This maca latte is a warm and cozy treat made with maca root powder, frothy milk and cinnamon and vanilla. It’s maple-sweetened, vegan and paleo but can also be made with dairy milk, if preferred.
Maca root powder is a mood, memory and metabolism-enhancing superfood that boosts energy and is packed with nutrients. It makes a wonderful nutty-flavored latte that’s perfect for the post-holiday season when you might be after something that’s not so rich and decadent.
You could even call it a superfood latte, much like this Chai Matcha Latte.
- Maca root powder — gives this latte its nutty flavor and added nutrition.
- Maple syrup — my preferred sweetener which pairs nicely with the maca.
- Vanilla extract — always a good addition. :)
- Ground cinnamon — adds a little spice and is perfect for garnishing the latte.
- Plant-based milk — I used cashew milk, but any milk will do.
For the full recipe, please scroll to the recipe box at the bottom of the page. You wouldn’t believe the number of angry emails and comments saying that I need to include the measurements in my recipes. I got one yesterday calling me trash. 😂
What is maca?
Maca is a plant that grows in the Peruvian Andes at an altitude between 4000 and 4500 meters and is often referred to as the “Peruvian ginseng”. It’s related to broccoli, cauliflower and cabbage and has been cultivated for over 2000 years (source).
There’s been more demand lately as people learn of its superfood powers, and China has started producing this tubular root plant for export. I read a few things saying that’s because seeds were smuggled out of Peru. This was an interesting read about Peruvian vs. Chinese maca.
It’s primarily exported as a powder that may be raw or processed as a gelatinized starch or as an extract. If it’s processed as a gelatinized starch, it means the root has been heat-treated before being ground into a powder. In traditional methods, maca was always cooked because it’s easier to digest.
There are many ways to add maca to your daily diet, like blending it into smoothies and soups or adding it to oatmeal and baked goods. So if you buy maca powder to make this latte, there are numerous ways to use it up. I’ve listed some suggestions below.
What does maca taste like?
The flavor of maca root powder is distinct and described as nutty, some say like like butterscotch (which I don’t get at all), and malty with a hint of caramel. Although it’s not sweet, it does pair well with sweet flavors, so I paired it with maple syrup and vanilla extract.
I would say this latte tastes like a wonderful blend of nuts, cinnamon, maple syrup, and something I can’t quite put my finger on – and that’s the maca! My husband, son and I have been enjoying this latte for the last few months.
I use an electric frother (I talk about which one in my Hot Chocolate with Frothed Milk post) and have been making my son’s latte cold. So if you don’t like warm drinks, that’s also an option.
Unlike matcha drinks, this maca latte isn’t an acquired taste. I really think anyone and everyone will love it.
Where to buy it
You can easily find maca in grocery stores and big box stores like Costco (although theirs is quite expensive) and Walmart. And, of course, you have loads of options on Amazon.
In my Black Ice Cream post, I talked about a browser extension that shows you the past prices of any item on Amazon. You can also set up price alerts and get notified whenever a product drops to your desired price.
Now I’m going to talk about another Chrome extension that informs you of fake reviews called Fakespot.
I would say a good deal of products on Amazon don’t get a good grade, meaning most have fake reviews. And this seems especially true of maca powder.
Food to Live Organic Gelatinized Maca Powder seems to be the best price and best reviewed. There were a few cheaper options, but they got Fs on Fakespot (they get graded A-F with A being the best).
It says on their website that it’s sourced from Peru, but note that it’s packaged in a facility that also processes tree nuts, wheat and sesame. Should that be relevant for you!
Anthony’s Organic Gelatinized Maca Root Powder is also sourced from Peru, but is verified gluten-free. But it got a D on Fakespot.
They also have non-gelatinized maca. I’ve honestly only ever used gelatinized, so I can’t comment on the taste difference, but on the Anthony’s gelatinized maca bag, it says that their gelatinized maca is also slightly smoother and sweeter than their non-gelatinized maca powder.
Also, make sure you’re getting maca powder and not a blend of ingredients to make this latte. I looked at one, and it was meant to create an energy drink and included pea protein powder and a host of other ingredients. You’re looking for strictly maca root powder.
Benefits of maca root
Maca root is an adaptogen, a plant extract that helps the body manage environmental stress. When stressed out, cortisol levels rise, and adaptogens help keep cortisol levels from rising.
Here are some more benefits of maca root
- Helps manage stress
- May assist with depression and improve mood
- Increased energy and endurance
- Promotes natural antioxidants in the body
- Reduces symptoms of menopause
- Improves memory and learning
- Helps bones stay strong
- Known for thyroid regulation properties
- Nutrient-dense containing vitamins B1, B2, B12, C and zinc
- Plus, added iron, potassium, phosphorous, protein, fiber and calcium
More ways to use maca
Besides making this tasty maca latte to boost your day, you can add maca powder to recipes that pair well with malty, or sweet flavors. Here are a few ideas.
And it pairs well with carrot juice and other fresh juices. 1 teaspoon to 1 tablespoon should do, and it’s based strictly on taste. It doesn’t dissolve easily in cold liquid, so you might dissolve it in a small amount of hot water before adding it to chilled juice.
And lastly, it adds an extra boost to hot chocolates like this Vegan Hot Chocolate to perk up cold, wintery days.
Paleo and vegan
As written, this recipe is paleo and vegan. For paleo, make sure to avoid milks with additives, preservatives and sugar. The only ingredients should be nuts and salt.
And if you’re really sensitive to gluten, read above where I talk about maca brands. You might not want to go with Food to Live brand.
What type of milk to use
I use cashew milk, as with most of my drink recipes. I find it creamier than other plant-based milk, but you can use whatever milk you’d like.
If you’re not paleo or vegan, you can of course use dairy milk.
How to froth plant-based milk
It’s easy to froth milk, but can you froth almond milk? You can.
You just have to heat the milk to 150 °F (66 °C) before frothing. You can froth it right in the pot with a handheld frother and control the amount of froth you get.
Or if you want a drink that’s mostly froth, then you can use an electric frother. The first time I tried it, I added everything, and it was just under the max line.
It very quickly rose with froth until it spilled out the sides. So I removed half of it, and it (and the other half I also ended up frothing) frothed so much that it wouldn’t fit in a 450-ml glass. And that was using 1 cup (240 ml).
If you don’t want a ton of froth, use the frother to heat the milk, then remove most of it, but leave enough so that the milk reaches the minimum line. Then froth what’s left in your frother, and then add that to the warmed maca latte in your cup.
Other warm and cozy drinks
Here are a few of my favorite warm and comforting drink recipes to try.
- Dolce Latte
- French Vanilla Cappucino
- Starbucks Matcha Latte
- Pumpkin Chai Latte Recipe
- Chai Tea Latte
I hope you’ll enjoy this maca latte! If you make it, I’d love to hear about it. Please leave a comment below or share on social media and tag #texanerin so I can be sure to see it. Thanks!
- Prep Time:
- Cook Time:
- Ready in:
- Yield: 1
- 1 teaspoon maca root powder
- 2-3 teaspoons (14-20 grams) maple syrup
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon + more for sprinkling on top
- 1 cup (240 ml) cashew or almond milk1 (or regular milk for non-paleo/vegan)
- In a small pot or saucepan, stir together everything but the milk until combined.
- Stir in the milk, heat over medium heat until 150 °F (66 °C), and use a handheld frother to froth.
- Pour it into a mug and sprinkle some cinnamon on top, if desired.