If you’re serious about your hot chocolate, most hot chocolate mix just doesn’t cut it. You can improve hot chocolate mix by trying these simple tips.
1) First things first–make sure to buy a good hot chocolate mix! You can do better than Swiss Miss! Why, I ask you, do they feel the need to put partially hydrogenated oil in hot chocolate? Disgusting!
Make sure that when you purchase a hot chocolate mix, the ingredients are pretty much limited to sugar, cocoa, and/or chocolate (cocoa, cocoa butter, soy lecithin, and vanilla might be included in the chocolate). Ghirardelli’s Double Chocolate Premium Hot Cocoa, Equal Exchange’s Hot Chocolate, and Green & Black’s Hot Chocolate Mix are all yummy choices.
2) Decide what liquid to use. Hot chocolate tastes best if you use plain old milk, but, if you’re like me, you might not drink a lot of milk or you are allergic to it. You may want to use soy, almond, rice, or powdered milk.
Tips: I usually drink soy milk, but I don’t like the taste in hot chocolate. Instead, I use about 2/3 boiling water and 1/3 cold soymilk just for thickness.
If you are using powdered milk, it is far easier to work with instant.
For super rich cocoa, try using part half and half.
3) Measure the appropriate amount of hot chocolate mix into your mug by following the instructions on the mix. If you are using powdered milk, mix the appropriate amount of powder in with the chocolate powder.
4) Heat the liquid. I usually heat it to boiling, but you can heat to drinking temperature too.
5) Add the liquid to your chocolate powder until the mug is only about 1/3 full. Using a small amount of liquid allows you to stir vigorously without sloshing over the sides.
6) Stir vigorously until the powder is thoroughly mixed into the liquid.
7) Continue adding liquid until your mug is full, then stir gently. If your liquid is very hot, you may wish to fill the mug to almost full, then add a little cold milk to bring the temperature down a bit.
8) Optional: top with whip cream, a dash of cinnamon, and or some shaved chocolate. Other yummy additions include 1/4 teaspoon vanilla or almond extract, or a bit of malted milk powder.
9) Drink up!
Good hot chocolate mix can be great–it just needs a little help!