How to Make a Lassi


Part smoothie and part milkshake, sweet, savory, or both, lassis exemplify Indian cuisine and its diversity. All versions of lassi use yogurt as the primary ingredient; secondary ingredients include buttermilk, kefir, Iranian doogh or water -- just about any type of water-based liquid or dairy product. After you build a lassi foundation, where it goes is up to you. Savory lassis can contain several spices, almost like a curry; traditional sweet lassis typically contain fruit, while chocolate, caramel and espresso lassis are common outside of India.

Things You'll Need

  • Blender
  • Yogurt
  • Milk, kefir or buttermilk


  • Blend 1 part yogurt and 2 parts dairy product or water until combined. Buttermilk works well because it thins out the yogurt. If you add kefir or ayran, for example, you need to adjust the consistency with water or milk after you add the primary flavoring ingredient.

  • Blend a primary flavoring ingredient into the lassi. Roasted carrots, avocados roasted pumpkin are a few examples of the numerous savory ingredients that work. Blend in half as much primary flavoring ingredient as a base to start with, and add more to taste.

  • Adjust the consistency with water or milk until drinkable, if needed, and season to taste with kosher salt.

  • Blend in secondary flavoring ingredients. This is where you can almost think of lassi as the curry of beverages. Commonly used spices and flavorings include rosewater, cardamom, turmeric, cinnamon -- similar to a curry. If the spices fit with the primary flavoring ingredient, it works in the lassi.

  • Blend the lassi a final time and garnish with fresh herbs or chopped nuts; serve immediately. You can usually keep a lassi overnight in the refrigerator in an airtight container, but they're best served as soon as possible.


  • Blend 1 part yogurt and 2 parts kefir, milk, buttermilk or water until combined.

  • Adjust the consistency as needed using water or milk. Sweeten the base to taste with sugar, honey or the sweetener of choice and blend.

  • Add a primary flavoring ingredient, such as mango, banana or strawberries, and blend until combined. As a fruit alternative, blend in cooled espresso or cocoa powder and adjust the sweetening to taste.

  • Blend in secondary flavoring ingredients. Any spice that goes with the primary flavoring ingredient will work. For example, avocado and ginger, mango and cardamom, and strawberries and lime are all good pairings.

  • Blend in crushed ice for a frozen, milkshake-like consistency, if desired. Blend the lassi a final time and adjust the sweetening as needed. Chill the lassi before serving and garnish with fresh herbs, chopped nuts or fresh fruit.

Tips & Warnings

  • If you use milk as the secondary base ingredient, heat it over low heat in a saucepan and steep whole spices, such as star anise, cardamom pods or black peppercorns, for additional flavor.

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