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Ayran Recipe – Turkish Yoghurt Drink

31/07/2020 (Last Updated: 01/12/2020)

This refreshing drink is the best way to rehydrate on a hot summer day. Mixed with sea salt, Ayran is a Turkish yoghurt drink frothed to perfection in seconds and served up icy cold. It pairs perfectly with a hot meal like Karniyarik.

Frothy ayran spilling over the edge of a glass.

Why We Love This

We adore this Middle Eastern drink because it’s so easy to whip up a fresh batch at home in less than 5 minutes. Made with only 3 simple ingredients – yoghurt, water (or soda water) and salt means you can blend it up in no time. 

Ayran contains no added sugar when using natural yoghurt, so it’s a healthy way to cool down. You’ll be free to enjoy the spiciest curry dish with an icy cold glass of ayran on hand to put out that fire. 

The frothy topping on top of a glass of the Turkish Yoghurt Drink.

What is Turkish Ayran? 

Ayran is a popular Middle Eastern beverage, especially in Turkey where it’s considered the national drink. In Iran, there’s a similar drink that goes by the name of “doogh” but is usually served up with fresh mint.

A deliciously simple recipe of diluted natural yoghurt mixed with sea salt and water, you’ll often find ayran paired with cooked meats, burek, or even pizza – but almost never with seafood which is superstitiously bad luck for your health.

Ayran reminds us a little bit of Indian lassi, just without the common additions of mango or strawberry flavour and sugar.

What You’ll Need

All you need is natural yoghurt, water, and sea salt. That’s it!

Ingredients laid out to make Turkish ayran.

How to make Ayran:

This couldn’t be easier. You’ll just need a blender and pop in all the ingredients. Blend until super frothy (10-20 seconds should do it as there’s no solids!) and you’re ready.

If you don’t have a blender, you could use a rocket or stick blender instead. In a pinch, you could try popping it in an airtight container and giving it a good shake before pouring it into a glass!

Wandercook’s Tips

  • Use soda water instead of still water to help your ayran become nice and frothy after blending! This will also add a little tingle to each sip!
  • Serve alongside spicy or heavy meals to help cool things down.

FAQs

What is Ayran meant to taste like?

If you’ve never tried it before, ayran can be an intriguing experience. It has a slightly tart/sour taste from the natural yogurt, but the biggest surprise is the saltiness. Our first ever sip stopped us in our tracks. After the second sip our taste buds were starting to understand. And by the third? We were completely hooked!

What’s the difference between Turkish Ayran and Iranian Doogh?

They’re essentially the same, although sometimes you’ll find mint more frequently in Doogh.

Variations & Substitutes

  • Add some finely diced cucumber, mint or crushed thyme for extra flavour, similar to Iran’s Doogh drink.
  • Throw in some ice cubes before blending for an icy crunch.
  • Or if you’re feeling really adventurous, you could even add a sprinkling of cracked black pepper for a spicy hit
Three bottles of fresh ayran ready to drink.

Want more drink ideas, whip these up next:

★ Did you make this recipe? Please leave a star rating below!

Glass filled with frothy yoghurt drink.

Ayran Recipe – Turkish Yoghurt Drink

This refreshing drink is the perfect way to rehydrate on a hot summer day. Mixed with sea salt, Ayran is a Turkish yoghurt drink frothed to perfection in seconds and served up icy cold. It pairs perfectly with a hot meal like Karniyarik.
Prep Time: 2 minutes
Total Time: 2 minutes
Course: Drink
Cuisine: Turkish
Servings: 4 serves
Calories: 61kcal
Author: Wandercooks
Cost: $5

Equipment

Ingredients

  • 400 g natural yoghurt
  • 2 cups cold water still or soda
  • 1 pinch sea salt

Optional ingredients:

  • handful ice cubes
  • mint finely chopped
  • cucumber finely ficed
  • pinch black pepper

Instructions

  • Place natural yoghurt, cold water and sea salt in a blender along with any of your chosen optional ingredients: ice cubes, mint, cucumber and black pepper.
    400 g natural yoghurt, 2 cups cold water, 1 pinch sea salt, handful ice cubes, mint, cucumber, pinch black pepper
  • Mix until ingredients are combined and drink is frothy. This should be around 10-20 seconds. Serve chilled.

Video

YouTube video

Recipe Notes

Quick tips to make this even better:
  • Use soda water instead of still water to help your ayran become nice and frothy after blending! This will also add a little tingle to each sip!
  • Add some finely diced cucumber, mint or crushed thyme for extra flavour, similar to Iran’s Doogh drink.
  • Throw in some ice cubes before blending for an icy crunch.
  • Or if you’re feeling really adventurous, you could even add a sprinkling of cracked black pepper for a spicy hit

Nutrition

Nutrition Facts
Ayran Recipe – Turkish Yoghurt Drink
Amount per Serving
Calories
61
% Daily Value*
Fat
 
3
g
5
%
Saturated Fat
 
2
g
13
%
Cholesterol
 
13
mg
4
%
Sodium
 
62
mg
3
%
Potassium
 
155
mg
4
%
Carbohydrates
 
5
g
2
%
Sugar
 
5
g
6
%
Protein
 
3
g
6
%
Vitamin A
 
100
IU
2
%
Vitamin C
 
0.5
mg
1
%
Calcium
 
125
mg
13
%
Iron
 
0.1
mg
1
%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.
Hey hey – Did you make this recipe?We’d love it if you could give a star rating below ★★★★★ and show us your creations on Instagram! Snap a pic and tag @wandercooks / #Wandercooks
Ayran Recipe - Turkish Yoghurt Drink

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46 Comments

  • Reply
    Kay
    19/08/2022 at 3:04 am

    The yoghurt used in that video looks like it has the consistency and thickness of ice cream…..what type is this please?

    • Reply
      Wandercooks
      19/08/2022 at 3:31 pm

      Hey Kay, it was natural pot set yoghurt. 🙂

  • Reply
    Archana
    02/08/2022 at 10:47 am

    Hi, we love this drink as it reminds us of a similar Indian drink, but not Lassi, that you mention. Lassi is sweet but Mattha is savory. It’s made exactly the same way with yogurt, cold water and salt. Except you can also add cumin powder for that extra zing.

    • Reply
      Wandercooks
      12/08/2022 at 11:44 am

      Thanks for the tip Archana, we’ll update this, as we’d only tried Lassi and not Mattha yet for the comparison!

      • Reply
        Zeenath
        22/09/2022 at 7:01 pm

        We in the South Indian state of Kerala, blend curd (our substitute for yogurt) with water and salt and add finely chopped coriander leaves and a dash of chopped green chilies to it, and drink. Instead of coriander leaves, you can add curry leaves (leaves of Murraya koenigii) if you prefer that.

        • Reply
          Wandercooks
          24/09/2022 at 5:15 pm

          Hey Zeenath, thanks so much for sharing your version of this drink. We’ll have to try it Kerala style next time ;). We have a curry tree too, so we can put the fresh leaves in :D.

  • Reply
    Andrew
    30/06/2022 at 6:16 am

    5 stars
    This hit the spot. I used goat yoghurt from the farmer’s market. Thank you!

    • Reply
      Wandercooks
      30/06/2022 at 12:03 pm

      Amazing, great idea to use local yoghurt too. Glad you enjoyed. 🙂

  • Reply
    Runa Laila
    13/04/2022 at 5:42 pm

    5 stars
    The Ayran recipe is awesome, we tasted it and was so cool.

    • Reply
      Wandercooks
      19/04/2022 at 1:52 pm

      Yay, so glad you enjoyed it Runa!

  • Reply
    Jamil Brownson
    18/01/2022 at 2:33 pm

    5 stars
    Having lived for years in Turkey I’m addicted to Ayran & sour cherry juice, both national soft drinks & with Boza as a slightly alcoholic fermented bread drink – coupled with mainly natural ingredients it’s about living a healthy probiotic lifestyle

    • Reply
      Wandercooks
      19/01/2022 at 11:10 am

      Hey Jamil, that’s awesome with the boza – we’ve never tried it. We make our own kombucha though and love having that at home. 🙂

  • Reply
    Vera
    19/11/2021 at 2:22 am

    5 stars
    Delicious!! Thank you very much!

    Quick question: Can you use ayran as a “base” to make more ayran? Or perhaps mix it with plain yogurt as part of the recipe?

    I live in Southern California. I’ve noticed that certain imported “authentic” ayran lists good bacteria strains not found in plain yogurt or even local store-bough ayran. I also notice it has a distinct taste that I really enjoy 🙂

    • Reply
      Wandercooks
      19/11/2021 at 3:57 pm

      Hey Vera, you’re very welcome!

      I wouldn’t use ayran to make ayran, instead I would make yoghurt and THEN turn that into ayran.

      For the type of good bacteria found in ayran – this would depend on the yoghurt they’ve used to make it. I would look for natural or Greek style unsweetened yoghurts at the store, as these usually contain the most cultures. You can also check the labels, as sometimes certain brands advertise that they have more than others.

      Hope this helps! 🙂

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