If you’re a fan of aloe vera on your burns and cuts, you might be surprised to hear that you can do a lot more with it than put it on your skin.
In fact, in many parts of the world aloe is a common culinary ingredient. More recently, the health benefits of taking aloe vera internally have been promoted in the natural health world.
Drinking aloe juice, for instance, is said to decrease pain from arthritis, promote healthy digestion, and even speed up weight loss.
Eating aloe or making an aloe beverage can add a lot of nutritional benefits to your diet without much work at all.
One of my favorite aloe vera recipes of all time is aloe yogurt. This mixture takes the probiotic benefits of yogurt and combines them with the additional digestive benefits of aloe.
This is a very popular flavor in most Asian countries, particularly Japan, but can be hard to find in other places. Luckily, you can make your own at home with plain yogurt, sugar, lime juice, and a few aloe spears.
The most difficult part of this recipe is making sure to peel the aloe completely without getting any of the yellow juice from the peel in your aloe. (You will know if the peel juice gets in there- it is one of the bitterest things I've ever tasted!)
The gel inside is then cubed and placed in a saucepan over low heat with a dash of lime juice and a sprinkling of sugar.
You can add more flavoring or sugar if you like, but a minimalist preparation highlights the flavor of the aloe.
Once the cubes are no longer slimy, they can be stored in a container in the fridge for later use. When they’re cool, simply put some in your plain yogurt and you’ve got an amazing breakfast food!
These aloe cubes aren’t only great in yogurt; they’re also excellent in drinks. Many bubble tea places serve their cold drinks with aloe cubes, and you can add them to any cold, fruity drink for a healthy beverage.
Some people just like to eat the cubes themselves, which have an intriguing texture much like grapes. The cubes can even be dressed up in other flavorings for a jello-like snack.
The other aloe vera recipe that everyone should know is how to make fresh aloe juice.
The simplest way to make aloe vera juice is to peel the leaf, throw the gel in a blender and get it down as fine as possible (it may still be a little chunky, depending on your preference.
While a tall glass of aloe vera juice would be good on its own, you can make even better drinks by combining this juice with something else.
Besides which, aloe vera often has a laxative effect, and you probably don’t want to drink more than a couple of ounces of aloe vera at once. To stretch out your enjoyment (and your trips to the bathroom), you can combine the aloe with other juices.
Citrus juices work well, but cucumber juice with aloe makes a truly refreshing summer drink.
You can sweeten your juice with honey or sugar, or dilute it with water depending on your preference. You might try diluting your juice with some iced green tea.
If you add some of the juice to a pitcher of iced tea, you can drink it all day long to feel refreshed all day.
Each aloe vera recipe makes delicious beverages and foods that can be enjoyed in any weather. If you have difficulty finding fresh aloe vera, you can also buy it already prepared from many grocery stores.
Asian grocery stores often carry cubes and juices, however many are made with sugar, so check the label. With all the benefits of aloe vera, you might even want to go out and get your own plant!