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Homemade Gifts: Hot Chocolate

By Ole & Shaina Olmanson |

I crave hot chocolate in the winter. Creamy and warm, it’s the perfect drink to chase away the chilly wind of winter, and it makes a fantastic Christmas or holiday gift. The hot chocolate mix comes together quickly, is easy to package as a gift and even easier to prepare.

The most important part of this recipe is the cocoa. A good cocoa is going to make all the difference in the quality of your final product. I used Scharffen Berger’s Natural Cocoa Powder. Find one you love and trust before mixing it all up.

Then I added just a bit of cinnamon and a dash of cayenne to give my hot chocolate a bit of depth, but you could definitely nestle a vanilla bean sliced open in there for a vanilla-flavored variety.

Hot Chocolate Recipe adapted from Alton Brown

2 cups powdered sugar
1 cup cocoa
2 teaspoons cornstarch
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon (optional)
1 pinch cayenne pepper, or more to taste
1 cup whole/2% milk

Sift together all dry ingredients. Store in airtight containers. I used pint-sized mason jars and topped with a circle of fabric and a raffia tie, but this could be packed into zip-top bags and then into cut paper bags or any other airtight container for gifting.

To make hot chocolate: Add 1/4 cup of mix to the bottom of a mug. Heat 1 cup of milk until hot but not boiling. Pour milk over cocoa mix while stirring or whisking.

Makes 4 cups powdered hot chocolate mix.

For more chocolate recipes, head over to GoodLife Eats and My Baking Addiction for the Holiday Recipe Exchange!

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About Ole & Shaina Olmanson


Ole & Shaina Olmanson

Shaina Olmanson is the food writer and home cook behind Food for My Family. Shaina can usually be found in one of three places: cooking, at the computer or behind the camera. These three things occur in the kitchen simultaneously with her four children hanging from her apron strings as she teaches them to cook and the importance of eating locally, seasonally, organically and together. She is a former Babble Food blogger.

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15 thoughts on “Homemade Gifts: Hot Chocolate

  1. Amanda says:

    I cant wait to try this recipe… that bit of cayenne is amazing!!! Great job!

  2. Nancy-The Sensitive Pantry says:

    I love this. Great idea for a college kid stocking stuffer!

  3. Lori @ RecipeGirl says:

    I love this idea- and I love Nancy’s comment about about making it a stocking stuffer too!

  4. Liz@HoosierHomemade says:

    Yum! We have had Hot Cocoa every night lately! It’s pretty cold and snowy here in Indiana!

  5. [...] been cold. Negative degrees type of cold. Naturally, there has also been a healthy dose of hot chocolate to keep the chill at bay after sledding, making snow forts or just shoveling the two feet of snow [...]

  6. Michelle Malette says:

    This turned out great! I made it with my daycare kids as gifts for their parents. We’re also making up some more as holiday thank you’s for other people. Also going to try our hand at making marshmallows with my after school age kids and include a few home made marshmallows as well.

    We made it exactly as called for, except for cayenne since I didn’t have any and we added a few chopped up pieces of milk chocolate. Delicious!!

    Thanks for the recipe!!

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  8. Jennifer says:

    This sounds yummy! All the hot chocolate recipes I have have powdered milk and barely taste like cocoa. I am gonna have to try this one!

  9. Erin says:

    I have been trying hot chocolate mix recipes from the Internet for a few months now, looking for the perfect one. This is it! Thanks for sharing!

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