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Agua fresca facts for kids

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ManekiNeko horchata jar
Two types of aguas frescas in a Mexican taqueria in Seattle On the left is a jar of agua de flor de Jamaica, and on the right is horchata. The drinks are ladled from the jars into glasses.
Agua de chía
Chia seed agua fresca
Agua de guayaba
Guava agua fresca

Aguas frescas (Spanish for "cool waters", or literally "fresh waters") are light non-alcoholic beverages made from one or more fruits, cereals, flowers, or seeds blended with sugar and water. They are popular in Mexico, Central America, and parts of the United States such as the Southwest. Some of the more common flavors include tamarind, hibiscus, and horchata.

Aguas frescas are sold by street vendors, but can also be found in bodegas (convenience stores), restaurants and juice bars.

Terminology

There is some confusion in terms internationally between the drinks referred to here and bottled soft drinks. In Guatemala and Nicaragua, these are referred to as "frescos", short for "refresco", which in Mexico means soft drinks. Soft drinks in Guatemala are called "aguas", short for aguas gaseosas, but easily confused with the Mexican aguas frescas.

Types

In Mexico, it is common to find aguas frescas in these flavors:

Sweet fruits

  • Cantaloupe
  • Grape
  • Guava
  • Mango
  • Melon
  • Prickly pear
  • Orange
  • Papaya
  • Passion fruit
  • Soursop
  • Strawberry
  • Watermelon
  • Raspberry
  • Peach

Sour fruits

Seeds

  • Chía, often blended with vegetables

Cereals

Flowers

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