'Tis the season for hot chocolate, and if you're a real fiend for sweet, hot beverages, you can find a way to fit it into almost any situation. Need something to wake you up in the morning? Dark hot chocolate will do the trick. Looking for an easy dessert? You guessed it, hot chocolate. Here are just a few of the many variations on the hot chocolate theme. See how many you can make before the new year:
- Milk chocolate peanut butter hot chocolate: For those times when you want to eat a peanut butter cup, but don't want to go to all the trouble of chewing it. To get that liquid candy flavor, combine milk chocolate chips and a hearty scoop of peanut butter (smooth, not chunky, of course) in a saucepan with whole milk. Top with mini marshmallows, just in case the hot chocolate isn't sweet enough on its own.
- Aztec hot chocolate: Sometimes you're in the mood for something sweet, but not too sweet. For these times, melt dark chocolate and combine with cinnamon and cayenne pepper for a hotter, smokier chocolate flavor. Garnish with cinnamon sticks.
- Salted caramel hot chocolate: Salted caramel is hot right now (no pun intended). To get the trendy coffeehouse flavor in your own kitchen, whip up some quick caramel sauce and salt to taste, then slowly mix it into steaming hot milk along with finely chopped milk or dark chocolate.
- Lemongrass Lavender White Hot Chocolate: For a truly unusual flavor, combine chopped lemongrass, dried lavender and lime zest with melted white chocolate and milk. The result is subtly sweet, zesty and tangy.