Heavenly hot chocolate recipes for cold weather

Heavenly hot chocolate recipes for cold weather

by Jessica Zen
Stripes Korea

While some people dread the coming cold, I rather enjoy it. There’s nothing quite as lovely as curling up next to a fire with a cozy blanket, fascinating book and a nice steaming cup of hot chocolate. Check out these recipes for inspiration to jazz up your next cup of delicious hot chocolate. 

For an adult hot chocolate:

Amaretto Hot Chocolate

Start to finish: 15 minutes
Servings: 3


  • 3 cups whole milk
  • 2/3 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • Pinch/grind of salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla
  • 3 ounces amaretto liquor (1 ounce per glass)
  • Whipped cream
  • Slivered almonds
  • Chocolate shavings


In a medium saucepan, add the milk, chocolate chips, sugar and salt. Heat on medium low heat, whisking often. Continue to whisk until the chocolate melts completely and the mixture comes to a low simmer (Do NOT let boil, as it will burn to the bottom of the pan). Once liquid comes to a low simmer, promptly remove from heat. Add the vanilla and stir to combine.

Ladle the hot chocolate into 3 mugs, and add 1 ounce amaretto liquor to each glass. Stir to combine. Top with your favorite toppings (whipped cream, almonds, chocolate shavings). Enjoy!


For a kid-friendly hot chocolate: 

Marshmallow Snowman Hot Chocolate

Start to finish: 15 minutes

Servings: 5

Ingredients for the marshmallow snowman: 

  • 15 regular sized marshmallows
  • Chocolate cookie icing
  • 20 pretzel sticks
  • 5 candy corn pieces 

Ingredients for the hot chocolate: 

  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/4 cup baking cocoa
  • 1/3 cup hot water
  • 4 cups milk
  • 3/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • Dash of salt

Directions for hot chocolate: 

In a saucepan, combine sugar, cocoa and salt. Add water and bring to a boil. Cook and stir for 2 minutes. Stir in milk; heat to serving temperature. Make sure not to boil. We don’t want to burn those little tongues. Remove from the heat; stir in vanilla. Whisk until frothy.

Directions for marshmallow snowmen:

Squeeze on eyes and a mouth to one marshmallow using your chocolate icing. Cut a slit in the middle and press in a candy corn for the nose. Cut another slit in the backside and press the marshmallow on the edge of your mug. Add two dots of icing to another marshmallow and press two pretzel sticks in the sides. Add another dot of icing on your last marshmallow and press in two pretzel sticks to the bottom. Place them in your mug and watch your snowman relax in his hot cocoa bath.


For a white hot chocolate: 

Peppermint White Hot Chocolate

Start to finish: 5 minutes

Servings: 1


  • 1 tablespoon peppermint chips
  • 1 tablespoon white chocolate chips
  • 1 tablespoon whipping cream
  • 8 ounces milk
  • 1 peppermint, crushed
  • Whipped cream


In a microwave safe mug, combine the peppermint chips, white chocolate chips, and whipping cream. Heat for 30 seconds, stir until smooth, and try not to eat this super yummy mixture all on its own (yeah guilty here)! Add milk and heat for an additional 90 seconds, or until heated through. Stir in crushed peppermint, top with whipped cream. You can also top the whipped cream with crushed peppermint for effect!


For a healthy hot chocolate: 

Healthy Homemade Sugar Free Hot Chocolate Cocoa Mix (low calorie, gluten free, vegan, paleo, dairy free) 

Start to finish: 10 minutes

Servings: 10


  • 1 cup cocoa powder - I used a mix of dark and standard
  • 1 1/4 cups granulated sweetener of choice - I used a monk fruit sweetener
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1/4 cup powdered creamer or powdered milk of choice (keto or paleo- use powdered coconut milk)

Directions for mix: 

Combine all the ingredients in a mixing bowl and stir until combined. Transfer to a jar or airtight container.

Directions for a single cup of cocoa/hot chocolate:

Add 2 tablespoons of dry mix (non creamer/milk version) to a large mug or cup. Add hot water and mix until completely dissolved. Add heated milk of choice and mix very well. Top with optional whipped topping and enjoy!


For hot chocolate that tastes like a cookie: 

Cinnamon Gingerbread Hot Chocolate

Start to finish: 5 minutes

Servings: 1


  • 1 1/2 cups chocolate milk
  • 1 teaspoon ground allspice
  • 1 teaspoon cardamom
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon clove
  • 1/2 teaspoon molasses
  • whipped topping


Heat chocolate milk in microwave or saucepan until desired temperature. Add a half teaspoon of allspice, cardamom, cinnamon and clove spices to a mug. Add molasses. Pour hot chocolate over the spices and molasses in the mug. Add whipped topping to the hot chocolate and sprinkle the rest of the spices over the whipped topping. Enjoy!


For Mexican hot chocolate: 

Champurrado: Thick Mexican Hot Chocolate

Start to finish: 10 minutes

Servings: 4


  • 1/4 cup masa harina (corn tortilla flour)
  • 2 cups warm water
  • 2 cups whole milk
  • 3.25 ounces disk Mexican chocolate, chopped
  • 3 ounces piloncillo cones, chopped or 1/2 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground anise seeds - I used star anise


In a large saucepan, slowly add masa harina to the warm water, whisking until combined. Add milk, chocolate, piloncillo, and ground anise seeds. Heat over medium heat just until boiling; reduce heat. Simmer, uncovered, about 10 minutes or until chocolate is completely melted and sugar is dissolved, whisking occasionally. Serve immediately.


Head to the store today to start stocking up on all the ingredients you will need for the most heavenly cup of hot chocolate you’ve ever had. Whether it’s spiked with a bit of alcohol or made with white chocolate instead, every cup is sure to be delicious.

Subscribe to our Stripes Pacific newsletter and receive amazing travel stories, great event info, cultural information, interesting lifestyle articles and more directly in your inbox!

Follow us on social media!

Facebook: Stars and Stripes Pacific
Flipboard: Stars and Stripes Community Sites

Looking to travel while stationed abroad? Check out our other Pacific community sites!
Stripes Japan
Stripes Okinawa
Stripes Guam

Related Content

Recommended Content

Around the Web