Hot chocolate, marshmallows, and hot coco baked goods are perfect for the holiday season!  From non-dairy milk hot chocolate drinks to your favorite flavors of warm cup of hot chocolate, we have dreamy hot chocolate recipes for everyone! I’m sure you’ll fine a favorite recipe in this big list of simple hot chocolate drinks.

20 Festive and Easy Hot Chocolate Recipes - collage of hot chocolate pictures from whipped cream to melted marshmallows - Kids Activities Blog
Let’s Make Hot Chocolate!

How to Make Homemade Hot Cocoa a Family Tradition 

Now that it’s cooling down outside, I am so excited to snuggle up with my family and enjoy these 20 Festive and Easy Hot Chocolate Recipes!

Related: This Slow Cooker Hot Chocolate is so yummy, Easy Chocolate Fudge, Fun Chocolate Facts for Kids Coloring Pages

Making homemade hot cocoa is one of my favorite Christmas traditions…one that extends all winter long! Every Christmas Eve we sit together as a family, read the Christmas Story, and drink hot cocoa together, before the kids have a slumber party sleeping around the Christmas tree. Then we carry them off to bed once they are fast asleep, so Santa can do his thing!

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Hot chocolate mug with cinnamon stick and chocolate all around from above
So Many Ways to Top Hot Chocolate…so Little Time

One of our friends also hosts an annual gingerbread house decorating party the same night that our town holds its annual tree lighting in front of town hall. Each family brings a gingerbread house to decorate, and a dish to share at my friend’s house, and then we go to the tree lighting. This year I am going to bring a portable hot cocoa bar as my “dish”, consisting of my favorite toppings and accessories.

Hot Chocolate Toppings & Accessories

Then, we can all have a warm cup of cocoa to enjoy as we walk up to the tree lighting! I love how hot chocolate is an easy, affordable treat that helps tie any event or holiday outing together. My hope is that these traditions are something that my children will remember and hold dear, to share with their own family one day. 

Now, on to the cocoa recipes

Homemade Hot Chocolate Recipes

20 Recipes for Hot Chocolate (text) - white sweater and red mittens surround a white mug of hot chocolate in the snow
Hot Chocolate Makes You Feel Toasty inside

1. Tips For Making Hot Chocolate Sweet and Creamy

Inspired by Family Mag has great tips for making hot chocolate sweet and creamy, using only three ingredients! Who doesn’t love milk chocolate hot chocolate?

2. Hot Chocolate On A Stick

If you haven’t seen hot chocolate on a stick, you might want to check out this recipe from Makes and Takes! This makes the sweetest DIY holiday gift, or treat to serve at a school party!

3. Crockpot Hot Cocoa

Have a crockpot? If you said yes, you will want to check out this crockpot hot cocoa recipe from Simplistically Living.

4. Spicy Hot Chocolate

Want some Spicy Hot Chocolate? Check out Better Homes and Garden’s recipe, calling for chipotle chili powder, and more!

5. Stir In Chocolate Dipped Marshmallows

Do your kids prefer a milky hot cocoa? Mine do and they love stirring Chocolate Dipped Marshmallows into steamed milk. Head on over to Rose Bakes and You Can, Too for the recipe!

Easy Cocoa Recipes

cup of hot chocolate heaped with marshmallows on a gray sweater surrounded by white lights
Hot Chocolate Doesn’t Have to Be Difficult

6. Dairy/Gluten Free Hot Chocolate

Have dairy-intolerant kiddos? Try Babble‘s dairy/gluten-free hot chocolate recipe.

7. Chocolate Spoons

Another “stirring” option, is to create a batch of chocolate spoons, with this tutorial from Two Shades of Pink. Just stir these into hot water/milk for a fresh cup!

8. Hot Chocolate Made From Ice Cream

Hot Coco made from ice cream? Yes, you can with this recipe from Sweet Recipeas. And yes, it’s “hot” and yes, you’ll want seconds! This is such an easy recipe for such a creamy hot cocoa drink! It’s real hot chocolate but with a fun twist.

9. Mocha Coffee

Don’t forget a fun and festive snack for the moms at your next playdate! Try making coffee with Italian sweet cream or mocha, from Inspiration Laboratories. I love hot drinks on a cold night that use simple ingredients.

10. Rich and Creamy Oat Milk Hot Chocolate

Can’t have dairy? No problem Homemaking For God has a rich and creamy non-dairy oat milk hot chocolate recipe you are sure to love! It’s the best hot chocolate with dark chocolate, milk chocolate, and unsweetened cocoa powder. Don’t like oat milk? Use whole milk instead! Or soy milk or even a mix of milk and heavy cream!

11. Nutella Hot Chocolate

The Hungry Housewife has a recipe for Nutella hot chocolate! Need we say more? Two of my favorites combined into a drink –yummy! Real chocolate and nuts! Yum, it’s sweet and nutty and chocolatey! This creamy hot chocolate is the best!

Quick and Easy Hot Chocolate

warming hands on a cup of hot chocolate next to a plate of cookies from above
Pairing Cookies with Hot Chocolate is Genius.

12. Peanut Butter Hot Coco

Peanut Butter + Chocolate = Win!  This drink from Dinner with Julie is great for a couple of my kids who struggle with getting enough protein (and are on the low percentile). Per

13. Salted Caramel Cocoa Mix

This drink mix is inexpensive to make and tastes gourmet! Make a batch of Seed at the Table‘s salted caramel cocoa mix.

14. Add Drink Mixes

What a fun way to gift drink mixes – add the ingredients in a plastic icing bag to make a “drink cone”, with this idea from Designs with Heart.

15. Hot Chocolate Truffles

Mel’s Kitchen Cafe‘s hot chocolate truffles are delicious, and a wonderful DIY gift ideas! Drop one of these balls into a glass of coconut milk, almond milk, or regular steamed. They are terrific solo, too!

16. Baked Hot Chocolate

Framed Cook’s baked hot chocolate is basically a hot chocolate mug cake. These would be a wonderful gift to pass along to a neighbor this holiday season!

Related: Try our hot chocolate mug cake recipe

Hot Chocolate Recipes for the Holidays

Cup of hot chocolate in a China cup on saucer with Christmas decorations around
Hot Chocolate Can be Festive for the Holidays!

17. Frozen Hot Chocolate

We live in Texas, and some December days are too hot for true hot cocoa. A Beautiful Mess‘s frozen hot chocolate is a great option for warm days.

18. Hot Cocoa Fudgesicles

Use hot cocoa to make fudgsicles with this recipe from Chocolate, Chocolate and More. Just pour the mix into popsicle molds, freeze, and enjoy!

19. Hot Chocolate Pudding

Delish‘s recipe for hot chocolate pudding uses a touch of orange zest to add a little zing. This is a great option for kids who want hot chocolate without the “hot”.

20. Hot Cocoa Cookies

Cookies are great to dip – especially if they are hot cocoa cookies! Check out the recipe over on Baked Bree.   

21. Homemade Peppermint Marshmallows For Hot Chocolate 

Make your own marshmallows to go with that hot chocolate! We are loving this this homemade peppermint marshmallows tutorial from Beantown Bakers!

EASY HOT COCOA RECIPEs From Kids Activities Blog

Try pairing your hot cocoa with one of these Chocolate Bark Recipes!

What is your family’s favorite winter/ holiday tradition? Comment below! 

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  1. Thanks for sharing my kids will definitely love all these recipes! Can’t wait to try them out one by one.

  2. Great post. 20 recipes this post is like a Christmas gift for me. I love hot chocolates. Thank you for the post.