It’s a snooooow day!!! The flurries started last night and then woke to the most beautiful and completely out of the ordinary blanket of snow. Being a born and bred Texan, cold weather is NOT my thing. In all honesty, I’m a pretty big weanie about it. Anytime the temperature drops below 50 degrees I’m itching in my skin waiting for spring to get its booty into town. But with snow…well that’s a different story entirely. I think winter and I could hang if I could have more of this white beauty. As long as it meant I had plenty of this healthy hot chocolate to warm me up.
So I’m sure I don’t need to give you any reason to get on the hot chocolate bandwagon. What’s not to like? It’s the ultimate winter comfort drink. But what if you could still sip on a warm mug of comfort while feeding your body super good for you goodies ? Enter this healthy hot chocolate.
This healthy hot chocolate takes only a few minutes to whip up, and is so much better for you than the boxed stuff in the store. I know those little satchels are mighty convenient, but take a look at the ingredients list and it can get a bit scary. Here’s just a couple to give you an idea:
Um….no thank you. Instead of filling your mug with sugar, genetically modified corn, and a whole host of things you can’t pronounce, let’s make some warm chocolate magic instead.
This healthy hot chocolate is made with cacoa, the holy mother of all superfoods. Cacao is powder made from cold pressing unroasted cacao beans, while cocoa is made from beans cooked at high temperatures. What that means is that since the cacao is raw, it is left with a much higher nutrient profile. Cacao is one of the biggest antioxidants out there, containing 20 times the antioxidants of even blueberries. It is also a great source of magnesium, that all mighty mineral that’s responsible for keeping us calm and helping us sleep well. Cacao has been shown to raise serotonin levels, giving it the reputation for being a “happy food” and contains theobromine, which can promote feelings of calm and even euphoria.
Cacao is definitely a bit more expensive than buying traditional cocoa powder. But its health benefits warrant shelling out a little more dough. If it’s a bit too pricey for you, go for the cocoa powder. Just be sure to read the labels to make sure you are getting pure cocoa powder, not some funky mixture with a bunch of added stuff.
For the sweetener this hot chocolate uses pure maple syrup, which is packed with minerals. If you are having to watch the sugar level due to candida or some other limited sugar diet, you can easily swap the maple syrup for some stevia.
Ok, onto the recipe!
3 cups unsweetened almond milk (or your milk of choice)
2 tbsp. pure maple syrup
1 tbsp. raw cacao powder
1/4 tsp. pure vanilla extract
few dashes cinnamon
pinch of sea salt
Heat the almond milk in a saucepan over high heat. Cover and keep a close eye on it. You don’t want it to reach boiling level because you’ll be adding it to your blender to get it nice & frothy. After about 3 minutes or so, check on it and if it feels warm enough to drink but not scalding hot you’re good.
Pour the warm almond milk in a vitamix or other high speed blender and add remaining ingredients. Please note that a vitamix does not have a glass pitcher, so can handle higher heat than a traditional blender with a glass pitcher. If you are wary of your glass pitcher shattering on your blender, then you can always whisk your ingredients straight in the saucepan.
Allow to blend a minute or so until a nice froth forms on top. Serve in mugs topped off with a little cinnamon, sprinkle of raw cacao, cacao nibs, or a few marshmallows.
Healthy Hot Chocolate
Healthy hot chocolate made with raw cacao, unsweetened almond milk, and maple syrup.
- 3 cups unsweetened almond milk
- 1 tbsp raw cacao powder
- 2 tbsp pure maple syrup
- 1/4 tsp pure vanilla extract
- 1-2 dashes cinnamon
- 1 pinch sea salt
Heat almond milk (or milk of choice) in a saucepan on high heat. Cover and keep close eye on pan.
After about 3 min. the milk should be warm but not scalding hot. Do not let it get to boiling point, as you’ll be adding it the blender.
Pour warm almond milk into vitamix along with remaining ingredients. Blend for a minute or so until you get some nice froth on the top.
Serve in mugs with a sprinkle of cinnamon, cacao powder, cacao nibs, or a few marshmallows. Enjoy!
If your blender has a glass pitcher, be extra careful the milk does not get too hot to prevent the liquid cracking your pitcher. If you are concerned about this at all, you can always just whisk the ingredients straight into the saucepan with the warm almond milk.
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