Our Favorite Mexican Hot Chocolate Recipe

Our Favorite Mexican Hot Chocolate Recipe

I have sweet memories of this Mexican Hot Chocolate from my stay at La Posada of Santa Fe several years ago. I looked forward to starting my day with a mug of their delicious spiced hot chocolate each morning. Dusted with chili powder and brewed with spices, this hot chocolate is a true treat, so I had to ask how to make Mexican hot chocolate, and after a few failed attempts, this recipe is where I arrived.

tray holding mexican hot chocolate and two tin cups surrounded by ingredients to learn how to make mexican hot chocolate on blue table
Mexican hot chocolate layout

The combination of herbs and spices may seem an odd match with cocoa. However, these spicy and savory ingredients bring out the flavor of chocolate. Ever noticed how creative gourmet chocolate bars have gotten lately? We've seen many made with interesting spices, sea salt, vanilla, and citrus. Above all, these ingredients support and enhance the flavor of cocoa.

Mexican Hot Chocolate with Honey
Hot chocolate being held by warm mittens

South American civilizations started cultivating the cacao tree and used the ground cacao beans for a chocolate drink. To cover up its bitter flavor, they added ingredients like vanilla and chili pepper to the mixture. Chocolate traveled to Europe and became a rare favorite of nobility. Here, it was still enjoyed as a bitter drink and slowly transformed into a sweet confection. Modern hot chocolate arrived in the 17th century, although it remained a drink for the wealthy for hundreds of years.

Clay Gordon

Spice up this Hot Chocolate Recipe

Thank goodness that chocolate is no longer a rare luxury item. We don't know what we'd do without it! You'll enjoy this recipe just the way it is. However, we always encourage you to mix our recipes to make them yours. Here's how to make this Mexican Hot Chocolate yours:

  • Swap out the dairy with non-dairy alternatives: homemade almond milk, coconut milk, and cashew milk work.
  • Serve with our Lavender Marshmallows
  • Add ground cayenne powder or chopped chilis to the mix
  • Serve with cinnamon sticks

How to Make Mexican Hot Chocolate

  • Bring water to a boil in a saucepan.
  • Split the vanilla bean and add to the boiling water.
  • Add honey, cinnamon, cardamom, espresso, and a pinch of salt.
  • Simmer for 1 minute, and add the bittersweet chocolate.
  • Whisk until it gets thick.
  • Add milk and simmer for 1 minute.
  • Serve immediately with a sprinkling of chili powder and cocoa nibs as a garnish.
Mexican hot chocolate layout

Looking for ideas on how to make and what to serve with this rich and delicious Cocoa?

  • Try our homemade gingerbread if you want ideas on what to serve with this Mexican hot chocolate recipe.
  • These ginger cookies will also go well with this Mexican hot chocolate recipe, especially on a chilly night.
  • Also impressive, these Cranberry Orange Biscotti by Namely Marly are delicious with cocoa.