Better Hot Chocolate

Wintertime cold fronts — even in the Florida Keys — are chilly on a boat.

Hot chocolate is great to take the edge off. And we found that we drank it frequently even while sailing in Mexico and helping friends take their boats up and down the ICW.

Even on a reasonably warm day, it’s cooler on the water.  And if you’re doing an overnight passage, it can be downright chilly in the middle of the night.

At times like that, a cup of hot chocolate is greatly appreciated.  But to make it easy, I’d just keep hot water in a good Thermos (or, even easier, you can use an airpot) and use instant hot chocolate.

The only problem is that, well, it can taste watery.  I know, the packages say to mix with water — but they also add something like what’s on my Swiss Miss container:  “For more indulgent cocoa, mix with milk instead of water.”

But it may not work to heat up a pan of milk.  I mean, that’s why I was using the instant mix to begin with.  I want it simple!

Once I discovered great powered milk, that dissolves easily, the problem was solved.  Just add a heaping spoonful of Nido powdered milk or any other really good powdered milk to the hot chocolate mix, stir them together and then add the hot water and make as usual.  I don’t precisely measure the powdered milk — you can use as much or as little as you want.

Instant hot chocolate is so easy on a chilly passage, but it can taste a little watery.  Some great powdered milk can really improve it!

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  • Shari
    Posted at 08 January 2014 Reply

    After the container is half empty, you can top it off with powdered milk, shake it up and it’s ready to go again.
    If you make your own mix, you can use really good quality chocolate and it really kicks up a notch!

  • Where The Coconuts Grow
    Posted at 08 January 2014 Reply

    Awesome! I didn’t know about Nido yet, but we’ll definitely be adding that to the provisioning list!

  • Vala
    Posted at 09 January 2014 Reply

    Do you have suggestions/recipe for making your own mix?

    • Carolyn Shearlock
      Posted at 09 January 2014 Reply

      From The Boat Galley Cookbook, page 91:

      Mix together
      2 cups powdered milk
      1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa
      2/3 cup sugar
      dash of salt

      Store in an airtight container.

      To make hot chocolate, use 1/4 cup of the mix in a mug and fill with very hot (almost boiling) water. Stir and enjoy!

      Makes about 12 mugs.

  • Becky
    Posted at 30 January 2015 Reply

    A great warm-up on a chilly eve. is a “Zander”– make your hot cocoa but add dark rum. Yum! We call it “medicinal.”

  • Candy Ann Williams
    Posted at 31 January 2015 Reply

    I have been using Nido in my hot chocolate this year and it is great!!! I can’t go back to using just plain water now in my hot chocolate …it is so rich tasting this way… I use Nido ALL of the time since you introduced this to me a several years ago…I very seldom but milk now even when I can. I really love it on my cereal. I have even gotten some of my land lubbers using Nido too. Now you have me wanting some hot chocolate! Lol

  • Stephanie Gardiner
    Posted at 01 February 2015 Reply

    My husband discovered the powdered milk tip last season when we ran out of fresh and UHT milk. He loved that his tea stayed hotter for longer but isn’t a fan of the powdered milk taste. I’ll give Nido a try when I do my provisioning for this season to see if it helps. Thanks!

  • Cory Nickerson
    Posted at 09 December 2016 Reply

    Do you deliver?!?!?

  • Paula Richard
    Posted at 09 December 2016 Reply

    You must try Coldstone Creamery’s Hot Chocolate mixes. Decadent!

  • Annie Lindsay
    Posted at 10 December 2016 Reply

    A shot of Bailey’s Irish Cream in hot choc is even better

  • gary
    Posted at 18 December 2016 Reply

    Double-strength hot chocolate works well too. Just add two packets! Add Nido too!

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