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The Best Hot Chocolate Recipes for Christmas Light Tours

Posted on November 9, 2022
Hot chocolate to-go cup.

As the weather gets colder, days get shorter, and people get merrier, we know the holidays are around the corner. 

One of our favorite holiday traditions is when families of all shapes and sizes come together for an evening drive through some of the most beautiful, unique, and extravagant Christmas lights displays

And what pairs perfectly with night drives and Christmas lights? Hot chocolate.

So as we enter the holidays, level up your Christmas light tours with the best hot chocolate recipes of the season.


The Best Hot Chocolate Recipes

A mug of hot cocoa, with whip cream on top.
Photography | bon appetit / Alex Lau

1. Bon Appetite’s Best Hot Chocolate

If there’s anyone that we can trust to make delicious hot chocolate, it’s Bon Appetite. Bon Appetite’s Best Hot Chocolate is a simple and decadent recipe that any hot chocolate lover will appreciate. 

For this recipe you’ll need: 

  • 3 tablespoons of cocoa powder 
  • 3 cups of whole milk
  • 6 ounces of semisweet chocolate 
  • 3 tablespoons of demerara or granulated sugar 
  • Lightly sweetened whipped cream for serving (what’s hot chocolate without it)

This recipe will fill four servings of hot chocolate. 


two mugs of hot chocolate
Photography | allrecipes / Danielle K.

2. allrecipes’ Creamy Homemade Hot Cocoa

If creamy hot chocolate is your thing, you’ve come to the right place. allrecipes gave us the gift of the most creamy and tasty hot chocolate recipe to bring on your next Christmas lights tour.

For this recipe you’ll need:

  • ¾ cup of white sugar 
  • ⅓ cup of unsweetened cocoa powder 
  • 1 pinch of salt 
  • ⅓ cup of boiling water 
  • 3 ½ cups of milk 
  • ¾ teaspoon of vanilla extract 
  • ½ cup of half-and-half cream 

This recipe will fill four servings of hot chocolate. 


hot cocoa in glass mug, next to chalkboard
Photography| Todd Wilbur's Top Secret Recipes

3. Top Secret Recipes’ Starbucks Copycat Hot Chocolate 

For all you Starbucks enthusiasts, we found you the best Starbucks hot chocolate copycat recipe with Top Secret Recipes. 

For this recipe you’ll need:

  •  ¼ cup of water
  • 2 tablespoons of unsweetened cocoa powder 
  • 2 tablespoons of granulated sugar 
  • 1 ½ cups of milk 
  • ¼ teaspoon of vanilla extract 
  • Whipped cream for serving 

This recipe will make one Grande hot chocolate. 


white hot chocolate in glass mug with candy canes
Photography | Celebrating Sweets

4. Celebrating Sweets’ Homemade White Hot Chocolate 

No need to worry if milk chocolate isn’t your favorite, we have something for everyone. Celebrating Sweets shared a sweet and easy white hot chocolate recipe for you to enjoy.  

For this recipe you’ll need:

  • 4 cups of milk
  • 1 cup of white chocolate chips or chopped white chocolate 
  • 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract 
  • Pinch of salt (optional) 

This recipe will fill four servings of white hot chocolate. 


hot cocoa in white mug, candy can balanced across top of mug
Photography | Martha

5. Martha Stewart’s Peppermint Hot Chocolate

None other than Christmas icon herself, Martha Stewart, has one of the best peppermint hot chocolate recipes around. This recipe is the perfect mix of chocolate and mint with every sip. 

For this recipe you’ll need:

  • ⅓ cup of unsweetened cocoa powder 
  • 1 quart of milk 
  • ½ cup of semisweet chocolate chips 
  • 7 peppermint sticks; 3 crushed, 4 left whole
  • 1 pinch of salt 

This recipe will fill four servings of peppermint hot chocolate. 


two cups of hot chocolate, in blue and white striped mugs.
Photography | Well Plated by Erin

6. Well Plated’s Healthy Hot Chocolate

If you’re looking to be more health-conscious this holiday season, this one’s for you. Well Plated’s healthy hot chocolate recipe still satisfies all your hot chocolate needs without the extra calories. 

For this recipe you’ll need:

  • 1 cup of unsweetened almond milk
  • 2 ½ teaspoons of unsweetened cocoa powder 
  • ½ tablespoon of pure maple syrup 
  • Pinch of salt 
  • 1 tablespoon chopped dark chocolate
  • ¼ teaspoon of vanilla extract

This recipe will fill one serving of healthy hot chocolate.

Garnishes to Make the Best Hot Chocolates Even Better 

If you’re looking to level up your hot chocolate recipes this holiday season, try some of these garnishes to make the best hot chocolate even better:

  • Candy canes 
  • Marshmallows 
  • Whipped cream 
  • Chocolate chips (milk chocolate or white chocolate) 
  • Chocolate shavings (milk chocolate or white chocolate) 

Get creative with it! If it involves chocolate, peppermint, or cream, we can promise you it’ll make your hot chocolate recipe that much more delicious. 

cartoon snowman walking torward cell phone depicting Christmas lights tour
Photography | Built Story

Hot Chocolate Recipes for Christmas Lights Tours 

We hope some of these recipes can bring you and your family holiday cheer during your Christmas light tours

Did you try one of the recipes or have your own? We’d love to hear from you! Share your reviews and recipes with us on Instagram


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