This Red Velvet Dark Hot Chocolate will surely keep you warm and cozy. It has a super rich and creamy taste from pure chopped dark chocolate, rich creamy milk and thick and fluffy homemade whipped cream .
It is basically a dark hot chocolate, so why did I call it Red Velvet? Red Velvet cake, cupcakes, brownies, cookies all have chocolate base. The only thing that made it Red Velvet is the addition of red food coloring to make it vibrantly red, plus the traditional cream cheese frosting.
I used dark chocolate, plus cocoa powder to bring out extra chocolate flavor. I only added 2 teaspoon of red liquid food coloring so it is not as red as one would expect for it to be called Red Velvet. If you are using semi-sweet, or using a stronger food coloring, you will have a deeper red color than mine. In the end, it still taste extremely sinfully delicious. Super rich and creamy, but not to overwhelmingly sweet. I added 4 tablespoon of granulated sugar to sweeten it. I might look like a lot, but since I used 70% dark chocolate, it came out just perfect. Still not too sweet, and with that nice bitterness from dark chocolate that I love.
If you are not a fan of dark chocolate, you can use semi-sweet but be sure to add the sugar gradually. You will most probably use less sweetener. If you want to try something slightly different, check out my Match Coconut White Hot Chocolate. That one is a real winner too.
Why Make Homemade Hot Chocolate?
- It’s cheaper to make it at home
- It’s super easy, you can make It in 5 minutes
- You can swap different kind of chocolate every time you make it (milk chocolate, dark chocolate and even white chocolate)
- You can choose the type of milk or cream (all full fat, half and half, all cream or non dairy for healthier option)
- You can add any topping that you like, without extra charge (marshmallow, whipped cream, sounds delicious right?)
You can add any flavor that you like (spice it up, drops of Vanilla or maybe some espresso powder to wake you up)
- You can reduce or increase the sweetness to your preference (no sugar? More sugar, less sugar, it’s your call)
Bottom line, easy and super flexible recipe that you can adjust to your preference.
What milk is suitable for making Hot Chocolate?
If you are indulging in this decadent hot chocolate drink, so you are probably aware that this is not the healthiest drink option. So if you are making at home, might as well do it the right and most delicious way. That is by using a full fat milk & cream. You need all the fat to make this super creamy, decadent and delicious. That’s what makes a great hot chocolate plus of course a good quality chocolate.
- All Cream – The best and creamiest option. You’ll get a really thick and creamy hot chocolate, not the healthiest option but definitely the most delicious
- Full Fat Milk + Cream – you can buy half and half or you can mix your own and adjust the ratio. 3/4 milk + 1/4 cream or vice versa, 50/50 or 2/3 milk + 1/3 cream or vice versa
- All Full Fat Milk only – this work as well, not as creamy and thick as when you add cream.
- Non Dairy Milk – the likes of Coconut Milk, Almond Milk or Soy Milk. They are not going to get even close to being creamy, in fact I don’t even taste the flavor of coconut or almond. It’s not my go to option, but you are vegan it you are just trying to cut on use of dairy, this is better than not having any at all. Just set the expectation before hand and so that you don’t get disappointed.
What kind of chocolate is suitable for making homemade Hot Chocolate?
You’re going to love this, you have choices when it comes to what Type of chocolate to use.
- Dark Chocolate – this had 70% and above cocoa content. Almost in between being bitter and almost too bitter. You might need to add sweetener if you choose this time of chocolate.
- Semi-Sweet Chocolate or Milk Chocolate – this have 60% cocoa content, for me a good compromise of getting the right sweetness and a good chocolate flavor. Depending on how sweet the chocolate you use, you may keep may not need to add sweetener in the hot chocolate.
- Unsweetened – this is very dark and bitter and I wouldn’t recommend using this on its own. Even with a sweetener, this is still quite bitter. What you can do it to mix it with semi sweet chocolate, but do not use it in its own.
- White Chocolate – definitely sweeter, less bitter than dark and semi sweet chocolate. It has higher amount of milk solids and sugar. You probably won’t need to add any sweetener if you use this one, unless you really want your hot chocolate to be extra sweet.
- Cocoa Powder – This is probably the most common homemade hot chocolate that compares to off the shelf hot chocolate mix. It’s usually unsweetened so you definitely have to add sweeter (normally sugar) when you use this. The good thing about using cocoa powder, you can easily make a huge batch of hot chocolate mix by just mixing it with sugar and salt. store it in a can and Just like that and you have a ready to use hot chocolate mix.
To sweeten the drink, I used granulated sugar. You can also use honey, maple syrup, agave or plant based sweetener. Please note that the measurement will vary depending on what sweetener you used. Adjust accordingly
I opted for the classic all time favorite whipped cream. Hot chocolate with whipped cream is is MUST for me. If am going crazy overboard, might as well do it right. I added some of my homemade chocolate dipped meringue which made this hot chocolate even more sinfully delicious. If you are interested how to make this, check my Meringue Chocolate Kisses. The process is similar, only for this one I used a tint of red color to make it pink. This meringue cookie is so addictive! Nice and crunchy, soft center and not too sweet which makes it great for this hot chocolate.
Bars, Chips, Wafers, or Powder?
- Bars – This is my first go to option when making hot chocolate. For me, nothing beats using a chopped chocolate. It not only melts faster, it also gives a better consistency when melted. Find a good quality chocolate, one that you can eat on its own. The key to a great hot chocolate is a great quality chocolate so do not settle for anything less.
- Chocolate Chips – although an option, I wouldn’t recommend using chocolate chips to make hot chocolate. Chocolate chips have stabilizers to help it retain its shape when bake. This is why the first choice in making chocolate chips cookies, they retain their shape even after baking in high temperature. Because chocolate chips uses stabilizers, it somehow compromise the flavor and it gives a waxy texture. Having said this, chocolate chips when use in hot chocolate does not melt as easily,you have to use a really hot milk to melt it.
- Wafers – this looks like coins, they are small disk shaped pieces of chocolate. It’s is better than chocolate chips because it does not contain stabilizers and so they melt beautifully.
- Cocoa Powder – usually unsweetened, it comes in either Natural or Dutch Processed (low acidity, darker color). Either one will work since we are not doing any baking here. Dutch Process will give a deeper dark color as opposed to Natural with lighter brown color.
- 1 cup Fresh Milk
- 1/2 cup Heavy Cream
- 4 tablespoon granulated Sugar (or any sweetener of your choice)
- 2 tablespoon Cocoa Powder
- 2 teaspoon Red Food Coloring
- 1/4 cup Whipped Cream (optional but highly recommended)
- Start by chopping the chocolate. Chop the chocolate as fine as possible for easy melting. If you are making a large batch, you can use a food chopper or simply use a sharp knife. Do not store the chocolate in the refrigerator if you plan to use it for making hot chocolate. Chocolate stored at room temperature is easier to chop, and it will melts faster too.
- Heat the milk in a pan then scoop a small portion and pour it into the cocoa powder (if using). Mix to dilute the cocoa powder. This will lessen the chance of lumps in the hot chocolate. Pour the dissolved cocoa powder in the hot milk and stir until combined. Use medium heat in heating the milk. Once the meat is hot enough, you should see steam coming out of the pan, and some bubbles showing on the side of the pan as well. Do not get it to the boiling stage.
- Add the chopped chocolate then stir until fully melted. You can also pass the hot chocolate in a sieve if you want to make sure it is lump free and smooth.
- Add the food coloring: Add red food coloring. I used liquid food coloring for this recipe.
- Taste then add sugar as needed. Be careful in adding sugar especially when using semi-sweet. It is always safe to add it at the end. You can use any powdered sweetener of your choice.
- Add Topping: Add mini marshmallow or whipped cream (or both) on top.
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