Watermelon and aloe vera juice

In Mexico, as well as other countries in Latin America, aloe gel (also sometimes referred to as aloe crystal) is used externally for a variety of skin ailments as well as consumed for its curative health benefits, especially for stomach and digestive ailments. Aloe gel or crystal comes from the meat of the leaf, and is easy and inexpensive to extract yourself at home. In Spanish, aloe vera is called “sábila” or “áloe,” and is sometimes misspelled as “sávila.” In Mexico, it’s most commonly referred to as “sábila.”

Aloe vera juice is said to help maintain healthy digestion, and can also help regulate blood sugar, reduce inflammation, reduce acne eruptions, as well as many other health benefits, and is a good addition for those who are conscious of an alkaline diet.

Watermelon aloe vera juice recipe from theothersideofthetortilla.com (jugo de sandía y sábila)

My Tío Eduardo swears by homemade aloe vera juice for digestive ailments. Homemade aloe juice is both easy and inexpensive to make—a single large aloe vera leaf in the produce section of most grocery stores in the U.S. should cost between 99 cents and $2 or $3. If a single leaf is $3 or more, it should be very large and heavy, otherwise check another store for a better price. Most Mexican or Latin American markets will carry them. Aloe leaves available in grocery stores are typically about 4-4.5 inches wide at the base, 22-24 inches long and about 1 inch thick.

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Pineapple cucumber lime paletas

Paletas made with pineapple, cucumber and lime juice are a refreshing, healthy treat you can enjoy without any guilt! This all-natural, no sugar added popsicle recipe is one of my favorite ways to cool off from the summer heat, without consuming lots of empty calories or sugar. The lime zest gives these paletas a bright zip of color and a citrusy aroma that lime juice alone just can’t provide. I also love how the lime zest sinks to the bottom of the popsicle mold as it freezes, embedded in the pineapple juice and some of the cucumber juice naturally floats to the top of the mold. It makes for a pretty layered look with zero effort for it to turn out that way!

Pineapple, cucumber and lime #popsicle #recipe on theothersideofthetortilla.com #paletas

After going 10 days without eating sugar last month, I began thinking a lot about how much added sugar we actually consume in our household. Although we won’t completely cut all added sugar out of our diet, there are definitely some places we can easily cut back to make healthier choices. And although it’s true that pineapple has a moderately high amount of natural sugar, the juice, when cut by cucumber  and lime juice and divided into 10 popsicles, still has way less sugar per serving than almost any store-bought popsicle, and absolutely no preservatives, chemicals, sugar substitutes or artificial color dyes.

If your family consumes a lot of popsicles in the summer like mine does, then you probably already know that making your own ice pops can be both cost effective and healthier. Especially if you’ve got little kids  you don’t want eating lots of sugar, this recipe is a great, tasty option. Be sure to cut the skin off the cucumber so that the flavor is mild and blends in well to mellow the sweetness of the pineapple. Leaving the skin on the cucumber often results in a bitter flavor that throws off the balance.

This pineapple, cucumber and lime popsicle recipe is vegan-friendly, dairy-free and gluten-free…. 

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Gluten-free Brazilian cheese bread with Mexican cotija

Brazilian cheese bread is a staple at most Brazilian restaurants—especially a Brazilian steakhouse. These addictive, light and fluffy cheese rolls are called pão de queijo in Portuguese, which simply means cheese bread. They’re a popular breakfast item (similar to how Mexicans love pan dulce) or a snack.

I loved these Brazilian cheese rolls so much after having them for the first time about a decade ago that I went on a quest to try to reproduce them in my own kitchen almost immediately. I’ve been making them for years now, and what better time to share this version with you when we’re about to embark upon a summer filled with soccer matches in Brazil!

This traditional Brazilian recipe is most commonly made with Minas cheese or parmesan cheese, but I’ve given my recipe a bit of a Mexican spin by substituting cotija cheese.

Brazilian cheese bread recipe (pão de queijo) using Mexican cotija cheese | Get the recipe at theothersideofthetortilla.com… 

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Paletas de horchata

These horchata popsicles are a spin on Oaxaca-style horchata, which usually includes diced cantaloupe and red prickly pears that give it it’s signature pink hue. In Oaxaca, this kind of horchata is commonly referred to as horchata con tuna. Some people even like to throw in chopped pecans and a sprinkle of ground cinnamon as a garnish. Horchata has always been one of the most popular recipes on The Other Side of The Tortilla, so I thought I’d share a popsicle version that my family loves to eat.

This recipe for horchata popsicles is gluten-free.

Horchata popsicles with cantaloupe and blackberries | Get more Mexican recipes on theothersideofthetortilla.com… 

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Vegan banana chocolate smoothie

This vegan banana chocolate smoothie recipe is a creation I’ve been drinking over and over again for the last few weeks. I love experimenting with Mexican ingredients that aren’t necessarily always in traditional Mexican dishes. Cacao has been harvested and consumed in its raw state by ancient cultures such as the Aztecs and Mayans in Mexico as well as some other Latin American countries for centuries. Today, it’s easy to find a variety of raw cacao powders commercially available and made by different brands; it’s often sold in health food stores and it’s easy and inexpensive to buy online as well. Raw cacao powder has plenty of health benefits in addition to the rich flavor it provides to any dish. It’s packed with antioxidants, and has high amounts of nutrients and minerals such as magnesium, copper and manganese.

This banana chocolate smoothie recipe is vegan, dairy-free, gluten-free and has no added sugar, but trust me when I say that you will feel like you’re committing a sin while drinking it.

Creamy, frosty #Vegan banana chocolate smoothie #recipe from theothersideofthetortilla.com #dairyfree #glutenfree… 

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Paletas de fresas con crema

Fresas con crema are a traditional, popular dessert all over Mexico.

Irapuato, a town in the state of Guanajuato, is particularly known not only for its bountiful strawberry fields, but also its roadside stands where you can get freshly picked berries or an impromptu treat of fresas con crema. Most of the roadside stands keep a cooler with crema on ice for highway travelers hankering for this sweet and simple treat. With only three ingredients—strawberries, cream and sugar—it’s easy to fall under this dessert’s spell.

MAY IS NATIONAL STRAWBERRY MONTH, so I’m delighted to share this spin on fresas con crema made into popsicles. You’ll love them so much, I promise you’ll want to eat them all spring and summer long until you can’t get any more strawberries.

#Paletas de fresas con crema (Mexican strawberries and cream popsicles) #recipe from theothersideofthetortilla.com

Variations on the traditional fresas con crema recipe mostly come in the choice of the “crema” part of the dish. Some people like to use crema Mexicana, while others may use a canned version known as media crema table cream. These Mexican strawberries and cream popsicles are made a little less dense—but equally creamy—with a quick homemade whipped cream made from scratch. Paletas de fresas con crema are one of my absolute favorite desserts for spring and summer, and my friends, family and co-workers all love when I make a big batch of these popsicles to share. During the hottest days of the summer, I suggest freezing them overnight before serving so they aren’t quick to melt in the heat.

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