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My kids love hot chocolate. In the Fall and Winter time, I can barely keep enough in stock as they drink it constantly.  In an effort to save money, I created this Easy Homemade Hot Chocolate Mix.  Now I love it more than the store bought ones.

Close up image of hot chocolate mix in a mason jar with a spoon. Also a white mug with hot chocolate with marshmallows.
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Homemade Hot Chocolate Mix Recipe:

We love making homemade cocoa mixes as they taste better and can control the ingredients. We have made Homemade Nesquick recipe which is easy to add some powdered milk to make this easy Hot Chocolate Mix Recipe.

Hot Chocolate is one of our favorites We make Starbucks Hot Chocolate Recipe and Crock Pot Hot Chocolate when the weather stars to get colder. They are so delicious and saves me money making them at home.

We also love making this Slow Cooker White Hot Chocolate as it is so flavorful and easy to make in the slow cooker. It is perfect for when we have friends over and we are hanging by the fire.

Make sure you check out 20 of our favorite Hot Chocolate Recipes. The weather is going to start getting colder and these recipes are sure to keep you warm. We love hot cocoa.

Close up image of hot chocolate mix in a mason jar with a spoon. Also a white mug with hot chocolate with marshmallows.

Homemade Hot Chocolate Mix is Budget Friendly:

This is WAY cheaper than the boxed variety (and tastes better). A typical 10-count box of cocoa will coast you about $1 (if you get it on sale).

You can make this homemade hot chocolate mix for under $1 and it will give you over 20 servings! Plus, there is something to be said about knowing ALL of the ingredients in your cocoa.

Close up images of ingredients to make hot chocolate mix.

Ingredients for Homemade Hot Chocolate Recipe:

  • Granulated Sugar
  • Unsweetened Cocoa Powder
  • Powdered Milk
  • Salt

How to Make Homemade Hot Cocoa Mix:

  • Step 1 – Combine ingredients in a mason jar. Shake until everything is well combined. You can also mix ingredients in a large bowl and then pour into the mason jar.
  • Step 2 – To make hot chocolate, add 1-2 tablespoons of homemade hot chocolate mix to hot water. Stir and enjoy.

How long will Homemade Hot Cocoa Mix last?

I like to store my hot cocoa mix in a cute designated container. This hot cocoa mix recipe will last up to 6 months. The first sign that it is getting colder, we start mixing up hot cocoa as I know the kids will be asking for it.

We also love giving this hot cocoa mix out as holiday gifts. Everyone loves getting it as I always include some cute holiday mugs and a Christmas movie. You can also include some baked goods. It is a cute but practical to give to give out to your neighbors and your kids teachers.

Close up image of hot chocolate mix layered in a mason jar with a mug of hot chocolate with marshmallows.

What to Serve with Hot Chocolate:

Hot chocolate is perfect to serve any time of the day. We have even done a hot chocolate bar when we have had friends over.

  • Baked Cookies
  • Slice of Pie
  • Marshmallows
  • Graham Crackers

What to Add to Hot Cocoa Mix:

  • Cinnamon
  • Pumpkin Spice
  • Vanilla Extract or Almond Extract
  • Chai

What is Powdered Milk?

You do need dry milk powdered for this recipe so that your hot chocolate is creamy.  All it takes is ½ cup Powdered milk it is essentially an evaporated milk product that is used in cooking and baking recipes.

By using dry milk, you no longer have to worry about your milk in your refrigerator going bad.  It’s a great way to extend the self life of milk in your home.

I found this product in the baking aisle of my local grocery store for this best hot chocolate mix recipe.

Close up image of hot chocolate mix with a white mug of hot chocolate with marshmallows.

Do you make Hot Chocolate with Milk or Water?

For a creamier hot chocolate we recommend using Whole Milk. But you can use low fat milk as well and you will still end up with a creamy cup of hot chocolate.

Substitutions for Homemade Hot Cocoa:

This recipe is very versatile.  You can definitely use different ingredients if you prefer. 

  • I have used powdered sugar (confectioners sugar) instead of regular sugar when I was out.  I did find that this made our hot cocoa a bit sweeter but we still enjoyed it.
  • Also, if you cannot find dry milk in your local grocery store, using instant coffee creamer will work as well.  I don’t think that it makes the hot chocolate as creamy but is a great option if you cannot locate powdered milk in your area.
  • In addition, the salt in this recipe is optional.  I find that it brings out the flavor in the cocoa powdered but is not needed if you are watching your salt intake.
Close up image of a mason jar of hot chocolate mix with a white mug of hot chocolate with marshmallows and a red towel.

How to Make Homemade Hot Chocolate:

  • Step 1 – Begin heat water in a sauce pan over medium heat.
  • Step 2 – After you have created your homemade hot cocoa mix, all you have to do is mix 1-2 Tablespoons of the mix with a cup hot water.  I add the amount of mix needed based on how chocolatey you want your cocoa.
  • Step 3 – All you have to do is stir until the mix is thoroughly dissolved and then your hot chocolate is ready to be enjoyed.
Close up image of hot chocolate seasoning with a mug of hot chocolate with marshmallows on top.

Toppings for Hot Cocoa

Ok now that you have created a delicious and easy cup of hot cocoa, what would use to top it? 

  • My kids love topping theirs with mini marshmallows.  We also have a pack of those on hand!
  • Also, whipped cream is always a winner on hot cocoa! 
  • Also, you can top it with your favorite type of chocolate chips.  I love using a mixture of white and milk chocolate chips.
  • Some friends put red hot candies in their hot chocolate.
  • Be sure to have some peppermint sticks or candy canes for stirring.

However you decide to enjoy it, you’ll love having this homemade chocolate mix in your pantry for your family to enjoy.

Print Easy Homemade Hot Chocolate Mix Recipe Here:

Easy Homemade Hot Chocolate Mix

4.90 from 276 votes
This homemade hot chocolate mix is much easier to make than you might think. It is also much cheaper to make your own hot chocolate mix than to buy in the store.
Prep Time 5 minutes
Total Time 5 minutes
Servings 20
Cuisine American
Course Dessert
Calories 74


  • 1 1/3 cup sugar (granulated or powdered)
  • 2/3 cup baking cocoa
  • 1/2 cups powdered milk
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt (optional)
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  • Combine ingredients in a mason jar. Shake until everything is well combined.
  • To make hot chocolate, add 1-2 tablespoons of homemade hot chocolate mix to hot water. Stir and enjoy!

Recipe Notes

Adding the powdered milk makes this hot chocolate nice and creamy and oh so yummy.

Nutrition Facts

Calories 74kcal, Carbohydrates 16g, Protein 1g, Fat 1g, Cholesterol 3mg, Sodium 27mg, Potassium 86mg, Sugar 14g, Vitamin A 30IU, Vitamin C 0.2mg, Calcium 33mg, Iron 0.4mg

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More drink recipes to try: 

You are going to love this homemade hot chocolate mix recipe that you can easily store in a jar. I always have this in my pantry and it’s great to give this Instant Hot Chocolate mix as a gift as well. I hope you enjoy this DIY hot cocoa mix. #eatingonadime #hotchocolatemix #giftsinajar

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About the Author

Hi, I’m Carrie. Welcome to Eating on a Dime!

I’m on a mission to help you cook delicious meals without busting your budget. Together we are going to cook real food… for real families!

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Recipe Rating


  1. Leslie says:

    5 stars
    This recipe is perfect and without all the extra nasty stuff in the big box stores.

  2. Asiya says:

    5 stars
    I just made this. I cut the amount of sugar in half. It tastes great. I love being able to control the amount of sugar.

  3. Kathryn Ojerio says:

    Needs much more cocoa powder and milk powder. Very thin and watery.

  4. Ellen says:

    This recipe has been around for ages. Made for my children when younger, now in their 40’s. Good to have on hand as price in grocery store is ridiculous.

  5. Heather says:

    I made a big jar of this (triple recipe) and sent it in to work with my husband, and he is the most popular guy in the office right now. 🙂 Thank you!

  6. Chelsey says:

    5 stars
    This is my go to hot chocolate mix. I follow the recipe exactly as stated. I love adding a few tablespoons to my green or black tea in the morning. Delicious!!

  7. Anonymous says:

    This is very good. I cut the sugar in half and probably could go even lower. I also added an additional tablespoon if dry milk directly to the cup when making because it was too watery for my taste.


  8. Carrie Barnard says:

    Yes, you can

  9. Jessica says:

    Can I use milk instead of water, even if I use powdered milk?

  10. Grammacat says:

    WOW! This recipe makes EXCELLENT hot cocoa. Easy too. I used granulated sugar. Nestle baking cocoa and the powdered milk. Mixed it all together. Makes quite a bit. I LOVE LOVE chocolate. Great chocolate flavor. I added 2 heaping teaspoons of mix to my cup with about 6 ounces of water. I needed room for the Reddi Whip! I will never buy hot cocoa mix again. Will be making this for Holiday gifts. Thank you for the great recipe!

  11. Carrie says:

    Here is the recipe that we follow when we make hot chocolate bombs and we love it – Hot Chocolate Bomb Recipe

  12. Petro Hattingh says:

    I need a hot chocolate mix to make hot chocolate bombs. The recipe I’ve got is too sweet with the chocolate that I use for the bombs. I also wnat it more body (thicker) in the mug. It seems to me when I pour milk over the bomb it need to be more thick and need some body. Please help mee with the right quantities of ingredients. Thank you so much

  13. Prema says:

    5 stars
    Thanks for the great recipe. My 9 old is used to chocolate milk ( milk mixed with large amounts of store bought chocolate syrup ) daily in the morning since she was a toddler. We are trying to get her to limit sugar intake and tried store bought hot cocoa powders with not much success. I am so relieved that she not only loves this home made one but says this is the best hot cocoa she ever had. Rest of my family likes it too.

  14. Carrie says:

    You’re welcome! Please let me know how it works with the sucralose sweetener!

  15. Emily Jo Hasley says:

    I’m planning to make the mix substituting a Sucralose sweetener for any sugar. Fingers are crossed. Love hot chocolate in the cold month and it’s snowing now in Colorado. Perfect time to make it. Thanks so much, Carrie!

  16. Carrie says:

    I’m not sure about that – You’ll want to check with your doctor on the best sugar substitute for diabetics. Thanks!

  17. Darlene says:

    How can I make this Low Carb and what is the best sugar substitute for Diabetics. Please answer ASAP. I’m craving it so bad and don’t won’t to miss up my blood sugar levels?

  18. Carrie says:

    I’m so glad you enjoyed it! I need to try it with the cacao powder – I bet that was delicious!

  19. Cheryl Gulota says:

    5 stars
    This was very good! I was skeptical because of the only 1/2 cup for powdered milk. I used 100% cacao powdered, it is a healthier option because you do not loose the antioxidants from the cacao bean, I use this in all my recipes that call for cocoa powder. I did sift the powder sugar and cacao powder. I tried it out with just water and it was very good. I am going to try it with both milk and almond milk. I have been drinking dark hot chocolate and adding peppermint mocha kahlua, excited to try this mix with it. Nice to have a hot chocolate without all the chemicals. Thank you for your recipe

  20. Carrie says:

    I used the regular but instant will work great in this recipe too!

  21. Terri Sue Nelson says:

    Are you talking instant powered milk or regular?

  22. Carrie says:

    I’m glad you enjoyed it and great to know about the buttermilk for everyone that might not be able to find milk powder. Thanks for sharing!

  23. Melissa D says:

    5 stars
    I didn’t have non-fat dry milk powder but I DID have buttermilk powder so I used that instead. I was leery of how it would turn out but I am pleasantly surprised and will continue to make my hot chocolate this way. Just wanted to throw that out there for those who, by chance, have buttermilk powder instead of non-fat dry milk powder. I also found that when creating your drink that the ratios were correct, 1-2T for every cup of water. Turned out perfect! Thank you for sharing this recipe!

  24. Carrie says:

    Thank you so much!

  25. disney says:

    5 stars
    THIS IS DELICIOUS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! 100% would make again

  26. Carrie says:

    Yes, I think this would be delicious with milk as well – Thanks!

  27. Robin says:

    I make hot cocoa bombs and I prefer to use milk not water. Can I use this recipe with milk as well? Thanks in advance!

  28. Carrie says:

    I used a non-fat powdered milk when making this and it worked great – thank you!

  29. Erin says:

    What fat content milk powder do you use? (If you already addressed this, I’m so sorry!) I have non-fat milk powder and I’m wondering if that will work!

  30. Carrie says:

    I just follow the expiration dates on the ingredients used to make them. I haven’t had an issue with either going bad. They generally last for 12-18 months (depending on expiration dates on the ingredients) and we usually use it all by then. Thank you!

  31. Carrie says:

    That sounds delicious!

  32. vici m moser says:

    5 stars
    I added crushed candy canes and in some I added chocolate chips.Great

  33. Perry says:

    This sounds great and gonna give it a try! What do you do to determine an expiration date as well for the Nesquick milk recipe?

  34. Carrie says:

    Yum! That sounds delicious. Thank you for sharing 🙂

  35. MJ says:

    5 stars
    I just made my 6th batch of this! Yum. I used half regular cocoa and half black cocoa for a really rich tasting hit chocolate. Then separated some into a jar and added a few drops of peppermint extract. It’s a winner!!!!

  36. Carrie says:

    yes you can.

  37. Debbie Collins says:

    If you want to use milk, could you leave out the powdered milk?

  38. Pat Troyka says:

    Every other hot chocolate mix recipe I’ve found takes 2 cups of powdered milk, yours says 1/2 cups. Is that supposed to be 1 1/2 cups, 2 1/2 cups or 1/2 cup?

  39. Rosie says:

    Great hot chocolate mix! It dissolves great and stays dissolved. I sometimes add a couple or Red Bird peppermint pieces. Next time I might crush those and add to the mix. Plus you know what you are putting in the mix since you know all the ingredients!

  40. Sam says:

    I don’t add sugar instead I use a lot more powdered milk which has plenty of its own sugar. I do use 60% cocoa chocolate chips about 10. 1/4 c powdered milk to 1tsp cocoa. I drink it every night to help me fall asleep. I don’t like warm milk so I add cocoa. Milk protein is added bonus by increasing milk powder. It has L-tryptophen, precursor to and it produces seratonin that helps you go to 3sleep. “Warm milk before bed” really does work

  41. Joy Ragnow-Guzy says:

    Is there any substitute for the milk? I’m lactose intolerant

  42. Maddie says:

    Just made your hot cocoa mix and put it in 4 oz jars going to fill another 4 oz jars with marshmallows and put them together and make a snowman out of them for my Coworkers at work

  43. Carrie says:

    Scott – I haven’t tried that but I think you could!

  44. Carrie says:

    Andrea – I haven’t tried it but I think that Stevia would work.

  45. Andrea says:

    5 stars
    Any ideas that we can use for a sugar substitute?

  46. Scott says:

    5 stars
    Can you use splenda instead of sugar?

  47. Janel Wright says:

    5 stars
    Can you use sugar substitutes and if so how much. Have family that is diabetic

  48. Sarah says:

    5 stars
    MMMmmmm….just lovely. Thank you so much for the share!

  49. Rebecca says:

    5 stars
    This is great! I havd been looking for a good homemade recipe since all of the prepackaged mixes all have hydrogenated oils in them…trying to clean up my diet without giving up all of my favorite things. To make this a Mocha Hot Chocolate…how much esspresso powder would you suggest adding to the mix? I am not a coffee drinker but do like a little bit in my cocoa. Thanks again 🙂

  50. brandy says:

    5 stars
    My husband is allergic to coconut. Really hard to find mixes without it. Thanks

  51. Minnie@thelady8home says:

    That’s a lovely article. This is a better idea than buying the hot chocolate mix. You can use sugar as per your need.