13 Best Vegan Hot Chocolate Recipes to Sip On Right Now

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13 Best Vegan Hot Chocolate Recipes to Sip On Right Now

Ditch the dairy with one of these delicious homemade vegan hot chocolate recipes perfect for warming up on chilly winter nights. 


Hot chocolate is the ultimate cold-weather drink. With winter just around the corner, we’re featuring 13 plant-based beverages that’ll have you wishing winter lasted all year long. 

Before you begin whisking and sipping away, let’s first dive into everything you need to know to make vegan hot chocolate. 

Hot chocolate vs hot cocoa

Although the terms “hot chocolate” and “hot cocoa” are often used interchangeably, the two drinks aren’t quite the same. While both impart a sweet dose of chocolaty flavor, their base ingredients slightly differ. Hot chocolate, as the name implies, is made by melting chocolate and combining it with hot water or vegan milk. Hot cocoa, however, is made using cocoa powder.

Given the similar end results, our list of must-make recipes includes both vegan hot chocolate and hot coca recipes. 

How to make vegan hot chocolate

There are few things better than getting cozy with a cup of hot chocolate while watching your favorite holiday movies. Luckily, hot chocolate—and hot cocoa—require minimal effort to make.

Start off by finely chopping vegan chocolate while simmering plant milk. Add the chocolate into your plant milk and whisk until it has completely dissolved. If you’re making hot cocoa, begin by heating up vegan milk and incorporating cocoa powder once your milk is simmering.

Add your favorite mix-ins for added flavors (think peppermint extract or pumpkin spice, for example) before topping with mini vegan marshmallows and whipped cream. 

Vegan hot chocolate recipes

From exotic and nutty to minty and spiked, this list has more than a dozen ways to make your chocolate dreams come true.

VegNews.MinimalistBakerMayanDrinkingChocolateMinimalist Baker

1 Vegan Mayan Drinking Chocolate

One taste of this indulgent dessert by Minimalist Baker, and we’re in chocolate heaven. All you need are seven ingredients and 15 minutes to create this simple yet sophisticated beverage. Decadent dark chocolate is perfectly balanced with Mayan spices (cinnamon, nutmeg, and cayenne) in what will quickly become your new chocolate obsession.
Get the recipe here

VegNews.RunningwithSpoonsPumpkinHotChocolateRunning with Spoons

2 Vegan Pumpkin Hot Chocolate

Creamy vanilla almond milk is the base in Running With Spoons’ sweet treat (which tastes like autumn in a cup). A spiked pumpkin purée combines with maple syrup to create all the flavors you crave on a brisk winter day. Cozy up with a blanket and a mug of this cocoa to be transported back to the pumpkin patch.
Get the recipe here

VegNews.VeganChickpeaHazelnutSpicedHotChocolateVegan Chickpea

3 Healthy Hazelnut Spiced Hot Chocolate

Cinnamon and hazelnut essential oils are the secret ingredients in this inventive recipe, but that’s not all that adds to the magical taste in this cup of cocoa, as Vegan Chickpea also stirs in two spoonfuls of hazelnut butter for a deliciously nutty, toasty flavor in every mouthful.
Get the recipe here

VegNews.ASaucyKitchenGingerbreadHotChocolateA Saucy Kitchen

4 Gingerbread Vegan Hot Chocolate

This thick, velvety drink from A Saucy Kitchen will satisfy those holiday season cravings. Full-fat coconut milk creates the same thickness of dairy-based hot chocolate, while fragrant ginger, cinnamon, allspice, and vanilla add flavors reminiscent of the holiday season. Make a batch of vegan gingerbread cookies for dunking, and we’re ready to deck the halls.
Get the recipe here

VegNews.BloodOrangeHotChocolateThe Almond Eater

5 Blood Orange Hot Chocolate

If you’re looking for a new (and different) way to enjoy hot chocolate, this zingy version from The Almond Eater is the way to go. Freshly squeezed blood orange juice and grated orange zest are mixed with traditional hot cocoa ingredients for a vibrant hot beverage that will put a spring in your step. Even better? This fun and unique recipe is ready in just 10 minutes and is made with only six ingredients.
Get the recipe here

VegNews.DarnGoodVeggiesRedVelvetHotChocolateDarn Good Veggies

6 Red Velvet Hot Chocolate

Darn Good Veggies has an antioxidant-rich surprise ingredient in this cocoa recipe—beet powder! Our favorite red vegetable adds an earthy, rich taste to this drink that pairs beautifully with the other ingredients. Cacao powder adds chocolatey flavor and more antioxidants, while Medjool dates add natural sweetness. Cheers to sweet health in a glass!
Get the recipe here

VegNews.RabbitandWolvesSmoresDrinkingChocolateRabbit and Wolves

7 Vegan S’mores Drinking Hot Chocolate

This drinking chocolate is full of all the flavors in your favorite campfire treat. The luscious chocolate is flavored with everything you taste in a golden graham cracker (cinnamon, brown sugar, molasses and vanilla). Rabbit and Wolves then tops the piping hot cup of cocoa with toasted vegan marshmallows for a classic twist on a campfire favorite.
Get the recipe here

VegNews.HeartofaBakerCoconutHotChocolate2Heart of a Baker

8 Creamy Vegan Coconut Hot Chocolate

Heart of a Baker uses a blender to prepare this velvety mug of cocoa (she has a stove top alternative, too.) Chopped dark chocolate and shredded coconut are mixed with coconut milk in a high-powered blender until hot. For even more awesomeness, garnish with shredded coconut for a picture-perfect cup of hot chocolate that is smooth to the taste.
Get the recipe here

VegNews.RhiansRecipesRedWineHotChocolateRhian’s Recipes

9 Vegan Red Wine Hot Chocolate

Give your hot cocoa a boozy kick with a pour (or two!) of red wine. Surprisingly, the fruity aroma of red wine perfectly complements the rich, earthy flavor of dark chocolate. Rhian’s Recipes recommends using almond or cashew milk for the best dairy-free substitute in this recipe.
Get the recipe here

VegNews.LaurenCarisCooksPeppermintHotChocolateLauren Caris Cooks

10 Vegan Peppermint Hot Chocolate

Mint + chocolate = a dreamy hot chocolate match. In this recipe from Lauren Caris Cooks, peppermint extract adds refreshing notes to frothy almond milk coated with dark chocolate. Top with coconut whipped cream for a classic hot chocolate.
Get the recipe here

VegNews.TheHungryHerbivoresCoffeeMexicanDrinkingChocolateThe Hungry Herbivores

11 Coffee Mexican Drinking Chocolate

This pick-me-up beverage from The Hungry Herbivores is similar to a mocha, but better! Combine your favorite dark chocolate and strong-brewed coffee for a breakfast beverage with which you’ll want to indulge all morning long.
Get the recipe here

VegNews.LoveandLemonsMatchaWhiteChocolateLove & Lemons

12 Matcha White Hot Chocolate

For a fancy adult take on the classic cup of hot chocolate, try Love & Lemons’ bright, beautiful recipe featuring popular matcha tea powder. Start by whisking almond milk and vegan white chocolate, then stir in matcha for a comforting beverage that is delicious and visually stunning.
Get the recipe here

VegNews.HealthySlowCookingHotWhiteChocolateHealthy Slow Cooking

13 Hot White Chocolate

This thick, rich cocoa by Healthy Slow Cooking is made with homemade dairy-free milk and is sweetened naturally with dates before cacao butter and vanilla beans—scraped straight from the pod—are whisked in. Trust us—this silky drink is irresistible.
Get the recipe here

Stephanie Dreyer is a freelance writer and recipe developer on a mission to help families cook and eat healthier.

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