When it’s especially cold out, nothing is better than a steaming cup of Espresso Hot Chocolate. Chopped chocolate is melted into hot milk, heavy cream, espresso, cinnamon and vanilla. This hot cocoa with a caffeine boost is the perfect thing on a chilly winter day.
I don’t know about you, but I cannot get my mind wrapped around it being Christmas in less than two weeks! I’ve done most of my shopping via the internet (thank you, Amazon Prime and your 2 day shipping!) but I need to find a day to actually go out and get the things that I can’t buy online i.e stocking stuffers. However now that Michigan is finally in the throws of winter, I don’t want to leave the warmth and coziness of my home and drive in the snow. If I do leave, like to grocery shop or something, I always take a travel mug of coffee with me. It’s how I cope with most things. But, BUT! now I have a new BFF —> espresso hot chocolate!
Hot cocoa with some sass.
Haileigh is my tea drinker, while Malloree is my daughter who is obseesed with hot chocolate and also loves coffee. Since Mal was 3 years old she would drink the last sip or two in my coffee mug. The last cold sip *shudders*. Now she’s 13 and on weekends she makes her own cup of coffee and (in my opinion) proceeds ruin it with way to much creamer, but hey that’s her prerogative. However, just about every school morning she will make herself a cup of hot chocolate [in the Keurig] and takes it to class with her in an insulated travel mug. If she’s at home then she will pile a bunch of whipped cream on top with sprinkles. My girl loves her hot beverages.
With her in mind, I made this espresso hot chocolate. It’s the best of both her worlds in one mug, topped with marshmallows and homemade chocolate syrup.
To make this super cozy espresso hot chocolate you will need:
- whole milk
- heavy cream
- instant espresso powder
- kosher salt
- vanilla extract
When using semi-sweet chocolate in hot cocoa, you will undoubtedly get a grainy appearance. Like it hasn’t fully melted. I have no idea how to avoid it, but to me it isn’t detectable when I drink it.
Pour 4 cups of whole milk and 2 cup heavy cream into a pot. Stir and heat on medium until hot but not boiling.
Meanwhile, chop up 12 ounces of semi-sweet chocolate. Try to use a good quality chocolate, I could only find Baker’s. I was hoping to find Scharffenberger but was out of luck. The hot cocoa was still delicious! I’m just a chocolate snob.
In a medium bowl, combine 1 tablespoon of instant espresso powder, a few pinches of kosher salt and ground cinnamon.
Stir and then add in 1 cup of hot water. Stir to dissolve and set aside.
I personally don’t think this hot chocolate has a strong coffee flavor.
Feel free to increase the espresso powder (just not the water) if you’re looking for a coffee flavored hot cocoa.
Once the milk and cream is hot [but not boiling] whisk in 1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons of granulated sugar and add in all of the chopped chocolate.
Then stir in the espresso mixture and the 1-1/2 teaspoons of pure vanilla extract.
If the espresso hot chocolate loses some of it’s heat, place it back onto your stove top. Reheat on medium-low until hot. Do not boil.
Pour or better yet, ladle the warm espresso hot chocolate into mugs and top with whipped cream or marshmallows and chocolate syrup. Add sprinkles, chocolate shavings or even caramel. Choose your own adventure here, the sky is the limit.
Not too thick or too rich, this espresso hot chocolate got 2 thumbs up from me and from Malloree.
Not pictured are the hot chocolate mustaches.
Espresso Hot Chocolate
- 4 cups whole milk
- 2 cups heavy cream
- 1 tablespoon instant espresso powder
- 2 pinches ground cinnamon
- 1 pinch kosher salt
- 6 tablespoons granulated sugar
- 12 ounces chopped semi-sweet chocolate, chopped
- 1 cup hot water
- 1½ teaspoons pure vanilla extract
- Add the milk and heavy cream to a large pot or dutch oven and heat on medium to medium-high heat until hot but not boiling.
- Meanwhile in a heat-safe bowl, add the espresso powder, cinnamon and salt. Pour in the hot water and stir to combine. Set off to the side.
- Once the milk and cream are hot, stir in the sugar and chocolate. Stir until the sugar is dissolved and the chocolate is melted.Then add in the espresso mixture and vanilla.
- If the hot chocolate cools at all, reheat on medium until hot, but not boiling.
- Ladle espresso hot chocolate into mugs and top with marshmallows or whipped cream, chocolate sauce, caramel and/or sprinkles.
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