Jaljeera To Nannari, 10 Regional Indian Summer Thirst-Quenchers
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Scorching heat, excessive humidity, severe dehydration and sunstroke—these are all the common issues we all face due to Indian summers. This year, large parts of India are going through severe heat waves that are making summer health issues quite worse. One of the best ways to deal with the onslaught of summer is to drink up loads of thirst-quenching and nourishing drinks which are traditionally made across India. 

In fact, instead of opting for pre-packaged or bottled summer drinks which have added sugars and preservatives, drinking homemade Indian drinks is a much better idea. Drinking Indian summer drinks can contribute to maintaining fitness and overall well-being in several ways. Indian summer drinks, such as buttermilk (chaas), coconut water (nariyal pani), lemonade (nimbu pani), and various fruit juices, are hydrating and help replenish the body's fluid levels. These drinks also contain natural electrolytes, such as potassium, sodium, and magnesium. 

What’s more, some traditional Indian drinks, such as aam panna (raw mango drink) or bel sherbet (wood apple drink), have additional health benefits due to their specific ingredients, such as antioxidants and digestive properties. Also, ingredients like rose water, fennel seeds, coriander, and mint have cooling effects on the body, helping to combat the heat and reduce body temperature. 

Video credit: YouTube/Kunal Kapur

So, in essence, indulging in homemade, regional Indian summer drinks is the best thing you can do for your health during this summer. Here are 10 such Indian regional summer drinks you should have more of. 

Nimbu Pani  

Also known as lemonade across the world, this one is an Indian classic and refreshing drink made with freshly squeezed lemon juice, water, sugar, and a pinch of salt. In many Indian homes, a bit of mint or roasted cumin powder is also added to Nimbu Pani to make it more potent as a digestive elixir. 

Kambu Koozh

Also known as Bajra Ki Raab or Pearl Millet Porridge in other parts of India, this is a traditional South Indian drink made from fermented pearl millet. It is a popular summer beverage in Tamil Nadu and is known for its cooling and nourishing properties. Kambu Koozh has been consumed for centuries in India and is considered a healthy and refreshing drink. 


This one is a tangy and flavorful drink made with a blend of spices like cumin, mint, black salt, and tamarind water. It is usually served chilled and is the perfect welcome drink too. Traditionally a staple of North India, versions of this tamarind-based summer drink are also prepared in other parts of the nation. 

Aam Panna

Summer is the season of mangoes and raw mango especially is known for its cooling properties. Aam panna is a popular summer drink made with raw mangoes, sugar, and spices like cumin and black salt. Also known as Aam Poda in Bengal and other eastern Indian states, this one is a must-have this summer.  

Coconut Water 

Nature's own hydrating beverage, coconut water is rich in electrolytes and minerals. It is naturally sweet and refreshing, so there is actually nothing you need to add to it. However, if you do want to experiment, you could add mint leaves, curry leaves and cumin seeds to make it more nutritious. 


Also known as buttermilk, this drink is a favourite in parts of North and Western India. In fact, it is believed to have originated in Gujarat. Chaas is made by diluting yogurt with water and adding spices like roasted cumin, salt, and mint leaves. It aids digestion and cools the body.  


This South Indian summer drink is made with the roots of the Nannari plant, which is scientifically known as Hemidesmus indicus. The powder derived from the roots is soaked overnight in water and strained the next day. Jaggery, lime juice and a bit of rose essence is then added to flavour the drink. 

Sugarcane Juice

Extracted from sugarcane, this sweet and refreshing juice is a popular street-side drink in India, especially North Indian states like Punjab, Haryana and Delhi. Sugarcane is known for its cooling properties and is naturally sweet, which means you need not add any artificial sugars to this drink. 


Millets are considered to be superfoods, and this drink from the Nyishi tribal community of Arunachal Pradesh derives from those very benefits of millets. Apong is an organic drink that is made by fermenting millets overnight. So popular is this one that it is also prepared in Assam and Meghalaya. 

Bel Sharbat  

Made from the pulp of the wood apple fruit, this drink is known for its cooling and digestive properties. The bel fruit is often smoked before deriving the pulp, and this pulp is then combined with water, cumin seeds and some salt. You could also add some lemon juice to enhance the flavour of this one.