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How to Thicken Hot Chocolate
Blog / Hot Chocolate / How to Thicken Hot Chocolate

How to Thicken Hot Chocolate

For many Brits, a cup of hot chocolate is more than just a drink – it's a cherished treat, especially on chilly evenings or after a rainy afternoon.

While a traditional mug of cocoa is always comforting, there's something undeniably luxurious about a thick, velvety version that coats the spoon and warms the soul.

But achieving that perfect consistency can be a bit of a culinary mystery.

Fear not, for in this post, we'll dive into the secrets of creating a sumptuously thick hot chocolate that will elevate your cocoa experience to new heights.

How to Thicken Hot Chocolate

Here is a list of various methods to thicken up your hot chocolate:

  • Cornflour/Cornstarch: Mix a small amount with cold milk or water to create a smooth paste. Whisk this into your hot chocolate towards the end of the cooking process until it thickens.

  • Double Cream: Stirring in a splash of double cream can instantly enrich and thicken your drink, giving it a velvety texture.

  • Reduce: Simply simmer your hot chocolate on low heat for longer, allowing it to reduce and become naturally thicker.

  • Use Chocolate Chunks: Melt actual chocolate chunks or shavings into your hot milk rather than just relying on cocoa powder. This adds richness and density.

  • Condensed Milk: A dollop of condensed milk can sweeten your beverage and add a creamy, thick texture.

  • Rice Flour or Arrowroot Powder: These can act as thickening agents, similar to cornflour. Again, mix with a little cold liquid to create a paste and then stir into the hot chocolate.

  • Use Less Liquid: Start with less milk or water than you think you'll need, and then slowly add more until your desired consistency is reached.

  • Yoghurt or Mascarpone: A tablespoon of thick yoghurt or mascarpone can lend a creamy, dense texture to your hot chocolate.

  • Gelatine: A less common method, but gelatine can provide thickness if used sparingly. Be sure to dissolve it properly to avoid any lumps.

  • Oats: Ground them finely and whisk them into the beverage. As they cook, they'll swell and thicken the drink. This method also adds a pleasant, earthy flavour.

  • Egg Yolk: Much like making a custard, you can whisk an egg yolk and then slowly pour some hot chocolate into the yolk to temper it before adding the mixture back into the pot. This results in a rich, creamy texture.

  • Thick Drinking Chocolate: Opt for products labelled as "drinking chocolate" rather than just cocoa. They often have added ingredients that create a richer and thicker result.

Experiment with these methods to find your personal favourite.

Whether you're aiming for a mildly thick treat or a dessert-like indulgence, there's a method here to satisfy every hot chocolate craving.

Related Post: How to Heat Milk For Hot Chocolate

How to Make Thick Hot Chocolate

Here's a guide on making a rich, thick hot chocolate:


  • 300ml whole milk.
  • 100g high-quality dark chocolate (at least 70% cocoa solids).
  • One tablespoon cocoa powder.
  • One tablespoon of caster sugar (adjust to taste).
  • 1/4 teaspoon of vanilla extract (optional).
  • A pinch of salt.
  • One tablespoon of cornflour (cornstarch).


  • Prepare the Cornflour Slurry: Mix the cornflour with a couple of tablespoons of milk to create a smooth paste in a small bowl. Set aside.

  • Heat the Milk: In a saucepan, gently heat the remaining milk until it's warm but not boiling.

  • Add the Chocolate: Break the dark chocolate into pieces and add it to the milk, whisking continuously until the chocolate has melted.

  • Add Dry Ingredients: Whisk in the cocoa powder, caster sugar, and a pinch of salt. Continue whisking until all the ingredients are well combined, and the mixture is smooth.

  • Cornflour Slurry: Re-whisk the cornflour paste in case it has settled, then pour it into the saucepan, whisking constantly.

  • Thicken the Hot Chocolate: Continue to cook the mixture over medium heat, whisking continuously. The hot chocolate will start to thicken. This usually takes about 4-5 minutes. Be careful not to let it boil, as this can make the cornflour taste starchy.

  • Finish with Vanilla: Once the hot chocolate has reached your desired thickness, remove from the heat and stir in the vanilla extract, if using.

  • Serve: Pour the thick hot chocolate into your favourite mug, and enjoy! Feel free to top with whipped cream, marshmallows, or a sprinkle of cocoa powder for an extra treat.

This thick hot chocolate recipe is perfect for those chilly evenings when you need something warm and indulgent.

The use of real dark chocolate combined with cocoa powder gives it a depth of flavour, while the cornflour ensures that luscious thickness we all crave.

Related: Who Invented Hot Chocolate?

Where Can You Buy Chocolate to Make Homemade Hot Chocolate?

Creating the perfect indulgent hot chocolate begins with sourcing the finest quality chocolate, and there’s no better place than the trusted Whitakers Chocolates.

Founded in 1889, our family-run Yorkshire-based company has been delighting Brits with our superior chocolate offerings for generations.

Our product, Easymelt, is a game-changer for hot chocolate enthusiasts.

Easymelt is a high cocoa percentage dark chocolate couverture specifically crafted for ease of melting.

Its rich, robust flavour profile and smooth consistency provides an excellent base for making luxurious hot chocolate at home.

The high percentage of cocoa solids ensures an intense, authentic chocolate taste, making it a perfect choice for hot chocolate lovers seeking an indulgent experience.

Remember, the key to a perfect hot chocolate is starting with the best quality chocolate, and using Easymelt takes you one step closer to creating a rich, creamy, and thoroughly indulgent beverage.

Simply melt it in a small amount of warm milk until smooth, then whisk in the rest of your milk.

The result?

A perfectly smooth, flavoursome hot chocolate right in the comfort of your own home.

So why not elevate your hot chocolate experience with Easymelt and turn your cosy winter nights into an indulgent chocolatey delight?

Some Notes From an Expert Chocolatier

As an experienced chocolatier, I’ve spent many years perfecting the art of chocolate making and learning to appreciate the nuances of flavour and texture that make the difference between good and extraordinary chocolate.

When it comes to treats like hot chocolate, my philosophy is simple – if you’re going to indulge, make sure it’s worth every calorie!

Creating a truly memorable hot chocolate is an art in itself.

The base should be top-quality real chocolate, like the Easymelt from Whitakers Chocolates.

Its high cocoa percentage and ease of melting make it an excellent choice for creating a rich, luxurious base for your hot chocolate.

When making hot chocolate, I always recommend using full-fat milk or oat milk.

These lend an extra creaminess to the drink, enhancing the velvety texture and rich taste.

Simply melt the chocolate in a small amount of warm milk, stirring until it’s smooth and glossy, and then gradually whisk in the rest of your milk.

The result is a hot chocolate that’s unparalleled in flavour and texture – a real treat to the senses!

Related Post: Chocolate Fondue Dipping Ideas

Final Notes On How to Thicken Hot Chocolate

In the world of comforting beverages, hot chocolate undoubtedly holds a special place in the hearts of many.

Its velvety embrace on a cold evening is unmatched, and its ability to be adapted to individual tastes makes it a timeless favourite.

As we've explored, thickening hot chocolate is not just a matter of adding one ingredient but rather understanding the harmony of flavours and textures.

Choosing high-quality chocolate, using natural thickeners like cornflour, and being patient with cooking are key elements.

While every method has its merits, the personal touch and experimentation lead to the perfect cup.

The potential variations are numerous, from a simple splash of cream to a spoonful of condensed milk or a well-mixed cornflour slurry.~

So, whether you’re in pursuit of a dessert-like thickness or just a slightly richer brew, remember that the beauty of hot chocolate lies in its versatility.

Related Post: Is Hot Chocolate Good For a Sore Throat?