Homemade hot cocoa is super fast to make, and you can make one mug at a time or in a big batch. Let’s see how to make homemade hot chocolate in this post of Apronese!

What’s Good about This Hot Chocolate?

To make it extra creamy and extra chocolate, I used a 50/50 mix of milk and half and half, semi-sweet chocolate, and unsweetened cocoa powder for a one-two chocolate punch.

I added enough sugar to keep it sweet, but not so much. And the result is a balanced rich, sweet, and chocolatey mug.

What Type of Chocolate to Use in This Mug?

You can use semi-sweet chocolate chips to make this hot chocolate. You can also use either milk chocolate or dark chocolate, depending on how sweet or bitter you like your hot cocoa.

In this recipe, I used Baker’s semi-sweet chocolate since that’s what I had on hand.

Can I Use a Different Type of Milk?

You can use different types of milk or non-dairy milk substitutes for your hot chocolate. Keep in mind that the type of milk you use will directly impact the creaminess and sweetness of your hot chocolate.

Half and half is a 50/50 mix of whole milk and heavy cream, so if you don’t have half and half, you can change the ingredients in this recipe to be 3 cups whole milk and one cup heavy cream for the same result.

What Else Can I Add to This Hot Chocolate?

There are many extra ingredients that you can add to make new flavors:

  • Instant coffee or espresso powder
  • Almond extract
  • Peppermint extract
  • Crushed candy canes or peppermint candies
  • Cinnamon
  • Cardamom
  • Cayenne pepper
  • Nutella
  • Caramel sauce
  • Malted milk powder
  • Maple syrup
  • Almond butter
  • White chocolate

Side view of four mugs of hot chocolate with different toppings

How to Make Homemade Hot Chocolate

This homemade hot chocolate is extra rich and delicious!

Author: Beth

Prep Time: 5 mins / Cook Time: 10 mins / Total Time: 15 mins

Servings: 4 (1 cup each)


  • 1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder ($0.14)
  • 2 oz. semi-sweet chocolate ($1.75)
  • 1/4 cup sugar ($0.04)
  • 1/8 tsp salt ($0.01)
  • 2 cups whole milk ($0.84)
  • 2 cups half and half ($0.90)
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract ($0.28)


  • Add the cocoa powder, semi-sweet chocolate, sugar, and salt to a medium saucepot. Pour the milk and half and half over top.
  • Place the saucepot over medium heat. Heat the ingredients over medium while whisking until the chocolate has fully melted into the milk and the milk is beginning to steam (but not simmering).
  • Once the chocolate is fully melted into the milk and the milk is has begun to steam, remove it from the heat and stir in the vanilla extract. Taste and adjust the sugar or chocolate to your liking.
  • Serve hot with your favorite toppings.


Serving: 1 cup ・ Calories: 377 kcal ・ Carbohydrates: 34 g ・ Protein: 9 g ・ Fat: 24 g ・ Sodium: 178 mg ・ Fiber: 3 g

The nutritional values shown here are only estimates. Please see our nutrition disclaimer.


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close up overhead view of a single mug of hot chocolate with marshmallows and chocolate syrup

How to Make Homemade Hot Chocolate – Step-by-step Photos

Milk being poured into a sauce pot with chocolate sugar and salt

Step 1: Add 1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder, 2 oz. semi-sweet chocolate, 1/4 cup sugar, and 1/8 tsp salt to a saucepot.

Pour 2 cups of whole milk and 2 cups half and half over top.

Finished hot chocolate

Step 2: Heat the mixture over medium while whisking. The cocoa powder will sit on top at first while the milk is cold, but will begin to incorporate as the milk heats up.

The semi-sweet chocolate will begin to melt as you heat, but will not fully incorporate into the milk until the milk gets so hot that it begins to steam.

Once steaming, remove it from the heat and stir in the vanilla extract.

four mugs of hot chocolate with different toppings

Step 3: Taste the hot chocolate and adjust the sweetness or other ingredients before serving and adding your favorite toppings!

If you want it to be extra, try topping it with some homemade whipped cream.

If this is your favorite drink, try these recipes as well:

  • Chocolate Depression Cake
  • Chocolate Molasses Cookies
  • Super Fudgy Homemade Brownies
  • Chocolate Banana Muffins

This hot chocolate is very delicious, and you can add other flavor add-ins for fun. Follow Apronese to get more amazing recipes!