DIY Homemade Hot Cocoa Mix

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Hot Chocolate Mix 2I know that it’s the weekend before Valentine’s Day, so I should be posting either a dessert that is in the shape of a heart, or a recipe for a romantic dinner.  If my weekend baking goes well, you’ll see Valentine’s Day cookies on the blog next week, but today I wanted to share a recipe that will help you cuddle up next to your loved one.  There’s nothing like sipping on a nice hot mug of cocoa when it’s cold outside, snuggled up with your significant other (or child).

Okay, so maybe that’s not exactly how I enjoy this drink every time I have it.  Maybe I also like to sip on it while sitting alone at my dining room table, laptop in front of me, glancing out the window every few seconds, daydreaming about how one day I’d like to be lounging in a log cabin with this mug in hand, feet kicked up, snow falling outside, me warm inside…you get the picture.

Hot Chocolate MixIn any case, this hot chocolate mix must make its presence into your home and replace any other store-bought packets.  It’s creamier and richer than any pre-mix I’ve ever tasted.  What a great gift option, as well!  Just package some mix into small mason jars or cellophane baggies, then gift it with written mixing instructions.  I’m sure you’ll make someone’s long winter much more enjoyable if you do!

Hot Chocolate Mix 4

UPDATE 12/16/2012:  Thanks to reader, Miranda, you can download printable labels for gifting this cocoa mix.  I recommend printing them on sticker paper.  They will fit perfectly to half-pint mason jar lids.

Click above image to download printable labels.

Homemade Hot Cocoa Mix

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Total Time: 10 minutes

Yield: About 20 servings

Serving Size: 1/3 cup

Homemade Hot Cocoa Mix

  • 3 cups nonfat instant dry milk powder
  • 2 cups powdered sugar
  • 1 1/2 cups unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 1/2 cups white chocolate chips
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt

Mix all ingredients into a large bowl. Pour half of the mixture into the bowl of a food processor and process until the chocolate is finely ground. Transfer to an airtight container, then repeat with the remaining mix. Store in the airtight container for up to 3 months.

To make the hot cocoa drink, mix 1/3 cup of the cocoa mix with 1 cup hot milk.

Source: Slightly adapted from Brown Eyed Baker, originally Cook's Country

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  1. this sounds great – i make hot chocolate on a stick sometimes but it is some work so this is a great alternative and will keep alot longer!
    but I need a NON dairy version – my boyfriend is a choc-a-holic but is lactose intolerant. Any suggestions for a subsitution for the dry milk?

    • Hi Merrill, I’m not sure about a substitute for dry milk. A Google search might help you more than I can. 🙂 Maybe there is a soy or almond milk powder out there that would work? I honestly have no idea.

      • you can sue the same amount of non-dairy powdered creamer.The creamer makes it a little creamier and you can get it in flavoers if you like a different taste.

        • I would be careful about using non-dairy creamers as they are loaded with high fructose corn syrup. If you know of any non dairy creamer without high fructose corn syrup, I’d like to know where to get it.

      • My husband is also lactose intolerant and I’ve used powdered or canned goat’s milk for several recipes because it’s naturally very low in lactose with great results. Nobody can even taste the difference. It’s right by the regular powdered milk at my WinCo. 🙂

    • Merrill – you may be able to substitute in non-dairy creamer. I have had success using chocolate non-dairy creamer in the past and they come in so many flavors!

    • I use DariFree non-dairy milk powder in other applications (haven’t tried this recipe yet). It’s lumpy if you mix it with cool water, but hot water smooths it out so I imagine it would be fine. I’m also gonna try just subbing the white chocolate chips for semi sweet (some cheap brands are dairy free). Might be a little rich so I’d try it on a smaller scale first!

    • stephanie says:

      I am also lactose intolerant (very sensitive, my daughter can do some things and be fine, I can handle milk products and it can effect me). I buy powdered rice milk and use just as you would dry milk powder. I’m assuming they mean non-instant. If they mean instant than I would use half of what they call for since the rice milk powder is non-instant.
      I know it seems like a lot but we go through it. I use it to make bread and when making pancakes with bisquick and any other thing that calls for milk. They also have soy milk powder if he prefers soy.
      I know you can get carob chips to replace chocolate chips, but I’m not sure about any white chocolate chips.

    • Cher Bales says:

      try dried coconut milk. I buy mine at Wilderness Family.

  2. jennifer says:

    Can I freeze this to make it last longer?

    • Good question! I have no idea! Maybe a Google search can tell you? Sorry!

    • I make mine a little different and in much larger batches. I store it in airtight cannisters and it lasts about a year. I do not use chocolate chips but rather Nestle’s chocolate milk mix. I also use a combination of powdered milk and non-dairy creamer. Finally I use regular sugar or Truvia instead of powdered sugar.

      • Kathy, will you share your recipe? I’m trying to find a sugarfree or diabetic-friendly recipe using Truvia. My mom is diabetic and loves Truvia.

  3. Hi Nikki,can I ask what brand of nonfat dry milk powder and unsweetened cocoa powder do you used? Is it a dutch process of cocoa powder?

    • Sure Kimi! For the nonfat dry milk powder, the brand is Village Farm (not that I”m stuck to that brand, it’s just what’s available in my grocery store). And, I use a blend of natural and dutched cocoa powder. Brand name is SaCo. I love it. Even though it’s not available in my grocery stores here in MS, I either stock up on it when I’m traveling or have my mom send me some. 🙂 Here is a link to a 3-pack of it on Amazon.

      • I can’t find SaCo on my grocery stores too,so I used Hershey’s cocoa powder I hope it’s fine. Thank you so much Nikki,finally I can make a hot cocoa mix for my boyfriend’s birthday gift. I love your blog :-*

      • I also make homemade hot cocoa and I use Nestle Quick,Powdered Sugar,Dry Powdered Milk,& Non-Dairy Creamer.It’s sooo good.

  4. Can this be used in hot water instead of milk?

    • Hi Vicki,
      I think that’s going to be up to taste preference. Although I haven’t tried it, it seems like you could use water instead since the dry milk is included. But, it’s definitely not going to be as creamy. If you like your hot cocoa more watery, then of course. But, again, that’s totally up to preference. It should melt and mix the same just fine. 🙂

      • If you use water add powdered creamer to make it creamier 🙂

      • Anonymous says:

        I used whole dry milk instead of nonfat in my mix; then I just added hot water to make the hot chocolate. It tasted very good; but to cool it off and make it just a bit richer, I topped it off with cold lowfat milk, maybe 1/8 cup. This was kid tested, with a rating of “excellent”.

  5. Yum! This sounds delicious. I might also experiment and grind up some candy canes with it.. one of my favorite flavors of Steven’s Hot Chocolate is one they only make at Christmas with bits of candy cane. Anyway, thanks for this post. I’m going to give it a try as soon as it gets cool enough to even consider hot chocolate again here in AZ.

  6. i have made this receipe for years, i mean i started back in the 70’s making this. i use nonfat milk powder(1 package) and then i use carnation powder cream. i always use dutch chocolate because it seems to make it richer tasting. as for the sugar i use just regular sugar. but now i have to watch my sugar intake so i use splenda baking sugar. i don’t use marshmallows but my husband does so i keep a bag of minimarshmallows in the freezer for him to use. i think the homemade cocoa mix is so much richer that the store bought ones. have a good cup of cocoa day.

  7. Thank you for this, I’m going to give it a try! 🙂 Found you on pinterest. I’m going to stay for a bit and look around your blog.

  8. Can you grind the chocolate by itself first and then mix it in? Or does the chocolate melt if alone in the food processor?

  9. Tammy Garrett says:

    This hot chocolate was so much better then store bought. Thank you for sharing. Next time i try it, i will add crushed peppermint hard candies to see how that turns out.

  10. Hello there,
    Is the White chocolate used because of a taste preference? Would it work out to use, say, a semi-sweet or a milk chocolate chip?

  11. Just wanted to let you know I am going to use your recipe for the hot chocolate served at my wedding!! So good! Thank you for sharing!

  12. Will this still taste good if I mix it into hot water instead of hot milk?

  13. I can’t have regular chocolate, so have you ever just made a white chocolate version? What would you increase or decrease to do so?

    • Hi Lindsey,
      I have not made an all white-chocolate version. My guess, though, would be you need to increase the amount of white chocolate. 🙂

  14. Will this work using a regular blender? I don’t have a food processor.

  15. Jennifer Mounce says:

    I would like to know how you made the Hot Cocoa mix. Thanks

  16. This sounds great! Thanks for sharing! I’m going to try this…I LOVE my hot chocolate!

  17. Just made it and its delicious, and i even only mixed it with water and it was still yummy. I’m sure its even better with milk. Going to give a jar of this with a mug to the kids teachers this christmas i think.

  18. Hi
    I really want to give this a try but im not really sure what powdered sugar is. Is there an Australian equivilent?

    • Hi Kristen,
      It might be called “icing sugar” in Australia. It’s also called confectioners sugar here. Does this help? If not, I think you can do a quick Internet search to find a recipe to make it. I believe it’s just cornstarch and granulated sugar finely processed in a food processor. 🙂

  19. Do you use instant dry milk or just dry milk? I know the reconstitution ratio is different with the two.

    • I’ve never use dry milk before so I didn’t know there was a difference till I saw your post. I checked my bag and I got instant. I made the mix tonight by the directions and my daughter loved it. So maybe what kind you use won’t matter 🙂

  20. Me and my 9 year old daughter made this and it’s delicious. We did a batch with the white chocolate chips and then a batch with Guittard Green Mint Chips. Even more delicious! We found it needed a half cup more powdered sugar though. Thanks for the recipe…I consider it a Pinterest success!

  21. For the person who needs lactose free hot chocolate mix, I use dried coconut milk all the time for making ice cream. It should work for this as well. You should be able to find the dehydrated coconut milk at the better grocery stores or other dehydrated nut milks–like almond milk. These are becoming more and more popular.

  22. What should I use in place of a food processor?

  23. Made this today, so yummy! Will be making more for xmas gifts. Thank you!

  24. This will be perfect! Thank you for the amounts. I’ve been recently making the kids hot chocolate with hershey’s unsweetened cocoa and the ingredients in your recipe, minus the powdered sugar and using real milk. But I was wondering if I used powdered milk, how much I would need. Thank you! It’s so much better (and cheaper) than those little cocoa packets.

  25. did you use instant dry milk or regular dry milk.? does it make a difference?

  26. Did you use instant powdered milk or regular powdered milk?
    Does it make a difference

  27. I have made this up with dry, non dairy, coffee creamer and used sweetened,vanilla, almond milk. I have made it with and without the cocoa chips. It was very good. I make it a cup at a time sometimes too. 1 cup heated sweetened, vanilla almond milk, 1 heaping tsp non dairy creamer and 1 level tsp powdered or regular sugar. I also made it with unsweetened almond milk and sweet and low or splenda. Just get creative and try things a cup at a time until you find what you like.

  28. so is this INSTANT powdered milk or actual no fat mild powder (that is not in the granules ) because the instant is 19.00 a box here the powder is much more affordable

    • Tara, I use the instant dry milk, and not familiar with no fat mild powder. Where do you live? The instant dry milk is not even half that price at my stores.

  29. Hot cocoa powder is creamier with WHOLE milk powder (in place of the nonfat), too.

    I have not ever tried using the ground chocolate – sounds fabulous!

  30. Stephanie M. says:

    This recipe is so good that I’m having a hard time keeping milk in the house! It is so much better than the store bought packets and the single serve cups that are made for the cofee makers. I made a second batch adding cinnamon for more of a mexican chocolate flavor and it was to die for. In a pinch, after running out of milk, we used water and it was still delicious.

  31. Just got done making it…used milk chocolate chips instead and put all the ingredients in my blender (Kitchenaid)and used the chop button then mix button.Instead of using milk in the cup,I used water (since milk is expensive),then had my husband drink it.He loved it and said it tasted kind of like dark chocolate.Marshmallows help sweeten it too!He LOVED IT!!

  32. can i make a big batch of this for a party and keep it warm on the stove? any tips? thanks!

  33. I made this for Christmas presents for some of my friends. They said it was amazing! Now I just need to make some for myself! Awesome Recipe! 😀

  34. What would the portions be if I wanted to do just enough for 1 serving (or at a lot fewer servings)?

    • Hi HW, this isn’t the type of recipe where you would want to make just one serving. You’re better off making up the entire batch, and if you don’t want to keep the large batch, what a great opportunity to share with friends! 🙂

  35. What size jar did you use

  36. Made this today, and I loved it because it really does have a great taste, I had all the ingredients in my pantry already, and there aren’t any chemicals in it like the carnations hot chocolate (which I used to drink all the time). I also started making my own granola because I like being able to pronounce all the ingredients 🙂

  37. White chocolate chips was a surprise ingredient!

  38. Hi Nikki! I just LOVE your recipe! I was wondering if it was okay if I shared a picture of your Homemade Hot Chocolate Mix with the link to your Blog to get the recipe. I would NOT share the recipe…people would have to come here to get it. I think my followers on my Facebook Page would LOVE this recipe! Let me know, and if you give me the okay, I’ll share!

    New follower on FB, PInterest & here! Hope you’re having a great week!

    Mary from Sweet Little Bluebird

  39. Does the cocoa powder blend in readily? That’s the problem I find with every homemade, cocoa-based mix I have tried. When I make hot chocolate from scratch, I always combine the cocoa with water in the pan first, and cook for a minute to dissolve and incorporate the cocoa, because it doesn’t readily combine with even hot liquids.

  40. Thank you so much for this post!! I am so excited to try this!!! I can’t use the ready made stuff at the store because I have soy, coconut, almond, and several other allergies. But weirdly not milk. I can’t seem to find chocolate chips, or hardly any chocolate without soy it it. Could I not put in the chocolate chips or possibly substitute something else? Thank you!

    • Hi Michelle,
      You can try it without the chocolate chips, but it will not be as chocolaty, of course. If you find chocolate without soy, then substitute that, but otherwise I do not know of a good substitution. If you try it without the chips and no substitution, come back and let me know how it turned out! 🙂

  41. It’s really hard to find white “chocolate” chips. They say white chips and don’t have any cocoa butter…which is what is in real white chocolate. All the normal brands just have sugar and vanilla in them. They all USED to actually have cocoa butter in them. The flavor is different. Real white chocolate has a chocolate taste. Do you use regular white chips or are they real white chocolate chips with cocoa butter? If it’s the kind with cocoa butter, I would love to know what brand. Thanks!

    • That’s interesting, Trisha. I never checked! And, I don’t have a bag on hand right now to look at the ingredients, but I’m pretty sure I’m just using the white chips and not pure white chocolate. I typically buy the Hershey’s or Ghirardhelli brands. Hope this helps! 🙂

  42. Hi! I’m so excited to try this recipe for the holiday season 🙂 Thank you for sharing it with us! But instead of a food processor, would a blender or anything else work just as fine?

  43. Christense says:

    I made this, and honestly, it tasted awful. It tasted like unsweetened cocoa in water. It was so not-sweet I went back to my powdered sugar and checked to make sure I hadn’t mixed it up with cornstarch: I hadn’t. Any thoughts on what might have gone wrong?

    • Hi Christense,

      I’m sorry! Without being there with you and seeing exactly what you used in the recipe, I can’t help you. The recipe is a proven one, as you can see with all of the positive comments here. Maybe try it again? There is a chance you may have missed an ingredient or measured something wrong without realizing it…

    • I made this today and loved it! Reminds me of the way my mom made it when I was a kid! I did use water and still tasted great. Glad I found you, Thanks.

  44. I wonder if you could also use this for chocolate milk mix as well?

    • Hi Christina,
      I haven’t tried, but I don’t think so as you need the liquid to be hot and melt the ingredients. If you try it and like it with cold milk, then come back and let us know! 🙂

  45. I just made this tonight and it is really good! Thanks! At first I thought “Oh no, this is way too sweet!” But a second later the dark chocolately goodness of the cocoa caught up and it was great. I had a hard time getting the white “chocolate” chips to blend up all the way though. I let it go in the food processor for quite a while but there were still tiny chunks in the mix. Most of them dissolved when I added the hot milk, but not all. Still a great recipe though!

  46. Just made it and the kids couldn’t get enough of it! I used the ninja blender to mix it up and didn’t have any problems. I highly recommend this recipe!

  47. Just linked this awesome recipe to my blog. We made it to give to neighbours as Christmas gifts last year. Awesome!

  48. I made this last night and divided it into mason jars for gifts and only filled it about half way and then put marshmallows on top. Is there any suggestion on the ratio of milk to powder for smaller portions or is it just a preference kind of thing. Thank you.

    • Hi Rachel,
      Without knowing the measurements, I can’t give you an answer. Do you know how much hot cocoa mix you put in each jar? Or, what size jar did you use?

  49. I saw you didn’t mind if your link was shared. I also shared your recipe here on my blog.

  50. Brenda Kennedy says:

    this sounds like a great hot chocolate .im gonna make this for gifts at Xmas .thank you for sharing .my family loves hot chocolate to take to the hockey games .now I can bring some for them .i know they’ll love it better than the envelopes they get there’s in .i love all the reviews all positive .i can’t wait to make it .

  51. Caroline Wilson says:

    Thanks for sharing. The recipe sounds very rich and yummy!

  52. for those concerned about the blending of the white chocolate chips in a blender my suggestion is use large chunks of white bakers chocolate and a grater to get finely chopped chocolate. or shave the chocolate on a cold surface then crumble it into the blender to combine.

  53. so looking forward to making this recipe for gifts this year!
    thanks Nikki!

  54. I keep my hot chocolate warm in my crockpot on Christmas
    morning, or for fall weiner roasts. Just put the already made hot chocolate into the crock and set the crock on warm.

  55. Do you have to use the chocolate chips?

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