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The BEST Vegan Hot Cocoa

Whether you’re cozying up in PJs and a blanket by the fire, heading out for an evening drive to look at Christmas lights, or snuggling on the couch to watch movies, there’s nothing quite like a mug filled with steamy hot cocoa to make a winter moment feel extra special.

red sweater mug filled with vegan hot cocoa topped with whipped cream, on a white plate with spoon and plaid napkin in front of a fireplace

You can find this along with many additional fun and festive recipes in my cookbook, Vegan Christmas Cookies & Cocoa!

Why This Recipe Works

  • Each sip of this vegan hot cocoa has all of the rich, delicious chocolate yumminess you crave when it’s cold outside.
  • Not only does it taste amazing, this cocoa is dairy free and gluten free!
  • The hot chocolate has deep indulgent flavors, but is made with just a handful of ingredients. You likely have everything needed in the kitchen right now.
  • Making homemade hot cocoa could not be any more simple! It requires only 3 easy steps, and in less than 10 minutes you’re snuggled up with a warm mug of chocolatey deliciousness.
top view ingredients on a wood board: dairy free milk, vanilla extract, sugar, chocolate chips, cocoa powder

How to Make The BEST Vegan Hot Cocoa Recipe

This quick and easy recipe will have you enjoying a mugful with your favorite blanket faster than you can say season’s greetings!

  1. Warm the milk in a saucepan over medium-high heat until steamy. Stir frequently and be careful to not let the milk get too hot… It should be very warm but not boiling.
pot with milk warming on the stove
  1. Whisk in the remaining ingredients.
top view metal pot with oat milk, chocolate powder with metal whisk

Continue to whisk until the sugar and cocoa powder are dissolved and the chocolate chips are melted.

top view metal pot with whisked frothy hot chocolate
  1. Pour into mugs while hot. Serve with marshmallows or whipped cream, if you like!
close view red sweater mug filled with vegan hot cocoa and whipped cream

Looking For More Fun Drink Recipes? Then You Have To Try My:

Recipe Tips And Variations

  • Do not walk away from the milk warming on the stove, as it may boil over if it gets too hot. 
  • For richer hot cocoa, add 1 extra tablespoon each cocoa powder and chocolate chips.
  • Add a pinch of cayenne pepper powder to the cocoa powder for a fun and spicy flavor boost.
  • Really make your sleigh bells ring and enjoy hot chocolate with a cookie! Some of our winter favorites are chocolate chunk peppermint brownie cookies and soft and chewy vegan ginger snaps.

Frequently Asked Questions

What are the best dairy free milks to make vegan hot chocolate?

I typically use almond or soy milk, but other plant-based nondairy beverages are also great! Cashew milk is also a great option. The only type to avoid for hot drinks would be oat milk with added omega-3’s. Reason being, the source for the omega-3’s is typically algae oil, which typically doesn’t taste great when the milk is heated.

Is this recipe gluten free?

Yes, it is! But double check ingredient labels to be sure.

What toppings are best with hot cocoa?

We love vegan marshmallows for that classic cocoa experience. Dairy free whipped cream is also delicious! Get extra fancy and add sprinkles or a drizzle of chocolate or caramel sauce on top, too.

Can this recipe be doubled or halved?

Yes and yes! As-is the recipe makes two mugfuls of cocoa. Halve the ingredients to make one serving. Double or triple the proportions for a larger batch.

mug full of hot cocoa with whipped cream

The BEST Vegan Hot Cocoa

Whether you’re cozying up in PJs and a blanket by the fire, heading out for an evening drive to look at Christmas lights, or snuggling on the couch to watch Christmas movies, there’s nothing quite like a mug filled with steamy hot cocoa to make a holiday moment feel extra special.
5 from 1 vote
Print Pin Rate
Course: Dessert, Drinks
Cuisine: holiday, vegan
Keyword: dairy free hot chocolate, dairy free hot cocoa, vegan hot chocolate
Prep Time: 3 minutes
Cook Time: 5 minutes
Total Time: 8 minutes
Servings: 2 servings
Calories: 163kcal

Ingredients

Instructions

  • Warm the milk in a saucepan over medium-high heat until steamy.
  • Whisk in the remaining ingredients until the cocoa powder is dissolved and the chocolate chips are melted.
  • Serve with marshmallows or whipped cream, if you like!

Notes

  • For richer hot cocoa, add 1 extra tablespoon each cocoa powder and chocolate chips.
  • Do not walk away from the milk warming on the stove, as it may boil over if it gets too hot.
  • Avoid making the hot cocoa with an oat milk that has omega-3’s (such as algae oil) added as it can make your hot cocoa taste a bit fishy.

Nutrition

Calories: 163kcal | Carbohydrates: 25g | Protein: 2g | Fat: 5g | Iron: 3mg
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