Favorite Healthy Hot Chocolate Recipe

For the past month or so, I’ve been CRAVING hot chocolate. That’s really not anything new though. As soon as the winter months roll in, I try to get my hot chocolate fix in anyway I can. Pile on the marshmallows plus whipped cream and don’t forget that adorably cute cinnamon stick for stirring.

I’m all about that hot cocoa life. In fact, I make this recipe at LEAST 4x/week. Tony and I love it!

healthy hot chocolate in a mug with whipped cream an a cinnamon stick

Ingredients in healthy hot chocolate

I started myself on a little quest to make a really, really freaking good HEALTHY hot chocolate that I could sip on while I binge watch all the Christmas movies on Netflix. I say, screw those Swiss Miss packets, my version is something you can feel good about sippin’ down.

This dairy free hot chocolate recipe only requires five simple ingredients:

  • almond milk: I like to use an unsweetened almond milk!
  • light coconut milk: yes, we’re using two types of dairy free milk! The coconut milk keeps the hot chocolate nice and creamy plus adds a slight sweetness and amazing flavor. I recommend using coconut milk from the can. Store the leftover coconut milk in an airtight container in the fridge and use it in your coffee or smoothies!
  • unsweetened cocoa powder: a high-quality cocoa powder is essential. I highly recommend using Ghirardelli’s 100% cocoa. I think it has the best flavor for hot chocolate (and trust me, I’ve tried quite a few!)
  • pure maple syrup: I love how delicious the maple syrup tastes in this recipe, plus it’s a natural sweetener. Perfection!
  • vanilla extract: a splash of vanilla brings lovely flavor to the hot cocoa. Not completely necessary, but oh so good!

healthy hot chocolate being poured into a mug

I LOVE that this hot chocolate is naturally sweetened with pure maple syrup and just so happens to be both vegan and dairy free thanks to a mix of both almond milk and light coconut milk.

I’ve found that using two different dairy free milks makes all the difference in taste, creaminess and texture — so please don’t skip using both! I did try it with only almond milk and it just wasn’t the same.

healthy hot chocolate with whipped cream in a mug

It took me a few times to perfect the recipe, but I truthfully believe that my healthy hot chocolate recipe is the BEST DAIRY FREE & VEGAN HOT CHOCOLATE EVER. It’s creamy, perfectly sweet, with just the right amount of cocoa to keep it intense and rich-tasting.

Feel free to top this healthy hot chocolate with marshmallows, whipped cream or dairy free whipped cream.

If you’re feeling like you want to make this a nightcap, I suggest adding 1 shot of amaretto. Tony LOVES it this way and it’s perfect for the holiday season. Enjoy! xo.

healthy hot chocolate in a mug with a hand around the mug

See how to make this healthy hot chocolate:

My favorite delicious creamy hot chocolate recipe that’s both vegan and dairy free! This healthy hot chocolate recipe is made with a mix of both coconut milk + almond milk and naturally sweetened with pure maple syrup. The perfect nightcap during the chilly winter months!

  • 1
    light coconut milk (from the can)
  • 1 1/2
    unsweetened almond milk
  • ½
    vanilla extract
  • 2
    pure maple syrup
  • 2
    unsweetened cocoa powder (I use Ghirardelli’s 100% unsweetened cocoa powder)
  • Pinch
    of sea salt
  1. Add all ingredients to a small pot and place over medium low heat. Whisk vigorously to combine and to get rid of any lumps of cocoa. Do NOT let the hot chocolate boil or you risk burning the almond milk, which can turn the flavor into something you do not want. Simply warm in the pot until steamy, about 3-5 minutes.

  2. Once hot chocolate is hot, remove from heat and pour into 2 mugs. Top with whipped cream, dairy free whipped cream, marshmallows or vegan marshmallows. Chocolate shavings or a dusting of cocoa powder on top are fun too! Enjoy!

To make this recipe in the slow cooker: you can feel free to quadruple the recipe (x all ingredients by 4) so that it serves 8. Whisk ingredients together in the slow cooker and place on warm setting and allow to warm for 1-2 hours before serving to guests!

Optional: add a shot of amaretto into your hot cocoa before serving. My husband LOVES it this way and it makes a fun holiday cozy nightcap!


Servings: 2 servings

Serving size: 1 serving

Calories: 166kcal

Fat: 10.2g

Saturated fat: 7.1g

Carbohydrates: 18.7g

Fiber: 2.6g

Sugar: 13.6g

Protein: 1.8g

If you make this recipe, please leave a comment below and rate the recipe. It helps others know how you liked the recipe — I appreciate your time! xo.

Recipe by: Monique Volz // Ambitious Kitchen | Photography by: Eat Love Eats

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