8 Vibrant Lassis To Help You Get Through the Heat

April 17, 2017

When most people I know hear the word “lassi,” they think of mangoes. I don’t blame them. A glass of mango lassi, when it’s done with right, can be more refreshing than any fizzy soda or milkshake I know, with a tang to counterpoint the sweetness.

But travel across different regions in South Asia and you’ll find countless variations of lassi beyond the mango: infusions of cumin, cardamom, mint, saffron, black pepper, even hearty kicks of cannabis. (No, I'm afraid I've never had bhang lassi.) My Bengali family’s favorite way is to make a batchfull of lassi with Rooh Afza rose syrup mixed with unsweetened, plain, whole milk yogurt and a splash of sugar, serving it alongside some parathas with potatoes. The lassi defies seasonality, but I prefer to drink when the climate gets muggier, a way of staving off heat.

“There’s so much more to Indian beverages than tea and lassi,” Annada Rathi declared earlier this year in an article for us. She was right. But I can't help but feel there’s so much more to lassi, a drink that's quite simple to make, than some of us may know. Here are some of the recipes for lassi we’ve got.

How do you like your lassi? Let us know in the comments.


See what other Food52 readers are saying.

  • ErinM724
  • Panfusine
  • Whiteantlers
  • Laila C.
    Laila C.
Mayukh Sen is a James Beard Award-winning food and culture writer in New York. His writing has appeared in the New York Times, the New Yorker, Bon Appetit, and elsewhere. He won a 2018 James Beard Award in Journalism for his profile of Princess Pamela published on Food52.


ErinM724 July 6, 2017
Strawberry is my absolute favorite. Any Indian restaurant that sells that gets my business!
Panfusine April 17, 2017
I prefer the lighter, more diluted South Indian style 'neer moar' with crushed ginger root, green chile, and curry leaves and fresh lime squeezed in.. with a hint of hing. a tadka of mustard is entirely optional
Laila C. April 25, 2017
I am inspired, will try to make it this season - how about sharing a precise recipe? thanksz
Whiteantlers April 17, 2017
I love salty lassis in the humid summer months. Really nice for breakfast instead of cold brew tea or cold brew coffee or a smoothie. Mango and sweetened rosewater lassis are great with very spicy food.