3-Ingredient Homemade Hot Chocolate

By Rachel Tiemeyer

Did you know you can make homemade hot chocolate with only THREE ingredients? Skip the generic brand (made with highly processed, sugary ingredients) and make your own hot chocolate at home! Tip: Use Ghirardelli cocoa to make it extra delicious!

Ghirardelli Homemade hot chocolate in a white mug

Parents. You know how it goes.

Snow falls from the sky. Kids pillage the home for their snow gear that has been scattered about. You spend 30 minutes helping them get suited up appropriately. Kids play outside in the snow for 5.2 minutes. Kids return to the house and wet snow gear gets piled by the door. The clamoring for hot chocolate begins.

ghirardelli girl blowing on hot chocolate

However, what’s a parent to do if the pre-packaged hot chocolate is running low?

Fear not. We have an easy solution. You can make hot chocolate mix SO EASILY at home.

So, we’re excited to share our 3 ingredient recipe for delicious, all-natural homemade hot chocolate.

ghirardelli hot chocolate with marshmallows

Why Make Hot Chocolate Mix from Scratch?

Ingredients matter. As you will find in most of our recipes, we primarily use whole foods, real ingredients. Ingredients you can pronounce. Ingredients your great grandma would recognize.

This is why when I looked at the ingredients in a generic hot chocolate mix, I was shocked.

Ingredients in generic hot chocolate

What IS all that junk? Well, I can tell you, this is NOT real food. Not only is this mix full of highly processed, sugary ingredients, but it also contains corn syrup, artificial flavors, and preservatives.

Whenever possible, we try to make things from scratch. You’d be suprised at how easy it is to make your own things like pizza sauce, croutons, BBQ sauce, and even breadcrumbs.

Even better news is you can make homemade hot chocolate with only THREE ingredients!

No trans fats, artificial flavors, or preservatives included. You probably have them in your pantry right now.

closeup of homemade hot chocolate mix

What’s in Homemade Hot Chocolate?

You likely have the ingredients to make hot chocolate RIGHT now. All you need is:

  • Cocoa powder (I recommend Ghirardelli brand)
  • Sugar
  • Milk

How to Make a Batch of Hot Chocolate Mix

While our recipe below is to make just one cup of hot chocolate, you can easily scale the recipe up and have a batch of the mix on hand. The cocoa powder/sugar ration is 1:1 so I simply put 1/2 sugar and 1/2 cup cocoa powder into a mason jar and give it a good shake. Now you can have hot chocolate mix ready to roll whenever the first snow flake flies.

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Why Use Ghirardelli Cocoa?

We like Ghirardelli because it’s one of the best powdered cocoas you can get. It rivals speciality high end products but is much cheaper. It’s flavor is deep, rich, and velvety.

This hot chocolate recipe will totally work with any type of 100% cocoa powder but we personally love Ghirardelli. You can even buy it on Amazon! Just be sure to get the 100% unsweetened cocoa, not the hot chocolate mix.


3-Ingredient Homemade Hot Chocolate Recipe

  • Author: Thriving Home
  • Prep Time: 2 minutes
  • Cook Time: 3 minutes
  • Total Time: 5 minutes
  • Yield: 1 1x
  • Category: Beverage
  • Method: Mix
  • Cuisine: American


Avoid all the junk in store-bought hot chocolate mix by using just 3 simple ingredients to make your own. This recipe makes the best hot chocolate ever!


  • 1 1/2 tablespoons 100% cocoa powder (I recommend Ghirardelli brand)
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons unrefined, raw sugar
  • 1 cup organic whole milk


  1. Pour all three ingredients into a small saucepan and heat over medium-low heat.
  2. Stir constantly until the ingredients are fully combined and the milk is hot.
  3. Serve immediately.


You can pull back on the sugar if you want. 

hands holding ghirardelli hot chocolate

Tasty Tip: The Best Ever Homemade Popcorn is our favorite snack to enjoy with this hot chocolate. Have you tried it yet?

homemade popcorn with coconut oil

Leftover Ham and Nine Bean Soup {Freezer Meal}

By Rachel Tiemeyer

Cheap, rich and savory, and good for you too! This Ham and Bean Soup is a perfect winter comfort food. #freezermeal #realfood

Cooking within a tight grocery budget? Let me tell ya, this soup is the bomb. It’s not only cheap thanks to the beans, but it’s also very filling and boasts a rich savory flavor thanks to the ham. (Want to save even more? Try my equally delicious Ham and Bean Soup that’s even more budget-friendly due to only using a ham bone to flavor it.)

I created this new Ham and Bean Soup recipe after Thanksgiving as a way to use up the leftover ham for my Uncle Rich, who won’t touch turkey with a 10 foot pole. What makes this soup so simple is the use of a nine bean soup mix that you’ll find in the bean aisle of most grocery stores. Just be sure to follow the package directions, because YOU WILL NEED TO SOAK THE BEANS a few hours or even a day beforehand. That’s about the most complicated part of all this, which isn’t complicated at all. Soaking the beans just requires a wee bit of planning.

Cheap, rich and savory, and good for you too! This Ham and Bean Soup is a perfect winter comfort food. #freezermeal #realfood

Make this recipe before winter passes, because it’s one of those soups you need to sip on while watching the snow flakes fall outside your window. Add a hunk of crusty bread alongside it, and you’ll feel that all is right in the world for those 10 minutes. It’s true.

Cheap, rich and savory, and good for you too! This Ham and Bean Soup is a perfect winter comfort food. #freezermeal #realfood


Leftover Ham and Nine Bean Soup

  • Author: Thriving Home
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 1 hour 30 minutes
  • Total Time: 1 hour 40 minutes
  • Yield: 8-10 1x
  • Category: Soup
  • Method: Stove Top
  • Cuisine: American


Cheap, rich in taste, savory, and good for you too! This Ham and Bean Soup is a perfect winter comfort food.


  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 large onion, diced
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • a pinch of red pepper flakes
  • salt and pepper, to taste
  • 64 oz (2 cartons) salted chicken broth
  • 4 cups water
  • 12 cups of ham steaks, cubed
  • 1 lb soup bean mix (Soak first according to package directions.)
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 lb bag of carrots, peeled and sliced


  1. In a large stock pot, saute onions in olive oil. Add garlic, red pepper, and season lightly with salt and pepper.
  2. Add chicken stock, water, ham, beans, and bay leaves and bring to a boil. Lower heat, put on a lid (keep it tilted for venting), and simmer for 1 hour. Stir occasionally. Add more stock or water, if it reduces too much.
  3. Taste broth and season with salt and pepper, to taste. Add carrots. Simmer another 30 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  4. Remove the bay leaves.
  5. Garnish a bowl of soup with some fresh chopped parsley. Serve with crusty bread.


Freezer Instructions:

To freeze:
Simply fully cook the soup, let it cool completely, and freeze in a BPA-free gallon freezer bag or other air-tight freezable container for up to 3 months.

To prepare:
Either thaw in the fridge overnight and warm up over low heat on the stovetop or in a crockpot.