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Avena (which means oat in Spanish) is a drink that is best known in South America and some parts of Mexico. But as with many dishes or foods around the world (beverages included), each country often has its own spin on things.

In the following recipe, we make it easy for you to choose or take your pick of which version to make.



1 cup water

½ cup milk

2-3 Tbsp Oatmeal

1 ½ Tbsp white sugar (or brown sugar)

1 tsp butter (optional*)

1-3 while cloves

¼ tsp fresh ginger (optional**)

½ tsp lemon or orange zest (optional**)

1 cinnamon stick or ¼ tsp cinnamon

½ stick of vanilla or ¼ tsp vanilla extract

1 pinch salt

* Puerto Rican version

** Dominican version


1. Boil water and milk in a saucepan.

2. Add in the 2 to 3 tablespoons of Oatmeal.

3. You can also mix oatmeal with water and milk and blend well prior to cooking.

4. Bring mixture to a boil.

5. Cook until slightly thickened for approximately 15 to 20 minutes on medium high. Or until liquid is reduced by a fourth of the way or to desired thickness.

6. Turn down

7. Add in your spices (cloves, ginger cinnamon, vanilla) and butter if you choose to make the Puerto Rican version or you can. If you are making the Dominicanian version, you can add in your ginger and citrus peels.

8. Let mixture simmer on low for 5 more minutes.

9. Add a pinch of salt.

10. If using cinnamon stick, remove the cinnamon stick before those 5 minutes are up to prevent too much of a cinnamon flavor. Also, if using citrus peels you can remove them also.

11. Add sugar to taste.

12. You can blend mixture if you didn’t in the beginning once it is cool enough. Or let the oat meal settle to the bottom and enjoy the beverage.

This is great as a breakfast or a light snack in between meals. You can sprinkle a touch of cinnamon before drinking or enjoy as is.

Note: It is best served warm. Refrigerate any leftovers for up to 3 days. You can double this recipe if needed.

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