Take Your Hot Cocoa Game to the Next Level

You’ve probably made hot cocoa a few times and you’re thinking, what can I possibly learn about making hot cocoa? After making about 25 times I’ve learned a thing or two. Whether you’re headed to the ski hill, fish house, or winter bonfire it’s ultimate warm-up. You can go traditional or turn it all the way up to 11. This recipe is made specifically for the 64 oz growler thermos. 


  • 1 Heaping Cup of Nestle or Hersheys powder (or any mix that calls for 2 tbps for 6 oz of liquid)
  • 8 cups of water or milk (or both)

Hot Tip: In order to make sure you don’t have clumps or settling put the powder in a small bowl then pour two cups of hot water or milk on top. Then mix it up. If you pour the mix in all 8 cups, you might have some stragglers that don’t mix in. 

The Best Damn Hot Chocolate

Designed for 64 oz. Thermos. Cut in half for 32 oz.  Makes 8 8oz cups of cocoa 

  • 1  cup sugar 
  • 4 ounces unsweetened chocolate,chopped up 
  • ½ Cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • ¼  nonfat dry milk powder 
  • 1 Tsp cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ½  teaspoon kosher salt
  • 7 cups of liquid (Milk, water, milk substitute)


Put the dry mix in a sauce pan and add two cups milk or water. Heat on low and start stirring. Get everything incorporated and all the chocolate melted and sugar dissolved. Pour in the rest of your liquid and bring to 150 degrees then transfer to your thermos.  

What Milk to Use?

There are a thousand types of milks now. If you’re feeling adventurous try some different milks, oat milk or flax milk is a great tasting substitute that delivers a unique flavor to your cocoa.

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The Perfect Temperature 

The ideal drinking temperature is 135 degrees. When you put the hot cocoa in the thermos you lose about 10 degrees when the cocoa warms up thermos so if you bring it up to 150 it will be the perfect temp by the time you drink it. The Stanley growler loses about three degrees per hour so that’s a good calculator for how hot you should make your brew.

Mix Ins:

You can spice up your cocoa with a variety of things to make it just a little extra:

Mint extract, ancho chile powder, orange zest, espresso powder, shaved hazelnut, almond extract, chai tea, honey, teaspoon of smooth peanut butter, 

Adult mix ins:

Peppermint schnapps, vodka, orange liqueur, chile liquer, cinnamon shnapps