Winter Warm Up: New Takes on Classic Hot Chocolate

Winter Warm Up: New Takes on Classic Hot Chocolate

Pour on the toppings for new takes on a traditional winter favorite.

By: Adam Easterling

Let's think about some of the best things winter brings: breaking out the cozy sweaters; snuggling next to a warm fireplace; the beauty of a fresh snowfall and watching Frosty come to life.

Another all-ages winter favorite: cocoa! A cup of piping hot, chocolatey cocoa warms you from tip to toe and gives you that brief reprieve from winter's chill.

If you’re looking for some new recipes for hot cocoa, we have you covered from the stovetop to the slow cooker. If you’re short on time, don’t be afraid to use the store-bought hot chocolate. Wherever you begin, this real rich and creamy experience comes to life by adding the mix-ins we’ve included below.

Slow Cooker Classic Cocoa
Serves: 4-6
Prep time: 5 minutes
Cost: $
Difficulty: Easy

1 1/2 cups whipping cream
1 can (14 ounces) sweetened condensed milk
6 cups milk
1 teaspoon vanilla
16 ounces milk chocolate chips
Mini marshmallows


  1. Stir together all ingredients except marshmallows in a slow cooker (or in a pan on the stove)
  2. Cover and cook on low for 2 hours, stirring occasionally
  3. When mixture is hot and all chocolate chips are melted, ladle cocoa into a mug and top with all those marshmallows
  4. Serve. Drink. Smile

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A tried and true classic milk chocolate cocoa is always a hit, while twists like peppermint or pumpkin can add some new flavors to the mix.

Ideas to try:

Add crushed peppermint candy, top with large marshmallows and a candy cane

Add pumpkin pie filling and top with pumpkin spice

Stir in melted caramel and top with course sea salt

Stir in coconut milk and top with store-bought whipped cream, cocoa powder and coconut flakes

There's no limit to the ways you can spice up this winter staple, so use your imagination when making this warm-up delight!

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