There are just 3 ingredients in this creamy, cozy hot chocolate recipe that uses chocolate chips instead of cocoa powder. Delicious dairy-free (vegan) options are included.
Chocolate chips -Using chocolate chips makes this a super simple recipe. When using cocoa powder it is also necessary to add sugar. Chocolate chips are already sweetened so just melt them with the milk and you’re ready to go. If you prefer milk chocolate or dark chocolate, either one of those will work.
The measurement included in the recipe card below is for standard sized chocolate chips. If you use mini chocolate chips decrease the amount by 1 tablespoon. If you use chocolate chunks increase by 2 tablespoons.
For a vegan, dairy-free chocolate, Enjoy Life is an excellent option.
Milk – I am mostly dairy-free and avoid milk, so I use a milk substitute. Hemp, coconut, almond, soy, oat, any milk sub will work. Milk substitutes are usually a little bit thinner in texture than cow’s milk, so I use a different proportion of milk and cream to be sure that it is super creamy.
Cream – Cream gives a wonderful rich, thick texture to this hot chocolate. If you prefer to keep the fat level down, it is okay to use all milk. Just substitute the same amount of milk.
There are several excellent dairy-free cream substitutes that will work in this recipe. Nut Pods and Califia Farms unsweetened creamer are good dairy-free cream alternatives. You will use a higher proportion of cream if using a dairy-free milk sub. Regardless of which cream substitute you use, be sure it is unsweetened.
Hot Chocolate Additions
Of course this hot chocolate is just perfect on its own. But there are ingredients you can add to give it a special flavor.
- Cinnamon is a wonderful flavor pairing with chocolate. Add one teaspoon ground cinnamon and cook it with the milk and chocolate chips.
- Espresso powder makes this a wonderful mocha, hot chocolate. Add 1 teaspoon espresso powder.
- Spicy hot chocolate – add 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper. Sounds crazy? A spicy kick with chocolate is an awesome combination.
- Peanut butter powder – peanut butter and chocolate is a classic combination. If you can find powdered peanut butter, add 1 tablespoon and cook it with the cream, milk and chocolate.
- Peppermint – peppermint and chocolate is a perfectly festive flavor combo. Add one teaspoon peppermint oil or flavor and top with crushed peppermint candy.
How to Make Hot Chocolate From Scratch with Chocolate Chips
- Nut Pods Dairy Free Cream
- 1¾ c milk (see "Notes" below for dairy-free options)
- ¾ c heavy cream
- ½ c semi-sweet chocolate chips (standard sized chips)* or 4 oz bar chocolate
- Place all of the ingredients in a small pot.
- Place over low-medium heat and heat for 2-3 minutes.
- Stir with a whisk to break up and combine the chocolate chips. If it begins bubbling, turn the heat down.
- Continue heating, stirring often, until all of the chips are melted and it is a dark chocolate color.
- Serve with whipped cream or marshmallows.