Hot Cocoa with Homemade Chocolate Syrup

Last fall I attended the most beautiful Vermont wedding atop a mountain of screaming brilliant autumn treetops.  The tables were set with clusters of tiny vintage glass bottles with fresh picked wildflowers.

After a few drinks, I talked to everyone within earshot about the beautiful glass bottles, and I must have been pretty enthusiastic, since many kind folks even gave me their souvenir bottles. By the end of the night, my husband’s coat pockets were clanking with the bottles I collected throughout the night.

After all, I couldn’t fit them in my evening gown!

These bottles were the first thing that came to mind when I made this pot of Homemade Chocolate Syrup.

This chocolate syrup stirs seamlessly in with warm milk, and just a small spoonful delivers a subtly sweet and rich chocolate flavor. After all, there is nothing worse than powdered hot chocolate mixes that clump at the bottom of a cup or the overly sugared syrups that are completely void of any semblance of real chocolate…

So make a big pot of this syrup and funnel into pretty glass jars for a beautiful homemade Christmas gift. Especially nice paired with a little sac of marshmallows.

And you don’t even have to bake a single cookie.

Homemade Chocolate Syrup

Recipe adapted from: Betty Groff, Good Earth Country Cooking

1 cup cocoa powder

4 cups sugar

½ teaspoon salt

1.5 quarts water

1 tablespoon arrowroot powder*, dissolved in 1/8 cup water

1 Tablespoon vanilla


1. In a large saucepan, mix cocoa, sugar and salt. Stir well with a whisk to fully incorporate.

2. Turn the heat to medium and add the water. Bring to a boil, stirring constantly.

3. As it begins to form bubbles, mix in the arrowroot/water mixture and cook until thickened, 8-12 minutes. Remove from heat and add the vanilla. Keeps in the fridge for several months.

*Arrowroot powder can be found in the natural food section and is a gluten-free alternative to cornstarch.


14 thoughts on “Hot Cocoa with Homemade Chocolate Syrup

  1. Anne, you are an excellent writer! I love reading your posts:) Also, I would love to get a bottle of this from you as a Christmas gift, haha, jk.

  2. Pingback: National Cocoa Day | Learning Things on the Fly

    • hi Lisa, the sauce will not get as thick as the store bought syrup, and probably will not stick to the whisk. I found that the thinner texture of this syrup mixes much better when stirred into milk.

  3. Can this be left out of the refrigerator? I’d like to make this and ship it to friends in another state. It would be unrefrigerated for probably 3-4 days.

      • I made a small test batch today. It was a little too sweet for me, so I added some more cocoa powder. mmm, mmm, mmm… It’s so good as hot cocoa or just eating by the spoonful. 🙂 Definitely will be making this for Christmas gifts.

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