Homemade Hot Chocolate
This Homemade Hot Chocolate recipe is mega creamy, intensely chocolaty, perfectly sweet and delightfully addicting. It’s also super simple to make with only six pantry friendly ingredients AND ready in minutes! This hot chocolate recipe uses both cocoa powder and chocolate chips for dreamy chocolaty depth and both milk and heavy cream to create the creamiest mug of hot chocolate you ever tasted AKA the best hot chocolate ever! I’ve also included how to customize your homemade hot chocolate with many different flavor options – because when you make homemade hot chocolate – the possibilities are endless!
Servings Prep Time
4-5 servings 5minutes
Cook Time
Servings Prep Time
4-5 servings 5minutes
Cook Time
Homemade Hot Chocolate
  • 2/3cup granulated sugar
  • 2/3cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 4cups whole milksee DIY notes
  • 1cup heavy cream
  • 1/2cup QUALITY semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • 1/2teaspoon vanilla extract
  1. In a deep saucepan or pot, add sugar then sift in cocoa powder; stir to combine.
  2. Stir in milk and heavy cream. Whisk vigorously for about one minute, until most of the lumps are gone.
  3. Continue to stir frequently as you bring to a light boil over medium heat. As soon as it starts to gently boil, reduce to a simmer. Simmer about 15 seconds stirring constantly.
  4. Reduce heat to low and stir in chocolate chips. Whisk until the chocolate chips melt completely, about one minute. Stir in vanilla.
  5. Ladle into mugs and serve with option marshmallows and whipped cream.
Recipe Notes

DIY Whole Milk

For the creamiest hot chocolate, I recommend whole milk with the addition of heavy cream.  That being said, you certainly don’t have to use whole milk, you can use skim, 1% or 2% as well.  Just keep in mind, that the higher the fat content, the creamier the hot chocolate.  So, if you would like to make up for not using whole milk, then I recommend replacing some of your milk with heavy cream.

Toppings ideas

Hot chocolate is delicious in its simplicity or jazz it up with all sorts of toppings!  Here are just a few ideas:

  • marshmallows or flavored marshmallows
  • whipped cream
  • mascarpone
  • caramel
  • coconut caramel
  • sweetened shredded coconut
  • hot fudge
  • shaved or chopped chocolate
  • chocolate chips, white chocolate chips, butterscotch chips
  • grated cinnamon, ground cinnamon, cinnamon sticks or cinnamon chips
  • crushed candy canes
  • sprinkles
  • almonds or hazelnuts, ground extra fine
  • crushed Oreos
  • crushed Butterfingers
  • Hot Tamales

Hot Chocolate Tips:

I hope you enjoyed learning all about hot chocolate!  Here is a summary of important tips and tricks:

  • It is better to use a large pot than a small one and worry about sloshing all over.  It is important to sift the cocoa powder so it’s easy to whisk away the lumps.
  • Use quality chocolate chips with a higher percentage of cocoa powder for superior melting ability and maximum flavor such as Guittard or Ghirardelli.  You may also substitute with 3 oz. shaved or finely chopped semi-sweet Bakers chocolate.
  • Use semi-sweet chocolate and not milk chocolate or your hot chocolate will be far too sweet.
  • Don’ skip sifting the cocoa powder!  Sifting makes it much easier to whisk the lumps away.  As the cocoa powder gets to the bottom of the sieve and only hard bits remain, you can push them through the sieve with a back of a measuring cup.
  • Please do not use water.  Your hot chocolate will not be watery (surprise) and not creamy.
  • I have had the most success with a blend of milk and cream for flavor and consistency.  Cream will also help stabilize your milk so it doesn’t curdle.  If you don’t want to use heavy cream, that is fine! Just be aware your hot chocolate will be less creamy.
  • Adjust your hot chocolate to taste – more sugar, less sugar, more cream, less cream, etc.
  • Use real, homemade whipped cream (see post).  It takes minutes to make and it’s thick, rich and boasts superior flavor to its artificial counterparts.