Hot chocolate

10 hot chocolate hacks

In today’s post, Chef Deb Rankine, a.k.a. The Fridge Whisperer, shares her favourite hot chocolate recipe along with 10 BEST ways to kick it up a notch!

What’s more welcoming than a hot mug of cocoa after a day’s hiking or a nature walk through a frosty forest?

In addition to our recipe for a rich tasting, velvety smooth hot chocolate mix, we’ve given you 10 fun and creative ways to make your hot chocolate experience the best one ever.

Rich Hot Chocolate Mix (serves 4)

  • 1/3 cup water
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/4 cup good quality cocoa powder
  • 1 pinch kosher salt
  • 4 cups whole (3.25%MF) milk
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

In a large saucepan over medium heat, whisk together water, sugar, cocoa and salt, bring mixture to a boil and cook until sugar dissolves, about 2 minutes, whisking constantly.

Whisk in milk and continue cooking until cocoa is thoroughly heated. Do not let mixture come to a boil.

Remove saucepan from heat, whisk in vanilla, and continue whisking until cocoa is light and foamy. Divide cocoa into 4 mugs and serve immediately.


peppermint hot chocolate
peppermint hot chocolate

1. Peppermint Hot Chocolate: dip rim of mug in melted white chocolate, then press into crushed peppermint candy. Serve with whipped cream and peppermint stick garnish.

2. Mexican Spiced Hot Chocolate: add ½-teaspoon chili powder to cocoa powder.

3. Pumpkin Spice Hot Chocolate: add 1/4-teaspoon cinnamon and 1/8-teaspoon EACH ground nutmeg and clove to cocoa powder.

smore hot chocolate
s’more hot chocolate

4. S’more Hot Chocolate: dip rim of mug in melted milk chocolate, then press into graham cracker crumbs. Garnish with a toasted marshmallow and drizzle of melted chocolate over top.

5. Mocha Hot Chocolate: add 2 teaspoons espresso powder to cocoa powder.

6. Cookies ’n Cream Hot Chocolate: garnish hot chocolate with a big swirl of whipped cream, then sprinkle crushed chocolate cream filled wafer cookies over top.

Snowman hot chocolate
snowman hot chocolate

7. Double Chocolate Hot Chocolate: dip a small teaspoon into melted dark chocolate and use it as a stir stick.

8. Snowman Hot Chocolate: use melted white chocolate to “cement” 3 marshmallows together one on top of the other and affix mini chocolate chips to create face and buttons on the front of the snowman. Twist pretzel sticks into sides and bottom of snowman to makes its arms and legs. Garnish hot chocolate with a big swirl of whipped cream and lay snowman on top.

maple hot chocolate
maple hot chocolate

9. Maple Hot Chocolate: add 1 tablespoon pure maple syrup to milk. Garnish with whipped cream and maple candy sprinkles.

10. Cheesecake Hot Chocolate: whisk together 1/4-cup EACH softened cream cheese and cold heavy (35%MF) cream and beat until soft peaks form, spoon mixture on top of hot chocolate and garnish with chocolate cookie crumbs.