How to make the best hot chocolate without cocoa powder. Using chocolate chips is the way to go for a rich, decadent cup of cocoa that is creamy and smooth.
There is nothing quite so cozy as drinking a cup of hot chocolate with the kids after they’ve come in from playing in the snow. Its such a fun little tradition that we all look forward to.
And its one of those things that is so simple to throw together in a matter of minutes! Just warm up some milk, add your chocolate and there you go. Come and get it!
Have you tried making healthy homemade marshmallows?
Ran out of cocoa packets? No problem! There are so many ways to make cocoa from scratch. You can make a batch of homemade cocoa mix to keep in the pantry. Or for a really decadent and rich cup of hot chocolate, you have to try making it with chocolate chips!
Its literally the easiest recipe ever. Milk, chocolate chips and you’re done!
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Why you’ll like this recipe
- delicious – if the only kind of cocoa you’ve had was made with a mix from the store, the you are in for a treat! Hot chocolate made with chocolate chips is so much more rich and creamy!
- thick and creamy – the melted chocolate gives this cocoa a really nice thicker consistency. Using a full fat milk or cream makes it perfectly creamy too.
- easy to make – its literally two steps: heat the milk ad add the chocolate chips. Done!
- quick to make – it takes less than 10 minutes to make a batch for your whole family to enjoy!
- only 2 ingredients – milk and chocolate. That’s it! Of course you can add vanilla and a pinch of salt for an even more delicious cocoa, but you don’t have to.
- can be enjoyed many ways – there are so many ways to customize your cocoa to your taste. From the toppings you choose to optional flavors you mix in. The possibilities are endless!
What you need to Make Hot Chocolate without cocoa powder
chocolate chips – you can use any kind of chocolate chips you want. If you want a sweeter cup of cocoa, use milk chocolate. Semi sweet will give you a more balanced sweetness and dark chocolate chips are great for a less sweet cocoa.
milk – you can use any kind of milk you like too! Skim, 2%, whole, half and half, heavy cream, almond milk, oat milk…you name it! I like to use whole milk because its a good balance between healthy and fatty.
optional add ins:
vanilla extract – adding vanilla extract to the cocoa after its finished cooking really brings this recipe to the next level. Just add a teaspoon to the pot after you remove it from the heat.
peppermint extract – instead of vanilla, you could use a couple drops of peppermint extract for a minty cup of cocoa.
sea salt – salt might sound like a funny thing to add to a sweet drink like this. But I find that adding just a pinch of salt actually brings out the sweetness in the chocolate and adds an extra depth of flavor to the cocoa.
espresso powder – add in a teaspoon of espresso powder to give the chocolate an extra deep flavor.
saucepan – just a medium saucepan for heating up your ingredients on the stovetop.
whisk – using a whisk makes the hot chocolate more smooth and creamy.
FAQ about Making Hot Chocolate Without Cocoa Powder
how do you make hot chocolate with milk if you don’t have cocoa powder?
If you don’t have any cocoa powder, you can still make hot chocolate by melting chocolate chips or a chopped up chocolate bar into a saucepan of steaming milk.
can you make dairy free hot chocolate?
You can definitely make hot chocolate that is dairy free by using a dairy free milk such as almond or coconut milk and check to make sure the chocolate chips you are using for this recipe say “dairy free” on the package.
is this recipe gluten free?
It sure is! Since its made with just milk and chocolate chips, there isn’t any gluten in it at all!
what toppings can you use for hot chocolate?
The options are almost unlimited!
- marshmallows ( like these homemade honey marshmallows)
- mini chocolate chips
- toffee bits
- chocolate syrup
- whipped cream (homemade whipped cream is the best)
- caramel sauce
- ground cinnamon
- crushed peppermint sticks
- sea salt…
how to make Hot Chocolate Without Cocoa Powder
Melt the Chocolate – In a medium saucepan over low heat, melt the chocolate chips with 1/2 cup of milk/cream. Stir constantly to keep it from burning.
Add The Milk – Gradually whisk in the milk until the mixture is smooth and warmed through. It should be steaming but not boiling.
Remove From Heat – If you want to add vanilla and salt, stir those in after you take the saucepan off the heat.
tips for success
To Serve – This recipe is best enjoyed right away when its nice and hot. Top with whipped cream, marshmallows or sprinkles.
To Store – Let the cocoa cool to room temperature and store in a covered container for up to 3 days. Reheat
Variations – Any kind of chocolate chips will work for this recipe. Using milk chocolate will give you a sweeter, lighter flavor. Semi sweet or dark chocolate will have more of a mild sweetness and a deeper chocolate flavor.
Substitutions – In place of whole milk, you can use any nut milk, coconut milk, heavy cream or half and half.
More Holiday Desserts from scratch On The Blog:
If you liked this recipe, I think you’ll really enjoy these other Christmas desserts on the blog!
- Old Fashioned Hot Apple Cider
- Homemade Strawberry Marshmallows
- Honey Whipped Cream
- Strawberry Whipped Cream
- Peppermint Marshmallow Recipe
I hope you love this recipe for hot chocolate without cocoa powder! If you make it, I’d love for you to come back and leave a comment and rating so that I know how you like it!
Pin these steps to try later. Tag @athomeontheprairie on Instagram to share what you’ve made with us!
I have a feeling I’ll be coming back to this post again and again. I love rich hot cocoa like this, but sometimes it’s hard to get the ingredient ratios just right!
Yum! I can’t wait to try this!
Yum, this looks so good! I really love a bit of sea salt 🙂
I’m already on board — this is so decadent looking! YUMMMM
I am a huge fan of white chocolate, so those are the only chips I had on hand. I added a little bit of vanilla extract. You’re right, I’ll never buy store bought hot cocoa again. Thank you so much for sharing this!
That sounds delicious! Thank you for sharing!
I had a sudden crave to drink hot chocolate with a splash of whisky on the side. Out of chocolate powder mix, no choc chips but did have 2 bars of chocolate! Comprised and used them with left over cream and milk. Delicious! Thank you for the idea
I’m so glad you liked the recipe, Ruby!