Easy Crockpot Hot Chocolate

Rich and creamy crockpot hot chocolate…so easy to make, and perfect for cozy fall and winter days, holiday parties, and guests.

Homemade hot chocolate is one of our very favorite things, and I love to make a big crockpot full on the weekend. If I’m lucky, it will last Saturday and Sunday. This recipe is also the one I make on the stovetop (adapted for the crock pot), and I’ve been making it for years. I got it from my mama, so I grew up drinking it. It’s an absolute favorite at our house, and the taste is out of this world!

This post contains affiliate links of products I use and love for your convenience. Full disclosure here.

Rich and creamy, this hot chocolate will warm you from head to toe! It’s definitely our go to on snow days, and after skiing or sledding with Candy Cane Marshmallow Dippers and a slice of Chocolate Peppermint Roll. But it’s also wonderful on any cold day, just to warm up. The crockpot just makes it so easy, and it’s so nice to have it just sitting on the countertop, ready whenever we need it. It’s also ready to drink once it’s heated through, so it’s an easy crockpot recipe that doesn’t need to be warmed for hours beforehand.  

Halloween, Thanksgiving, Christmas Eve,  Christmas Day…all of these holidays are also perfect for Crockpot Hot Chocolate, and really the entire winter season.  Make a big batch, and then people come and serve themselves whenever they want to. It’s super easy, cozy, SO yummy, and perfect for a crowd. 


Ingredients

  • Whole Milk
  • Half and Half
  • Evaporated Milk
  • Heavy Cream
  • Chocolate chips
  • Vanilla extract

This recipe utilizes chocolate chips instead of cocoa powder, which lends to its creaminess. You don’t need sweetened condensed milk either–just these basic ingredients!

Equipment

You’ll need a crockpot for this recipe. You can also adapt for the stovetop (directions below), using a large pot or stockpot (love this blue speckled one!). Wooden Spoons and Hot Chocolate Mugs are also great to have!

How to make

Mix all the ingredients together in a 6 quart crockpot. Cook on low for 4-6 hours, stirring often the first hour, to make sure the chocolate incorporates and doesn’t burn on the bottom.

In the 30 minutes before serving, add large and mini marshmallows to the crockpot. They’ll get all melty and yummy! Use a ladle to serve hot chocolate into mugs, then top with all of your favorite hot chocolate toppings.

Recipe Tips

This recipe fills a 6 quart crockpot or slow cooker, so if you need more or less, you can adjust the recipe. It’s an easy one to cut in half if needed. There is also some versatility to the recipe as well—changing up the ratios of milk to heavy cream is just fine, depending on personal preference. If you like it a little thinner, and not quite as rich, add less cream and more milk. For a richer chocolate flavor, make the recipe as is, or even more cream and mess milk if you like.

When it comes to the chocolate, I use a mix of milk chocolate chips and semi-sweet chocolate chips, and sometimes all milk chocolate. But again, that’s a preference. If you like darker chocolate, you can use it!

If you’ve ever wondered, there is a difference between hot chocolate and hot cocoa.  Hot cocoa is made with cocoa powder, and typically lighter and more mild. Hot chocolate is made with real chocolate and cream, making it richer and thicker. Some hot chocolate recipes may use sweetened condensed milk, but this one doesn’t need it!

You also have an option when adding the chocolate. You can either put all the other ingredients in the crockpot and heat until warm, then stir in the chocolate after melting it in the microwave. Or you can add the chocolate chips from the beginning, then making sure to stir often the first hour or so they don’t burn on the bottom. I’ve done it both ways, and both work well–it just depends on what you want to do.

Tip: If you don’t like marshmallows, you can skip that step and use whipped cream instead…or in addition to! I usually like to have peppermint sticks or crushed candy cane to sprinkle on top.

Hot Chocolate Party Ideas

I love to host a Hot Chocolate party every holiday season, and this is the most important recipe of the event! A crockpot of hot chocolate with all the toppings is the highlight, including peppermint, mini chocolate chips, caramel sauce, sprinkles, whipped cream, and extra marshmallows. Christmas breakfast is another hot chocolate must-have at our house, and then we have it all during the day for our family, and anyone who stops by. 

FAQ

Do I need to stick exactly to the recipe?

No! The good news is that the types of milk or cream are forgiving, and you can switch them around as needed. For example, if you want to use less heavy cream and more milk, you can do that. It won’t taste as rich, but you can certainly adjust to your taste.

Can I double the recipe, or halve the recipe?

Yes, you can. This is an easy recipe to adjust for amounts, and if you need to make or less you can. I’ve often done this for different sizes of crockpots or slow cookers

Do I need a crockpot or slow cooker to make this recipe?

Good news! If you don’t have a crockpot, don’t worry. You can use this recipe on your stove too!! Place all the ingredients on a large stock pot. Keep on low, stirring often until all the chocolate is melted. Simmer with lid on, stirring occasionally.

Watch the video

More holiday recipes


Hey – you’ve made it this far, so now we’re pretty much best friends! If you make this recipe, I’d love for you to leave me a comment below, and a recipe rating! 🖤 Make sure you follow me on InstagramPinterest, and Facebook, too!

Don’t forget to check out my book, Simply Tradition: 70 Fun & Easy Holiday Ideas for Families.  It’s chock full of holiday traditions, ideas, and recipes for every family–and it makes a great gift!

The Best Ever Crockpot Hot Chocolate

5 from 255 votes
Kierste Wade | Old Salt Farm
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 4 hours
Servings: 15
PIN RECIPE PRINT RECIPE
Rich and creamy crockpot hot chocolate…so easy to make, and perfect for cozy fall and winter days, holiday parties, and guests.

Ingredients
 

Instructions

  • Mix all the ingredients together in a 6 quart crockpot. Cook on low for 4-6 hours, stirring often the first hour, to make sure the chocolate incorporates and doesn't burn on the bottom.
  • In the 30 minutes before serving, add large and mini marshmallows to the crockpot. They'll get all melty and yummy! Use a ladle to serve hot chocolate into mugs, then top with all of your favorite hot chocolate toppings.

Video

Notes

If you don’t have a crockpot, you can still make this!  You can use this recipe on your stove too!! Place all the ingredients on a large stock pot. Keep on low, stirring often until all the chocolate is melted. Simmer with lid on, stirring occasionally.
*You can use 6 cups whole milk, or make it even richer by using 3 cups whole milk and 3 cups half and half.  I’ve done it both ways, and both are yummy! I usually use half and half.  
Calories: 287kcal | Carbohydrates: 21g | Protein: 4g | Fat: 22g | Saturated Fat: 13g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 4g | Cholesterol: 60mg | Sodium: 62mg | Potassium: 153mg | Sugar: 18g | Vitamin A: 622IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 131mg | Iron: 1mg
Course :Drinks, Holidays
Cuisine :American, Dessert
Keyword :Chocolate, Christmas Drinks, Christmas Recipes, Easy Crockpot Recipe, Holiday crockpot recipes, Holiday Drinks, Holiday recipes, Hot Chocolate, Hot Cocoa
PIN THIS RECIPE FOR LATER! @oldsaltfarm or tag #oldsaltfarm!

Share and save for later!

24 Comments

    1. You can use this recipe on your stove too!! Place all the ingredients on a large stock pot. Keep on low, stirring often until all the chocolate is melted. Simmer with lid on, stirring occasionally!!

  1. Thank you so much for sharing! Looking forward to making this on Sunday! We need to half the recipe. Should I cook it for the same amount of time or give it less time?

    1. You’ll need less time…it’s really just until it’s heated through until it gets to be the temperature you want it to be. Then turn it down to warm! ENJOY!!

  2. Looks delish! My son can’t wait to make it with me. What size (oz) can evaporated milk do you use?

      1. 5 stars
        Thank you! I made it this morning and it’s delish! I think this will be our day after Thanksgiving go to… sip on hot chocolate, relax, and start decorating for Christmas! ❤️

  3. Hi. I am planning on taking this in a crockpot to an outdoor party. Is there a way to keep that top layer from forming while it sits in the crockpot.
    Thanks

    1. It happens when the hot chocolate starts to cool, or is introduced to cooler air. I try to frequently stir it after it’s heated through, and keep the lid on. Here is an article I found too: https://www.thekitchn.com/food-science-why-skin-forms-on-88664

      Hope that helps!

  4. 5 stars
    It’s delicious! Can leftovers be refrigerated and reheated? It was so rich that we couldn’t finish it!

    1. Yes, it can! I’ll put it back in the crockpot, on the stovetop, or even in the microwave in individual mugs. I haven’t had it in the fridge for longer than a few days though.

  5. I made this for a work cocoa bar and everyone absolutely loved it! I have tried a couple different recipes that were just too sweet! This one was perfect the only sweetener was from the chocolate chips! Huge success!!

    1. I’ve used both! I usually just grab what I have on hand, but we prefer milk chocolate. But it really is a personal preference.

  6. 5 stars
    Hi! I haven’t made this yet, but I’m super interested because I have a potluck on campus coming up- I think it’ll be a hit in the cold and rainy winters we get here. If possible, could you give some advice on whether it’s possible to make this ahead of time and heat it up a little bit before the event (say 30 minutes to an hour?)
    Also, whether it’d be okay to leave it out for roughly 2-3 hours beforehand (sealed but unplugged)? Unfortunately I have classes earlier in the day so I can’t make it on-site or leave the crockpot on and unsupervised.
    Either way I will definitely be giving this a try at some point! Thanks

    1. Hi, Sarah! You could make this ahead, but you’d need to keep it refrigerated until ready to heat and serve. You don’t want it sitting out longer than a couple of hours for safety reasons. If there is a refrigerator that you could keep it in until an hour before, I think it could work!

  7. 5 stars
    Just wanted to point out that when you use the 2x feature to double the ingredients it changes the evaporated milk to 4- 24oz cans when it should be 4- 12 oz cans. I thought that seemed like a lot of evaporated milk! :)

    1. Oh goodness!! Thanks for pointing that out! I’ll have to go in and input it differently so it won’t give those amounts. That IS a lot of evaporated milk, lol!!!

  8. What is the total amount of evaporated milk needed, as well as heavy cream? Is it 12 oz of evaporated milk and one pint of heavy cream TOTAL?

    1. It’s 2 cans of evaporated milk (12 oz. each) + 1 pint of heavy cream, which is 2 cups. So it’s a total of 24 oz. evaporated milk + 2 cups heavy cream (plus the half and half/whole milk).

      Sorry for the confusion! It’s tricky adding a recipe into the form I use to make sure it makes sense for the 2x feature. I’ve edited a few times trying to make sure it makes the most sense for both 1x and 2x. Hopefully that helps!!!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Recipe Rating




This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.