The switch to Daylight Savings Time never fails to throw my body schedule off course and give me a week-long hangover of sorts (including restless sleep and groggy mornings–ugh!). While I’m always tempted to reach for extra coffee, I know my system will thank me if I wade through the change more patiently sans jitters. If you’re like me and you find yourself feeling like you should stay up a bit later (only to pay for it in the morning!), perhaps a nice warm mug of moon milk should become a part of your nightly wellness ritual. The celestial name alone is already helping me feel more at peace!
What Is Moon Milk?
When I first heard of moon milk, I instantly thought it was a latte with Moon Dust (from the Moon Juice brand), and while you can put Moon Dust in your moon milk, you actually don’t need any fancy powders to try this new trend.
Moon milk isn’t anything new. In fact, it has roots in Ayurvedic tradition as well as our grandmothers’ kitchens. Essentially, it’s little more than drinking warm milk before bed to help relax you. This traditional practice had a good chance of being effective, too. Cow’s milk contains the amino acid tryptophan, which can encourage sleepiness.
In our conscious and woke age, however, we certainly don’t support the consumption of dairy milk for ethical, environmental, and health reasons. Instead we have several beautiful plant milks to choose from (including those we can make at home!). These are a perfect substitute for a dreamy, caffeine-free, dairy-free evening beverage—even if these milks have a different nutrient profile than dairy milk. After all, the magic of moon milk may actually be more about the ritual: ”Sleep experts always advise to have a ritual that promotes sleep and tells your body you’re getting ready for shut-eye,” Julie Upton, RD, explains, suggesting that the kind of milk matters less than the act of making yourself a comforting drink.
So if you’re having trouble dozing off during the transition to Daylight Savings Time (or any time of year for that matter!), consider making yourself a nice cup of moon milk.
How to Make Moon Milk
All you need for moon milk is your favorite plant-based milk. There are endless ways to customize it, of course (see below for some ideas). There are a few things you’ll want to avoid, however, including anything that you may find stimulating. For some, this includes cacao and cocoa as well as cayenne pepper. You may also wish to skip sugar and sweeteners (though a small amount of unrefined liquid sweetener like coconut nectar is okay).
8-12 oz non-dairy milk (cashew, soy, and hemp are especially good in moon milk)
Powdered fruit (like açai, pitaya or mangosteen)
Ashwagandha (an especially good option if you’re experiencing stress)
Coconut nectar or maple syrup
Butterfly pea flowers
Vegan collagen powder
Magnesium powder (like Natural Calm)
A note on combining ingredients: Remember that flavor families tend to go well together. For example, flavors in the “spicy” family, like nutmeg, cinnamon, cardamom, ginger, and turmeric go well together. Rooibos goes well with the spicy family. Spicy elements are also good at disguising the taste of pungent adaptogens like ashwagandha. Meanwhile, “floral” ingredients including chamomile, rose, lavender, and butterfly pea flowers go well together.
Basic moon milk:
In a small pot over medium-high heat, bring milk to a gentle simmer, stirring frequently to prevent the milk from getting a “skin.” Add your chosen add-ins and whisk thoroughly. Serve and enjoy!
Moon milk with an herbal tea base:
Boil 1/2 cup water. Pour over herbal tea. Allow tea to steep for at least five minutes.
Warm 1/2 cup vegan milk in a small pot on the stove over medium heat.
Remove tea bag from hot water and combine tea and warm milk in the small pot. Add your chosen add-ins and whisk thoroughly. Sip away, dreamy one!
More Moon Milk Ideas
Beautifying Blue Vegan Collagen Latte
Have you tried moon milk? What your favorite part of your evening ritual?
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Photo: Dani Rendina on Unsplash, Noemí Jiménez on Unsplash, Molly Lansdowne, Mary Hood Luttrell