Cozy, warm, and comforting. My peppermint hot chocolate is made in the slow cooker and flavored with peppermint candy canes. A perfect treat for winter!
Bittersweet chocolate, crushed up candy cane’s, and whipped cream — lot’s of it. How Ahh-mazing? Lately, I just cannot get enough of this stuff. As a child, I was a big fan of the Swiss Miss stuff. Chicago winters called for a hot cup of cocoa all the time. My parents would buy it in bulk. So every year when winter comes around, I get the urge for hot chocolate. I’ll admit, I tried the Swiss Miss stuff a few years back and oh gosh, it’s so cloyingly sweet. I could barely get down a few sips before the sugar high kicked in. I need real cocoa with real chocolate. But I also don’t want a bar of melted chocolate (that would be my husbands idea of cocoa).
This recipe for peppermint hot chocolate was adapted from this recipe. With a few tweaks, I created this peppermint version which is perfect for when you need a little more variety. And when you have tons of candy canes lying around after the holidays and no one to eat them. <– True story. Enter this peppermint hot chocolate.
What’s really crazy is that up until last December, I had never tried making homemade hot chocolate. And it get’s worse. Sadly enough, I thought the slow cooker couldn’t handle the job. Glad I was wrong about that. It’s the easiest thing ever to just toss everything in the slow cooker and let it do it’s action. Stir ever hour or so and you can’t go wrong. The flavor really have a chance to sit together and warm up and really flavor everything well.
A lot of recipes call for heavy cream when making hot chocolate. This is something that i’ve left completely up to you. I do however recommend adding in just a little but as it really brings a lot more flavor to the hot chocolate. And let’s be honest, it’s not hot chocolate without a little richness, AmIRight?I served a big batch of peppermint hot chocolate while we were prepping for a friends baby shower. The weather was awful that day, it was freezing and it just would not stop raining. This was the perfect little treat. One sip of this stuff and it really warms you up from the inside out. I call if a liquid blanket.
Because it makes you feel so freakin’ cozy.
- 1 tablespoon cocoa powder
- ⅓ cup hot water
- 4 ounces bittersweet chocolate (roughly chopped)
- 4 cups (1 quart) milk
- ¼ cup half and half (or replace with additional milk)
- ¼ cup sugar
- 5-7 candy canes (pulsed in food processor) (see note)
- In a small bowl, combine the hot water and the cocoa powder, stir until smooth.
- Add the bittersweet chocolate, milk, half and half, sugar, and candy canes to the slow cooker along with the cocoa paste. Heat on the low setting for 2 hours, stir every 30 minutes or so. If you notice the chocolate is not melting after the first hour, switch to the high heat setting and let cook the remaining 1 hour on high (stirring every 30 minutes).
- Serve warm with marshmallows, whipped cream, crushed candy canes, sprinkles, chocolate syrup, or chocolate shavings.
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