Homemade Rich Hot Chocolate Recipe

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This Homemade Rich Hot Chocolate Recipe for 2 is the perfect drink to cuddle up by the fire with. Especially warm after a long day of skiing, snowmobiling, or shoveling, you or your kids are never going to want the store-bought stuff again. Thick, creamy, and topped with toasted marshmallows – it’s simply the best!

Homemade Hot Chocolate

My kids are in love with hot chocolate. From the time the bon-fires start in the fall to when the snow starts flying, up until the new lambs are born in the barn during the spring, my kids know it’s hot coco season. Having the largest sweet tooth in the family myself, I can more than understand their excitement.

But I’ll be honest. Something so sweet, personal, and nostalgic just doesn’t seem right coming out of a can in powdered form from the grocery store. Don’t get me wrong, we always have one as a backup but whenever I can, I’m going to be making this delicious homemade hot chocolate in my mini Dutch oven and serving it up with extra marshmallows or fluff.

Homemade hot chocolate is best enjoyed fresh. So this recipe is perfect for two kids coming in from the snow, a date night curled up by the fire, or a mom needing a little solace once the kids go to bed.

Classic Hot Chocolate Ingredients

  • Milk – whole or raw
  • Unsweetened Cocoa Powder
  • Semi-sweet Chocolate Chips
  • Granulated Sugar
  • Whipping Cream
  • Cornstarch – for thickening
  • Marshmallows – for garnish

How to Make Classic Homemade Hot Chocolate

We certainly have a few varieties we like to try out on special occasions, but a classic is a classic for a reason. This hot chocolate is what I would consider the most decadent classic hot chocolate out there. It comes together very quickly and can just as easily be adjusted to the consumer’s tastes with added extracts or adult additions such as whiskey or peanut butter bourbon.

Step 1: In a 2 quart cast iron saucepan, over low heat, combine the milk, cocoa, chocolate, sugar, whipping cream, and cornstarch.
Step 2: Use a whisk to stir continuously until all the ingredients have dissolved and you notice the mixture thickening.
Step 3: Remove from the heat and continue to stir until ready to serve. Pour into mugs and top with marshmallows, whipped cream, fluff, or toasted marshmallows for a little something extra!

Can this recipe be doubled?

Yes! While some recipes will require you to make adjustments, this one does not. Simply straight double all ingredients, triple, whatever you need to make the quantity desired. Keep it warm in a slow cooker if you’re hosting a party!

Ingredient Substitutions

  • Milk – while I love using whole or raw milk for the thick creaminess and extra fat, you can use any milk you have on hand. You can use vegan milk, evaporated milk, and even powdered milk! Sky is the limit here.
  • Unsweetened Cocoa Powder – if you have sweetened on hand, go ahead and use that. Just back off on the amount of added granulated sugar you put in to compensate. You can also use Dutch Cocoa Powder, a personal favorite.
  • Granulated Sugar – you can use typical kitchen sugar, coconut sugar, sugar in the raw, Xylitol, honey, or maple syrup. There are only a few Tablespoons in this recipe so the switch out can remain 1:1.
  • Semi-Sweet Chocolate Chips – You can use dark chocolate, white chocolate, a mixture of semi-sweet and peanut butter chips… it all sounds so good! Get creative! Just use GOOD chocolate. If you have baker’s bars of chocolate, even better!
  • Whipping Cream – You can use half’n’half, heavy cream, and any non-dairy equivalents.
  • Cornstarch – Tapioca, Arrowroot, and Xanthan Gum are among my top recommendations. You can choose to omit the cornstarch as well for a thinner, more store-bought like thickness.

Topping Ideas & Flavor Add-ins

  • Whipped Cream
  • Marshmallows (toasted or non)
  • Fluff
  • Crushed Peppermint Candies or a Candy Cane
  • Caramel Drizzle
  • Flavored Extracts (vanilla, peppermint, caramel, rum, strawberry, etc)
  • Alcohol
  • Chili Powder or Cinnamon
  • Shot of espresso
  • Shaved Chocolate

Alternative Cooking Methods

This recipe works great over a campfire or woodstove! The trick is regulating the heat. Be sure to not let your hot chocolate boil or you’ll end up with a grainy texture vs the smooth creamy one we’re going for.

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Homemade Hot Chocolate Recipe

Course Drinks
Cuisine American
Prep Time 3 minutes
Cook Time 5 minutes
Total Time 8 minutes
Servings 2
Rich and decadent, this thick, creamy, homemade hot chocolate recipe will be your new go-to over the store-bought stuff. Made quickly and easily adjusted to anyone's tastes!


  • 2 quart dutch oven or saucepan


  • 2 cups whole milk
  • 4 Tablespoons unsweetened Cocoa powder
  • 2 Tablespoons semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • 2-3 Tablespoons granulated sugar
  • 4 Tablespoons heavy whipping cream
  • 2 teaspoons cornstarch


  • Add all the ingredients to a saucepot or 2 quart dutch oven over low heat. Whisk or stir until all is melted and combined. Be sure to simmer, not to boil.
  • Once all is warmed through and dissolved, remove from the heat and serve. Top with your favorite hot chocolate toppings or adult add-ins.


Be sure to add in the cornstarch at the beginning so it all dissolves. Also, DO NOT let your hot chocolate boil or it will get grainy in texture. 
If making this on the woodstove, add a heat-safe trivet or mason jar rings to lift the saucepot off the woodstove. This will minimize the direct heat contact and lower the chances of an accidental boil.


Calories: 416kcal | Carbohydrates: 40g | Protein: 11g | Fat: 26g | Saturated Fat: 16g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 7g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 66mg | Sodium: 120mg | Potassium: 582mg | Fiber: 5g | Sugar: 30g | Vitamin A: 844IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 317mg | Iron: 2mg

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