I am so excited to finally have hot cocoa again! Throughout my childhood I would drink hot chocolate from time to time, usually during holidays or on rainy days. My family had a tradition where my brothers and sisters would all huddle outside on our small covered porch while it was raining, and we’d sip hot cocoa with red licorice as the straw. It was a tradition that my oldest sister started, and it is one that is very dear to many of our hearts.
As excited as I was to sit outside in the rain with my siblings, and as much as I enjoyed sipping the hot cocoa, I dreaded the feeling I experienced after a drink. The hot cocoa I always had was either Nesquik mixed with milk, or one of those powder concoctions from a foil pouch with those hard, cardboard mini marshmallows. I was always hesitant to drink from those pouches because most of the time my tummy turned in unbearable knots after a glass. It also made me feel incredibly tired and heavy. Needless to say, I haven’t had hot cocoa for a very long time.
I was a bit reluctant about making homemade hot cocoa, but I am happy to report that this made me feel nothing less than warm, cozy, and very happy!
My husband was so delighted after his first sip.
In his words, “mmm…. this warms my heart and my soul.”
This hot cocoa is extremely easy to make, and I can’t wait to discover the many variations that are possible with this. Soon, I’ll experiment with peppermint essential oil, cayenne pepper, mint leaves, coconut, and vegan caramel. Let me know you come up with!
Makes 3 cups (2 mugs)
3 cups unsweetened almond/soy/hemp/rice milk (add 1 tsp Vanilla extract if using plain flavor)
4 Tbsp unsweetened cocoa powder
3 Tbsp pure maple syrup (I use Grade B because of its rich, robust flavor)
-You can substitute ~1 Tbsp vegan sugar for maple syrup
Pinch of cinnamon
Heat vegan milk in a pot over the stove, or microwave in microwave-safe container.
Stir in vanilla and chocolate powder until melted.
Add maple syrup and cinnamon.