Dairy Free Hot Chocolate

Dairy Free Hot Chocolate is so easy to make at home from scratch. Just sweet enough with a little zing of spice, this vegan hot chocolate recipe is comforting and delicious. Makes 2 servings.

Love a cozy dairy free recipe to enjoy during the wintertime? Don’t miss Vegan Potato Leek Soup, Hazelnut and Pecan Baked Oatmeal and Salted Caramel Cookies (Caramel Thumbprint Cookies).

Overhead of two mugs holding dairy free hot chocolate with mini marshmallows in the mugs sitting on a green cloth

Remember last week when I told y’all that even though it was 80° F on Wednesday, they were predicting a “winter storm” and how I have a severe lack of trust in weathercasters because so many have cried wolf about ice storms throughout the course of my life?

Well, the storm they were predicting actually happened.

Which means we were stuck inside our home from Friday morning until Sunday afternoon. You know, once we cleared an ice sheet off our driveway and confirmed that the roads around our neighborhood were passable.

While we were bundled up, I baked a ton of cookies, shared said cookies with our neighbors, played new-to-me games, imbibed a few specialty cocktails, watched tons of football (even though our team wasn’t playing) and drank this delightful Vegan Hot Chocolate.

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    Why I love this recipe:

    As someone who can no longer enjoy a glass of cow’s milk, I’ve missed traditional hot chocolate.

    This recipe is my rendition of something that I can actually enjoy nowadays. It’s chocolate-y and rich without being crazy sweet, and the cayenne adds a little zing without setting your mouth on fire.

    And since there are so many options with dairy free milks and chocolates these days, we’ve got the world at our fingertips. This dairy free hot chocolate is also awesome for people who aren’t dairy free, so don’t be afraid to share a mug of this with someone you love.

    Other hot chocolate recipes for the wintertime: Gourmet Vanilla Hot Chocolate | Strawberry White Hot Chocolate | Mason Jar Peppermint Hot Cocoa Mix | Pomegranate White Hot Chocolate

    Looking for another recipe to enjoy during the cold months? Head on over to my Winter Recipe Index for all kinds of cozy inspiration.

    Mini marshmallows in a mug of hot cocoa on green linens

    What you need to make Dairy Free Hot Chocolate

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    In addition to those tools, you’ll need some ingredients, too.

    • Dairy free milk of your choice—I’m partial to almond and cashew milk because we have those on hand always, but you can use whatever you’ve got on hand!
    • Vegan/dairy free chocolate bar squares—be sure to read the labels to ensure there’s no dairy in your bar/squares
    • Cayenne pepper—just a little bit for a bit of spice!
    • Vegan marshmallows, if you’re vegan or are making this for a vegan

    How to make Dairy Free Hot Chocolate

    First and foremost, grab your ingredients, and get them all out on the countertop. You’ll also want to get out your blender, too.

    Heat the almond (or other nondairy) milk for a minute in the microwave in a microwave-safe measuring cup.

    Pour the hot almond milk into the base of a blender, and add the dark chocolate squares and cayenne.

    Blend the ingredients until the chocolate has completely melted.

    Pour into mugs, then top with your favorite marshmallows and enjoy!

    To make this Vegan Hot Chocolate, double check on the ingredients of your marshmallows! I’ve linked to vegan marshmallows above and in the recipe card below, but it’s important, so don’t skip this part!

    Overhead of two mugs holding dairy free hot chocolate with mini marshmallows in the mugs sitting on a green cloth

    Dairy Free Hot Chocolate

    Erin Parker, The Speckled Palate
    Dairy Free Hot Chocolate is so easy to make at home from scratch. Just sweet enough with a little zing of spice, this vegan hot cocoa recipe is comforting and delicious.
    4.67 from 3 votes
    Servings 2 servings
    Calories 45 kcal
    Prep Time 10 minutes
    Cook Time 1 minute
    Total Time 11 minutes


    • 1 ½ cups unsweetened almond milk
    • 5.6 oz. vegan dark chocolate squares (4-1.4 oz. squares)
    • ¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper
    • Vegan marshmallows for serving

    As an Amazon Associate and member of other affiliate programs, I earn from qualifying purchases.


    • Heat the almond milk for a minute in the microwave in a microwave-safe measuring cup or on the stovetop in a small saucepan.
    • Pour the hot almond milk into the base of a blender.
    • Add the dark chocolate squares and the cayenne.
    • Blend until the chocolate has completely melted.
    • Top with your favorite marshmallows and enjoy!


    You can use any type of nondairy milk that you have on hand! Unsweetened almond and cashew are the ones I generally keep at my house, so those are my favorites, but this would be creamy and dreamy with coconut milk or anything else!
    Read the ingredients of your chocolate and your marshmallows to ensure they’re both dairy free.


    Serving: 1servingCalories: 45kcalCarbohydrates: 3gProtein: 1gFat: 3gSaturated Fat: 1gPolyunsaturated Fat: 2gSodium: 3mgFiber: 1gSugar: 2g
    Keyword dairy free, dessert, drinks, hot chocolate, hot chocolate drink, hot chocolate recipe, vegan, vegan hot chocolate
    Course Mocktails & Nonalcoholic Drinks
    Cuisine American
    Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!

    Are you lactose intolerant?

    Have you ever had dairy-free hot chocolate?

    A woman with dark curly hair wearing a black tank top in front of a white wall

    About the Author:

    Erin Parker is a Southern gal living in Texas with her husband and two daughters. She started The Speckled Palate to share what she was cooking as a newlywed… and over the years, it’s evolved to capture her love for hosting. Specifically, the EASIEST, lowest key entertaining because everyone deserves to see their people and connect over good food. Learn more about her

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    1. Sounds good with the cayenne pepper. Might try it tonight with my coconut milk. Thanks for sharing and stay warm!

      1. Kathy, I bet this would be lovely with coconut milk. Excited to hear how it turns out for you and if you enjoyed it! Thanks — and I hope you’re staying warm this weekend, too!

      1. Thanks so much, Ellis! Like you, I’m lactose intolerant, so it’s always nice finding a buddy who knows what it’s like… and then finding a substitute to something you’ve always loved but can no longer enjoy. I hope you like this recipe!

      1. Thanks, Megan! I’m a SUCKER for dark chocolate, so I try to use it in as many things as possible… and yes, I think this is delicious. Would love to know what you think if you give it a shot!

      1. Thanks, Aleshea! And pssh. We’ve all got our different things… and I’ve been known to have the stuff out of the packet from time-to-time because it’s easy and delicious and reminds me of my childhood. 🙂

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