Thursday, November 11, 2010

Quest for the Perfect Hot Chocolate

As the temperatures drop, one thing is always on my mind; Hot Chocolate. The foodie in me wants something other than a Swiss Miss packet with some hot milk. So today begins my quest for the perfect hot chocolate recipe. Do you have one? Please share!!

I've found a few recipes to try out. First I found this one from

3 cups milk
1/3 cup semisweet chocolate, grated
1 tablespoon white sugar
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 egg


1.Put milk into a microwave-safe container and cook on High in microwave for 2 minutes. Mix in chocolate, sugar, and cinnamon. In a small bowl, whisk an egg until smooth, then mix it into the chocolate mixture.
2.Return to microwave and cook on High for 3 to 4 minutes or until foamy (be careful not to let it boil.) Whisk until smooth and pour into 3 mugs. Garnish with a sprinkle of cinnamon if desired.

I'm a little concerned about putting an egg in there, but maybe I'm wrong. Also, I'm not sure how I'm supposed to microwave it for 3 to 4 minutes without letting it boil.

That will be my next venture. But for now, I'll share some other trials we went through in my quest to find the perfect Hot Chocolate.

I had a few judges for this little showdown, so I'll tell you their scores (from 1 to 5, with 5 being the best) of each drink after the recipe

2 1/4 c milk
1/4 c water
1/4 c sugar
3 1/2 oz unsweetened chocolate baking squares (chopped finely)
1/4 c cocoa
1/2 t chili powder

Melt all ingredients in saucepan on the stove. With an imersion blender, blend on low speed for 5 minutes until frothy. Pour into mugs and serve!

My judges gave this a 4 out of 5

Snow Flake Cocoa (From

1/3 c + 1 T whipping cream
1 c + 3 T milk
1/4 t vanilla
3 ounces white chocolate chips
peppermint pieces for garnish
Whipped Cream for garnish

Mix together all ingredients and heat over medium low on the stove until hot. Make sure not to boil!! Pour into mugs and garnish with peppermint and whipped cream.
My judges gave this 5 out of 5!

Xocolatl (Aztec Chocolate) (from

1 1/2 c water
1 green chili pepper
4 c water
1/4 c unsweetened cocoa powder
2 t vanilla

Bring 1 1/2 c water to a boil in a pot; add the chili pepper, seeds included, to the boiling water and cook at a boil for 5 to 10 minutes. Streain the chili pepper and seeds from the water; return the water to the pot. Add 4 cups water to the chili pepper infused water. Reduce heat to medium-low, and bring to a slow boil. Stir the cocoa powder and vanilla extract into the boiling water. Cook and stir until the powder dissolves completely, 5-10 minutes.

This was so horrible, I didn't even give it to my taste testers.

Fluffy Hot Chocolate (From

8 t sugar
4 t baking cocoa
4 c milk
1 1/2 c mini marshmallows
1 t vanilla

In saucepan, combine the first four ingredients. Cook and stir over medium heat until the marshamllows are melted. Remove form heat; stir in vanilla. Ladle into mugs.

This received 3 out of 5.

Mayan Hot Cocoa 

4 oz unsweetened chocolate, chopped
2 1/2 c milk
1/2 c sugar
3/4 t cinnamon
1/4 t nutmeg

Heat milk in saucepan until hot to the touch. Add chopped chocolate and sugar, whisking until well blended. Add cinnamon and chili powder. Heat thoroughly over medium-low without bringing to a boil and serve.

This received 1 out of 5, with one person writing in "0" out of 5.

Vanilla Hot Cocoa 

3 oz bittersweet chocolate
2 c milk
1 c sugar
1 vanilla bean

Combine 1 1/2 c milk with vanilla bean in a heavy saucepan and cook over medium-low heat about 5 minutes, just below boiling point. Remove from heat. Remove vanilla bean and scrape ot vanilla bean seeds. Stir vanilla seeds into the hot standing milk. Cover and let stand 5 minutes. Discar the pod. Meanwhile, break up chocolate and place in another saucepan. Melt with the remaining 1/2 c milk and sugar over low heat while stirring constantly. When the chocolate has melted, add the milk and vanilla bean seed mixture, stirring contstantly. Heat thoroughly. Pour into mugs and stir.  

This received 3 out of 5.


Just to make sure to cover all bases, the 7th cup of hot chocolate tried by my taste panel was Swiss Miss. Yep, that's right. I simply heated some milk and added a packet of instant hot chocolate. 

The Swiss Miss received 2 out of 5

So it seems our winner was #2...Snow Flake Cocoa!


Fern said...

Good work! Your post is an excellent example of why I keep comming back to read your excellent quality content that is forever updated.
alain silberstein

Thank you!

Anonymous said...

I use the recipe from the back of the Hershey's box. I have tried others but always go back to a family tradition but I think I will try some of the ones you posted!

Dana Haehnlein

ann said...

I really like hot choc Started having it at night when it got cold before we finally turned on the heat. It was just Carnation but I like it anyway. I put choc chips and a marsh mellow in it before more flavor but, Oh the calories.

Lana said...

Ok, so I was going to serve cocoa to the kids Sunday for the tea party. I was going to go with the recipe on the Hershey's cocoa box; Mom always made it, and it was good!

Cranberry Morning said...

What a fun experiment! I love dark chocolate, usually darker than most other people like it. BUT, when it comes to hot chocolate, I like it a little creamier, so that I don't feel like I'm eating melted dark chocolate. I'll have to try these variations!