Homemade peppermint hot cocoa recipe made with cocoa powder is rich, creamy and a delicious warm drink for all ages. Tastes just like a peppermint mocha!
I love coffee, but when it's cold at night, there's nothing like a steaming mug of homemade hot cocoa to warm you up. Honestly, if I drank coffee at night, I'd be up for hours. Since it's officially the holiday season, I decided to tweak our favorite hot chocolate recipe and make it a little more festive.
So I made some homemade Peppermint Hot Cocoa for the family, and it was just perfect for this time of year. This smooth, minty and very chocolaty drink is will have you feeling warm and cozy in no time!
We had a cold front move in over Thanksgiving, so we actually had to wear jackets when we ventured out for Black Friday Shopping. One of my teens didn't think she would need a coat, and she ended up buying one just because she was so cold! She scored an awesome deal, though.
Anyway, since everyone was so cold, it was the perfect weather for hot cocoa, and I jumped at the chance to make some.
I used to use those instant packets, but a few years ago I started making my own homemade hot chocolate, which is basically a doctored-up version of the recipe found on the back of cocoa containers, and we've never gone back to the store bought variety. There really is a huge difference in taste, and the homemade kind is super easy.
This peppermint version is very rich. It's made with with cocoa powder on the stove, and it's flavored with peppermint extract, but it's perfect for the holidays!
How to make peppermint hot cocoa with cocoa powder
It's super easy to make hot cocoa with cocoa powder and a few other ingredients. Just mix the cocoa powder with sugar, salt and a little bit of cinnamon. Bonus points if you make everything match!
Then, add water and heat until boiling -- stirring constantly. The mixture will be thick, but you'll be adding milk and cream to thin it out.
Stir in the milk and cream, and let the hot cocoa warm up gradually. You don't want to let it boil. Then, add the peppermint extract, and you're ready to serve!
The heavy cream makes this peppermint hot chocolate extra rich, but you could use all milk if you want to. You could also reduce the peppermint, but since I love the combination of chocolate and peppermint, this was perfect.
My teen thought it tasted just like a peppermint mocha, which is one of my absolute favorite drinks. I guess that explains why I liked this hot chocolate so much!
So, if you're cold and worn out from braving the holiday shopping crowds, make some peppermint hot cocoa when you come home, and you'll probably feel better almost instantly. It worked for us!
More easy peppermint recipes
Homemade Peppermint hot cocoa recipe
Peppermint Hot Cocoa
- ½ cup unsweetened cocoa
- ½ cup granulated sugar
- ¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon
- ⅛ teaspoon sea salt
- ½ cup water
- 3 ½ cups milk
- ½ cup heavy cream or half and half
- ½ teaspoon peppermint extract
- In a medium saucepan, heat the cocoa, sugar, cinnamon, salt and water until boiling, stirring constantly.
- Reduce heat to medium, and stir in the milk and cream.
- Heat mixture until warm, but not boiling, and then turn off heat and stir in the peppermint extract.
- Pour into large mugs, and top with whipped cream and peppermint candies, if desired.
I hope you enjoy this homemade peppermint hot cocoa as much as we do!