Want to make the perfect hot chocolate using hot chocolate powder? Read on for the best hot chocolates to make at home, and try our toppings ideas here.
What is hot chocolate?
Hot chocolate, also known as drinking chocolate, comes as a powder, flakes or beans, and is mixed with either hot milk or hot water to produce a drink. Sugar is often added as a sweetener, and other flavourings, such as spices and fruit zest, may also be included.
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Best hot chocolate powders
Best instant made with water: Aero Instant Hot Chocolate Tin, £15.99, 2kg, Amazon
Comments: This instant hot chocolate powder has an impressive frothy head and a sweet flavour. It’s not quite as thick as some other chocolates, but it’s an easy one to make at work (or on a camping trip) as it only needs hot water.
Best classic hot chocolate: Asda Extra Special Fairtrade Indulgent Drinking Chocolate, £2.48, 300g, Asda
Comments: This affordable hot chocolate produces a luxurious drink. The decadent dark chocolate mixed with milk gives a high-quality, creamy finish. Buy this one if you want a classic hot chocolate experience.
Best cocoa-flavour: Tesco Finest Santo Domingo Hot Chocolate, £2.50, 250g, Tesco
Comments: If you’re after a bittersweet powdered hot chocolate, buy this bargain pot which creates a well-blended drink with a prominent cocoa flavour and smooth mouthfeel.
Best spiced hot chocolate: Divine Fairtrade Spiced Hot Chocolate, £4, 300g, Ocado
Comments: This festive hot chocolate has a silky-smooth texture and fragrant hints of stem ginger and orange. It would be great spiked with a tot of spiced rum!
Best hot chocolate beads
Comments: With bitter dark chocolate notes, this rich hot chocolate has a smooth mouthfeel and creamy texture. Try pepping it up with a pinch of dried chilli flakes for a grown-up drink this winter.
Best hot chocolate flakes
Best for the family: Green and Black’s Fairtrade Organic Hot Chocolate, £3.60, 300g, Ocado
Comments: A great option for children, the well-rounded chocolate flavour mixes well with milk for a homogenised drink. Try topping up with some cream for extra indulgence.
Best luxury hot chocolate: Fortnum and Mason Ultimate Hot Chocolate, £19.95, 300g, Fortnum and Mason
Comments: The high price means this might not be an everyday treat, but these sweet chocolate flakes are rich in flavour, and, when mixed with milk produce an indulgent mug of smooth hot chocolate.
Best thick hot chocolate: Chococo 70% Madagascan Hot Chocolate Flakes, £7.50, 125g, chococo.co.uk
Comments: We love this high-quality chocolate, with the dark, bitter flavours that these flakes are made from. It’d be great made with cream for a thicker, champurrado-style drink.
Other hot chocolates we tried
If you want to make your own from scratch, try our luxury hot chocolate with mix ‘n’ match toppings here
Tasting conducted by Ellie Edwards