European hot chocolate is the best version there is – rich and thick, more dessert than drink! Make it at home in 10 minutes.Jump to Recipe
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You haven’t really tried hot chocolate until you had the European version. Particularly popular in Italy and France, it’s thick and rich, falling somewhere between a drink and a pudding.
The best part is that it’s easy! You can make it in ten minutes.
The tablespoon of espresso intensifies the chocolate flavor, so try it even if you don’t love coffee! It doesn’t taste like coffee, I promise. You can sub in espresso powder, but I just save some from my morning Moka pot and toss it in.
You want to use the darkest chocolate you can find. Aim for 70%. use baking chocolate rather than chocolate chips to avoid additives that don’t melt as well.
It isn’t a mistake that there’s no sugar! The chocolate is so rich that you don’t need any. Traditional European hot chocolate is more about the chocolate flavor than sweetness.
When you first combine everything, the liquid will still look think, like regular hot cocoa. Keep it on super low heat and stir gently for a few more minutes and it’ll thicken right up!
This recipe makes enough for two mugs, but it’s so intense you may want to serve it in teacups or espresso cups. Top with a bit of whipped cream and you have a decadent drink to warm you up!
Have some leftover? Scoop a tablespoon into your morning coffee tomorrow for a cheat mocha!
Tools you’ll need: small pot, measuring cups, knife.
European Hot Chocolate
- 8 oz dark chocolate 70% cacao
- 1 cup milk whole
- ½ cup heavy cream
- 1 tbsp espresso
- ½ tsp vanilla extract
- Chop the chocolate into small pieces.
- Heat milk, heavy cream, espresso and vanilla in a medium pan over low heat. Don't let it boil, and stir occasionally.
- When tiny bubbles begin to appear on the edges of the liquid, add the in chocolate. Stir gently and continuously until the chocolate is fully melted.
- At this point, the liquid will be very thin. Heat on low, stirring often and making sure to gently scrape the bottom. The chocolate will continue to incorporate and thicken. After about 5 minutes, it should be ready.
- Serve immediately, topped with whipped cream!
That’s it! Trust me, it’s worth the extra few minutes to make it.
Don’t have the right ingredients on hand? I’ve also got a great hot cocoa recipe. Or, try your hand at gluwhein for another European winter drink!