Hot cocoa is a winter staple in every household, isn't it? It definitely is in mine. A few years back, I gave up on those little canisters and pouches of hot cocoa mix. Sure, they were quick and convenient, but they just weren't...good. Questionable ingredients aside (and there are a few!), I wanted better flavor! I've been working and tweaking recipes for two winters now, and I finally have it! For you: my Homemade Hot Cocoa Mix!
I realize that the "perfect" cup of hot cocoa will vary widely from person to person. For me, I wanted intense chocolate flavor without it being over-the-top sweet. I also wanted the mix to incorporate well, so you never come upon a glob of dry mix while you're drinking or a have gritty bottom to your mug. My Homemade Hot Cocoa Mix checks all those boxes! Add to that the fact that you can whip up a batch in about five minutes, and you really can't go wrong! 🙂
The recipe uses dry milk powder for added creaminess. Milk powders can vary widely in quality and flavor from brand to brand, so you may have to experiment a bit to find what you like best. I use an organic nonfat dry milk powder. You can find it online [here].
Because the recipe uses dry milk, you can opt to make this hot cocoa with water instead of milk if you prefer. I like to make it with milk so it's thicker and creamier!
The cornstarch in the recipe isn't entirely necessary if you prefer to leave it out. That said, it helps keep the mix from clumping up, and helps it to better incorporate into the hot milk, so I always add it!
Now, for the best part: the chocolate! I used a dark cocoa powder (this one [here]) and dark chocolate (60% cacao), because that's how I roll. I really enjoy the deep chocolate flavor, and I find that it pairs better with the *heaping pile* of marshmallows that I put on top. 😉
While there's still come cold weather in Texas in the winter, it's nothing compared to what we'll have when we move back home to Michigan. Next winter I'll be making this Homemade Hot Cocoa Mix in bulk! <3
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Adpated from Cook's Illustrated.
Homemade Hot Cocoa Mix
- In the bowl of a food processor, combine all ingredients. Pulse to combine. You want to make sure that the chocolate chips are chopped tiny enough to fully incorporate into the mix (and then they'll melt better, too)!
- Once the mix is fully combined, store in an airtight container until ready to use. Recipe makes about 3¾ cups of mix, which will make about 12 cups of hot cocoa.
- To use: combine 1 cup warm milk (see note) with 5 tablespoons hot cocoa mix. Stir to incorporate.Enjoy!