Hot Chocolate

Hot chocolate is more impressive than you think! 

It was first enjoyed over 2000 years ago by the ancient Mayans and was flavored with wine and chili peppers. Up until the 1800s, it was used medicinally to treat stomach ailments. It even contains more antioxidants than both tea and wine (if you’re using the right ingredients).

Our brutal northeast Ohio winter is almost here and it’s the perfect time to add a delicious cup of hot cocoa to your daily routine. Here are 5 ways to make that experience even better! 

1. Experiment with different toppings.

Toppings can make or break a great beverage, think about all the crazy garnishes people put on cocktails. The same is true for a good cup of hot chocolate. If you want to keep your basic recipe the same but add a little variety to the mix try some of these unique topping ideas!

2. Maximize anti-oxidants by using more cocoa.

Cocoa is the ingredient of hot chocolate that makes it tasty, but did you know it has health benefits as well? In order to get the most anti-oxidants from your drink make sure you use chocolate that contains at least 70% cocoa.

3. Add some caffeine.

Hot chocolate is delicious, but it will never replace your need for that morning caffeine buzz. Have the best of both worlds by making  your own fancy Starbucks style drink!

Just add coffee or espresso to you favorite hot chocolate recipe and experiment with different amounts until you get the perfect taste and caffeine amount. You might just discover a new favorite morning drink!

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4. Radically change the flavor.

You probably never thought to add peanut butter, coconut milk or even maple syrup to your hot cocoa, but that’s exactly what startcooking.com says are great additions to the classic chocolate flavor. Think outside the box, come up with your own ideas. Just don’t be afraid to try something new!

5. Use better ingredients.

Like most recipes , a good cup of cocoa starts with good ingredients.  Ditch the instant mix and melt your own chocolate for hot cocoa. . You’ll be amazed at how much better a cup of true hot chocolate compares to the easy to make variety you are used to! Try using these 10 commandments of awesome hot chocolate to the next time you get a craving for the sweet beverage!

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Stop by your local Sparkle Market for all of your hot chocolate needs!

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