Aztec Hot Chocolate mix combines cocoa powder, cinnamon, vanilla, and chili powders for a delicious rich flavor that’s smooth and decadent with a nice warm feeling. It’s easy to mix together, makes a great gift, and is so delicious; you’ll love it!
And don’t worry about the spiciness; it isn’t so spicy that you have to warn people, more of a hint of spice, very mild, just enough to make a warm and cozy drink.
I first posted about this fun drink and handmade gift in November 2010, but it was time for a facelift, with new pictures, information, and a better user experience. I hope you like this drink, as it’s a favorite of mine!
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Homemade DIY gift
This mix is a great handmade gift to give this holiday season.
You can mix it up last minute if you need to, making it a great last-minute gift!
And, I figure that most people love chocolate, so what better gift to give!
Wrap it up in cute jars with tight-fitting lids and pretty ribbons! Tie a cinnamon stick to it, attach instructions on how to mix it up (and you could even put a link to my website if you want), and you have a beautiful and thoughtful handmade gift.
You could also make it into a larger gift with a pretty mug, nice festive cloth napkin, and maybe some homemade cookies like my Coconut Oat Cookies, Classic oatmeal cookies, or Brownie cookies with mocha frosting.
You could also try making your own cashew milk or oat milk for this delicious hot drink.
The ancient combination of chocolate & chiles
The combination of chocolate and chiles dates back to the ancient civilizations of Central America, where Mayan and Aztec civilizations drank xocoatl, an unsweetened bitter chocolate drink flavored with spicy chiles.
What does this hot chocolate taste like?
I like to use dark cocoa for my drinks, it provides a smooth richness as the base of the beverage.
Cinnamon adds a nice earthy warmth to the drink, while the chiles give it just a little fruity smoky tingle.
And it’s all balanced with a nice amount of sugar. Not too sweet and not too bitter. The perfect winter drink!
Pro tips to make this hot cocoa
Note: this section contains affiliate links
Mixing up this hot cocoa powder is super easy. Be sure to scroll down to the printable recipe card for detailed ingredient amounts and instructions.
Vanilla powder is a great ingredient to keep in your cupboard. Toss some in drinks, cookies, baked goods. If you don’t already have some, grab it on Amazon, at well-stocked grocery stores, or from specialty food stores. It’s also fantastic on my Vanilla dusted sea scallops.
Most well-stocked grocery stores will carry Ancho chili powder and chipotle chili powder in the spice aisle.
Ancho chili powder has a deep rich flavor from dark smoky chiles with a mild to medium heat. It’s a little sweet and a little fruity, with a flavor reminiscent of raisins.
Chipotle chili powder has a mildly smoky, sweet, spicy flavor. It’s made from smoked and dried jalapeno peppers.
Chili powder may be substituted for the ancho powder and/or the chipotle powder. Cayenne pepper can also be substituted, but you will lose some of the sweet smoky flavors from the ancho and chipotle.
I love to use dark cocoa powder in this recipe. It feels more traditional and the flavor is mellow and rich. Want to read more about cocoa, especially this special dark cocoa? Learn more about cocoa powder.
How to make it
Toss all the ingredients in a glass 2-cup Pyrex-type measuring cup. Then just mix with a fork or a small whisk. Break up any lumps that you may find in the cocoa as well.
To use the mix, drop 2 to 3 tablespoons powder into a mug.
Heat 1 cup (or 8 ounces) of milk over medium-low heat in a small saucepan, stirring often, until hot. Or, you can use a microwave for 1 to 2 minutes.
Make the drink with any kind of milk you like, dairy milk, plant-based vegan milk, even try making your own homemade oat milk.
Add the hot milk to the mug with the cocoa powder, and stir well.
This drink is also delicious if you use hot water or coffee in place of the milk. It’s particularly good in my morning coffee to spice up my morning mocha!
And, then, of course, feel free to top it with some delicious and decadent whipped cream! Now that’s some tasty goodness right there!
You’ll see I garnished mine with edible stars as well for a festive touch. Grab some edible stars of your own.
Can I Use plant-based Milk?
Yes, absolutely, vegan milks are delicious in this drink. I’ve used just about every milk in my hot cocoa, and they’re all great!
Canned coconut milk adds a nice thick richness that goes along with the Aztec flavors.
Almond, soy, and oat milk are all great in this recipe.
Favorite Winter Drinks
I love a nice warm drink during the winter. There’s just something so relaxing and calming about it. Sitting by the fireplace with friends and family with a nice warm drink. Ahhhh…
Try some of my favorites!
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Aztec Hot Chocolate Recipe
Aztec Hot Chocolate
- 1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
- 3/4 cup granulated sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla powder
- 1/8 teaspoon ancho chile powder
- 1/8 teaspoon chipotle powder
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- Mix all ingredients in a small jar. Put a pretty ribbon on the jar and tie up with a cinnamon stick and the instructions.
- To use: Mix 2 to 3 tablespoons powder into 1 cup hot milk, water, or coffee. Enjoy.
Nutritional information is based on third-party calculations, and should be considered estimates. Actual nutritional content will vary based on brands used, measuring methods, portion sizes, and more.
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