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Ayurvedic Cooling Drink with Amla (Indian Gooseberry)

Tall glass with amla drink sitting on burlap napkins on cutting board

Never heard of amla before? Let me be upfront: it’s very sour! But more importantly, it’s regarded in the Ayurvedic tradition as having cooling properties. Also known as amalaki or Indian gooseberry, it’s a great choice for balancing any heat that comes your way. Although organic dried amla powder is most commonly known as one of the three herbs that make up the popular Ayurvedic blend called triphala, it has other herbal and culinary uses too!

How to Use Amla

One spring day many years ago when I took a trip to India, I had the amazing experience of watching an Ayurvedic practitioner use fresh amla fruit to create a healthful herbal jam called “Chyawanprash.” Chyawanprash is a sticky, dark, sweet, spicy, and of course tart (from the amla) spread found in your local South Asian food market. People often take a spoonful a day for rejuvenating and balancing purposes. I used to spread it on toast … a childhood treat!

Amla powder can also be taken as a stand-alone herb in a herbal blend like triphala, or as a spice for culinary purposes. Sour with a slightly bitter aftertaste, amla can be added to curries, salad dressings, marinades, rice dishes, and anything else that requires a tart zing. So the next time you are out of lemons or limes, give amla a try!

Bag of amla powder, smoked sea salt, mint leaves, and wooden spoons for making amla drink

Another healthful use for amla powder is an Indian drink called “Jal Jeera”, a beverage taken to promote a normal-functioning appetite. Never one to shy away from salt, I love this salty and tangy drink! I have fond childhood memories of reaching for this herbal spice mix, simply because it tasted good on the tongue and felt good in the tummy. The cumin (known as “Jeera” in Hindi) in the recipe is helpful for mild, occasional digestive issues. Even though the drink is typically made sour by mango powder and lime, I've found that amla powder makes for a wonderful, healthful substitute! 

A Word of Caution: In the USA, not everyone is used to salty or savory drinks. Trust me, it can take some getting used to! In Indian culture, salt is not only used occasionally in beverages, but also in yogurt dishes and even fresh fruit. In the summer, this salty drink is a gentle way to also promote hydration. Here’s my variation of a “Jal Jeera” recipe for you to try.

Wooden spoon filled with amla powder and other herbs on cutting board

Ayurvedic Cooling Drink Recipe with Amla (Indian Gooseberry)

Ingredients

Directions

  1. Add all ingredients to tall glass.
  2. Pour in one cup room-temperature water.
  3. Stir with fork or mini whisk.
  4. Adjust seasonings and water content to taste.
  5. Enjoy!

Pro Tip: For folks who love extra tang, add a teaspoon of organic lemon or lime juice to the mix!

 

Looking for more herbal drinks to stay cool?

5 Iced Teas For Summer

 

You may also enjoy: 

Cooling Ayurvedic Amla Drink Recipe Pin from Mountain Rose Herbs

Topics: Recipes, Herbalism, Tea & Herbal Drinks

Ek Ongkar

Written by Ek Ongkar on July 4, 2018

Ek Ongkar, Marketing Coordinator, is our analyst and email marketer. Born and raised in Eugene, Oregon, she’s no stranger to the ancient Indian wellness philosophy of Ayurveda. You can often find her sipping chai, taking long walks on local woodland trails, and doing origami.