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Hot Cocoa Recipes to Make at Home

Hot Cocoa Recipes to Make at Home

Whether you like it thick and luscious, smooth and creamy, or rich and decadent, these hot chocolate recipes are bound to satisfy.


5 min read

December 04, 2020

Thick and luscious, smooth and creamy, rich and decadent...when it comes to hot chocolate, words don't do justice to the heavenly pleasure felt with just one sip of this aromatic wintertime beverage—especially when we're talking about homemade hot chocolate. The drink of the gods is unparalleled, particularly in comparison to any prepackaged mix on the market.

The winter holiday season is finally in full swing (yes, thank you), so the time has come to prepare the ultimate homemade hot chocolate. When the perfect hot chocolate recipes come your way, it's unarguably life-changing. Whether you don't feel like heading out to grab a cup of hot cocoa from your local Bay Area shop or you want to use up some of your California-made chocolate, read on to discover California food bloggers' twist on homemade hot chocolate recipes this season.

The Hot Chocolate Recipes Getting Us Through The Cold Season

Is there anything more delicious than a huge mug of steaming hot chocolate on a chilly day?

Spiced Hot Chocolate

The Latin-inspired, Los Angeles-based blog A Cozy Kitchen is dedicated to enlightening readers on the magic of homemade meals. Bittersweet chocolate chips, cinnamon sticks, marshmallows—oh my. What's in your cup? It best be this spiced hot chocolate. 

Servings: 2 cups


2 cups milk (you can go low-fat or whole milk, for a touch of decadence)

¼ cup bittersweet chocolate chips or chunks

¼ cup milk chocolate chips

¼ teaspoon allspice pods

2 cinnamon sticks

⅛ teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg

Marshmallows or whipped cream (or both), for serving 


1. Place all ingredients in a small saucepan—sans marshmallows. Bring mixture to a low simmer, whisking constantly.

2. For a richer chocolate flavor, add more chocolate chips as you taste.

3. Remove the saucepan from heat, then cover it and let it steep for 5 to 10 minutes.

4. Strain the hot chocolate into mugs. Top with toasted marshmallows and whipped cream.

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Perfect Homemade Hot Chocolate

A Cozy Kitchen’s recipes for hot chocolate are never-ending—and we’re definitely not complaining. Chocolate is everyone’s best friend, and the California chocolate makers know how to deliver the crème de la crème.

Servings: 2 cups


4 cups whole milk (or any other milk of choice)

2 tablespoons white sugar 

1 whole cinnamon stick 

¼ whole vanilla bean, scraped (or 2 teaspoons of vanilla extract)

6 ounces dark chocolate (preferably 60-percent cacao or higher)

¼ teaspoon ancho chile powder 

Kosher salt


1. In a medium saucepan over low heat, pour in milk, sugar, cinnamon stick, and vanilla.

2. Bring the mixture to a simmer, then turn off the heat and allow the mixture to steep for 10 to 15 minutes. Discard cinnamon stick and vanilla bean (if using a whole one).

3. Create a double boiler by placing a glass bowl over a saucepan filled with boiling water. Place the chocolate in the bowl, and heat until the chocolate is melted, stirring occasionally.

4. Heat the pan of steeped milk once more over medium-low, then pour in the melted chocolate. Make sure to whisk until thoroughly combined.

5. Finally, add ancho chile powder and a pinch of salt. Divide the mixture between mugs and top with homemade marshmallows.

Tip: Turn this dark chocolate wonder into a creamy white hot chocolate by substituting the dark chocolate for white chocolate.

Make yourself a mouthwatering mug of hot cocoa and get cozy on the couch for a relaxing night in.

Mint Hot Chocolate

Healthy Happy Life is Santa Cruz native Kathy Patalsky’s masterpiece. From food, wellness, and photography to travel, art, and culture, she covers it all. Try her homemade hot chocolate recipe for a taste of divinity. Nothing sounds more appealing this December than festive holiday drinks such as homemade hot chocolate with a touch of mint. 

Servings: 2 cups


2¾ cups soy milk

4 to 5 tablespoons cocoa mix (or substitute with vegan cocoa powder)

3 sprigs of mint, divided

⅛ teaspoon peppermint extract, for that extra kick

Whipped cream


1. Heat milk and cocoa mix in a medium-sized pot.

2. Add 2 sprigs of mint and peppermint extract. Let it simmer. Gently beat or whip the mixture with a milk frother if you desire a light and airy texture.

3. Pour cocoa into two mugs. Garnish with remaining fresh mint and whipped cream. Enjoy this cup of steaming hot chocolate as you plan your virtual celebration.

Indulge in a rich, decadent cup of hot chocolate spiked with cinnamon. You won't regret it.

Authentic Mexican Hot Chocolate

Indulge in A Side of Sweet's magnificent spicy-sweet Mexican hot chocolate. This divine winter treat defines cozy winter feels. With just a handful of ingredients, this hot cocoa recipe is perfect for the holidays. 

Servings: 4 cups


2 cups water

2 cups milk

5 ounces dark chocolate (preferably 75-percent cacao), roughly chopped 

½ teaspoon ground cinnamon

Granulated sugar

4 cinnamon sticks, for garnish


1. Pour water and milk into a medium saucepan and bring to a boil.

2. Once the mixture is boiling, turn off the heat. Add chocolate, whisking vigorously until well combined. 

3. Add cinnamon and stir.

4. Add as much granulated sugar as you'd like.

5. Pour into mugs and top with a cinnamon stick.

Homemade Hot Chocolate Mix
To Gift This Year

The delicious and healthy two-ingredient homemade hot chocolate mix by Detoxinista will take your breath away. The ultimate DIY gift, the receiver is bound to love this healthy and tasty treat. Just mix it with a cup of milk for the ultimate festive drink to sip this season. 

For an easy DIY holiday gift this year, make your own homemade hot chocolate mix and give it to your loved ones.

Hot Chocolate Mix (In A Jar!)

Servings: 16


¾ cup unsweetened cocoa powder

1½ cups coconut sugar


1. Place cocoa powder and coconut sugar in a large bowl, and stir well with a fork or whisk.

2. Scoop the homemade hot cocoa mixture into a glass jar, and seal well with the lid until ready to use. 

3. To prepare hot chocolate using the mix, combine 2 tablespoons of the mix with 1 cup of almond milk (or any milk of your choice) in a small saucepan. Warm up the mixture to your desired temperature, and serve.

Read on to discover healthy holiday recipes to make during the holiday season.

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