This homemade gingerbread hot chocolate is so much better than a store bought mix, and just as easy! It’s cozy for Christmas or any frosty evening.
A few weeks ago, our nephews came to visit. They’re 5 and 7, and most often lately we make forts and watch movies and eat popcorn. This time, though, we decided to break out some kitchen experiments as an activity. I found an old Kitchen Experiments book my mom had passed on from my childhood, and the book fell open to a page that said “A Heat Your Own Hot Chocolate Project.” Perfect! This “hot chocolate project” was really making homemade hot chocolate…with a few twists! Keep reading for this gingerbread hot chocolate recipe, and some fun ideas for kitchen experiments for kids.
How to make homemade hot chocolate
Have you tried making homemade hot chocolate? If you stock a few pantry ingredients, it’s easy as pie! And you don’t even need to remember to buy those packets of storebought hot chocolate. Which, many times have lots of added sugar and even random preservatives. Making homemade hot chocolate is as simple as heating milk with cocoa powder and a sweetener. Since we like natural sweeteners, we’ve sweetened this homemade hot chocolate recipe with pure maple syrup. We always keep a bottle of pure maple syrup in the fridge, so it’s perfect for sweetening hot chocolate. Now, how did this gingerbread hot chocolate come to be? Keep reading.
This gingerbread hot chocolate
Back to those nephews! We decided to take on the “Heat Your Own Hot Chocolate Project” and make homemade hot chocolate. The recipe is so simple: 2 cups milk, 2 tablespoons cococa powder, and 2 tablespoons maple syrup (or sugar). Once you heat those together on the stove, whisking so that they come together, the recipe is basically complete. Which, was exciting in itself! My nephews thought it was pretty cool we could make it from scratch. They were also intrigued by my maple syrup sweetener. We tasted the homemade hot chocolate, and it was SO GOOD! (Their words.)
Then, the fun thing about the “Hot Chocolate Project” kitchen experiment was that it said to add flavorings to the hot chocolate and then taste them. For example…Mint extract! Cinnamon! Ginger! My nephews and I started to raid our cabinets to find anything I had on hand, including lots of random things like almond extract and even cardamom. We put our homemade hot chocolate into small glasses and added little bits of new flavors. Peppermint? Too minty! Orange blossom water? Yuck! As we played with combinations, one nephew decided we needed a pinch of cinnamon, ginger, and nutmeg. It tastes like gingerbread! I exclaimed. And the gingerbread hot chocolate recipe was born.
So, here we’ve recorded the “Hot Chocolate Project” recipe for you. A bit of milk, cocoa powder, maple syrup, and gingerbread spice ingredients (cinnamon, ginger and allspice), and you’re ready with Christmas hot chocolate! It’s perfect for any snowy evening, but of course the Christmas season is peak gingerbread hot chocolate time! If you’d like to make it vegan, you can use a plant based milk: we like a creamier milk like soy milk or a thicker almond milk. Coconut milk might have a strong of a coconut flavor, but you’re welcome to try that if you’re adventurous! Let us know if you make this gingerbread hot chocolate. It’s going to become a tradition around here!
If you’re up for a decadent treat, top this gingerbread hot chocolate with our Homemade Whipped Cream!
Thanks Colby and Dylan for collaborating on this recipe :)
Looking for more holiday treats?
Outside of this gingerbread hot chocolate recipe, we have lots of Christmas treat recipes on A Couple Cooks! Here are a few of our favorites:
- Gingerbread Pancakes
- Raspberry Braided Bread
- Christmas Cranberry Pudding with Butter Sauce
- Chocolate Banana Bread
- Soft Gingerbread Cookies
- Peppermint Meringues
- Chai Spiced Snowball Cookies
- The Best Soft Ginger Molasses Cookies
- Shortbread Cookies with Chocolate Drizzle
- Cherry Quinoa Chocolate Bark
- Healthy Peanut Butter Buckeye Balls
This recipe is…
This gingerbread hot chocolate recipe is vegetarian and gluten free. For vegan, dairy free and plant based, use a dairy free milk like soy milk.Print
This homemade gingerbread hot chocolate is so much better than a storebought mix, and just as easy! It’s cozy for Christmas or any frosty evening.
- 2 tablespoons cocoa powder
- 2 tablespoons maple syrup
- 2 cups milk (or any dairy free milk for vegan, like soy)
- 1 pinch kosher salt
- 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1/2 teaspoon ginger
- 1/2 teaspoon allspice
- Place all ingredients in a medium pot and whisk to combine over medium heat; do not boil.
- Serve immediately in mugs. (If you’re up for a decadent treat, top with our Homemade Whipped Cream.)
Keywords: Hot Chocolate, Homemade Hot Chocolate, Gingerbread Hot Chocolate, Christmas Hot Chocolate, Gingerbread Spice Ingredients
About the Authors
Cookbook Author and writer
Sonja Overhiser is an acclaimed vegetarian cookbook author and cook based in Indianapolis. She’s host of the food podcast Small Bites and founder of the food website A Couple Cooks. Featured from the TODAY Show to Bon Appetit, Sonja seeks to inspire adventurous eating to make the world a better place one bite at a time.
Cookbook Author and photographer
Alex Overhiser is an acclaimed food photographer and author based in Indianapolis. He’s host of the food podcast Small Bites and founder of the food website A Couple Cooks. Featured from the TODAY Show to Bon Appetit, Alex is author of Pretty Simple Cooking, named one of the “best vegetarian cookbooks” by Epicurious.