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3-Ingredient Hot Cocoa Mix

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Make your own hot cocoa mix this season using 3 natural ingredients!

diy hot cocoa mix

The holidays are here so it’s time to bring out the candy canes, Christmas music and of course, the hot cocoa.

For as long as I can remember, we kept a stockpile of hot cocoa as soon as the temperature started to drop. Growing up, drinking hot cocoa from October to February was a routine. When I started college, my relationship with my beloved hot cocoa was quickly replaced with coffee (how else would I get through late-night study sessions?) and now, 16 months after graduation, I am just now getting back to drinking hot cocoa to get me through these chilly days.


My first step in rekindling with hot cocoa was heading to the grocery store and finding a box similar to the ones stocked in the pantry when I was a kid. Let me tell you, this was an overwhelming experience. There were so many to choose from! There was a Rich Chocolate mix, Double Chocolate mix, Candy Cane mix, and even a Smores-flavored mix! And to top it all off, most of these mixes were nearing $5.00 a box. I like variety and cannot imagine spending up to $10.00 on 2 boxes of hot cocoa just because I want dark hot cocoa today and peppermint hot cocoa tomorrow. And because I like challenging myself and attempt to make things from scratch as much as possible, I figured I’d take a look at the ingredient lists on these cocoa mixes and see how I can make my own.

hot cocoa mix

You guys, these boxed mixes contain up to 15 ingredients (some of them contain something called “carrageenan” – whatever that is). If there’s one thing you should know about me, it’s that I’m annoyed by difficult-to-pronounce words on products that I consume or put on myself or my dog. Hot cocoa should be simple and I prefer mine to be as natural as it can possibly be, which is why I ventured to make my own.


Luckily, in the same aisle of $5.00 hot cocoa mixes was a $3.18 tub of Hershey’s 100% Cacao. And get this – the only ingredient is cocoa! To say I was excited would be an understatement. It’s 100% unsweetened meaning I can make as many hot cocoa variations (with a ton of whipped cream!) as my heart desires.

With just cocoa, sugar and salt, you can have an assortment of your own hot cocoa through fall and winter!


3-Ingredient Hot Cocoa Mix
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Recipe type: Beverage
Serves: 1 serving
  • 1 cup milk
  • 100% cocoa powder
  • pinch of salt
  • sugar to taste
  1. For a single serving, warm milk in a microwave for 2 minutes.
  2. Stir in cocoa powder, salt and sugar until fully incorporated.
  3. Add extra flavorings as desired, such as vanilla or peppermint extract.
  4. Top with tons of whipped cream and enjoy!


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