Greg DuPree

When it comes to hot chocolate recipes, there are countless variations on the classic. From thick dark chocolate, to red velvet and pecan pie, here are seven of the best hot chocolate recipes to cozy up with this winter.

Rich n’ Thick Hot Chocolate

For this recipe, it’s all in the name. Combine melted dark chocolate bars and cornstarch to create the rich, chocolatey flavor and thick, smooth texture. Top it mug with homemade marshmallows and whipped cream and serve.

 

Red Velvet Hot Chocolate

This unique twist is inspired by one of our favorite cakes. The recipe calls for creamy chopped milk chocolate and is topped with a sweet cream cheese "frosting." Trust us -- you'll need to make a double batch.

 

3-D Hot Chocolate

This decadent hot cocoa gets its name from its three main ingredients: dark chocolate, dulce de leche, and Drambuie (a Scotch whiskey-based liqueur flavored with honey and spices). The recipe calls for half-and-half instead of milk, which makes it extra creamy and rich. Top it with a dollop of whipped cream and a drizzle of dulce de leche, with a few crunchy chocolate wafer cookies on the side. The 3-D hot chocolate is also great (and kid-friendly) without the Drambuie.

 

 

Boozy Buttermint White Hot Chocolate

With a healthy splash of Baileys, crushed buttermints, and chopped white chocolate, this flavorful spin on hot cocoa makes the perfect post-holiday nightcap. Garnish it with mini marshmallows, buttermints, and fresh mint.

 

Toasted Coconut and Cinnamon Hot Chocolate

Coconut lovers will go crazy for this Toasted Coconut and Cinnamon Hot Chocolate, made with coconut milk, cocoa powder, chopped bittersweet chocolate, and cinnamon. Finish it off with whipped coconut cream and toasted coconut shavings.

 

Mexican Hot Chocolate

Mexican hot chocolate recipes range from a touch of spice to full-on scorcher. We think this version has mastered the best balance of flavors -- and we can’t get enough. Simmered with a cinnamon stick, vanilla extract, and a touch of chili powder, the final result is amazingly fragrant and delicious. Make it a little richer with whipped cream and a cinnamon stick garnish.

 

Frozen Pecan Pie Hot Chocolate

While this one won’t exactly eradicate your winter chill, this decadent drink -- a kind-of hybrid between hot chocolate, milkshake, and pecan pie -- is irresistible no matter how frightful the weather. Combine your favorite butter pecan ice cream with whole milk, instant cocoa mix, cane syrup, and toasted pecans. If you’re serving it for guests, serve it in a clear glass and drizzle the insides with chocolate syrup; top each serving with crispy shards of golden pie-crust cookies, a dollop of whipped cream, and chopped toasted pecans. You’ll need a straw and a spoon.