The Pretend Chef

Kunnu Aya, Tiger nut milk

sweet, nutty and healthy kunnu aya, tiger nut milk

Drinks, Recipes, vegetarian | January 31, 2017 | By

Kunnu aya, tiger nut milk is rich, nutty and creamy and is called nectar from the ground or Drink of the gods. It is made from Tiger nut. From Nigeria where it is called kunnu aya or Aya milk to Spain, where it is known as Horchata de Chufas, it is deliciously enjoyed. Also made in parts of Latin America and the Middle east.

Many types of non-dairy milk are available, some are made from nuts, grains etc, eg. almond, soy, rice, coconut and tiger nuts. Tiger nut is not actually a nut but a tuber, a mini tuber. It tastes and feels like soft coconut, but is sweeter. 

There are so many reasons to make and drink kunnu aya. It is natural, tastes great, healthy, nutrient-rich, good for digestion, for relieving the bowel and it is very filling. Also, lactose and gluten free.

sweet, nutty and healthy kunnu aya, tiger nut milk

Tiger nuts are commonly sold in Nigeria in either the fresh or dry form. It is called aya in Hausa, ofio in Yoruba, and aki awusa (Hausa) in Igbo. Besides milk, it is used in making a local snack called Dakuwa. The oil and flour are both used for culinary purposes.

Flavourings for Kunnu aya, Tiger nut milk:

Dates (dabino) 
Dried ginger 
Dried chili pepper 
Alligator pepper 
Citrus peel 
Apple etc. 

 To make Kunnu aya, Tiger nut milk:

1 cup Aya (Tiger nut)       
3 cups water
10 dates, pitted
Flavouring (optional)

If using the dry tiger nuts wash and soak them in water for 1-2 days, changing the water once during this period to rehydrate them.

If using the fresh ones, then there will be no need for soaking, just wash them.

Aya, tiger nut for kunnu aya, tiger nut milk

Wash dry dates and soak in clean water for 2-5 hours to rehydrate and soften them.

dry dates for kunnu aya, tiger nut milk  soaked dates for kunnu aya, tiger nut milk

Remove seeds and discard.

de-seeded rehydrated dates for kunnu aya, tiger nut milk  date seeds

Put the tiger nuts, 1½ cups of water, dates with its soaking liquid, and flavouring into a blender. Blend till well grounded.

Strain using a very fine strainer, chiffon fabric, or cheesecloth into a large bowl or jug. I used a rubber band to hold it in place.

chaff of aya, tiger nut from kunnu aya, tiger nut milk

Put the tiger nut pulp back into the blender with the remaining 1½ cups of water, blend and strain into the bowl.

sweet, nutty and healthy kunnu aya, tiger nut milk

Serve cold or over ice cubes.

Store in the refrigerator.

You will also enjoy my healthy beetroot juice, cucumber agua fresca or mango lassi.



  • Soaked dry tiger nuts in water to rehydrate and get rid of antinutrients. Though the level of antinutrients present in Tiger nuts is much lower than other nuts.  
  • You can also use a new, clean handkerchief to strain your Kunnu aya.
  • Use honey or sugar in place of the dates as a sweetener, add after straining the milk.
  • Upon storage, the sediments settle at the bottom of the container. Just shake it and drink, this sediment contains flavour and nutrients.
  • Use leftover pulp to make my Tigernut energy balls.
  • Spread the leftover pulp in an airy place to dry. Use this Tiger nut pulp flour, a gluten-free flour.
  • Use dried tiger nut pulp in place of desiccated coconut in some recipes.
  • Toasted tiger nuts lightly in the oven before you for an extra toasty flavour profile.

You will also enjoy my Iced tea, Cashew juice, Virgin Pina Colada and Zobo drink. You can read 30 amazing facts about Tiger nut milk. Do you have any comments, questions or suggestions, please leave a comment below. 

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  1. Gennifer Rose
    February 11, 2017

    This looks so delicious! I drink turmeric lattes with almond milk in the morning but I would gladly switch a day for this one 🙂

    Gennifer Rose |

    • gaga
      February 11, 2017

      Hi Gennifer, it is very delicious, do give it a try and thanks for stopping by.

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