Adult Hot Chocolate

Adult Hot Chocolate Cocktail
The Spruce Eats / S&C Design Studios
  • Total: 6 mins
  • Prep: 6 mins
  • Cook: 0 mins
  • Serving: 1 serving
  • Yield: 1 cocktail

Appropriately named "adult hot chocolate," this recipe is one of the easiest and most common ways to spike your cocoa. To make it, you will simply add a shot of peppermint schnapps to your favorite hot chocolate and a delicious, warm drink is yours to enjoy.

The schnapps not only gives it a mint-chocolate flavor, but the alcohol also adds to the warming qualities of the drink and makes it a bit sweeter. When topped with whipped cream and chocolate, you'll treat yourself to one amazing cup of cocoa.

You might also see this same recipe under the names peppermint kiss, cocoanapps, or the snuggler. No matter what you call it, it is the perfect drink for a chilly night.

Ingredients

  • 2 ounces peppermint schnapps
  • 6 ounces hot chocolate (or enough to fill)
  • Garnish: ​whipped cream
  • Garnish: shaved chocolate or chocolate syrup

Steps to Make It

  1. Gather the ingredients.

    Ingredients for an Adult Hot Chocolate
    The Spruce Eats / S&C Design Studios
  2. Pour the peppermint schnapps into a warm mug or Irish coffee glass.

    Making an Adult Hot Chocolate Cocktail With Peppermint Schnapps
    The Spruce Eats / S&C Design Studios
  3. Fill with hot chocolate. Stir well.

    Mixing an Adult Hot Chocolate Cocktail
    The Spruce Eats / S&C Design Studios
  4. Top with whipped cream and shaved chocolate or a drizzle of chocolate syrup. Serve and enjoy.

    Adult Hot Chocolate Cocktail
    The Spruce Eats / S&C Design Studios

    Tips

    • Preheat your mug to keep the drink warmer longer: Fill the mug with hot water and let it sit for a few minutes, then dump it out before making the drink. In the microwave, simply warm up the water-filled mug for about 10 seconds.
    • This recipe will work with your favorite hot chocolate recipe. Whether you prefer powdered cocoa or thick drinking chocolate, the peppermint schnapps is a great way to boost the flavor.
    • If you prefer to make a smaller cup of cocoa, cut back on how much schnapps you pour. A full two ounces can easily overpower the chocolate taste if you pour less than 6 ounces.
    • For the whipped cream, you can get as involved as you like. Making your own is fun and you can flavor it in interesting ways. Then again, canned whipped cream is very convenient and tastes pretty good, too.

    Recipe Variations

    • Around the holidays, pick up some mini candy canes to use as a garnish. Hang one on the side of the glass and allow it to melt in the warmth for an even mintier touch.
    • No peppermint schnapps in stock? If you have crème de menthe—either white or green—pour it instead. You'll actually be making a drink similar to the midnight snowstorm recipe.
    • If you really want to play up both flavors, mix up a hot peppermint patty. The recipe uses both peppermint schnapps and crème de menthe, along with crème de cacao.
    • Add a hint of coffee flavor to give the adult hot chocolate more dimension. Simply add a small shot of coffee liqueur as seen in the chocolate kiss recipe.
    • For a nonalcoholic alternative, skip the schnapps and stir about 1/2 teaspoon of mint extract into your cocoa.

    What Can Make Hot Cocoa Mix Taste Better?

    While it is nice to mix up a steaming cup of old-fashioned hot chocolate, the reality is that powdered cocoa mixes are much faster and easier, especially for simple cocktails like this. Instant cocoa mixes can be inexpensive and the quality does vary. If you enjoy the convenience of powdered cocoa, it's worth your time to explore different brands or make your own cocoa mix at home. No matter which you choose, there are a couple of things you can do to make any cocoa taste better:

    • Slow down the pour: Try pouring just one-third of the hot liquid, give it a thorough stir, then slowly fill the cup while you continue to stir. This can help dissolve the dry mix and create smoother cocoa.
    • Many cocoa mixes work better with warm milk instead of hot water, especially those that don't include a dry creamer. Heat the milk very slowly on the stovetop, stirring constantly, and never let it come to a boil in order to avoid scalding and curdling it. In the microwave, stir it every 15 seconds on medium-high power. With either method, warm the milk just until it begins to steam.

    How Strong Is an Adult Hot Chocolate?

    Peppermint schnapps varies greatly in strength—from 30 to 100 proof. Which you pour will determine the strength of this cocktail. When made with a 30-proof schnapps, the recipe comes out to an extremely mild 3 percent ABV (6 proof), which is lighter than most beers. Its alcohol content with a 100-proof schnapps jumps up to 12 percent ABV (24 proof). Even that is equivalent to drinking a glass of wine, so go ahead and indulge!