? You can boil a piece of anis star for a delicious aroma and extra flavor.
  • Make it creamy. If you want a creamier version of thos blue corn atole, sub the water with whole milk of your favorite plant-based milk.
Nutrition
Calories: 115kcal | Carbohydrates: 26g | Protein: 1g | Fat: 1g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 1g | Sodium: 14mg | Potassium: 36mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 16g | Vitamin A: 29IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 36mg | Iron: 1mg
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5 Comments

  1. Oh wow very similar to Navajo blue corn mush except we add juniper ash .. no spices
    We also toast the corn in a cast iron pan before using it. Some people add a little sugar on top can eat with a spoon or drink it for a fast easy breakfast.

    1. That’s interesting, Jennifer. I also discovered the other day about some tamales recipe very similar to a Mexican one that Navajo people make and can’t wait to try it!

  2. I also make blue corn stole l make in pan w some oil to toast it some then add water slowly stirring until there are no lumps add salt and milk. Usually drink in the evenings.

  3. 5 stars
    Love how easy is this recipe, I got a bag of blue corn masa harina as a gift and didn’t know what to do with that besides tortillas, after looking for some recipe I found yours for atole and definitely I am going to try it because it seems so easy to make. I don’t have piloncillo on hand but I have brown sugar and going to use it, thank you for the idea!