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Creamy Christmas Orange Drink

There are always lots of surprises under our tree on Christmas morning, but year in and year out, our family gathering begins and ends precisely the same way.

Upon arising or arriving, everyone is served a glass of our traditional quaff with a very pedestrian name:  Orange Breakfast Drink. And then the Pegster, who is always, always clad in a festive sweater and often holly-shaped earrings from the 1960s, takes her first sip and declares, “Ahhh! It’s officially Christmas.”

My Aunt Jill—a wonderful and adventurous cook, in addition to being a (now retired) neonatal heart surgeon (her photo can be found beside the definition of “omnicapable” in Webster’s)—first served us the delectable orange concoction when we visited her in Houston in the late 70s.  My mother served it the following Christmas morning as a special treat, and it stuck.  I think we’ve had it for the last 40 Christmases.

After breakfast, which is typically, you guessed it, a strata of some sort, we sit around in a big circle and take turns opening gifts.  When the last wad of giftwrap has been tossed into the center of the circle, it’s time for my dad to officially end the gathering:

“Well,” he says, surveying the landscape of piled boxes and shiny new objects, “the merchants won again.”

I hope you’ll enjoy whipping up a batch of orange breakfast drink for your family this Christmas. I know it seems sketchy to mix orange juice concentrate and milk. But trust me and try it anyway—everyone loves it. Think a slurpable, less-sweet Creamsicle. Maybe it’ll become your family tradition, too!

Happy Holidays to all!

Christmas Morning Orange Drink

Recipe by Betsy OwensCourse: Breakfast, BeverageDifficulty: Easy


8-oz. servings
Prep time



Orange you glad it’s finally Christmas? This refreshing drink is like a Creamsicle in a glass.


  • Frozen orange juice concentrate, 12 oz. can

  • 12 oz. water

  • 12 oz. milk

  • 3 Tbs. sugar

  • 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract

  • About 5 cups of ice cubes


  • Defrost can of orange juice concentrate under hot running water for a minute, just to loosen from container.
  • Add concentrate and all remaining ingredients to blender.
  • Blend on high for about 30 seconds, or until a slushy consistency.
  • Cheers!

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