My Perfect Homemade Student Christmas Gift: Hot Cocoa

If there’s one type of gift you will likely never see me give students, it’s a hand-made craft.

Don’t get me wrong, there’s absolutely nothing wrong with those types of gifts – I think they’re fabulous. I am just a TERRIBLE crafter!

Luckily, we have Joy Morin for those types of student gifts. She has lots of great homemade ideas over on her site including paper ornaments, glass ornaments, and mittens.

What my students WILL get from me is some kind of baked good or food item. My favorite over the years has been a homemade hot chocolate mix.

Let’s take an important poll first: Do you call it “Hot Cocoa” or “Hot Chocolate”? Put your vote in the comments! 🙂

Since I cycle through different gifts each year so students who are with me for a long time don’t always get the same thing, I’ve actually only done this twice!

Hot chocolate is such as fun idea though because what kid doesn’t love hot chocolate?


Making Homemade Hot (You Fill in the Blank! 🙂 )

Consider recipes that are made with powdered milk so students only have to add hot water.  Along those same lines, I would advise you to not do the layered-type cocoa mix where you have to dump the whole container into a pot to mix.

My favorite recipe is from Cook’s Country, but since it’s a paid recipe service, here are some other versions you could try from Pioneer Woman and AllRecipes. 

What they all have in common:

  • Dry milk powder
  • Unsweetened cocoa powder
  • Confectioner’s sugar (dissolves better than white sugar)

(P.S. the only thing Cook’s Country adds is white chocolate chips and a bit of salt.)

Since the CC recipe uses white chocolate chips, they have you mix the recipe in a food processor to get the chips into smaller pieces so they will dissolve better/quicker.

Unfortunately, this is what happens when you process dry powder stuff in a food processor. It’s a blustery mess! LOL

If you use a recipe with just the dry good items and no chocolate chips, a nice big whisk will suffice and save you a mess!

I had to multiply the recipe quite a bit for volume. My non-photographer skill means I didn’t give a very good perspective on the size of this bowl but just know, it’s BIG.

Now, into 1/2 pint jars.

I find this size to be nice as it will give them a good 1-4 servings – plenty for a nice little gift.

If you have a funnel, that can help keep the mess down when scooping it into the jars.

I have to admit the non-crafty person in me would love to just stop at this point and call it good but it’s Christmas and a little decoration makes it “happier”. So I bite the bullet and decorate (as simply as possible!)

This particular year I used up leftover gift tags – simply hot gluing them to the lid.

Don’t forget to include instructions on how much to use in each serving!

Isn’t this a lovely little studio-Christmas setting?

Happy day.

Have you ever made hot cocoa or another food item for your students? 

Don’t forget to vote for “Hot Cocoa” or “Hot Chocolate” in the comments! 🙂

Me: I most often say “Hot Chocolate”. I only used “Cocoa” in the title because it was shorter. Ha! LOL


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.