Homemade Hot Cocoa Mix

Cornstarch gives the cocoa a smooth and creamy texture that doesn’t interfere with flavor.

  • Prep time: 10 minutes
  • Yield: 2 cups cocoa mix (about 24 servings)

Ingredients

BASE RECIPE: Plain Hot Cocoa Mix

  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 1 cup plus 2 tablespoons Dutch process cocoa powder
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt

VARIATION: Mexican Chocolate Cocoa Mix

  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 teaspoon finely grated orange zest
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 1 cup plus 2 tablespoons Dutch process cocoa powder
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 tablespoon ground cinnamon (or to taste)
  • 1/4 teaspoon ancho chile powder (optional)

VARIATION: Peppermint Hot Cocoa Mix

  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 tablespoon pure mint extract
  • 1 cup plus 2 tablespoons Dutch process cocoa powder
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt

To make one cup of hot cocoa:

  • 4 teaspoons hot cocoa mix
  • 3/4 cup milk (any milk of your choice)
  • Cinnamon sticks, optional
  • Peppermint sticks, optional
  • Mini-marshmallows, optional
  • Whipped cream, optional

Method

1 Mix the extract in with the sugar: In a bowl, place the sugar and sprinkle the extract over top (along with the orange zest, if making the Mexican Hot Chocolate variation). With a whisk or your fingers, work the extract into the sugar until thoroughly combined.

The addition of extract to the sugar makes it slightly damp, but the moisture is distributed when you mix it with the cocoa and cornstarch.

Hot Cocoa Mix

2 Add the remaining ingredients to the mix: Add the cocoa powder, cornstarch, salt, and cinnamon (if using) to the bowl and whisk to combine. Store in jars for up to three months.

Hot Cocoa Mix

To make one cup of hot cocoa:

1 Make a paste of the mix and cold milk: In a microwave-safe cup, stir 4 teaspoons of hot chocolate mix with 1 tablespoon of the milk until blended.

2 Stir in the rest of the milk. Stir until the paste is dissolved in the milk.

3 Warm the cocoa: Warm in a small pot on the stovetop until steaming, or in the microwave for about 1 minute. Serve immediately with any optional toppings you like.