Mexican Hot Chocolate with Coconut Whipped Cream

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Tall mug filled with our Mexican Hot Chocolate recipe with coconut whipped cream flowing down the side

Having friends over this weekend? Hosting an all-girls affair? Just staying in and playing cozy all by your lonesome self? All three are excellent options if you ask me. But in any case I have just the thing: Vegan Mexican Hot Chocolate with sweet cinnamon, earthy nutmeg, spicy cayenne and a dollop of creamy coconut whipped cream.

Oh yeah, #youknowyouwantthis.

Mug filled to the brim with our homemade Mexican Hot Chocolate recipe

Origins of Mexican Hot Chocolate

Chocolate has been grown in Mesoamerica since at least the 9th century. The Mayans called it xocolatl and believed it to be a gift from the gods (source). We’d say they were onto something!

They would make chocolate into a drink by fermenting, roasting, and grinding cacao and then mixing it with water, cornmeal, chili peppers, and other spices (source). The drink didn’t have any added sweetener so it was quite bitter.

Then in the late 1500s, sugar was introduced in Mexico and was adopted into hot chocolate. Our version is not traditional, but is inspired by the concept of adding spices to hot chocolate. You can learn about Mexican Hot Chocolate and its history here.

Mug of Mexican Hot Chocolate topped with Coconut Whipped Cream

As you know from my Boozy Pumpkin White Hot Chocolate story, I love hot chocolate. Its hot, sweet and chocolate-y goodness never does me wrong. But since I’m a part-time vegan and lover of all things coconut and spice, I decided to give an alternative recipe a try.

Mug of Mexican Hot Chocolate with Coconut Whipped Cream and a drizzle of chocolate syrup
Big mug of Mexican Hot Chocolate with Coconut Whipped Cream for a delicious vegan treat

The base of this beverage is simple: Non-dairy milk (I mixed full-fat coconut milk and vanilla almond milk), cocoa powder, vanilla extract, salt, sugar, and pinches of Vietnamese cinnamon, nutmeg, and extra-hot cayenne. Then for a luxurious finish I add a layer of vanilla-infused coconut “whipped cream” made with my remaining coconut milk and drizzle it on top with a little chocolate syrup for good measure.

If my hot cocoa-loving neighbors wouldn’t have been nearby for sampling, I would’ve guzzled the whole batch down by myself.

Mug overflowing with homemade Mexican Hot Chocolate and Coconut Whipped Cream
Mug of Vegan Mexican Hot Chocolate with Coconut Whipped Cream

Vegan Mexican Hot Chocolate

Sweet and slightly spiced Mexican Hot Chocolate with cool, creamy coconut whipped cream.
Author Minimalist Baker
Overflowing mug of Mexican Hot Chocolate topped with Coconut Whipped Cream and chocolate sauce
5 from 16 votes
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 5 minutes
Total Time 10 minutes
Servings 2 (hot chocolates)
Course Beverage
Cuisine Mayan-Inspired, Mexican-Inspired, Vegan
Freezer Friendly No
Does it keep? Best when fresh


  • 2 cups non-dairy milk (I used 1/2 full-fat coconut milk 1/2 vanilla almond milk)
  • 3 heaping Tbsp cocoa powder (or more for intense chocolate flavor)
  • 2-3 Tbsp sugar or agave (or honey if not vegan // depending on your taste)
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon (I recommend Vietnamese as it’s sweeter)
  • 1/4 scant tsp each nutmeg and cayenne (omit cayenne if you don’t like spice)
  • 1/2 tsp pure vanilla extract
  • 1 pinch sea salt


  • In a small saucepan, bring milk to a low simmer over medium heat.
  • Add cocoa powder, sugar, salt, vanilla and spices and whisk vigorously to combine.
  • Serve warm with coconut (or regular) whipped cream and a drizzle of chocolate syrup.


*Nutrition information is a rough estimate.

Nutrition (1 of 2 servings)

Serving: 1 hot chocolates Calories: 388 Carbohydrates: 31 g Protein: 5 g Fat: 30 g Saturated Fat: 26 g Trans Fat: 0 g Cholesterol: 0 mg Sodium: 95 mg Fiber: 6 g Sugar: 24 g

Coconut Whipped Cream

A vegan alternative to traditional whipped cream.
Author Minimalist Baker
Overflowing mug of Mexican Hot Chocolate with Coconut Whipped Cream
5 from 16 votes
Prep Time 1 hour
Total Time 1 hour
Servings 4
Course Dessert
Cuisine Mexican-Inspired, Vegan
Freezer Friendly No
Does it keep? 2-3 Days


  • 1/2 can full-fat coconut milk
  • 1/4 cup powdered sugar
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract


  • Place your coconut milk in the fridge overnight or in the freezer for 30 minutes to an hour. Upon removal, be careful NOT to shake the can as you want the cream to remain separated from the liquid.
  • Open the can and scoop the top layer of cream into a chilled mixing bowl. Whip on medium-high until soft peaks form. (Add a dash of the remaining coconut liquid if it’s too thick.)
  • Add powdered sugar and vanilla and whip again to combine. Taste and adjust flavor/sweetness accordingly. Serve with hot cocoa and reserve the rest in an airtight container in the fridge for later use. Should keep for several days.


*Nutrition information is a rough estimate.

Nutrition (1 of 4 servings)

Serving: 1 g Calories: 167 Carbohydrates: 10 g Protein: 1.4 g Fat: 14 g Saturated Fat: 12 g Polyunsaturated Fat: 0 g Monounsaturated Fat: 0 g Trans Fat: 0 g Cholesterol: 0 mg Sodium: 0 mg Potassium: 0 mg Fiber: 1.3 g Sugar: 9 g Vitamin A: 0 IU Vitamin C: 0 mg Calcium: 0 mg Iron: 0 mg

P.S. The mug featured in this post was handcrafted by our local artist and friend Troy Becker.

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My Rating:

  1. Robin Neville says

    Very tasty! Made this with carob instead of chocolate and held up well. Will make again. Thanks for sharing this recipe!

  2. Jen B says

    I made only the hot chocolate, but I can’t wait to try making the whipped cream (no coconut milk)! Just the hot chocolate was delicious and easy! I loved the additions of cinnamon and nutmeg. The perfect treat for a fall evening!

  3. Ash says

    This was totally delicious! My husband likes it too! I used 1c coconut cream and 1 c almond milk, with maple syrup to sweeten. Delicious! All of MB’s recipes are to die for. Thanks guys xx

  4. Marie says

    Great recipe, very popular in my house. I used oat milk, which I find sweet, so I added less sugar. Really enjoyed, thank you!

  5. Faux Leather says

    mmm I love this whipped cream!!!!!!!!!!!! I made it with a pineapple cake which was decadent. I love making these kinds of drinks, especially in the fall on a chilly night. I have been blending up fresh fruit smoothies every morning which are wonderful, and I’m learning a lot from my cooking class too.

  6. Meghan says

    Is there a specific brand of coconut milk you use to make the whipped cream? I tried over the weekend using Whole Food’s brand 365 and it didn’t whip up very well. Would love a suggestion, thanks :) PS. I love your blog and it has changed my life, quite seriously.

    • Avatar for Dana @ Minimalist BakerDana @ Minimalist Baker says

      Ah, thanks Meghan! SO kind. I think Whole Foods is great, so give it another try. And be sure to refrigerate overnight and leave the liquid behind. Otherwise, the Trader Joe’s coconut cream is THE best. Native Foods is also pretty good.

  7. qwerty says

    Looks great. What the hell is a part-time vegan though? Are you only bothered by animals’ enslavement, murder and torture 3 days a week or something?

  8. kate says

    I just made this. It took about 15 minutes for both the hot chocolate and whipped topping. So simple, and such basic ingredients – I even had the coconut milk on hand. The hot chocolate alone has a thick, rich, creamy, wonderful mouth-feel. The whipped coconut cream puts it over the top, in a very good way. The amount of cayenne was just right for me, but I’m a Texan. Others might want to use half the amount and then add more to taste, especially if serving it to kids. I recommend a light sprinkle of cinnamon on top of the whipped cream, with or without the chocolate syrup drizzle.

    Thank you for this wonderful winter (vegan) treat!!!!!!

  9. The Vegan Cookie Fairy says

    I am drooling all over my keyboard and it’s entirely your fault. What a tempting mug of hot cocoa!

  10. Rebecca - FoodFlav says

    OMG STOP. I am so in love with this hot chocolate with coconut cream on it. . AMAZING

    You guys are so cute.

  11. tvland says

    The recipe sounds intriguing but the pictures…..well, while I suppose they are artsy the munchkins in my care are hesitant. They have the impression this will be sticky and messy, things they don’t like.

  12. Kelsea says

    You should try agave Syrup instead of sugar for a more guilt free option. Sounds delicious though! x

  13. Holly says

    Since you posted this, I have made it more times than I’d like to admit. It is delicious and so think and creamy!

  14. Alexis @ Hummusapien says

    This looks so fabulous! I love the addition of vegan whipped cream :) I’m sure the pinch of cayenne makes it over the top delish!

  15. Ruby @ The Ruby Red Apron says

    Wow this hot chocolate sounds like a dream! I love the addition of cayenne. Reminds me of the movie Chocolat! :)

  16. jaime @ sweet road says

    Chocolate and coconut are the two key words that get me to perk my ears up, and this one definitely did the trick. I don’t have any coconut milk, but I have coconut cream which is actually thicker so I have a feeling it might do the trick. I’m so excited to try it!

  17. says

    Your pictures are lovely, I am dying for a hot chocolate now. Would love for you to share your pictures with us at

  18. Megan | EatsDaily says

    Wow, amazing pictures!!
    The recipe sounds delicious… it’s a drink like this that helps make the cold winter days more tolerable