Homemade Peanut Butter Hot Cocoa Mix

I am not a hot beverage person. I’ve never liked coffee, and if it’s possible, I enjoy tea even less. Hot chocolate is the only warm beverage I’ll touch, but even then, only on rare occasions. In high school and college I dated a guy who played hockey so I spent a lot of time in chilly ice rinks. I sometimes ordered hot chocolate, though if I’m honest, it was mostly for the purposes of keeping my hands warm :)

This week, for the first time since the days of those hockey games, I found myself craving a warm mug of hot cocoa. A wave of brutal arctic air has settled over New England, and basically sapped me of motivation to do anything but hide under a giant blanket on the couch. I did go out to run errands one day and when I came back happened to be pulling in at the same time as my neighbor. We chatted for maybe 10 minutes, and by the time I got back inside my fingers hurt so much! I immediately decided to make myself hot cocoa to warm up.

Homemade Peanut Butter Hot Cocoa Mix

The only problem was we don’t keep hot cocoa mix on hand since it’s such a rare treat. Fortunately, it takes all of about 3 minutes to whip up this awesome homemade version so I was enjoying my hot chocolate in no time! Rather than make a plain chocolate mix, I went with a peanut butter version and am so glad I did. The cocoa was rich and creamy with tons of both peanut butter and chocolate flavor. I know we’re well past Christmas, but I think packages of hot cocoa mix would make a lovely gift throughout the winter. You could even get fancy and include homemade marshmallows if you really wanted to impress :)

Homemade Peanut Butter Hot Cocoa Mix

Homemade Peanut Butter Hot Cocoa Mix
from Cook’s Country, February/March 2007

{Note: you can substitute white chocolate chips for the peanut butter chips to make classic hot cocoa instead.}

1 1/2 cups nonfat dry milk powder
1 cup confectioners’ sugar
3/4 cup Dutch-processed cocoa powder
3/4 cup peanut butter chips
1/8 teaspoon salt

Add all of the ingredients to a large bowl and stir to combine. Transfer half of the mixture to the bowl of your food processor and pulse until the peanut butter chips are finely ground. Transfer to an airtight container, and repeat with the other half of the mix. (You really want to be sure the chips are finely ground or you’ll find them clumped at the bottom of your mug of hot cocoa – I speak from experience…)

To make hot cocoa with the mix: Stir 1/3 cup of the mix into 1 cup of hot milk. Garnish with marshmallows, whipped cream, or your favorite topping before serving.

The mix will keep for 3 months if stored in an airtight container.