If there’s one drink that’s a must-have each and every winter, it’s hot chocolate! The warm, chocolaty beverage is a favorite of my entire family. If you’ve only been making hot chocolate from an instant powder you are missing out! I’ve gathered several must-try hot chocolate recipes in this post, along with a few hot chocolate gift ideas that are perfect for hostess and teacher gifts!
As soon as the air turns frosty, my kids start begging for hot cocoa. They’ll be outside for just a few minutes and try to convince me that they need some to warm up. But I can’t exactly blame them – hot cocoa is just one of the many nice things this time of year.
To be honest, I could drink hot cocoa any time of the year. In fact, I’m sure I’ve snuck a mug or two when the kiddos were asleep too. This amazing list of delicious hot cocoa recipes & gift ideas has got me craving a mug of chocolate heaven. I promise I won’t tell if you sneak off and have a cup of your own.
Plus, hot cocoa makes a wonderful homemade gift idea! There are many fun ways to gift hot cocoa and it’s something just about anyone on your list will enjoy – from teachers to friends to Grandma and even that very-hard-to-buy-for guy!
FAQs About Hot Chocolate
Before we get to the recipes, let me answer some common questions about hot chocolate. If you have additional ones, please drop them in the comments and I’ll do my best to answer you!
Is there caffeine in hot chocolate?
Chocolate does contain a bit of caffeine, so hot chocolate does as well. However, it’s a very small amount, particularly when compared with a cup of coffee! To put it in perspective, hot chocolate has about 5-15 mg of caffeine while a cup of coffee has about 200 mg!
So, if you are super sensitive to caffeine, maybe just stick to hot chocolate during the day time. Otherwise, most people can safely have it any time of day!
How to Make Hot Chocolate
Yes, I’m going to give you lots of yummy recipes to try below! But if you are looking for a basic, simple way to make hot chocolate, I suggest you check out my easy 3-ingredient hot chocolate mix. It’s super simple to put together and once you have it made, all you need is hot water!
How to Make Frozen Hot Chocolate
Frozen hot chocolate has been made famous by the New York City restaurant, Serendipity. Luckily, a trip to the Big Apple isn’t required to make this frosty beverage at home! To make a frozen hot chocolate, take the hot chocolate mix I mentioned above, and blend it together with milk and ice. For an extra treat, add whipped cream and some crushed peppermints!
The Best Hot Chocolate Recipes
Let’s get into some recipes! I just updated the list to include those new hot chocolate bombs, along with new traditional recipe variations. There’s something for everyone on this list
Hot Cocoa Recipes
- Healthy Hot Cocoa for Kids [Living Well Mom]
- Gourmet Hot Cocoa [Flour on My Face]
- Easy 3-Ingredient Homemade Hot Chocolate Mix [Living Well Mom]
- Belgian Hot Chocolate Recipe [Busy Creating Memories]
- Paleo Peppermint Hot Cocoa [Living Well Mom]
- Hot Cocoa Tutorial; How to make Gourmet Hot Cocoa at Home [Busy Creating Memories]
- Starbucks Copycat Hot Cocoa [Midget Momma]
- Mexican Hot Chocolate Recipe [The Centsable Shoppin’]
- Peanut Butter Hot Cocoa for Kids [Living Well Mom]
- Mexican Hot Chocolate with Frozen Whipped Cream [Slap Dash Mom]
- Spooktacular Halloween Recipes – Ogre Eyes Hot Cocoa [From Val’s Kitchen]
- Frozen Inspired Easy Frozen Hot Cocoa Recipe [A Worthey Read]
- Candy Cane White Coconut Hot Cocoa [Flour on My Face]
- Gingerbread Hot Chocolate [Frugal Mom Eh!]
- Cinnamon Hot Cocoa Mix [The Kitchen Garten]
Hot Cocoa Bombs
- How to Make Hot Chocolate Bombs [Gluesticks]
- Pumpkin Spice Hot Chocolate Bombs [Pastry Tales]
- Peppermint Hot Chocolate Truffle Bombs [Stress Baking]
- Decadent White Chocolate Hot Cocoa [Scrambled Chefs]
- Gingerbread Hot Chocolate Bombs [The Denver Housewife]
Hot Chocolate Gift Ideas
If you are looking for a budget-friendly gift that the recipient will absolutely LOVE, look no further than these hot chocolate gifts! These are perfect to have on hand as stocking stuffers, hostess gifts, or teacher appreciation gifts. They also are great for coworker gifts too.
Hot Cocoa Gift Mixes
- Low-Calorie Cinnamon Hot Cocoa Mix [The Nerd’s Wife]
- Homemade Christmas Gift: Peppermint Hot Cocoa Mix [Flour on My Face]
- Homemade Holiday Gift Hot Cocoa Mix [Everblossom]
- Hot Chocolate Snow Man [Living Well Mom]
- Awesome Christmas Gift Idea! Individual Santa Hot Cocoa Bags! [More With Less Today]
- Mini Hot Cocoa Cups: Holiday Gift Idea [The Tom Kat Studio]
- Hot Cocoa on a Stick [Thirty Handmade Days]
- Simple Christmas Gift: Homemade Holiday Inspiration – Hot Cocoa Kit [Hossier Homemade]
- Double Chocolate Hot Cocoa Mix [The Yummy Life]
- Homemade Holiday Gifts: Easy Double Chocolate Vanilla Bean Hot Cocoa Mugs + Marshmallows [Half Baked Harvest]
- Peppermint Hot Chocolate Mix in a Jar [Mommy Octopus]
- 5 Fun Mason Jar Gift Ideas – Homemade Hot Chocolate Mix in a Jar [Love Grows Wild]
- Reindeer Hot Cocoa [Thirty Handmade Days]
- Hot Cocoa Mix Ornaments [Bubbly Nature Creations]
- Reindeer Hot Cocoa Kit [Project Nursery]
Cute Gift Mugs
You can find a ton of personalized kids mugs on Etsy and Amazon. I found a few that are just plain adorable! Who wouldn’t enjoy the perfect cup of cocoa in one of these?
Isn’t this the cutest little personalized mug! It’s 15 oz stainless steel mug from StickEmUpBaby on Etsy.
You can find this penguin mug by Riverside Bridal in a 11 or 15 oz size and it’s oh so adorable!
Blue Lion Design Shop has a couple of personalize options. My favorite may actually be the little red truck.
Every holiday mug collection should include at least one Santa mug, right? Especially a Precious Moments themed one. You can also find a matching snowman mug to make the perfect pair.
I hope you’ve found your new favorite hot chocolate fix on this list! If you have a go-to recipe that’s not listed, please share it below…I guarantee I’ll give it a try! 🙂
Just pin it below to find the list later!
This is perfect a perfect list, especially since it’s time to start thinking about teacher’s gifts. I love the peppermint hot cocoa in a jar!
Ashley S says
Definitely bookmarking this post! I love hot cocoa 🙂
Nicole B says
Hot cocoa is a great neighbor gift. It’s one of my favorite things to give and get from others. Perfect for the holiday time.
Denise C says
I really try not to eat or drink much sugar, but at this time of year, I find it hard to say no to a delicious cup of hot chocolate. Mint is my favorite!
Jacqui Odell says
Oh! I have to try number 14! White Chocolate and Coconut! YUMMM!!!
Kara Mathys @Wellnessgrit says
Absolutely love your creative idea with Gourmet Hot Cocoa! Can I post it on my blog? Thanks for sharing!
Julia Stearns @ Healthirony says
Wow. This Gourmet Hot Cocoa look is a pure combination of taste, I love healthy food.
Erika, this list was literally huge but awesome. I mean so many ideas at just one place.
Keep sharing such stuff 😀
What if there’s not so much sugar of loving chocolate. I was using skim milk and truvia, and chips of dark chocolate. The vanilla has mistakenly been left out but still tastes fine.