Homemade Hot Chocolate – dairy and sugar free

Homemade Hot Chocolate Recipe - dairy and sugar free

{I love making my own healthy versions of processed foods like chocolate chips, white chocolate chips, taco seasoning, ketchup, salad dressing, and even taco shells. Today’s recipe from Candida Free Candee is for dairy and sugar-free homemade hot chocolate which is so much better for you than the packaged brands.  Perfect for cooler weather, though I would personally love it all year round!}

I am blessed, there are no two ways about it. I have a great family, a wonderful hubby, and I couldn’t be more proud of my little girls.

I know – every mom says that, but I really, truly am.

I had moment of heart-bursting love and awe with my two and a half year old last weekend that made me feel beyond blessed.

We were visiting Grandma and Grandpa in the country and it was finally warm enough to go outside and play in the snow. And was there ever snow. The massive yard was waist high with white stuff.

It had been a very rough few weeks for me and I was ecstatic to get out in the sun and enjoy the fresh air.

So out we went. My little peanut and I bundled up. The wind was colder than we had expected, but we weren’t about to let that ruin our fun.

My little one had never played in these conditions. We’d gone for some toboggan rides (pulled by mommy), shoveled a bit, and thrown some snow up in the air, but she had never trudged.

So what was my duty? To help her out, blaze a trail, have her walk in my footsteps, to make the trek easier for her, of course!

So there I was, trudging away in thigh-high snow, trying to stay on top of the harder, packed parts for the most part, musing dramatically about how I was blazing a trail literally and perhaps figuratively, for my girl. As I did this, heading for the gazebo that was boarded up for the winter, I saw my little girl out of the corner of my eye.

Wait…what? The corner of my eye? I thought she was behind me–in my footprints, taking the path I had made for her, blazed for her, to help her out, to make it easy for her!

No, there she was, walking beside me, finding her own way, blazing her own trail through the deep heavy snow and I mean deep, heavy snow. I was taken aback. I had underestimated my little girl. She was stronger than I’d given her credit for. I beamed with pride while wanting to burst into tears at how grown up she was.

From there on, she lead the way, traipsing around the property, saying things like:

“let’s go this way”
“follow me”
“you can do it mommy” and my favorite
“we gotta go find more bunny poop” (the resident bunnies had left piles all over the yard).

I was so proud of my confident, adventurous, imaginative and self-assured little girl. She was blazing trails and making tracks where there were none. We went to each and every cold corner, up the hill, down the hill, and through the trees–to places that no one had walked all winter.

The wind started to pick up, so I began planting the idea of hot chocolate in her head. Well, after my suggestion and one more trek up the hill to look for bunny poop she said, “it’s getting chilly, better go in for hot cocoa”.

So in we went, and to add to her independent day, she scooped her own cocoa powder, dropped in her own stevia and stirred it all up in the milk.

I’m surprised she didn’t heat it up on her own out of pure will :).

We usually try to give her carob when it is later in the afternoon (to avoid caffeine) but I wasn’t about to split hairs after the moment we’d had. And Grandma had cocoa, so cocoa it was! She loved it, and savoured every last drop.

This drink is so satisfying and will warm you from the inside out. It’s perfect on a cold winter day or any day at all. In fact, I imagine myself (when I have time to read again) curling up with a good book and a giant mug of this on a crisp autumn day or during a spring thunderstorm–cozy.

Pair this hot chocolate with a grain-free Carob Cardamom Cupcake, a slice of Perfect Pumpkin Pie, or one of my delicious Sugar-Free Sugar Cookies.

There are many variations to this recipe and you really can’t go wrong.

We’ve used a variety of non-dairy milks from almond (my favourite being vanilla almond), hemp, rice, coconut and even water and they all have turned out just fine. The carob powder is quite sweet on its own so you don’t need much stevia or sweetener, which is always a plus.

I also discovered last time I made this that a combination of about 1 tbsp carob and 1 tsp cocoa made a lovely mixture but start with small amounts and adjust to your tastes!

You could use stevia, as I did, or honey or maple syrup (this would make for an interesting flavour variation) or if you find the carob version sweet enough you may not need sweetener at all.

Top this with coconut whipped cream (or this “faux coconut whipped cream“), real whipped cream (if you are able to eat it), cashew cream (stay tuned to Candida Free Candee for an exciting cashew recipe coming soon) or sans cream (which is how I usually enjoy it). The possibilities are endless.

But please, whatever you do enjoy it.

Life is so short, and I want to savour each and every moment with my family, because it’s true what they say–it goes by too fast.

So if you will pardon me, I’m off to the kitchen.

I think my snow-trekking little girl and I deserve another cup of hot cocoa.

Have you made Homemade Hot Chocolate before?

CandaceCandace is a stay-at-home-mom, wife, graphic designer and food lover. She loves to make healthy, whole foods that are dairy free and candida friendly. She loves being a mom and is passionate about parenting, living healthy and helping others do the same. She shares her recipes and candida fighting tactics at: candidafreecandee.com. You can also follow her on Facebook and Twitter.

 Shared at Food Renegade, Ricki Heller, and Tip Junkie.

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  1. Aren’t our children precious?
    My two “little” girls are now 37 and 35!!!
    It seems just days ago that they were small adventurers themselves, making their mommy proud, too.
    Savor these days, they grow up SO FAST!
    The hot cocoa sounds a perfect end to such wonderful adventures. Thank you. I think I’ll mail my wonderful blessings a ‘care’ package including this cocoa!

    • Hi Carol,
      They certainly are! I never understood until I had kids myself how truly fast it goes by! Thank you for the reminder to slow down and savour every day, I sometimes forget this and I don’t ever want to look back and wish I had been more “in the moment”.

      You have very lucky girls to have a mama that sends them care packages, I am sure they feel blessed! I hope you and your girls enjoy this recipe!

  2. Delicious and easy! :) Thanks!

  3. Your hot chocolate looks so much more appetizing then mine ever does! I guess I have to try and try some more!

    • Hi Heather,
      The coconut whipped cream really helps the look. I admit I don’t always top it but it does add a little extra something for special days! I just piped it on using an icing tip and sprinkled on some homemade, stevia-sweetened chocolate chips, if you need some help let me know!

  4. Great idea! Stevia is really amazing replacement of sugar. It has almost 0% calories and what is not least important – it’s absolutely natural. Because of this it’s also good for small children comparing to other “chemical” sweeteners.

  5. I used to use stevia for everything for a number of years. I was having health problems and my adrenals were so depleted. Then I heard that using stevia consistently for a long time could effect your adrenals – so stopped using it all together.
    I was wondering if anyone had heard of that as well?

  6. Candace, I am a new blog follower and subscribed to your other sites as well. I am going to try some of the recipes I have already spotted. I found you through the blog hop and hope that you will follow my blog as well. You can find me here http://www.portraits-by-nc.com/blog

    Can’t wait to see what you cook next!

    Enzie

  7. Yum, I never thought of using almond milk to make hot chocolate, what a great idea!

  8. Wonderful dairy free hot cocoa, my daughter loves hot cocoa but not the dairy, this would be perfect! I would love to invite you to share your recipe at Meal Planning Monday Recipe Link-Up. :) http://www.aprilshomemaking.com/2014/03/meal-planning-monday-recipe-link-up-3.html

  9. How did u make the chocolate chips?