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The Secret to Decadent, Dairy-Free Hot Chocolate for Christmas

Decadent, Dairy-Free Hot Chocolate

This year one of many transitions for me included going dairy-free. I found myself missing a comforting cup of hot chocolate as the first snowflakes began to drift from the sky, and I am very excited to share one of many dairy-free victories with you: the secret to dairy-free hot chocolate just in time for Christmas!


My first several attempts at making hot chocolate without dairy ended in absolute failure. I reached for the variety of cartons lining my refrigerator door and if you are dairy-free I’m sure you know the drill. I tried almond milk, rice milk, and coconut milk all without success. Each cup tasted like I had opened a packet of hot cocoa mix and watered it down until it was a faint echo of chocolate. After my third attempt I recognized the missing element: fat. Before I was forced to admit that the carton of cream and I should part ways, it was one of my best friends. So I searched for a substitute and bingo! The secret to decadent hot chocolate without milk or cream is…full fat coconut cream.

Decadent Dairy-Free Hot Chocolate Recipe

  • 2 Tablespoons of full fat coconut cream
  • 1 teaspoons of coconut sugar
  • 2 to 3 Tablespoons of Lakanto sweetening blend (includes monk fruit extract and erythritol)
  • Pinch of sea salt
  • 1 cup of So Delicious Coconut milk
  • ¼ teaspoon of vanilla extract
  • 1 Tablespoon of Dutch baking cocoa
  • Dash of cinnamon
  • 1 Tablespoon of Enjoy Life's dairy-free dark chocolate chips (optional)

Melt your chocolate chips in a boiler if you like your hot chocolate extra rich. Place a saucepan on medium heat. Add your melted chocolate, cinnamon, salt, vanilla, cocoa, coconut sugar, and Lakanto sweetening blend. Whisk the ingredients together thoroughly and slowly incorporate your coconut milk. Wait until a little steam begins to rise from your hot chocolate before adding your coconut cream. Whisk it together until the cream has melted and pour it into your favorite cup!

To make this recipe sugar-free entirely just skip the coconut sugar and add some liquid stevia or more Lakanto sweetening blend instead. I use the coconut sugar because it gives me a brown sugar flavor! You can triple this recipe several times and throw it in a crock-pot for a fabulous holiday party drink! Check out my article on the health benefits of Monk Fruit (including Lakanto) here!

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Some fun variations:

Add 1 to 2 drops of peppermint flavoring for a candy cane worthy twist!
Substitute ½ cup of coconut milk and ½ cup of coffee for a mocha inspired hot chocolate!

If you like to float whipped cream instead of marshmallows on top of your hot chocolate just use a mixer to whip the leftover coconut cream. Don’t forget to add a dash of cinnamon! If you want to use Lakanto sweetening blend simply throw a couple of tablespoons in a coffee grinder for the desired confectionary sugar consistency.

This recipe didn’t have a happy ending the first try. If you have found yourself forced to face a world without certain foods too, especially dairy, I just want to encourage you not to give up on the first try. Perseverance rewards those who retry the botched first attempt again and again until their taste buds do a happy dance because finally their old friend is back! Yes, your taste buds can be fooled perhaps more easily than you would expect which gives our foodie deprived souls a glimpse of hope. I assure you, this decadent, dairy-free hot chocolate will give your taste buds that familiar experience while being kind to your gut at the same time. What are you waiting for? This decadent hot chocolate takes less than five minutes to whip up, and it will cure your chocolate cravings in no time! Cheers!

Check out these other healthy and allergen-friendly recipes by EMaxHealth: The Secret to Decadent, Dairy-free Mashed Potatoes and Turkey Shepherd's Pie recipe and Vegan Caramelized Sweet Potato Wedges.