5 Minute Cinnamon Cacao Hot Chocolate | picklesnhoney.com #vegan #hotchocolate #chocolate #drink #recipe

Cinnamon Cacao Hot Chocolate

It’s that time of year when we need to get serious about one very important thing: hot chocolate! I’m not a fan of temperatures below 70 degrees (maaaaybe high 60s is okay) and indulging in really good vegan cacao hot chocolate is one of the small ways I make cold late-fall and winter days more enjoyable.

5 Minute Cinnamon Cacao Vegan Hot Chocolate | picklesnhoney.com #vegan #hotchocolate #chocolate #drink #recipe

This almond milk-based cinnamon cacao hot chocolate is Aaron and my go-to dessert at least a few times a week, usually enjoyed by our fireplace in the evenings (one of the best things about our condo) but sometimes in the afternoon when golden hour happens at 3pm and I’m seriously dragging. You can use regular cocoa powder, although we like it best with rich, raw cacao powder. Raw cacao is great because it’s alkalinizing and brimming with antioxidants, and it tastes even better with a generous sprinkle of cinnamon, a splash of vanilla, and a little pure maple syrup to sweeten it up. I add the ingredients straight into my saucepan, whisk to combine, and then heat it on the stove. It takes five minutes, and hooray! There’s only one pan to clean.

5 Minute Cinnamon Cacao Vegan Hot Chocolate | picklesnhoney.com #vegan #hotchocolate #chocolate #drink #recipe

You can enjoy your cacao hot chocolate as-is, dress it up with a few vegan marshmallows, or add a dollop of coconut whipped cream and some dark chocolate shavings. I love the coconut whip and chocolate shavings combo, although I have a sweet spot for those cute mini marshmallows too.

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Cinnamon Cacao Hot Chocolate

5 Minute Cinnamon Cacao Hot Chocolate | picklesnhoney.com #vegan #hotchocolate #chocolate #drink #recipe

Cinnamon Cacao Hot Chocolate

Vegan, Gluten Free,

Serves: 2 big mugs, 4 small mugs


Cook Time: 5 minutes

Simple 5 ingredient vegan cacao hot chocolate made with rich chocolate and spiced with cozy cinnamon. This is my go-to recipe when I want something easy and decadent while still being naturally sweetened.

5 Minute Cinnamon Cacao Hot Chocolate | picklesnhoney.com #vegan #hotchocolate #chocolate #drink #recipe

Cinnamon Cacao Hot Chocolate

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Ingredients

For the hot chocolate:

  • 3 cups plain unsweetened almond milk
  • 1/4 cup raw cacao powder (or cocoa powder)
  • 3 tablespoons pure maple syrup
  • 3/4 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • pinch of fine sea salt

For topping (optional):

  • vegan marshmallows
  • coconut whipped cream, store-bought or homemade (see notes for recipe)
  • finely chopped dark chocolate

Cuisine: Vegan, Gluten Free Servings: 2 big mugs, 4 small mugs

Cook Time: 5 minutes

Simple 5 ingredient vegan cacao hot chocolate made with rich chocolate and spiced with cozy cinnamon. This is my go-to recipe when I want something easy and decadent while still being naturally sweetened.

Instructions

  • Add all of the hot chocolate ingredients to a medium saucepan and whisk to combine. Warm over medium heat, whisking occasionally. Taste and adjust the sweetness if desired. Serve with marshmallows, coconut whip and/or dark chocolate if you like.

Notes [2]

To make homemade coconut whipped cream, you’ll need:

1 (14 ounce) can full-fat coconut milk*, refrigerated for 24 hours
2 tablespoons organic powdered sugar

Open the can of coconut milk and scoop out the top layer of solid coconut cream into the bowl of a stand mixer. (side note: save the remaining coconut liquid for smoothies!) Mix the coconut cream and powdered sugar on low speed until combined, then crank it up to high speed for 1 more minute until light and fluffy.

Leftover coconut whipped cream can be stored in a container in the fridge for 5-7 days. The whipped cream will harden when cold, so mix it on high speed until it’s light and airy again before using.

*Be sure to stay away from coconut milks with stabilizers and gums because the cream won’t separate from the liquid even when refrigerated. I’ve found that the Aroy-D brand tends to produce reliably good results.

For the marshmallows, I usually buy Dandies brand, but Trader Joe’s also sells vegan marshmallows in regular and mini sizes (and I’m pretty sure they are Dandies too)!

Copyright © 2019 Amanda Maguire for Pickles & Honey

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  1. Beth says

    I hate the cold too. I moved to Palo Alto a couple of years ago from Minneapolis and the warmer temperatures suit me much better. Maybe a move to Cali is in order? 😉 This “fancy” hot chocolate sounds fantastic!

    1. We did live in San Francisco for a little while, but I think instead of heading back east maybe we should have just gone a little more south? The weather in SF wasn’t our favorite, but Palo Alto (and pretty much anywhere outside the city) was very nice. 🙂

  2. Sara says

    This looks like such a luxurious (and healthy!) hot chocolate! I’ve been looking for ways to use up a big bag of cacao that I bought for a cake recipe and this sounds perfect! I’m going to make it tonight.

    1. Yay! Glad I could help you make use of that cacao. 🙂

  3. Katie says

    I love adding a dash of cinnamon to my hot chocolate, and sometimes a bit of orange zest. I’m betting the latter would be great in your recipe.

    1. Yes! Orange zest sounds SO good!

  4. Jackie says

    This was so good! I used coconut milk from a carton (not a can) instead because I didn’t have almond milk and I also added a little almond extract. It was wonderful.

    1. That sounds dreamy, Jackie! I love almond extract. I don’t know why I’ve never added it to hot chocolate…

  5. I hate hate the cold too! I feel like cookie baking and making hot chocolate are the only two good things about winter 🙂

    1. I so agree! Cookie baking, hot chocolate, and pretty twinkly lights. 😉

  6. Freya says

    If there’s one good thing about the cold, it’s that we can indulge in a good hot chocolate without feeling guilty! I’m a big fan of topping it with coconut whipped cream, too!

    1. Yes! I love me some coconut whip. 😉

  7. Carly says

    I just made your cinnamon hot cocoa and it was the BEST hot chocolate I’ve made / tasted, um, ever. Who knew that such a simple recipe would beat out all the others? THANK YOU.

    1. Your comment made my day, Carly! Thank you!!

  8. Milen Moodie says

    Hello!
    Thanksfor the perfect recipe! This looks so yummy and delicious! I’m definitely going to give it a try! Lots of love!
    Milen

    1. Thank you, Milen! Happy hot cocoa drinking. 🙂

  9. regelyn banal says

    Such a great and delicious recipe, Thanks for sharing this one. 🙂

  10. jude says

    yummy! every kid would love this, my daughter likes it and wanted more. Thanks for sharing 🙂

  11. Dree says

    My cacao recipes always taste bitter. What can I do?

    1. Amanda says

      It sounds like the brand of cacao powder you’re using may be overly bitter. If it’s helpful, this is the cacao powder I use (I buy it on Amazon and it’s pretty affordable).

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