Saturday, November 22, 2014

A Nice Cup of Hot Cocoa

Well, the weather we’ve been having calls for a nice warm cup of comfort. When you first go vegan, you realize that many of the convenience foods you grew up on are now off-limits and the from-scratch alternatives can be a little discouraging.

But just because Swiss Miss is off the table doesn’t mean you’re out of luck. If you start with the right ingredients, you can make a good cup of cocoa just as fast as the instant kind.

With a candy cane for a stirring stick


Single-serving Vegan Hot Cocoa


6-8 fl. oz vanilla nondairy milk
2-4 tsp cocoa powder or carob powder
sweetener to taste
(optional) flavorings such as cinnamon to taste

with vegan marshmallows

Dissolve the cocoa or carob powder into a couple tablespoons of the soymilk, then whisk in the rest of the soymilk. You can do this right in the mug if you want to. Add sweetener or flavorings if using.
Heat in microwave 1 or 2 minutes, or in a pan on the stovetop until warm to your liking.
Top with vegan marshmallows or whip topping, and enjoy!

Now, whether you need sweetener or not depends on your choice of nondairy milk, and also on whether you’re using cocoa or carob (carob is inherently sweeter). An unsweetened soymilk paired with cocoa will definitely need some extra sweetener; a sweet vanilla milk with carob probably won’t. 

If you want an extra rich and thick version, you can try coconut milk. I find a high-protein soymilk* does the trick just fine.

Vegan hot cocoa, topped with rice whip

*soymilks with 8-11 grams of protein are more concentrated and less watery than those in the 3-6 range. They often perform better in recipes and have more nutritional value.

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