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Spanish Hot Chocolate

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Spanish hot chocolate is a thick, rich, flavorful homemade hot chocolate made with bittersweet dark chocolate, whole milk, a hint of sugar, and a pinch of cinnamon and cayenne pepper. Your family will love this decadent and flavorful drink!

two white mugs of hot chocolate sitting on white saucers. Mugs are on pink marble with white subway tile behind

If you love hot chocolate, then you have got to try this version from Spain! Forget the overly sweet packets from a grocery store, this is the real deal! So thick its almost a pudding, rich and flavorful, with just a hint of spice to it, you won’t be able to drink hot chocolate any other way.

Also known as Chocolate Caliente, this velvety and deeply chocolate drink is often served with churros to dip into. This is much thicker than what you typically find in North America, and feels like such a luxurious and decadent drink because of its texture and the hint of spice from the cinnamon and cayenne pepper. This drink is NOT spicy hot, and the well flavored drink is perfect for kids to enjoy. 

Thank you to AE Dairy for sponsoring this post. And Thank you for supporting the brands that support me and allow me to continue to grow my site. All opinions, recipe and photographs are my own.

two white mugs on saucers filled with hot chocolate with white bottle of milk behind. Mugs are sitting on pink marble with a white and red striped cloth beside

What ingredients do I need for this?

You only need a few simple ingredients to make this amazingly rich and flavorful hot chocolate recipe.  Because you only need 6 ingredients, make sure they are all the best quality you can get.

  • Milk – I recommend using a really rich and creamy whole milk for this recipe. I always recommend AE Dairy milk because it’s so fresh and the quality is top notch. This is a decadent treat, so don’t substitute with a low fat milk or it won’t taste the same. You want full fat, fresh, quality, flavorful milk. 
  • Chocolate – You want to use a good quality bittersweet or semi-sweet chocolate. Do not use milk chocolate as it is too sweet. Use the best quality you can get, and one that doesn’t have added ingredients that might melt funny or make your drink taste weird. I recommend using a chocolate with between 60-75% cacao. You can use a darker chocolate, but you will probably want to add a bit more sugar.
  • Cornstarch – This helps to thicken the drink. You only need a little!
  • Sugar – You only need a small amount of sugar for this recipe. Its not overly sweet, and you really want the chocolate flavor to shine. You can adjust for your flavor preferences, but don’t go too sweet. 
  • Ground Cinnamon – This helps to give it that spiced flavor that makes this hot chocolate just so good. Use a really good quality cinnamon for the best flavor.
  • Ground Cayenne Pepper – You just want to add a tiny little pinch of ground cayenne for just the hint of flavor. This drink it not at all spicy, but you do want these spice notes! 
bottle of milk with small glass bowls of chopped chocoalte, cinnamon and cayenne, sugar, and cornstarch on marble counter

How to make Spanish style hot chocolate

This homemade hot chocolate is so quick and simple to make! For the full set of directions, make sure you scroll down to the recipe card below.

  1. In a medium saucepan, whisk together the AE Dairy whole milk, cornstarch and sugar until the cornstarch has been dissolved.
  2. Place the saucepan on the stovetop over medium heat, whisking constantly, until the milk has heated and thickened, about 5-10 minutes. Do not allow the milk to boil as it can cause the milk to separate and the cornstarch to actually become thinner. You just want to gently heat it.
  3. Reduce the heat down to low.
  4. Add the chopped chocolate, ground cinnamon, and cayenne pepper.
  5. Whisk until the chocolate has melted and is fully incorporated into the milk.
  6. Turn off the heat and serve.
four photos showing whisking ingredients in saucepan for spanish hot chocoalte

How to serve this hot chocolate

Unlike hot chocolate in America, this Spanish hot chocolate is never served with whipped cream or marshmallows. It is either enjoyed as it is or it is commonly served with churros to dip into.

Not authentic, but I imagine serving these with some homemade cinnamon sugar donuts would also be amazing!

overhead view of two mugs of spanish hot chocolate in white mugs with bottle of milk beside them

Food tastes better when its shared! If you try this recipe, let me know! Leave a comment and rate below!

Yield: 2 servings

Spanish Hot Chocolate Recipe

two white mugs of hot chocolate sitting on white saucers. Mugs are on pink marble with white subway tile behind

This Spanish style hot chocolate recipe is thick, rich, and so flavorful!

Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 5 minutes
Total Time 10 minutes

Ingredients

  • 1 cup whole milk
  • 1 teaspoon cornstarch
  • 1 teaspoon granulated sugar
  • 3 ounces bittersweet chocolate, chopped small
  • ¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • Pinch cayenne pepper

Instructions

  1. In a medium saucepan, whisk together the milk, cornstarch and sugar until the cornstarch has been dissolved.
  2. Place the saucepan on the stovetop over medium heat, whisking constantly, until the milk has heated and thickened. Do not allow the milk to boil.
  3. Reduce the heat down to low.
  4. Add the chopped chocolate, ground cinnamon, and cayenne pepper.
  5. Whisk until the chocolate has melted and is fully incorporated into the milk.
  6. Turn off the heat and serve.

Nutrition Information:

Yield:

2

Serving Size:

1

Amount Per Serving: Calories: 362Total Fat: 26gSaturated Fat: 16gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 9gCholesterol: 13mgSodium: 63mgCarbohydrates: 22gFiber: 7gSugar: 9gProtein: 10g

Nutrition information is an estimate and is provided for informational purposes only. For the most accurate information, please calculate using your specific brands and exact measurements.

Did you make this recipe?

Please leave a comment on the blog or share a photo on Instagram, and don't forget to tag #gingeredwhisk.

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Journa Liz Ramirez

Monday 19th of December 2022

This recipe is so good! I tried making it at home and my family loved it! Thank you for sharing this flavorful and easy-to-make Spanish hot chocolate recipe. We'll surely make this again.

Jenna

Sunday 18th of December 2022

Adding cayenne pepper to this hot chocolate really kicked it up a notch. It was delicious - thanks for sharing.

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