Slow-Cooker Gingerbread Hot Chocolate

What’s better than a cup of steaming spiced hot cocoa? One that’s ready and waiting for you after a long afternoon of sledding or skiing. We slow-cooked a batch of subtly sweet cocoa sweetened with both powdered sugar (because it melts evenly) and molasses (for a rich base note). Traditional gingerbread spices like cinnamon, ginger, and cloves make it smell like you’ve been baking all day when you’ve actually been out playing in the snow. If you have cheesecloth, bundle the spices inside of a square and secure it with kitchen twine. That way you won’t have to strain. Here’s an idea: use any leftover hot cocoa as a milk substitute in your morning coffee.

slow-cooker-gingerbread-hot-chocolate
Photo by Greg DuPree
Slow-Cooker Gingerbread Hot Chocolate 4.8 4 5 1
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  • Serves 8
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What’s better than a cup of steaming spiced hot cocoa? One that’s ready and waiting for you after a long afternoon of sledding or skiing. We slow-cooked a batch of subtly sweet cocoa sweetened with both powdered sugar (because it melts evenly) and molasses (for a rich base note). Traditional gingerbread spices like cinnamon, ginger, and cloves make it smell like you’ve been baking all day when you’ve actually been out playing in the snow. If you have cheesecloth, bundle the spices inside of a square and secure it with kitchen twine. That way you won’t have to strain. Here’s an idea: use any leftover hot cocoa as a milk substitute in your morning coffee.

Ingredients

  1. Check 3 (4-in.) cinnamon sticks
  2. Check 1 (2-in.) piece peeled fresh ginger, lightly crushed
  3. Check ½ teaspoon whole cloves
  4. Check cup unsweetened cocoa
  5. Check 4 cups whole milk, divided
  6. Check 4 cups half-and-half
  7. Check cups (about 6 oz.) powdered sugar
  8. Check 2 tablespoons molasses
  9. Check 1 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
  10. Check 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  11. Check teaspoon fine salt
  12. Check Mini marshmallows, whipped cream and/or ground cinnamon for serving

Directions

  1. Place cinnamon sticks, ginger, and cloves in a 3- to 4-quart slow cooker.
  2. Whisk together cocoa and ½ cup of the milk in a small bowl until smooth. In the slow cooker, whisk together cocoa mixture, half-and-half, powdered sugar, molasses, nutmeg, vanilla, salt, and remaining 3&frac 1/2 cups milk. Cover and cook on LOW 2½ to 3 hours; strain. Serve hot chocolate with marshmallows, whipped cream, and cinnamon.