Turmeric Milk — Golden Milk Ayurveda | Haldi Doodh


An ancient Ayurvedic drink known for its anti-inflammatory properties

Overhead shot of turmeric milk in a bone china tea cup and saucer

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With myself feeling under the weather, I thought it was high time to bring out a winter warmer favourite of mine — Golden Milk.

What is Golden Milk (aka Turmeric Milk)?

Golden milk (or turmeric milk) is a traditional Indian drink (Haldi Doodh in Hindi)
that people make with turmeric which gives it a yellow or gold hue. Turmeric milk is a healing drink due to turmeric's natural properties. It’s right up there with matcha tea in terms of its myriad health benefits.

The Health Benefits of Golden Milk | Turmeric Milk

Ayurvedic and Chinese medicine have been prescribing golden turmeric milk for centuries, the modern version of which is turmeric tablets I suppose. Studies have shown that curcumin, the active ingredient in turmeric, can ameliorate certain autoimmune conditions by regulating inflammatory signals, making it great for autoimmune conditions — something we certainly want to care for more these days, if you know what I mean (yes, Covid).

Turmeric is also a potent antioxidant, which can fight free radicals (hello ageing) and can even help stave off the common cold. All because it fights chronic inflammation that may otherwise be suppressing your immune system.

There are myriad uses for turmeric including but not limited to treatment for:

  • heartburn
  • stomach pain, Crohn’s disease, and ulcerative colitis
  • diarrhea
  • intestinal gas
  • stomach bloating
  • loss of appetite
  • jaundice
  • liver problems
  • stomach ulcers
  • irritable bowel syndrome (IBS)
  • high cholesterol
  • skin inflammation from radiation treatment
  • fatigue
  • It is also used for headaches, bronchitis, colds, lung infections, fibromyalgia, fever, menstrual problems, itchy skin, recovery after surgery, cancers, Alzheimer’s disease, diabetes, water retention, urinary bladder inflammation, and kidney problems. (1)

Warming golden milk is also soothing and relaxing before bed, similar to a chamomile tea, so you may get an extra deep night’s sleep.

My First Golden Milk

During my time in Singapore, I stumbled across a wonderful indie cafe-cum-bookshop in Chinatown called The Moon. Stacked to the brim with your not-so-average books, 70% of which are written by women, I pretty much felt at home. They've got a wonderful reading room upstairs which doubles up as an event space for literary minded-people and more.

They don't just do books well though, as I was smitten by their Haldi Doodh.

Credit The Moon

Vegan Turmeric Milk Ingredients

You just need a handful of pantry ingredients to make vegan turmeric milk.

  • Ground Turmeric Powder:
    In this case, the ground turmeric powder is actually better than the fresh root as it’s more concentrated.
  • Freshly Ground Black Pepper:
    This is key to the absorption of the nutrients in turmeric — just a pinch is needed. I twist the grinder about 4 times.
  • Nut Milk and/or Full-Fat Coconut Milk or other Plant Milk
    A little fat is needed to help you absorb all of the nutrients in golden milk. Just look for something unsweetened that is is not overly processed (the fewer the ingredients the better.) Canned coconut typically has more fat content than coconut in a carton. If you’re not using full-fat coconut milk, almond oil, coconut oil, or organic ghee all work well to add fat. I actually mix both coconut milk and almond milk in this recipe, inspired from the Minimalist Baker.
  • Spices & Aromatics For Flavour & Even More Health Benefits:
    Add any of the following to your golden milk:
    • Ground Cardamom (detoxifier, mild diuretic, antioxidant, and anti-inflammatory);
    • Fresh or Ground Ginger. Or in this case, doTERRA's wonderful ginger essential oil. Read about its benefits below;
    • Ground Cinnamon (another high antioxidant and anti-inflammatory);
    • A pinch of chilli (used to decrease pain and inflammation, and prevent disease with its antioxidant content);
    • Vanilla ( an everyday ‘superfood’, especially powerful at enhancing brain and mood health). I don't use it in this recipe though as I prefer it without vanilla;
    • Sweetener (raw honey, date syrup etc.). I use maple syrup.

Using doTERRA's Ginger Essential Oil

As you may have seen from my earlier post here, I have started to used pure essential oils in my food. The word 'pure' is essential. Make sure to read my post to understand whether or not to use essential oils in your food.

doTERRA's Ginger Essential Oil is sourced from Madagascar, and has a hot, fragrant flavour when used as a kitchen spice. Internal use of Ginger oil is best known as a digestive aid and for helping to ease occasional indigestion and nausea.

As essential oils are bursting with flavour, I dipped four clean toothpick in the essential oil bottle, each time dipping the wet toothpick into the pot to release the essential oils.

How to Make Vegan Golden Milk

Vegan golden milk is a no-brainer. All you need to do is:

  • Pour your milk(s) of choice into a small pot on medium heat
  • Add the ground turmeric, your spices of choice and sweetener of choice.
  • Bring to a simmer for 10 minutes to let the flavours all meld and enjoy.

Turmeric Milk (Golden Milk or Haldi Doodh)

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A perfect winter warmer when you're feeling under the weather or need a pick-me-up


Preparation time
Cooking time


  • 7.5grturmeric
  • 200mlcanned full-fat coconut milk
  • 200mlalmond milk
  • 15mlmaple syrup
  • 1pinch, black pepper
  • 1whole cinnamon stick
  • 1tsp, ground cardamom
  • 1pinch, chilli flakes
  • 4dipped toothpicks, doTERRA essential oil (or 0.25 tsp grated fresh ginger)


  1. 1. Heat the plant milk

    To a small saucepan, add the coconut milk, almond milk, ground turmeric, cinnamon stick, black pepper, chilli, cardamom and sweetener of choice (I usually add 1 Tbsp (15 ml) maple syrup. Dip a a toothpick in pure ginger essential oil (I use doTERRA) and repeat 4 times. More and it might overpower.

  2. 2. Whisk to combine

    Whisk to combine and warm over medium heat. Heat until hot to the touch but not boiling – about 4 minutes – whisking frequently. Turn off heat and taste to adjust flavour.

  3. 3. Serve immediately or store

    Serve immediately, dividing between two glasses and leaving the cinnamon stick behind. Best when fresh, though leftovers can be stored covered in the refrigerator for 2-3 days. Reheat in a pot on the stove or microwave until hot.

Article details:

Written by Claire Tonna, 10 February 2021

  • Asia
  • Vegan
  • Vegetarian
  • Beverage

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