It’s good for so much more than a cheery, cold-weather drink
EC: 15 Unexpected Ways to Use Hot Chocolate Mix
Credit: Photo by Anna Pekunova via Getty Images

At the end of the holiday season, you may find yourself left with a lifetime supply of hot chocolate mix wedged in the back corner of your pantry, gathering dust until the next autumn. But hot cocoa mix is useful for more than just a pick-me-up in winter. Use up last year’s supply and make room for new boxes with these creative things to do with hot chocolate mix—besides the obvious, of course. Hot cocoa mix can actually be used as a cocoa powder substitute in your favorite chocolate desserts. Hot chocolate desserts, like hot chocolate mug cakes, hot chocolate cookies, and hot cocoa cupcakes, use store-bought powdered mix and go way beyond your mug.

Why store-bought rather than homemade? Imagine this: It’s cold outside. You’re wrapped in fuzzy blankets, you’re sitting by the fire, and you’re craving some chocolatey comfort. You could warm up with a hot cup of homemade hot chocolate, but that takes too much time and effort away from your extremely busy holiday season. Buying hot chocolate mix in single packets is convenient and inexpensive. Plus, most mixes already include marshmallows. (YAY!) Go out and buy hot chocolate mix in bulk. It’ll definitely come in handy whether you’re making one of our hot chocolate mix desserts or entertaining over the holiday.

Hot-Chocolate Brownies

The centers of these hot chocolate brownies are soft and gooey and resemble a lava cake. What’s not to love?

Hot-Chocolate Whipped Cream

What’s the holiday season without homemade whipped cream? Add a few hot chocolate packets to the mix and never look back.

Hot-Chocolate Popcorn

Here, popcorn is tossed in white chocolate, dusted with sugary hot cocoa mix, and drizzled with milk chocolate. Are you drooling yet?

Caramel Hot-Chocolate Brownies

These brownies are perfect for a pantry filled with caramels and instant hot chocolate. Adorn each square with itty bitty mini marshmallows.

Hot-Chocolate Mug Cake

Satisfy all your chocolate cravings in under 3 minutes. #blessed

Hot-Cocoa Pancakes

Make perfectly fluffy homemade pancakes with yogurt and hot chocolate mix for a sweet treat.

Hot-Chocolate Krispie Treats

Making Rice Krispies treats with instant hot chocolate just makes total sense, since most packets include marshmallows in them. We approve.

Slow-Cooker Hot-Chocolate Oatmeal

Slow cooker breakfast? Yes, please. Prep before bed and wake up to sweet hot chocolate oatmeal in the morning.

Peppermint Frozen Hot Chocolate

This refreshing milkshake will win over your heart—if it’s freezing cold outside.

Hot-Chocolate Cheesecake Dip

Cream cheese, marshmallow creme, yogurt, and hot chocolate mix unite in this no-bake party appetizer ideal for the holidays. The perfect chip for your dip? Animal crackers, of course.

Hot-Cocoa Muddy Buddies Recipe

This one’s for all you die-hard puppy chow lovers.

Hot-Cocoa Pudding

Swoon over this hot chocolate custard whether it’s served hot or cold.

Hot-Chocolate French Toast

Embrace a double hit of chocolate—the bread is stuffed with mocha ganache, and then soaked in hot chocolate.

Hot-Chocolate Krispies

Melt the marshmallows down in a pot with hot chocolate mix to make quick and easy Rice Krispies treats.

Hot-Chocolate Monkey Bread

Monkey bread is made easy with refrigerated biscuit dough. This chocolatey, pull-apart bread doubles as breakfast and dessert.

Starbuck’s Hot-Cocoa Chocolate-Chip Muffins

Indulge in your favorite coffee shop’s grab-and-go breakfast without ever leaving home.