Champurrado is a traditional Mexican chocolate beverage. Here in Texas, there are many Mexican restaurants that serve champurrado. Champurrado is an atole. Corn and masa are the two main ingredients of an atole (or atolli, atol de elote). Ford Fry and Jessica Dupuy describe champurrado as “somewhere between a thick porridge and a soupy smoothie” in the book Tex-Mex Cookbook.
- In the book Christmas in Texas, Elizabeth Silverthorne describes champurrado as a hot chocolate drink thickened with corn meal.
- According to Nathan Hodge, in the book The Art and Craft of Chocolate, champurrado has been “around since pre-Colombian times” and that champurrado has its roots “in Aztec, Zapotec, and Mayan cultures.”
- Here’s another interesting: traditionally, women make champurrado because women have the right energy to bring out the froth, not men. That’s in the book The Art and Craft of Chocolate.
- Champurrado, according to the book Entertaining from Ancient Rome to the Super Bowl: An Encyclopedia, is a traditional offering to relatives who passed away.
- The traditional way to bring out the froth is to use a wooden whisk called a molinillo. The modern way is to use a blender.
Champurrado Buying Guide
- Go to an authentic Mexican restaurant if you want an authentic champurrado.
- Champurrado contains milk. If you are lactose intolerant, find a restaurant that serves dairy-free champurrado that uses vegan options like almond milk.
- Order just enough so that it doesn’t fill you up. Champurrado is consumed alongside other food like tamales. Having too much champurrado will make you feel full and cause you to lose your appetite.
- You may inquire what they use to make the champurrado, especially if you have allergies or if you are avoiding consuming specific kinds of food for medical or personal reasons.
Champurrado Production & Farming in Texas
Atole has been consumed by the native peoples residing in modern-day Texas as far back as the fifteenth century. It was sweetened by unrefined sugar or wild honey before ground chocolate became part of the norm in making food and drinks in the region. That’s when they started making the chocolatey treat we now know as champurrado.
It is not uncommon for an authentic Mexican champurrado to be different from one another. This is because people will sometimes use different ingredients in making champurrado. Ford Fry and Jessica Dupuy explained it in the book Tex-Mex Cookbook: champurrado has “a base that’s usually ground corn, this starchy cereal can also be made from a grain, including rice, oats, and even mesquite beans.”
Production of champurrado is focused on Mexican restaurants operating in Texas.
If you are looking for champurrado, here are some restaurants to visit:
- El Paso
- San Antonio
Pesticides, Additives, and Chemicals
Instant champurrado chocolate drink sold in the market may contain any or all of the following: modified starch, corn syrup solids, sodium caseinate, artificial flavors, mono and diglycerides, dipotassium phosphate, silicon dioxide, and soy lecithin. It also contains one or more of the following: coconut oil, palm oil, cottonseed oil
Champurrado is a traditional Mexican beverage, but it is also now made in different parts of the world where there is a Mexican community.
Champurrado is commonly enjoyed in the morning as part of breakfast in Mexico and in many parts of Texas. According to Ford Fry and Jessica Dupuy, in the book Tex-Mex Cookbook, “In Mexico, and north into the Rio Grande Valley of Texas, atole has long been a filling, inexpensive fixture at the breakfast table.”
Champurrado is an important part of San Antonio’s tradition and culture. Linda West Eckhardt, in the book The Only Texas Cookbook, wrote: “Christmas in San Antonio is a cultural mix drawing from Mexican, German, and Southern traditions. For many Texas Mexicans, no Christmas would be complete without champurrado, a hot drink that originated with the Indians of the Mexican peninsula. It is grainy, an acquired taste, but a vital part of a San Antonio-style holiday.”
There is an instant champurrado chocolate drink are in a resealable pack.
Beth Hensperger, in the book Not Your Mother’s Slow Cooker Recipes for Entertaining, explained that champurrado “is comforting, nourishing, and sustaining, often drunk before long Catholic masses or as a restorative.”
You’d notice that champurrado is always served in a mug. That is customary and it is the tradition. According to Ford Fry and Jessica Dupuy, in the book Tex-Mex Cookbook, “It’s not uncommon for it to be consumed as a warm beverage in an earthenware mug rather than from a bowl with a spoon.”
Champurrado is part of the Day of the Dead and Las Posadas celebration in Mexico. Mexicans all around the world celebrating this occasion make this at home. Champurrado, according to Mimi Sheraton, in the book 1,000 Foods To Eat Before You Die: A Food Lover’s Life List, “is especially popular at Christmas and New Year’s and is generally served alongside churros or pan dulce.” Champurrado is a drink that accompanies other traditional Mexican food like tamales.
It is a favorite, and very popular, especially during the cold / winter season in Texas.
You can keep leftover champurrado in the refrigerator. Put it in an airtight food container. It will keep for a maximum of three days. It could start to go bad since it has milk. You can reheat champurrado in a saucepan over low heat. Add water or milk if necessary, to achieve the consistency you prefer.
There are many different ways to make a champurrado and there are a variety of ingredients used in making this beverage. There are many champurrado recipes online that you can try, including those that are perfect for your dietary preferences (i.e. low-carb champurrado, vegan champurrado, etc.)
If you want to make an authentic, traditional champurrado, remember the reminders and tips from cookbooks. Chelsea Kenyon, from the book Knack Mexican Cooking: A Step-by-Step Guide to Authentic Dishes Made Easy, wrote: “Champurrado is a hot chocolate beverage whisked with a tool called a molinillo until it becomes frothy. It has a slightly thickened consistency because it is cooked with masa harina.”
Beth Hensperger, in the book Not Your Mother’s Slow Cooker Recipes for Entertaining, has additional tips. “Low-fat milk is fine, since in Mexico it is often made with half milk and half water. Use dehydrated masa harina…or a stone-ground organic masa flour. You may substitute two 1 1/2-ounce tablets of Mexican drinking chocolate for the chopped chocolate, if you wish. Dark brown sugar is more similar in taste to piloncillo, the little pyramids of raw sugar found in Mexico.”
To have an idea of the health benefits of champurrado, it is important to look at the health benefits offered by champurrado’s main ingredients.
- Chocolate – Chocolate contains copper, iron, magnesium, phosphorous, and zinc. A healthy diet of chocolate can result in a strong cardiovascular system.
- Corn – Corn is a great source of energy. It has carbohydrates, fats, and protein. It has vitamin A, vitamin B1, B2, B3, B5, B6, and B9, and vitamin C. It has iron, magnesium, manganese, phosphorus, potassium, and zinc. Eating corn can help improve digestion and maintain eye health. But if you are looking to lower your blood sugar level or lose weight, make sure to eat corn in moderation because this food is high in starch.
- Milk – Milk is rich in protein, vitamin B12, vitamin D, calcium, riboflavin, and phosphorus. Milk promotes bone health and helps keep blood pressure normal and steady.