How to Make a Malt

Two Parts:Prepare the Malted Milk PowderPrepare the Malted Milkshake

Malts are believed to date back to the early 1920s. This popular dessert drink is similar to a standard milkshake, but the addition of malted milk powder adds a distinct sweetness that cannot be duplicated by any substitution. You can make and enjoy your own malts at home with a standard kitchen blender.


Makes 4 servings

Malted Milk Powder

  • 2/3 cup (160 ml) instant dry milk, whole or non-fat
  • 2 Tbsp (30 ml) malt powder
  • 2 Tbsp (30 ml) unsweetened cocoa powder (optional)

Malted Milkshake

  • 5 cups (1.25 L) vanilla ice cream
  • 1 to 2 cups (250 to 500 ml) milk
  • Prepared malted milk powder
  • 2 tsp (10 ml) vanilla extract (optional)
  • 1/2 cup (125 ml) chocolate syrup OR other drink/dessert syrup (optional)

Optional Garnishes

  • Whipped cream
  • Malted milk balls
  • Sprinkles
  • Maraschino cherries

Part 1
Prepare the Malted Milk Powder

  1. Image titled Make a Malt Step 1
    Whisk the ingredients together. Place the malt powder and instant dry milk in a small bowl. Whisk the two ingredients together until the mixture appears evenly blended.[1]
    • If you want to make a chocolate malted milkshake, you can use either plain malt powder or chocolate malt powder. To make chocolate malt powder, add the unsweetened cocoa powder to the dry milk and malt powder and whisk together.
  2. Image titled Make a Malt Step 2
    Sift the powder. Pour the powder into a fine mesh sieve. Force it through the sieve by gently agitating the utensil.
    • Keep a second bowl beneath the sieve to catch the sifted powder.
    • If necessary, you can also push down on the powder with the top of your whisk to help force it through the sieve.
    • Note that you will probably need to do this step if you make chocolate malt powder but may not need to if you only make plain malt powder.
  3. Image titled Make a Malt Step 3
    Store until ready to use. You can use the malt powder immediately or save it for later.
    • Excess malt powder not used for the malted milkshake can also be stored.
    • To store the malt powder, spoon it into an airtight container and hold it at room temperature for up to one year.

Part 2
Prepare the Malted Milkshake

  1. Image titled Make a Malt Step 4
    Combine the ice cream and desired flavoring. Scoop the ice cream into the container of a blender. If you want to add vanilla extract or chocolate syrup, pour that into the blender, as well.
    • For best results, choose a dense vanilla ice cream. The container will usually say something like "rich," "creamy," or "premium," and it should feel notably heavier when compared to other brands of ice cream available in similarly sized containers.[2]
    • The vanilla extract should only be added if you want to amplify the flavor of a vanilla malt. You do not need to add it to the malt when preparing another flavor.
    • Change flavors by adding an appropriately flavored syrup. Chocolate malts are the most traditional, but you can add nearly any drink or dessert syrup—strawberry, caramel, cherry, and so on—in similar proportions.
    • The most authentic flavoring technique is to add flavored syrup to vanilla ice cream, but you can technically save money by skipping the syrup and using a flavored ice cream, instead.
  2. Image titled Make a Malt Step 5
    Blend in a portion of milk and malted milk powder. Add 1/2 cup of milk and 1/2 cup of your previously prepared malted milk powder to the blender. Blend on high speed until combined.
    • Whole milk is strongly recommended since it will lend the creamiest, most authentic flavor to the malt. If desired, though, you could substitute whole milk for 2% milk or skim milk.
    • You may need to add more malted milk powder, and you'll definitely need to add more milk. It is better to start with too little than too much, however. More can easily be added, but it will be impossible to remove any excess once you already blend it into the malt.
  3. Image titled Make a Malt Step 6
    Slowly adjust the milk and malted milk powder. Gradually add more milk to adjust the consistency and more malted milk powder to adjust the taste.[3]
    • The consistency can usually be gauged without directly touching the milkshake, but to determine whether or not the taste is to your liking, you'll need to pause the blender and take a small sample with a spoon. Make sure that you use a clean spoon each time you sample the taste to avoid contamination.
    • Add the milk 1/2 cup (125 ml) at a time, up to a possible total of 2 cups (500 ml). Use a total of 1 cup (250 ml) for a thicker malt or a total of 2 cups (500 ml) for a thinner malt.
    • Blend in additional malted milk powder 2 to 3 Tbsp (30 to 45 ml) at a time. You can add up to the full amount of prepared malted milk powder. If you prefer a less potent “malt” taste, use less powder and store the rest for another occasion.
  4. Image titled Make a Malt Step 7
    Mix thoroughly. Once the malt satisfies your own sense of taste, blend it just long enough to break up any remaining large chunks of ice cream.
    • Periodically pause the blender and mix the contents of the blender basin with a spoon. As you hand mix the malt, use the spoon to push any notably large chunks of ice cream further down toward the blender blades.
    • Avoid over-blending the malt mixture since doing so could cause the mixture to become too thin. You will only need to blend it for about one to two minutes total.
  5. Image titled Make a Malt Step 8
    Pour the malted milkshake into glasses. Evenly distribute the prepared malt between three to four tall glasses.
    • You may need to use a spoon to help coax the malt into each glass.
    • For added flair, consider pouring the malt into frosted glasses. To chill your milkshake glasses:
      • Rinse the outside of the glasses in water but do not dry them.
      • Place the glasses in the freezer for 10 to 15 minutes, or until a thin layer of frost forms on the surface.
  6. Image titled Make a Malt Step 9
    Garnish as desired. Top each malt with a dollop of whipped cream. Add any other desired garnishes, then enjoy the drink immediately.
    • Consider cutting a few malted milk balls in half and decorating the top of the malted milkshake with those.[4] Alternatively, you could dust the whipped cream with sprinkles or drop a maraschino cherry on top.
    • Serve the malt with both a spoon and a straw.


  • To save time, you can purchase commercially packaged malted milk powder instead of mixing your own. Add commercially prepared malted milk powder to the malted milkshake in the same proportions and using the same technique.

Things You'll Need

Homemade Malted Milk Powder

  • Small mixing bowl
  • Whisk
  • Sieve
  • Airtight glass or plastic container

Malted Milkshake

  • Ice cream scoop
  • Blender
  • Spoon (for mixing)
  • 4 tall dessert glasses
  • 4 spoons (for serving)
  • 4 straws

Article Info

Categories: Drinks