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Nutmeg Hot Chocolate

Mike Smith / TODAY
Cook Time:
7 mins
Prep Time:
5 mins

Chef notes

Creamy, rich hot chocolate gets a spicy kick from a touch of nutmeg. Adding a bit of rum turns a kid-friendly treat into a more adult beverage. I love this with a dollop of whipped cream but marshmallows are also delicious.

Technique Tip: Simmering the cocoa powder in water before adding the milk brings out a deeper chocolate flavor.

Swap Option: If you don’t have nutmeg on hand, cinnamon is a great substitute. You can use nondairy milk (almond, oat or coconut work particularly well).




  • 1/3 cup water
  • 2 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder, preferably Dutch-processed
  • 3 cups milk
  • 3/4 cup semisweet chocolate chip
  • 1 tablespoon sugar, more to taste
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg, for garnish
  • Whipped cream or marshmallows, optional
  • Rum, optional



In a medium saucepan, bring the water to a simmer. Add the cocoa and whisk until mostly smooth (a few lumps are okay).


Add milk and bring to a simmer. Whisk until all the cocoa lumps are dissolved. 


Add chocolate chips and sugar and whisk well, until the chocolate is melted and the mixture is smooth. Taste and stir in a little more sugar if needed. Whisk in nutmeg.


Serve in mugs, adding a splash or two of rum if you like. Top with whipped cream or marshmallows and grate some nutmeg on top.