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Dairy-Free Hot Chocolate

by Capri Lilly

A decadent, dairy-free hot chocolate made with creamy almond milk, rich cacao, sweetened with date syrup, and topped with vegan marshmallow — talk about a sweet treat! This winter-time must tastes EVEN BETTER than regular hot chocolate, and can be made in less than 5 minutes!

If you love this warm winter drink, then you’ll love my Dairy-Free Eggnog or my Golden Milk Latte recipe!

Homemade Hot Chocolate Dairy Free

Did I mention this homemade hot chocolate is rich, creamy, and absolutely delicious? Did I also mention that it is completely DAIRY-FREE!?

I have to say that this hot chocolate is perfect for those cold winter days when you need something quick and sweet to warm you up. Sometimes I even like to make spiked hot chocolate for those special occasions and holiday gatherings! That’s the beauty of this recipe, besides the fact that is super easy, it is perfect for kids and adults.

cacao beans benefits

What is the secret to this richness of this hot chocolate? 

It’s Cacao!

Cacao (Pronounced Kuh-Cow) is one of the most powerful superfoods!

  • Cacao is the healthy substitute for chocolate.
  • Cacao beans are seeds from the Theobroma Cacao Tree. Cocoa Powder comes from the same tree, but through heat and chemical processing loses all of its nutritional value!
  • Raw Organic Cacao Powder, on the other hand, is minimally processed by cold-pressing raw cacao beans, therefore it retains all of its incredible nutrients!!
  • Cacao has more antioxidants per gram than blueberries, goji berries, and pomegranates. (1)
  • It’s High in magnesium- which helps relieve muscle tension, anxiety, and improves brain health (2)
  • It has the highest plant-based source of iron! (3)
  • Has a high level of Flavonoids- which boost heart health by lower cholesterol and blood pressure (4)
  • It contains Amino Acids such as Tryptophan- which naturally helps to enhance relaxation and boost mood. (5)

If you’ve been following my food blog for a while, you know that I am obsessed with cacao and all its incredible nutrients and deep flavor! I use it often and for various dishes, like smoothies, chia pudding, and icing!


raw cacao powder for hot chocolate

There are several ways to incorporate Cacao into your diet.

An easy way to make your chocolate desserts a bit healthier is to substitute Organic Cacao for Cocoa powder.

It is an easy 1:1 ratio (replace 1g Cacao for 1 gram Cocoa Powder)!

Here’s how to easily make this Creamy Dairy-Free Hot Chocolate in three simple steps!

Step 1: 

Pour 2 cups almond milk into a pot over medium heat. Add 3 tablespoons cacao, 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon (optional), and 3 tablespoons date syrup (or maple syrup). Stir well until all the lumps have dissolved and the mixture is a smooth texture. 

healthy hot chocolate recipe

Step 2: 

Allow the mixture to come to a subtle boil (about 5 minutes), then lower the temperature. If you would like to make your hot chocolate boozy, now is the time to add any of your favorites spirits.

Popular alcohols to add to hot chocolate are

  • Peppermint  Schnapps, Cinnamon Liqueur
  • Marshmallow Vodka
  • Coffee Liqueur
  • Bourbon
  • Rum
  • Whisky

Pick your favorite! 🙂

how chocolate with almond milk
vegan how cocoa

Step 3:

Pour your hot chocolate into your favorite mug, top with vegan marshmallows (or regular marshmallows), and a bit of cinnamon. Enjoy!

how to make homemade hot chocolate-2

In three steps you have delicious Homemade Hot Chocolate! Skip the store brought hot cocoa and make this one at home. I promise you’ll love it!

Here’s a 1-minute step-by-step video!

Homemade Dairy-Free Hot Chocolate

A decadent, dairy-free hot chocolate made with creamy almond milk, rich cacao, sweetened with date syrup and topped with vegan marshmallows. The taste is  even better than regular hot chocolate, and can be made in less than 5 minutes.
Prep Time2 mins
Cook Time5 mins
Total Time7 mins
Course: Dessert, Drinks
Cuisine: American, Healthy Options
Keyword: best dairy free hot chocolate, homemade hot chocolate, hot chocolate
Servings: 2
Calories: 358kcal
Author: Capri Lilly


  • 2 cups Almond Milk (or your favorite milk)
  • 3 tbsp Cacao Powder
  • 1/2 tsp Cinnamon
  • 3 tbsp Date or Maple Syrup

Optional Ingredients

  • 1/4 cup Rum or your favorite alcohol
  • 3-4 Vegan Marshmallows
  • Pinch of nutmeg for garnish


  • Pour the almond milk, cacao, syrup, and cinnamon into a medium sized pot over medium high heat. Stir until all lumps are removed.
  • Allow the mixture to come to a subtle boil (about 5 minutes), then reduce the heat.
  • Add the rum (optional). Stir well and remove the mixture from the heat.
  • Pour the hot chocolate into your favorite mug. Top with marshmallows and cinnamon.



  • Serving: 2
  • Fat: 11.6g
  • Calories: 358
  • Protien 6g
Tip: This recipe can easily be doubled if you want more people to enjoy it!


1. https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/cocoa-powder-nutrition-benefits

2. https://www.huffpost.com/entry/the-11-best-sources-of-ma_b_1817556

3. https://begoodorganics.com/cacao-5-little-known-benefits-of-this-amazonian-superfood/

4. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4696435/

5. http://www.wiseonesuperfoods.com/science-raw-cacao/

Disclaimer: Some of the links above are affiliate links, which pay me a small commission for my referral at no extra cost to you and helps me keep my site running! I’m sharing these products because I use them, trust them, and cannot recommend them enough. All thoughts and opinions are 100% my own.

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