red mug of hot chocolate and marshmallows

Snacks & Treats

A Dairy-Free Hot Chocolate Recipe That Won’t Make You Miss Milk

Jan 24, 2018

Canadian winters and hot chocolate make a natural pair. Just like pancakes and maple syrup, mashed potatoes and gravy and ketchup and fries — you just can’t have one without the other. And if you do, something just isn’t right!

Since we’re currently deep into our Canadian winter, let’s revisit the hot chocolate recipe. Hot chocolate is a very simple drink with a few variations and it’s either good or not-so-good. When you find a good one, you stick with it.

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This hot chocolate recipe is a good one. It’s rich, cream- and dairy-free, and it just may become a new favourite treat to warm up with. Sip this warm confection after hours of playing in the snow, with a favourite book, or devour a mug as an after-school treat with cookies. It takes a couple minutes longer to prepare than pre-mixed hot chocolate powder, but it’s so worth it.

Dairy-free hot chocolate ingredients

The secret ingredient that makes this dairy-free hot chocolate extra special is coconut milk. And we’re not talking the coconut milk that comes in a carton that you keep in the fridge — this recipe uses the thicker, creamier canned coconut milk. It makes the hot chocolate just a little bit thicker than the regular stuff and adds a creaminess that you’ll love.

You will need:

  • 2 cups of your favourite dairy-free milk
  • 1/2 cup canned coconut milk (full fat or light)
  • 3 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
  • sweetener of choice, to taste
  • garnishes, optional (see note below)


  1. Heat non-dairy milk and coconut milk in a small pot. Heat until steaming but not boiling.
  2. Whisk in cocoa powder.
  3. Add sweetener, stir. Taste and adjust as necessary.
  4. If garnishing, add your preferred garnish to the top.

Recipe Notes:

  • Be sure to use canned coconut milk (not the refrigerated type found in cartons) and either full fat or light can be used. Using canned coconut milk in your hot chocolate will make it slightly thicker and make it extra creamy.
  • For your garnishes, use whatever you and your kids like! We love using coconut whipped cream and the vegan peppermint marshmallows shown in the pictures above.
  • For a little twist on regular hot chocolate, try this recipe for peppermint hot chocolate, which is also dairy free and delicious!
Article Author Gwen Leron
Gwen Leron

Read more from Gwen here.

Gwen Leron is a writer, web editor, and web content manager. On her website, Delightful Adventures, she shares easy, delicious, allergy-friendly recipes with her readers. She also shares travel tips and stories as well as info about local attractions/events in her home city, Ottawa.
Connect with Gwen on Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, and Pinterest.

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