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Honey (Recipe: mango lassi) {vegetarian, gluten-free}

First published in February 2008, this updated pantry ingredient post features new photos and links. Often served for dessert, lassi, an Indian smoothie, makes a perfect breakfast or lunch, and best of all, you can use frozen fruit from the grocery store at any time of year.

Try a mango lassi (an Indian smoothie) for breakfast, or dessert.

Sugar pie, honey bunch
You know that I love you
I can't help myself
I love you and nobody else

When I saw this squirt jar of Canadian honey in our village grocery store, I knew I had to write a little valentine to my resident Canadian honey bunch.

Then I started to wonder, "Are there really honey bees in Canada? Isn't it too cold?"

Ha! Not only are there bees, but, according to the Canadian Honey Council, the government actually has invested in the long-term sustainability of the honey bee population. Which, of course, makes me wonder why the US government is investing in war, while Canada is investing in bees.

War and bees...

(I know. I can hear the groans.)


Honey, a natural sweetener with anti-microbial and antioxidant properties, has been made exactly the same way for 150 million years. Bees, which travel up to two miles from their hives, collect flower nectar in their mouths. The nectar mixes with an enzyme in the bees' saliva, and it becomes honey. They carry the honey back to the hive and deposit it into cells in the wall. The fluttering of the bees' wings creates sufficient ventilation to cause evaporation of excess moisture from the honey.

Stored in a cool, dry pantry cupboard in an airtight container, honey will keep forever. If it has crystallized, place the jar in a bath of hot water for a few minutes to loosen things up. To measure, coat a glass measuring cup with canola spray before you fill it, and the honey will slide out easily.

Mango lassi recipe on The Perfect Pantry.

Mango lassi

From the pantry, you'll need: honey, plain yogurt.

Makes 2 quarts, approximately 8 servings.


3 cups diced fresh or frozen mango
1 cup fresh orange juice
1 cup ice cubes
1/4 cup honey
2-1/2 tsp rose water (available at Indian or Middle Eastern markets)
3 cups plain yogurt (regular, low fat, or nonfat)


Combine half of first 5 ingredients in a blender, and process on high until well combined, approx 30 seconds. Add 1-1/2 cups yogurt and process until frothy, 45 seconds. Pour into a pitcher. Repeat with remaining ingredients. Serve immediately.

[Printer-friendly recipe.]

More recipes in The Perfect Pantry:

Honey gingerbread cookies
Honey-roasted beets
Honey and lemon green tea cupcakes
Lamb tagine with garlic, honey and raisins
Grilled honey lime chicken

Other recipes that use these pantry ingredients:
Honey yogurt waffles, from Two Peas & Their Pod
Mango yogurt smoothie, from The Kitchn
Frozen mango lassis, from Eat, Live, Run
Honey-yogurt pie with fresh mango, from Rainforest Recipes
Oat-mango smoothie with blackberries, from Lisa's Kitchen

Disclosure: The Perfect Pantry earns a few pennies on purchases made through the Amazon.com links in this post. Thank you for supporting this site when you start your shopping here.


this sounds perfect I'm looking forward to making this tomorrow - alas no Canadian Honey here.

Such lovely words about bees and honey, Lydia ... thank you for them! This mango lassi looks awesome. Do you think it will still taste good without the rose water? I don't have any local stores that carry that.


Shirley, absolutely, make it without rose water if you don't have it. It's like making lasagna with nutmeg -- if you put some in, it adds an indescribable something; if you leave it out, nobody notices! Rose water makes a lassi most definitely Indian, and it's a real treat if you have a market that sells it.

Satonahat, use your favorite honey. And I used frozen mango, but if the markets have lovely fresh mango, use that.

Canada is NOT ALWAYS COLD. We have SEASONS - think of Maine, ok, we are right next door to it! Thanks for the kind words about Canada and our honey though!

Laurie, of course you know I love Canada and my Canadian husband! Most of our family is in Eastern Canada, and we seem always to visit during the cold times of year.

I grew up with spun honey my mom would bring back from Canada after visiting her mom--I love that stuff!
I keep getting raw honey at the farmer's market, and it's great for everything except spreading onto a toasted English muffin like my mom would make for us.

This lassi looks luscious. Thanks!

Bees are amazing and when they have troubles with this world then we know we have serious problems. Honey is one of mother nature's most amazing creations I think and I use it everyday to sweeten a breakfast fruit smoothie that I make for my husband. I will have to get some mangos and try this on him!!

Kirsten, though I don't have much of a sweet tooth, I do love a little bit of honey in this lassi to smooth out the flavors. The rose water adds a real Indian touch, too.

Carol, most of the local beekeeping friends in my area seem to have healthy bees this year, and I'm grateful for that. I use frozen mango as often as not, and it's great in this lassi.

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