This spiced hot chocolate mix is so easy to make, just chuck the ingredients in a processor or blender, blitz them up, and done!
The hot chocolate mix itself is vegan and dairy-free so it can be used by both vegans and vegetarians alike, just add three tablespoons of the mix to hot milk or plant-based milk, whisk until smooth, and top with whatever you wish!
It also makes the perfect cold-weather gift or for Thanksgiving or Christmas, just pop it in a pretty jar, top it up with mini marshmallows, add a gift tag and wrap a pretty ribbon about it.
With just eight ingredients, try it today! Of course, if a bit of spice is your thing (it’s definitely mine), then these vegan chickpea chocolate chip cookies with cayenne would be the perfect accompaniment!
How to make it
Spiced hot chocolate mix has to be the easiest recipe ever, you just grab your ingredients, toss them in a good blender or food processor, blitz for up to two minutes and done.
Check out the photos below to see how easy it is.
Step one is choosing your sugar and your chocolate. My favorite sugar to use is vanilla sugar. I live in Europe where all white sugar is vegan by default as it’s made from beets, but if you live in the US and are vegan you might want to double-check that your vanilla sugar is vegan (made without using bone char) or make your own vanilla sugar (really easy).
After vanilla sugar, I also love to use brown sugar, and those are the two types I recommend as they both bring a lot of depth to this spiced hot chocolate mix, but if you can’t get them or don’t have them on hand you can use any sugar.
Step two, choose your chocolate. You can either use your favorite chocolate chopped up, or chocolate chips.
Whichever type you use do make sure it’s high quality. For vegans make sure it’s a “creamy” style chocolate bar if you use that, with a good amount of cocoa butter, or your hot chocolate won’t turn out as creamy as it could have.
If you’re using a bar of chocolate make sure to break it up and roughly chop it before processing it. If you’re using a good processor you’ll be able to just roughly chop it up but if you’re using a blender you’d be better off chopping more finely.
Step three pick a good cocoa powder. I prefer Dutch-processed, but you can use your favorite. Just make sure it’s a high-quality one without fillers and preferably unsweetened. Don’t use hot chocolate mix.
Step four add the sugar, chopped chocolate/chocolate chips, cocoa powder along with the salt, cayenne pepper, cinnamon, cornstarch, and nutmeg (optional) to the bowl of your processor or blender (image number one below).
Make sure the blender/processor bowl is perfectly dry before you add the ingredients, you don’t want any mix sticking to the bowl or moisture getting in if you plan on storing it for a while or gifting it.
For a mildly spiced hot chocolate mix, use one-eighth of a teaspoon of cayenne pepper. If you like it reasonably hot, one-quarter of a teaspoon will give you a medium-hot mix.
The nutmeg is optional but really complements the heat. The cornstarch will help thicken the hot chocolate and also prevent the mix from clumping over time. The salt is totally necessary for balancing all the flavors.
Start to process/blend on a low speed and increase to high within a few seconds. Starting on low will stop all the lighter ingredients (the spices) from shooting up and coating the lid or upper part of the processor/blender bowl and not getting blended into the mix.
Process for up to two minutes or until it looks finely ground enough to you (image number two above). Decant to a Tupperware container with a lid or a jar until ready to use.
This recipe makes enough for just over seven regular-sized mugs of hot chocolate, or five large over-sized mugs and can easily be doubled/tripled up.
Making your spiced hot chocolate
It’s super easy to use your spiced hot chocolate mix once you’ve made it. Simply heat up your milk of choice until very hot and starting to simmer (don’t allow it to boil or you’ll have to deal with a skin forming), add two-three level tablespoons of the mix, and whisk in.
For a regular-sized mug (just over eight fluid ounces/240 ml), two tablespoons should be enough. For a large oversized mug (typically around 13-14 fluid ounces or 385-415ml) use three tablespoons.
Turn off the heat and continue to whisk in until fully dissolved. Leave on the stove for at least two minutes to allow the cornstarch to thicken and help it get creamier, whisking the odd time.
Serve and add your toppings of choice.
Now you have your luscious spiced hot chocolate mix ready-to-go, let’s talk about toppings and add-ins. Some lovely additions could be:
- A peppermint, hot cinnamon, or hot clove candy cane. Whole, to stir your hot chocolate with, or chopped/crushed as a topping.
- Mini marshmallows (vegans check for gelatine here).
- Whipped cream (again, use non-dairy whipped cream if you need to. I like a coconut-based one).
- Shaved chocolate.
If you’re going to be gifting the mix then you could add some toppings to the jar, or pop them in a large pretty mug and add it to the set, or tie some candy canes onto the jar.
As I mentioned above, you should add your spiced hot chocolate mix to a container with a tightly fitting lid, a pickling jar, or a clean jar with a tightly-fitting lid.
The containers should be perfectly dry before adding the mix.
Your tasty hot chocolate mix should last up to five months stored in a warm dry dark place.
Did you make this recipe? Let me know how much you loved it with a star rating in the recipe box, review, or comment below.
Or take a picture and tag me on Instagram (@the_fiery_vegetarian), I love seeing all your creations!
- 1/3cup vanilla sugar (or brown sugar)
- 1/3 cup favourite vegan chocolate or chips (about 1.8oz/50g)
- 1/3 cup cocoa powder
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 1/8 - 1/4 tsp cayenne
- 1/4 tsp cinnamon
- 1.5 tsp cornstarch
- Pinch nutmeg (optional)
- Place all ingredients in the bowl of a food processor or blender. If using chocolate, chop up roughly for a food processor or more finely for a blender.
- Start to blend on a low speed and bring up to high within 10-15 seconds and process for up to two minutes or until finely ground.
- Decant to a container with a tightly fitting lid if using later or storing, otherwise use immediately.
- To use, measure 2 tablespoons for a regular cup or mug (240ml) , 3 for a large one. Add to very hot milk of choice and whisk until dissolved and let sit for two minutes. Serve with toppings of choice.
Use 2 tablespoons for a regular cup or mug, 3 for a large one. Add to very hot milk of choice and whisk until dissolved and let sit for two minutes. Serve with toppings of choice.
Serving Size1 large mugful
Amount Per Serving Calories 165Total Fat 6gSaturated Fat 2gTrans Fat 0gUnsaturated Fat 2gCholesterol 3mgSodium 155mgCarbohydrates 27gFiber 2gSugar 19gProtein 2g
(note that calories from whichever milk you choose and toppings are not added in here)