It is official—winter is here. With that means snow, or, at least, visions of snow, if you happen to live in a warmer state, cozy vibes, all the soft blankets and menus featuring your favorite comfort foods. But, it also means cold temperatures, drying weather and trying to strike the perfect balance between not overheating in your zillion layers and freezing your ears off because you decided to dress in something a bit too trendy when you should have stuck with cold weather staples.
We get it, we have all been there, but this winter, we only want to bring you cozy vibes, which means the quintessential drink of the season: hot cocoa, hot chocolate, drinking chocolate or whatever you call it is a classic. Warm chocolaty goodness topped with whipped cream, marshmallows, extra shaved chocolate or whatever you can dream up. If you want to get into the spirit of the season, give our ideas for hot cocoa recipes a look.
This recipe for hot cocoa seems to evoke a time gone by. Packed with cocoa powder and heavy cream, it is a comforting drink at its finest. Allrecipes author JEANIE BEAN says that the smell the hot cocoa makes once it is on the stove is ‘good for the soul.’ We happen to agree, so why not give it a try?
Great for those who choose not to consume animal products or who are intolerant to lactose, this drink is creamy and delicious, sans-guilt. Pro tip: substitute your non-dairy milk of choice. Oat, cashew, soy and rice milks also work.
Looking for a last minute gift idea, or something that will just last through the season? Mix up this jar of ingredients to make hot cocoa whenever you have a craving. Add non-dairy creamer for some extra variety, suggests author Earla Taylor, the recipe’s author. Cinnamon or peppermint could work well here.
For those looking for a little kick to their drink, this Rachael Ray Every Day idea may be just their cup of cocoa. Bailey’s Almande adds some grown up flavor to this super chocolate sip.
If something portable is more your speed, try these fudgy brownies, where hot cocoa mix is a star ingredient. To cut through the sweetness, add some chopped nuts, like one recipe reviewer did. Walnuts work great!
Chocolate pudding mix, cinnamon and whipped cream make this hot drink even easier to make. Just mix them up, combine and sip!
Dark chocolate lovers, this one is for you. Thick and creamy, this is best served in a tall mug.
Indulge with the addition of Baileys to your hot chocolate. Sprinkles, whipped cream, caramel or chocolate sauce would add to the overall festive feel.
Spice things up with cayenne pepper, and enjoy hot chocolate as the Mayans did. No need for whipped cream or marshmallows, the drink is enough.
For those who have had drinking chocolate in Europe, this recipe replicates that experience. The secret? Half-and-half and butter.
Make use of all the leftover candy canes and put them in a hot drink. This one is a favorite for kids of all ages.
Best wishes for a happy, safe and healthy winter season. May you drink many cups of hot cocoa.