Peppermint Hot Chocolate Recipe

This peppermint hot chocolate recipe makes a silky, smooth, minty mug of cocoa that’s perfect for an easy cold-weather indulgence.

You can’t beat homemade hot chocolate. This peppermint hot chocolate recipe is a fun twist on a holiday classic. It’s perfect for winter party guests or family gatherings. This drink is a popular drink at McDonald’s and Starbucks, but there’s no need to spend all that money when you can make it cheaper at home.

A side view of a glass mug filled with peppermint hot chocolate topped with whipped cream and chocolate sauce.

Making Peppermint Hot Chocolate With Peppermint Extract

While it may seem really simple to melt a candy cane or piece of peppermint candy into your hot chocolate (or use peppermint syrup), the easier and healthier option is to use peppermint extract. You get all the peppermint flavor without the excess processed sugar. Although, I will say, if you are looking for a more adult beverage, a little peppermint schnapps is always a yummy addition. It may not be the healthiest addition, but it works.

Can You Make Hot Chocolate Ahead?

You can! Make the hot chocolate according to the directions below, and then store it (without any toppings) in the fridge for up to 3 days before serving. When you are ready to serve it, simply heat it up on a stovetop in a pot or in a slow cooker.

A side view of two mugs filled with peppermint hot chocolate. Candy canes hang off the edge of the mug.

Serving Peppermint Hot Chocolate

To serve peppermint hot chocolate, you have many options for garnishes. Try any of the following or a combination of any of them. Some are clean and healthy, while others are more of a treat. The choice is yours.

  • whipped cream
  • crushed candy canes or a whole candy cane
  • extra chocolate chips
  • marshmallows
  • vanilla extract

Can You Add Peppermint Tea To Hot Chocolate?

While I don’t recommend using prepared peppermint tea, you can definitely warm the milk with a tea bag in it. That does a good job of infusing the peppermint flavor naturally. Just be aware you may need to use more than one bag to get the proper strength of flavor.

A finished cup of Peppermint Hot Chocolate in a glass mug.

Can You Make This Dairy-Free?

You can! Use vegan chocolate and try plant-based milk such as unsweetened almond milk, cashew milk, coconut milk, or any milk you’d prefer to use.

Can I Use Cocoa Powder Instead?

For sure. Start with about 2 tbsp. and add more to taste. Although, if you go this route, you’ll most likely need to add more sweetener.

Recipe Tips

  1. This recipe makes 1 serving but can be easily doubled or tripled.
  2. Whole milk can be replaced with any plant-based milk.
  3. Peppermint extract is very powerful, so use only a little unless you really love a stronger peppermint flavor.
A spoon scoops out some whipped cream from a mug of peppermint hot chocolate.

About The Ingredients

Whole milk – You can also use plant-based milk to make this dairy-free.

Heavy cream – If you need this to be plant-based, use a vegan cream.

Sucanat – Or coconut sugar, or monk fruit, or…

Peppermint extract – The real stuff. Not peppermint flavoring.

Dark chocolate – Note that if you use unsweetened chocolate, you will most likely need to add more sweetener.

How To Make Peppermint Hot Chocolate

Ingredients for Peppermint Hot Chocolate sitting in individual bowls on a white background.

Gather and measure all your ingredients.

Pouring milk into a pot.
Melting chocolate in milk in a small pot.

Put the chocolate in a medium saucepan with the milk, heavy cream, and sweetener. Gently bring the mixture to a light simmer over medium heat, until the chocolate has melted.

Adding peppermint extract to chocolate milk in a pot.

Add peppermint extract and stir occasionally until all ingredients are combined. Do not bring it to a boil.

Pouring hot chocolate into a glass mug.

Pour the chocolate into cups and hang the cand on the edge.

A side view of a glass mug filled with peppermint hot chocolate topped with whipped cream and chocolate sauce.

Serve with whipping cream on top, almond flakes, crushed candy cane, chocolate sauce, or just simply on its own.

Storing Peppermint Hot Chocolate

Try to store any leftovers without toppings. If you do have leftovers with toppings, it’s best to stir them in before storage.

Keep leftovers in a container or canning jar with a tight-fitting lid for up to 3 days.

If you made this ahead of time, store it for up to 2 days, or whatever total gets you to 4 days from making it.

Freezing

You can freeze these into popsicles if you happen to have enough left over. Do not thaw or try to reheat.

Reheating

From chilled, reheat this over low heat in a pot on the stovetop or simply in the microwave.

More Hot Chocolate Recipes

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A side view of a glass mug filled with peppermint hot chocolate topped with whipped cream and chocolate sauce.

Peppermint Hot Chocolate Recipe

Deliciously simple hot chocolate with a peppermint twist.
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Course: Drinks
Cuisine: American
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 5 minutes
Total Time: 10 minutes
Servings: 2 small servings (or 1 large)
Calories: 478kcal

Ingredients

  • 1 cup whole milk
  • ¼ cup heavy cream
  • 2 tbsp. Sucanat (or coconut sugar, or monk fruit, or…)
  • ¼ tsp. peppermint extract
  • 3 oz. dark chocolate

Optional Toppings

  • whipped cream
  • candy cane
  • almond flakes
  • maple syrup
  • marshmallows
  • chocolate sauce

Instructions

  • Gather and measure all your ingredients.
    Ingredients for Peppermint Hot Chocolate sitting in individual bowls on a white background.
  • Put the chocolate in a saucepan with the milk, heavy cream, and sweetener. Gently bring the mixture to a light simmer until the chocolate has melted.
    A wooden spoon stirs chocolate pieces in milk with sweetener.
  • Add peppermint extract and stir occasionally until all ingredients are combined. Do not bring it to a boil.
    Adding peppermint extract to chocolate milk in a pot.
  • Pour the chocolate into cups and hang the cand on the edge.
    Pouring hot chocolate into a glass mug.
  • Serve with whipping cream on top, almond flakes, crushed candy cane, chocolate sauce, or just simply on its own.
    A side view of a glass mug filled with peppermint hot chocolate topped with whipped cream and chocolate sauce.

Notes

Please note that the nutrition data given here is a ballpark figure. Exact data is not possible. Data does not include toppings.

Nutrition

Serving: 0.5the recipe | Calories: 478kcal | Carbohydrates: 38g | Protein: 8g | Fat: 33g | Saturated Fat: 20g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 9g | Trans Fat: 0.01g | Cholesterol: 50mg | Sodium: 63mg | Potassium: 520mg | Fiber: 5g | Sugar: 29g | Vitamin A: 652IU | Vitamin C: 0.2mg | Calcium: 202mg | Iron: 5mg

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