Red Wine Hot Chocolate

by Lauren
2 mugs
15 min

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Last Updated on April 26, 2021 by

This Red Wine Hot Chocolate is sweet, just a touch boozy, and oh so decadent. Make a mug just for yourself or enjoy it with a loved one!

What ingredients go into this recipe?

Just a handful of really good ones. Check 'em out below.

  • Half and half - I've used half and half when making this hot chocolate, but I imagine that 2% or whole milk would also work. Heck, use heavy cream if you're feeling EXTRA decadent. I've never tried it with non-dairy milks, however.
  • Chocolate - I used semi-sweet Ghirardelli chocolate chips. But use whatever suits y0u: milk or dark chocolate, chips, chunks, or chopped chocolate bars.
  • Vanilla Extract - Just a splash of good quality vanilla extract.
  • Red Wine - I made sure to use a red wine that paired well with chocolate. A Google search told me that Merlot, Zinfandel, or Syrah would be a good pick. Make sure you use something that you wouldn't mind drinking on its own.
  • Whipped Cream - Freshly made or from a spray can. Either works. I whipped up some lightly sweetened whipped cream just for the occasion.
  • Marshmallows - Make them from scratch if you're feeling fancy! My store bought mini marshmallows did the trick, though.

How does this recipe come together?

I always forget how easy and basically effortless it is to make homemade hot chocolate until I start actually making it again. All you'll need to do is heat some half and half on the stove until warm, but not boiling or scalded. Add some chocolate, and stir until everything is smooth.

From there, you just need to turn off the heat and add some vanilla extract and the red wine. Stir it all up and there you have it.

Just ladle the hot chocolate into a couple of mugs and top with whipped cream and marshmallows!

What kind of wine should I use?

A red one, for starters 😉

For the best results, I'd advise you to use a red wine that pairs well with chocolate. According to Google, that's something like a Merlot, a Zinfandel, or a Syrah. Regardless of what you choose to use, just make sure that it's something that you wouldn't mind drinking a glass or two of.

It doesn't have to be expensive, either! I picked up an $11 bottle of Merlot and it was great in this hot chocolate. And then it was great again when my husband and I finished the bottle later in the day.

What kind of chocolate should I use for this hot chocolate?

Preference comes into play here a bit more. I used semi-sweet chocolate chips, because I tend to think of semi-sweet chocolate as being kind of an all-purpose chocolate. But if you dig dark chocolate (I bet it would be great in this recipe), use that instead. You could also use milk chocolate, if that's your preference. Just be mindful of the fact that the type of chocolate that you choose will dictate how sweet the hot chocolate is.

You could also use chocolate chips, chunks, or chopped up chocolate bars. You do you.

Looking for other wine-y and/or hot chocolate recipes?

I have a recipe for a really great Cheerwine Sangria that you should definitely check out. And if you're looking for more of a shortcut, check out the Kalimotxo Cocktatail. Good stuff.

You should also take a look at this recipe for non-alcoholic homemade hot chocolate, as well as these delicious Hot Chocolate No-Bake Cookies and Hot Chocolate Cupcakes!

What do I need to have on hand in order to make this recipe?

  • Mugs, of course!
  • A heavy-bottomed saucepan.
  • A silicone whisk, so you don't scratch the bottom of your nice new saucepan.
  • A ladle, to get your hot chocolate into the mugs.

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Recipe details
  • 2  mugs
  • Prep time: 5 Minutes Cook time: 10 Minutes Total time: 15 min
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  • 1 ½ cups half and half (see notes)
  • ¾ cups semi-sweet chocolate chips (see notes)
  • splash of vanilla extract
  • ½ cup red wine (see notes)
  • whipped cream and marshmallows, for garnish

In a heavy-bottomed saucepan, set over medium-low heat, warm the half and half until beginning to bubble slightly around the edges. Be careful not to let it boil, and do not scorch it.
Add the chocolate and whisk continuously until melted and smooth.
Remove the saucepan from the heat and add the vanilla extract and red wine. Whisk until combined and smooth.
Ladle the hot chocolate into mugs and top with whipped cream and marshmallows, if desired.
  • I've preferred half and half, but I believe that 2%, whole milk, or heavy cream would work, as well. I have not yet tried to make this with non-dairy milks.
  • Use dark, semi-sweet, or milk chocolate, according to your preference. Also feel free to use chips, chunks, or chopped bars of chocolate.
  • For best results, use a red wine that pairs well with chocolate (Merlot, Zinfandel, Syrah would all be good picks) and that you wouldn't mind drinking a glass of on its own.
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  • Kca27466468 Kca27466468 on Jan 29, 2022

    Drink was delicious, especially on a cold winter night. Just for a spin, I replaced the wine with a shot of peppermint schnapps. Also yummy!