Super Nutritious, Summer, Finger Millet Drink - Ragi Ambli Recipe

Super Nutritious, Summer, Finger Millet Drink - Ragi Ambli Recipe

Here’s a super nutritious drink you should consider having during these hot summer days. You’ll need just 5-7 minutes to make this finger millet (ragi) drink. It has cooling effects on your body, is high in calcium, protein, iron & fibre (hence, helps in weight loss). And umpteen number of other health benefits too (look below for more info). So, next time you reach out to make a cup of coffee for yourself, make yourself this finger millet drink instead. Ready to trade your cup of coffee for this healthy drink? It's delicious too.

It’s called ragi ambli in Kannada & in various other South Indian languages. For ages, South Indians have been having this finger millet drink as their breakfast, lunch, as their refreshing summer drink. The weather, temperature, the heat explains the reason behind this porridge being an important part of South Indians diet. 

I make this finger millet drink a little thick. It further thickens as it cools down. It sets like a pannacotta on cooling & like Matt Preston (from Masterchef AU) says it wobbles like a Rubenesque woman wearing 5-inch heels! :) I then enjoy this thick porridge/soup with a spoon instead of drinking it. :) 

Here’s the super quick, easy recipe for ragi ambali.


  • 3 tablespoons of finger millet/red millet powder
  • 2 cups of water
  • 1 teaspoon of cumin powder
  • 1 big garlic clove
  • Salt to taste
  • 3/4 cup of buttermilk/curds

Serves: 2

Preparation Time: 5-7 minutes

Preparation Method:

There are many ways you can make this drink. Here’s how I prepare it.

  1. Heat a cup of water. Bring it to boil.
  2. Add cumin powder, salt, finely sliced/chopped garlic to it. 
  3. Once it comes to a boil, let it simmer for a minute so that the cumin & garlic flavour gets infused into the water.
  4. Meanwhile, dissolve 3 tablespoons of finger millet powder in another cup of water, such that there are no clumps.
  5. Add dissolved finger millet into the boiling water & mix well.
  6. Stir the mixture at frequent intervals so that it doesn’t stick to the bottom of the vessel as it continues to cook.
  7. Bring it to a boil, then simmer it for 3-4 minutes so that rawness of finger millet powder goes off & it cooks through. You know it by tasting. The raw taste of finger millet powder should be gone.
  8. The mixture will thicken as it cooks. Keep stirring occasionally. 
  9. Add curds/buttermilk & give it a good mix. (Dilute it further if you wish to. Add another 1/2 - 3/4 cup of water & boil it for a minute.)
  10. Remove it from heat & serve hot, once it cools down or serve it chilled. 
  11. These red millets are gluten free too. So, this drink makes up for a great gluten free diet.

P.S: You can add chopped fresh coriander leaves, curry leaves, finely chopped onions & serve this drink at room temperature or serve it chilled.

Or make yourself this delicious finger millet juice (nanchane udha in Konkani).

Benefits of finger millet/ragi you can reap through the above simple drinks:

  1. Finger millet has the highest amount of calcium (344mg%) and potassium (408mg%).
  2. Finger millet has higher dietary fiber, minerals, and sulfur containing amino acids compared to white rice, the current major staple in India.
  3. Finger millet is rich in iron and vitamin D.
  4. Ragi contains amino acid and Tryptophan which reduces appetite & thus, is one of the easiest ingredients for weight loss
  5. Ragi ambli is said to work as a body coolant.
  6. Ragi malt/ambli is considered to be a natural energy drink that helps keep the body energized and satiated throughout the day.
  7. Finger millet has low glycemic index which helps to maintain blood sugar levels. It's ability to regulate blood sugar levels make this excellent drink for people with diabetes.
  8. Finger millet increases lactation & is very good for pregnant women with gestational diabetes.
  9. Finger millet cuts down cholesterol levels.
  10. Finger millet is considered as a remedy for acidity & is known to treat anemia.

For detailed health and nutritional benefits about finger millet please visit this page

Tags: Finger millet malt, ragi malt, ragi ambli, ragi ambali, finger millet drink, summer drink, healthy drink, healthy breakfast, healthy lunch, South Indian drink, finger millet porridge, weight loss, nutritious, red millet, gluten free drink.