Hot chocolate is the ultimate in comfort and indulgence. Really good hot chocolate is difficult to find and often comes at quite a cost, especially if what you after is a hot chocolate that’s packed with natural ingredients and not entirely sugar based. I’ve found it easier and more reliable to simply make my own, that way I have control over the ingredients, and how creamy and chocolatey it is – that might also be the control freak in me finding it’s way to the surface.
When it comes to drinks, my sweet tooth mostly disappears. I say mostly because clearly, I cannot resist the urge to put chocolate in almost everything. This hot chocolate has been my little saving grace this winter, and during all times when I need a little extra comfort after a tough day. That’s probably because chocolate stimulates endorphin production, which is what gives us the feeling of pleasure – combined with the fact that it contains serotonin it makes the perfect little pick me up.
We put a little Mexican twist on this recipe by adding some fresh chilli and tried our best to make sure it was creamy and decadent, but still on the healthy side – exactly how I like my hot chocolate. We promise that once you start making your own, you won’t feel the need to buy store bought powders again.
1. Add your Base Ingredients
Your base ingredients are those that will always stay consistent, such as your cocoa powder, chocolate – try and keep it above 60% to keep the sugar content low, sweetener and choice of plant-based milk. Using only these ingredients will always leave you with a creamy hot chocolate base.
This is where you can choose your combinations or any extras. For this hot chocolate, we decided to add a Mexican twist by adding some extra chilli flakes to kick the heat up a little. We also love using a combination of almond and coconut, but that’s only if we have both available. At this stage, you could also add ingredients like cinnamon, vanilla, cardomom or any other warming spices depending on the how you prefer your hot chocolate.
3. Let it Melt
Once you’ve chosen your added extras, place your saucepan over a medium heat and using a wooden spoon or whisk slowly stir to combine. Once your chocolate has melted together with your other ingredients and you’re left with a smooth mixture remove from heat.
Nows the time to gather everyone and pour your hot chocolate into your mugs, and ready for any added extras. These are totally customisable too.
5. Get a Little Extra
Everyone loves to feel special, and the little extras that go on the top do just that. topped with extra coconut milk to add that extra creaminess, some fresh chilli for added heat, toasted hazelnuts for a little crunch and some hemp seeds for added protein. Enjoy!
- 1 cup Full Fat Coconut Milk
- 1 cup Unsweetened Almond Milk
- 2 tbsp Coconut Oil
- 60 g 70% Dark Chocolate roughly chopped
- 1/4 cup Cocoa Powder
- 1/4 cup Hazlenuts skins removed
- 1 tbsp Hemp Seeds
- 1 tbsp Maple Syrup
- 1 Chilli Sliced into rounds
- 1 tsp Dried Chilli Flakes
Preheat your oven to 180 degrees Celcius and line a baking sheet with baking paper.
Spread your hazelnuts on your prepared baking sheet and once your oven has reached temperature roast for 15-20 minutes, or until fragrant and golden. After the 10 minute mark keep checking on them to make sure they don't burn.
While your hazelnuts roast, place your coconut milk, dried chilli flakes, almond milk, coconut oil, chocolate and cocoa powder in a saucepan over medium heat and using a whisk stir to combine. Keep stirring until your chocolate and coconut oil has melted and combines to form a smooth, drinkable mixture. Remove from heat once completed.
Remove your hazelnuts from the oven and roughly chop them once cooled.
Separate your hot chocolate mixture into two cups, add your maple syrup to taste and top with extra coconut milk, fresh chilli, hemp seeds and roasted hazelnuts.