5 Ways to Liven Up Your Mug of Hot Chocolate
Liven Up a Tasty Beverage
Hot chocolate is a favourite beverage for many people year round.
The drink is made from cocoa powder or from a manufactured product containing cocoa powder, such as the instant powdered mix you get at the grocery store. Hot chocolate is a soothing beverage that can warm you up when you are feeling cold or help alleviate your stresses after a hard day. With chocolate at the centre of the mix, the drink is delicious too!
Your mug of hot chocolate can be enhanced with a few toppers, side options, and variations to the cocoa powder mix. Liven up your mug of hot chocolate as a fun and yummy way to add a kick to the beverage!
A great way to create new flavours for your mug of hot chocolate is by adding spices. The best ones to enhance your beverage are cinnamon, ground nutmeg, and chili powder.
A great, easy recipe for cinnamon hot chocolate is provided by Linda Nilsen at All Recipes. Click here to get the recipe online. While Linda uses a half teaspoon of ground cinnamon, you can use a cinnamon stick instead. Stir the stick around the beverage and leave in while you drink from the mug for a taste that intensifies the longer the stick sits there.
Cinnamon Livens Up Your Mug
- Ground Nutmeg and Chili powder
Do you want to add a zesty quality to your hot chocolate? Try adding half a teaspoon of chili powder and a quarter teaspoon ground nutmeg to the mix. These two ingredients can be added to instant mix or into the mix you are making from scratch. A great spiced hot chocolate recipe from scratch is found here, care of the Yummly website.
Add vanilla extract to liven up your mug of hot chocolate. Vanilla compliments the chocolate flavour very well. A half teaspoon of vanilla extract per mug should suffice, though you can add more if you desire a stronger flavour.
Continue with the vanilla theme by adding vanilla ice cream to the tops of each beverage after the hot cocoa is poured. The ice cream can be scooped up from the top of the mug with a spoon before it melts, stirred into the mix, or sipped slowly with a straw instead. There are no wrong moves here! For an even more decadent flavour, try drizzling chocolate sauce over the ice cream!
A Drink to Remember: Add Coffee
Hot Chocolate and Coffee
Put another twist on traditional hot chocolate by adding coffee to the beverage. This type of drink is often called a Mocha Hot Chocolate in restaurants.
Better Homes and Gardens, in the Recipes & Cooking section of the website, suggests adding instant coffee crystals along with the cocoa powder and other traditional ingredients for hot chocolate. This recipe is called the Mocha Hot Cocoa Mix. The kick of caffeine may be just what you need in the morning to start your day off right!
The Chilled Variety
If you prefer to drink cold beverages during the summer, transform traditional hot chocolate into a refreshing chilled beverage. The iced drink tastes best when made from scratch, having more flavour without artificial taste of some instant mixes. Bev at Food.com provides a great, straight-forward recipe for iced hot chocolate.
Following her recipe here, combine the required amounts of milk, water, and sugar together, simmer all in a saucepan, remove from heat, and then whisk in finely chopped chocolate. Here is the difference with hot chocolate: you refrigerate about four hours to chill the mixture. Then, add more milk to the mix and blend until frothy. Pour into glasses and add ice. Have a refreshing glass: delicious!
Fun with Marshmallows
Liven up your mug of hot chocolate by adding edible goodies after the beverage has been poured into mugs. Try marshmallows, whipping cream, or even a candy cane!
The classic combination: marshmallows with hot chocolate. There are ways to add variety too. Try using a combination of mini-marshmallows with the larger sized varieties. There are flavoured marshmallows as well to try aside from the standard vanilla. Strawberry and chocolate are popular flavours. Plush Puffs Marshmallows offer Caramel Swirl and Chocolate Chipetta too!
- Whipping Cream
The delicious drink can be topped as well with a generous helping of whipping cream. Stir the cream into the drink or lick off the top of the mug before savouring the hot chocolate.
- Candy Cane
Pair the steaming cup with a side of candy cane. Try dipping the candy cane into the mug and then sucking on the candy delight. You can also use the candy cane as a stir stick in the hot chocolate; it will melt away in the warmth of the mug and your hot chocolate will have a minty flavour to it!
So Many Fun Ways to Liven Up Hot Cocoa!
The Right Mix
Enjoy playing around with the drink recipes. You may find that you like slightly more cinnamon than a particular recipe calls for or that you enjoy the candy cane variety as a treat at night. Personalize the hot chocolate mixes to your own taste and have fun in the process! Then, sit back and relax as you slowly savour the sweet hot chocolate you have made!
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