Whether you want a warm chocolatey sweet treat after dinner or an afternoon pick me up, this dairy-free hot chocolate is calling your name. It takes just 5 minutes to make (if that) and you likely already have the 4 ingredients you’ll need to make it.
To make it even fancier, you can add marshmallows. Or add homemade marshmallows if you’re feeling extra fancy.
Dairy-Free Hot Chocolate Ingredients
This dairy-free hot chocolate couldn’t be easier to make. Here’s what you’ll need.
- Oat milk. Oat milk lends a nice creaminess to the hot chocolate.
- Cocoa powder or cacao powder. Cocoa powder provides a nice milk chocolate flavor. Cacao powder has more dark chocolate characteristics – think bitter, richer flavor, more antioxidants, and minerals.
- Maple syrup. Maple syrup adds a really nice natural sweetness.
- Vanilla extract. The vanilla extract helps to balance out the chocolate and give it more dimension.
- Salt. A pinch of salt helps to balance out the sweetness.
- Marshmallows (optional). This dairy-free hot chocolate is amazing on its own, but when you want to take things up a notch, marshmallows are a nice touch, especially homemade marshmallows.
How to Make Dairy-Free Hot Chocolate
Remember when I said this was easy?
1. Add all the ingredients (minus the marshmallows, if using) to a medium saucepan over medium-high heat.
2. Whisk to break up any clumps and continue stirring until everything is well-combined and the mixture is hot.
No oat milk? ➝ You can really get away with using any kind of dairy-free milk. If you want to use something super creamy like canned coconut milk, I recommend using it in combination with another type so it doesn’t have an overpowering coconut flavor.
No cocoa/cacao powder? ➝ You can alternatively use chocolate chips in place of the powder. I would start with 1/4 cup.
No vanilla extract? ➝ Peppermint extract also works really well, or you can just omit it completely.
No maple syrup? ➝ Coconut sugar works really well here, but any granulated sugar will work.
Helpful Tips for Making the Best Dairy-Free Hot Chocolate
If you love a rich chocolate flavor, you can do one of two things. Use cacao powder instead of cocoa powder or use more cocoa powder.
Depending on how sweet or bitter you want your hot chocolate, add the sweetener accordingly.
If using chocolate chips in place of the powder, add them to the saucepan with a little bit of the milk until the chocolate has melted before adding in the rest of the ingredients.
Because chocolate chips are usually sweetened, you won’t need as much additional sweetener.
More Chocolate Recipes
Dairy-Free Hot Chocolate
- Add all the ingredients (minus the marshmallows, if using) to a medium saucepan over medium-high heat.
- Whisk to break up any clumps and continue whisking until everything is well-combined and the mixture is hot. Serve immediately.
- For a deeper chocolate flavor, use 2 tablespoons of cacao powder or 3 tablespoons of cocoa powder.
- If using cacao powder instead of cocoa powder, you may want to use the full 3 tablespoons of sweetener since its flavor is more bitter.