Hi everyone! The days are getting shorter and the temperature keeps dropping making it the perfect time to curl up on the couch with a mug of hot cocoa. Hot cocoa is my best friend on cold nights, but the carbohydrates found in hot cocoa aren’t. Yes, sugar in hot cocoa does have an ample amount of carbohydrates in it, but the milk you use to make the hot cocoa is also full of carbohydrates – unless you use heavy cream. Milk naturally contains a sugar called lactose, which you may have heard before in reference to lactose intolerance. This sugar is not necessarily a sweet sugar, but it is a sugar none the less, and is processed by our body the same way sucrose, aka table sugar, is. One cup of milk contains ~12 grams of carbohydrate, all of which are from lactose making a one cup serving of milk a carbohydrate serving. Skim, 1%, 2%, and whole milk all contain 12 grams of carbohydrate, the only difference between these milks is the fat and calorie content. 

I usually use milk in my hot cocoa, but when trying to make my hot cocoa lower in carbohydrates I found that using unsweetened almond milk is just as delicious! Unsweetened almond milk only contains 1 gram of carbohydrate per cup, which is a huge decrease from 12 grams per cup found in regular milk. By using unsweetened almond milk and stevia sweetener, I was able to reduce the carbohydrate content in my hot cocoa from 30 grams per serving to 4 grams per serving and I couldn’t even tell the difference in flavor!

I made a peppermint hot cocoa, but if you aren’t a fan of peppermint simply change out the 2 tsp of peppermint extract for 1 tsp of vanilla extract! Here is the recipe I used to create my low carbohydrate hot cocoa. I hope it helps keep you warm this winter!

Peppermint hot cocoa:

Ingredients:

4 cups unsweetened almond milk

1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder

20 drops (a little less than 1 tsp) of liquid Stevia

2 tsp peppermint extract

Directions:

1. Heat unsweetened almond milk on medium heat in a medium saucepan until it is simmering. Reduce heat to low and let simmer for ~10 minutes.
2. Once done, whisk in the remaining ingredients until dissolved, ~1 minute.
3. Pour into mugs topped with marshmallows and enjoy!