This vegan hot chocolate recipe delivers a rich, decadent, dark chocolate beverage. Serve it with your favorite toppings like whipped coconut cream and cinnamon sticks. Imagine you’re in a Paris cafe sipping dairy-free hot chocolate!
I like my comfort food, and this homemade vegan hot chocolate is the crème de la crème of comfort. Hot chocolate actually has melted chocolate in it, whereas hot cocoa is made only with cocoa powder. This recipe combines both, making it easy to make and absolutely delicious too.
Why This Recipe is a Winner
- Adding both cocoa powder and dark chocolate chips means this recipe is easy to make and rich and creamy
- Using minimal sugar lets the flavor of the chocolate be the star
- Adding favorite toppings like whipped cream or vegan marshmallows or even cinnamon sticks makes this beverage beautiful and delightful
You can find the full printable recipe, including ingredient quantities, below. But first, here are some explanations of ingredients and steps to help you make this recipe perfect every time.
- Lemon — We’ll use both the zest and the juice of the lemon.
- Oats — I used rolled oats for this recipe, but you can substitute instant oats.
- Chia — We’ll add some ground chia seeds to create a thicker texture. You can use whole chia seeds; I just prefer ground because it creates a smoother finished texture.
- Syrup — I used maple syrup, but you can substitute agave nectar.
- Milk — We’ll use almond milk for the best overnight oats! Substitute your favorite plant-based milk.
- Yogurt — I love adding some plant-based yogurt (plain, unsweetened) for an even more tangy flavor.
- Protein Powder — I add some vanilla protein powder for increased flavor and nutrients. If your protein powder is not sweetened, you may want to add an extra teaspoon or two of sweetener.
- Cornstarch — We’ll use cornstarch to thicken the lemon curd topping.
- Turmeric — A pinch of turmeric makes that lemon curd sunny yellow.
- Cocoa powder — You can use either natural or Dutch-process cocoa powder.
- Sugar — Use granulated sugar, coconut sugar, maple syrup, agave nectar, or even your favorite zero-calorie sweetener.
- Plant-based milk — I recommend using creamy plant-based milk like soy milk or cashew milk. If you use one that’s vanilla-flavored, that’s a plus too.
- Chocolate Chips — We’ll add dairy-free chocolate chips to this drink to add even more chocolate flavor and silky smoothness. You could also chop up a semi-sweet chocolate bar.
- Garnishes — Add these optional toppings: vegan marshmallows, coconut whipped cream, steamed soy milk, a sprinkle of nutmeg, or a cinnamon stick for stirring.
How to Make Vegan Hot Chocolate
- Stir together cocoa powder and sugar in a saucepan over medium-low heat.
- Pour in the milk and continue cooking and stirring until the liquid becomes warm.
- Stir in the chocolate chips until melted.
- Remove from heat and pour hot chocolate into 2 mugs.
- Add your favorite toppings and serve warm.
Most of the cocoa powder will break down in the saucepan with the heat and stirring. However, if yours has lumps, simply use an immersion blender, or transfer the liquid to a food processor or blender and blend until smooth. This adds even more foam to the finished cocoa drink, too.
Serve vegan hot cocoa with any of the following:
- Dairy-free whipped topping
- Vegan Marshmallows
- Steamed Soy Milk — To top your cocoa with steamed plant-based milk, heat the milk until hot (but not boiling) and use a whisking tool to froth it. I talk more about steaming soy milk in my green tea hot chocolate recipe.
- Drizzles of Vegan chocolate syrup
- Vegan caramel sauce
- Cinnamon sticks.
- Vegan Biscotti Cookies add a nice touch to any hot beverage!
Make It Healthy
For a lower-calorie and reduced-carb hot chocolate, replace the sugar with your favorite zero-calorie sweetener.
Based on using stevia, the nutrition estimate is 173 calories, 16g carbs, 9g protein, 9g fat, 3g fiber.
Transfer any leftover drinking chocolate to a lidded, airtight container, like a mason jar. This will keep in the fridge for up to 4 days. When you’re ready to serve, simply stir it, pour it into a mug, and heat it in the microwave.
If you love this vegan hot cocoa mix, here are even more vegan beverages to try:
I hope you like this recipe for hot chocolate as much as we do!
Vegan Hot Cocoa
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The nutrition information shown is an estimate provided by an online nutrition calculator and should not be considered a substitute for a professional nutritionist’s advice.