Join me in Baños, Ecuador to try jugo de caña – the juice extract of the sugarcane plant. As a sweet addict, this is one of my favorite fresh squeezed juices, and it's only available in certain parts of the world. I was excited to have another glass as soon as I arrived back in Baños a few months ago. You can also watch and share this video on Facebook and YouTube.

Jugo de Cana Street Vendors in Banos Ecuador

Every street you turn in Baños Ecuador, you'll find more than enough vendors selling jugo de caña to satisfy even the sweetest of sweet tooths. Jugo de caña is the juice extract of the sugarcane plant, which has become the world's largest crop thanks to our worldwide addiction to processed sugars. Every year the world produces over 2 billion tons of sugarcane. The plant only grows in tropical climates including parts of Ecuador, which is partly why it's become such a popular drink to sell in Baños.

Cup of Jugo de Cana Juice

The sugarcane plant is used to make:

  • sugar – needs no introduction.
  • falernum – a syrup liqueur from the Caribbean used in tropical drinks
  • molasses – a liquid sweetening product and honey alternative
  • cachaça – a distilled spirit made from fermented sugarcane juice popular in Brazil
  • bagasse – a biofuel for the production of heat, energy, and electricity made from the leftover pulp after juicing a sugarcane
  • cachaça – a distilled spirit made from fermented sugarcane juice popular in Brazil
  • ethanol – a renewable fuel made from sugarcane, corn, and other plants
  • rum – a distilled alcoholic drink made from sugarcane by a process of fermentation and distillation and aged in oak barrels.

Sugarcane Plant

A few years ago, I had the opportunity to tour the Flor de Caña rum factory in Nicaragua and learn about this other popular drink made from sugarcane. Unfortunately, I have no video to show you about the experience because I didn't make videos back then! But here's a photo of me in the aging room with all the barrels. You can only spend up to 5 minutes in that room or you can drunk from the fumes!

Flor De Cana Barrels in Nicaragua

Before sugarcane goes through any sort of refining process to make the products above, you can use the raw sugarcane plant to make one of the sweetest and most delicious drinks I've ever drank called Jugo de Caña or “Juice of the Sugarcane”.

I tasted jugo de caña a few years ago when I first stepped foot in Baños Ecuador, which you might remember is the town with the swing at the end of the world, and also the town where all the neighbors bathe together on Friday nights.

So when I returned to Baños several years later, I was excited to drink this freshly squeezed diabeticly delicious drink again.

Is jugo de caña healthy?

Despite what you and I might instinctively think about a juice derived from the same plant that makes sugar, jugo de caña is not actually terrible for you. The juice offers several health benefits from treating urinary tract infections and kidney stones to preventing tooth decay and bad breath. And although sweet, the juice has a low glycemic index (GI) so it comes highly recommended for diabetics because it does not alter blood glucose levels.

Lastly it can provide an instant boost of energy!!!

Jugo de Cana Juice Foam

What do you think of jugo de caña?

Have you tried this delicious juice before? Drop a comment below this post and let me know what you think. Jugo de caña is also popular in Indonesia, Vietnam, Madagascar, Pakistan, and other tropical climates around the world where the sugarcane plant grows, so Ecuador isn't your only chance to have a taste if you haven't had the opportunity to try it yet.

Watch more videos from Ecuador:

  • Quilotoa: What Goes Down… – Join me at this 2-mile wide lagoon in Ecuador that formed after a volcano eruption 738 years ago, that's now developing into a popular tourist destination.
  • Coffee, Tea, Puppy? – Alex & Diana have personally taken in 13 dogs, 4 cats, and they've helped find homes for 100+ others. Watch this amazing story about Cafe Mosaico in Quito!
  • La Casa de Rafa – Join me at a restaurant in Quito Ecuador that's run by the blind and serves meals inside a cave underground in absolute darkness!
  • They Use Our Money – How would you like to visit a country in South America and pay with U.S. Dollars?!
  • How To Poop In South America – When American tourists visit South America for the first time and learn about the pooping practices of their southern neighbors, they are often taken back. “The toilet paper goes where??”

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