It's hot cocoa season! I'm really excited to share my better-for-you version with you. Hot chocolate doesn't have to be some sugar-laden with questionable ingredients and freeze-dried marshmallows powder that you mix with water. Sure it's easy, but it's not even that tasty, is it? I bring you Heart Healthy Gingerbread Hot Chocolate that will hit the spot and warm you right up from the inside out!
This hot cocoa version has it all. It's mildly sweet, so you won't be in a sugar coma 10 minutes later, it's chocolaty, it's creamy, and it's gingerbready! It's everything that is awesome this season! So cozy up with an over-sized blanket on the couch with a big steaming cup of gingerbread hot chocolate and a Hallmark movie (if that's your speed). Crackling fire optional, but highly recommended.
How to make Gingerbread Hot Chocolate
For this recipe, I recommend using unsweetened cashew milk. Cashew milk is low calorie, but very creamy. That's what you want! Other alternatives are coconut milk, soy milk, almond milk, or pretty much any other type of non dairy milk you like.
The recipe also calls for molasses. It's the main sweetener, plus it completes the gingerbread flavor. Don't skip it. But remember, molasses is sugar. Your body processes it the same as regular white sugar. The difference is that molasses does have a bit lower concentration of sugar. It also has some trace nutrients, but not enough that you'll get any benefit from it. Blackstrap molasses on the other hand has an even lower sugar concentration, and higher nutrition. But it's also a tad bitter. If you don't mind that, use blackstrap. Otherwise, stick to regular light or dark molasses.
There's not much else to know about the process. Pour everything in a small sauce pan, and whisk until it's as hot as you like!
I used a coconut cream whipped topping from a can. It tastes great, and doesn't melt too quickly. Use whatever you like!
Is Hot Chocolate Healthy?
I bet you won't be surprised if I say no, hot chocolate is not very healthy. It's usually high in sugar or artificial sweeteners, and often high in saturated fat, especially if you're getting it at a coffee shop or restaurant. Whole milk or even half and half might be used to make it feel creamy and decadent. It's basically a candy bar in a mug. Fine once in a while, but my goodness do the December treats ever get away from us, right?!
My recipe is low in calories and fat, because I use cashew milk - which is thick and creamy without all the fat. It's also low in sugar because I'm using a drizzle of molasses (and optionally either maple syrup or honey to taste). This allows you to taste and enjoy the other ingredients as well.
Don't forget to try all our healthy Christmas recipes!
If you make Gingerbread Hot Chocolate, let me know in the comments!
Gingerbread Hot Chocolate
There's nothing better on a cold winter's evening than a hot, steaming cup of chocolate and gingerbread! We've created this version with your health in mind - without skimping on taste!
- 1 ½ Cups Cashew Milk
- 2 tablespoon Unsweetened Cocoa Powder
- 1 tablespoon Molasses
- ¾ teaspoon Ground Ginger
- ½ teaspoon Cinnamon
- ⅛ teaspoon Allspice
- ⅛ teaspoon Ground Cloves
- 1-3 tablespoon Honey or Maple Syrup to taste (optional)
Add all ingredients, except maple syrup/honey, to a small saucepan, and whisk to combine.
Cook over medium low heat for about 5 minutes, or until hot and steaming, whisking occasionally.
Taste and add sweetener, if needed.
Ladle into mugs and finish with whipped topping, if desired.