Hot Chocolate

2015-12-17 10.38.27RECIPE #148, DAY #173

ORIGINAL RECIPE: I’ve been experimenting with and whipping this up for years*

TIMING: 5 minutes

DIFFICULTY: Easy; just make sure you hover over the pot

TOOLS: A whisk and a small, heavy-bottomed sauce pan

COOK TYPE: Stovetop

HEALTH: Well, milk and cocoa definitely have their health benefits. On the other hand, you want to avoid sugar and fat (and also “blood chocolate”). I buy premium ingredients and have modified this recipe to use a small amount of maple syrup, one of the healthier sugars. If you are health-conscious, leave out the marshmallows, home-make your own, or use a small amount of fresh-whipped whipped cream.

2016-01-23 15.10.35EXPERIENCE: So we make this all fall and winter long. Along with a bowl of popcorn, this is our standard after-school or movie-time snack. It’s also amazing after having come in from a walk or hike in the cold (or sledding). It takes minutes, and is a happy compromise between a boxed packet (with water–ew!) and some sort of melted chocolate concoction with granulated sugar.

NOTES: Options for garnishing include marshmallows, marshmallow creme, julienne mint, a candy cane, a cinnamon stick, cinnamon, cinnamon and cayenne, Irish cream liquor, brandy, milk froth, or whipped cream and chocolate shavings.

This recipe serves 1 and easily expands for as many people as you have. I usually make it for 3 or 4 people, multiplying everything by 3 or 4.


  1. Place a small, heavy-bottomed sauce pan over low or medium-low heat. Add 1 cup milk and whisk in 1 tablespoon cocoa powder, 1 tablespoon maple syrup, 1 teaspoon powdered milk, a couple drops vanilla extract, and 1 small pinch salt. Continue to whisk, slowly, until milk is steaming. Serve hot.


Serve to chilly people, with one of the garnishes listed above, like a candy cane and some marshmallow creme.

*Recipe changed from the original.


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