Welcome that cold winter weather with open arms – and a mug full of Peppermint Spiked Hot Chocolate, made with Pinnacle® Whipped® Vodka & DeKuyper® Peppermint Schnapps! Skip the boxed hot cocoa mix and whip up a homemade version for an even more decadent drink.
This post is sponsored by Jim Beam and Drizly but all opinions expressed are my own. Thank you for supporting the brands we love that make this blog possible!
Can you feel it?
There’s definitely a nip in the air – though for many of you, that nip has turned full-blown frigid already.
Down here, our winters are short and mild. And I just happen to be one of the crazy people who pulls out my scarves and boots at the very mention of a sub-70 degree day.
Gotta enjoy the chill while I can, even if it only lasts a few weeks!
JUST TAKE ME TO THE YUMMY PEPPERMINT SPIKED HOT CHOCOLATE ALREADY!
If you’d rather skip my (pretty darn helpful) tips and tricks, essential cooking info, and similar recipe ideas – and get straight to this deliciously easy spiked hot chocolate cocktail recipe, just scroll right on down to the bottom of the page where you can find the printable recipe card!
In addition to those warm clothes, colder weather also means warms drinks!
I might love hot chocolate even more than coffee. I don’t drink it nearly as often, but I have so many wonderful childhood memories that I associate with it.
After being out in the cold, there’s nothing quite like a mug of creamy hot cocoa to warm your hands and your inner child. And a bonus of adulthood is being able to spike it!
That’s what’s happening here – I’ve taken your nostalgic mug of cocoa and flavored it with peppermint schnapps and whipped cream vodka.
Now, I’ve mentioned before that I’m not a big fan of vodka, but I make exceptions for a bottle of Pinnacle® Vodka.
I have yet to find a drink combo that it doesn’t make better, and this cocoa is no exception.
And since mint and chocolate go together like beans and rice, the schnapps is an obviously genius addition.
Are Hot Cocoa and Hot Chocolate the same?
Hot chocolate and hot cocoa are pretty ubiquitous – people use both terms interchangeably all over the world.
That being said, there’s no definition that separates them, but they do actually differ in ingredients and flavor…and most people have a preference.
Hot cocoa, as the name suggests, is usually made from cocoa powder, with an addition of sugar. It is sometimes flavored, and can be bought on store shelves in packets with tiny dehydrated marshmallows that plump when mixed with liquid. It is combined with hot water, cream, or milk, and is generally thinner than hot chocolate.
On the other hand, hot chocolate is essentially melted chocolate blended with hot water or milk. There’s is usually no added sugar, thanks to the natural sweetness of chocolate. Hot chocolate tends to be creamy, smooth, and thick, with a deep chocolate flavor, sometimes known as drinking chocolate.
How to make Spiked Hot Chocolate
Before you reach for the liquor, you need a fabulous hot cocoa as a base. After all – this is a hot chocolate cocktail.
I already hear you – Can I use boxed cocoa mix? Yes, you sure can. I personally prefer a homemade hot chocolate, but if you’re looking for an easy way out, it works well!
If you’re going to use the powdered stuff, I do recommend mixing it with cream or whole milk instead of water. The fat in the dairy will help balance the burn from the liquor, leaving you with a pleasantly smooth, almost innocent-tasting hot chocolate.
If you’d rather make your own hot chocolate base…
I suggest this recipe that I shared last year. It serves six as written, but you can easily cut it in half or quarters for a smaller batch. The best part about that recipe, aside from how yummy it is, is that it can be made on the stove top, slow cooker, or Instant Pot! Plus, you can use your favorite blend of chocolates, further customizing your experience.
And if you’re craving a super-chocolatey cocoa, whip up this French Hot Chocolate recipe. It’s made with a bit of espresso powder, which deepens the already intense chocolate flavor.
Once you’ve got your hot chocolate, all that’s left to do is to mix in your liquor and garnish up your cocktail! This recipe uses a 2:1:1/2 ratio –
- 2 parts hot cocoa
- 1 part vodka
- 1/2 part schnapps
So if you’re making more than one drink, just use that ratio, mix everything together, then divide it between your mugs. Whipped cream and candy canes aren’t required, but they sure add a special something!
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Boozy Peppermint Hot Chocolate
- Pour all ingredients into a mug and mix well.
- Garnish with whipped cream and a peppermint stick, if desired.