xmlns:b='http://www.google.com/2005/gml/b' xmlns:data='http://www.google.com/2005/gml/data' xmlns:expr='http://www.google.com/2005/gml/expr' Why Pay More for Hot Chocolate? | The Parent Game

Thursday, 9 April 2015

Why Pay More for Hot Chocolate?




I recently ran out of hot chocolate and was surprised to find how easy it is to make a really delicious hot chocolate, using just milk, sugar and Cocoa. This particularly appealed to me, because I don't get on well with dairy and try to avoid it if I can. The shop-bought hot chocolate I was used to was one you made with water, so the milk was already added. Not only does this mean you have to suffer the dairy content, but also, like all processed foods, there are lots of other ingredients too that aren't strictly necessary.



Take this example from Tesco. This is a list of ingredients for their Value hot chocolate;

Sugar, Whey Powder, Maltodextrin, Fat Reduced Cocoa Powder (9%), Vegetable Oil, Thickener (Guar Gum), Milk Proteins, Stabiliser (Potassium Triphosphate, Tetrasodium Diphosphate) 


As ingredients are always listed in order of quantity, you will see that the primary ingredient is sugar. followed by other stuff, some of which I've heard of, others not so much. I can't be 100% sure they are good for me, either way, so I might as well avoid them if I can. Sugar is, also, incredibly cheap. So, for your money, you are getting; a very cheap ingredient, a bit of cocoa and some other stuff you don't really need. On the surface, you would expect a Value product to be, well, value, but that actually isn't the case here. The Value product costs 58p for 400g and the Cocoa costs £1.99 for 250g. This sounds as if the Cocoa is a lot more expensive, but, with Cocoa, you only need 1 teaspoon per drink, instead of 5 of the Value Hot Chocolate. The figures (for anyone that's still awake, this wasn't meant to be a maths exercise!) work out at 3.63p per serving for the Hot Choc and 0.04p for the Cocoa, so it's really a no-brainer. Once you've done the maths, obviously, that was a bit of a brainer. 


I had always made cocoa the traditional way, gently warming milk in a saucepan, before adding cocoa powder and stirring until it dissolved. This is a little time-consuming compared to chucking hot water onto ready-made powder, but I have since found another way to make it, which is so much easier. All you have to do is add one teaspoon of cocoa and two teaspoons of sugar to a mug. Mix in a little boiling water, to form a paste, then top up with whichever milk you prefer. Personally, I use Almond Milk. No dairy and a lovely nutty addition to your bedtime beverage. Pop in the microwave for one and a half to two minutes, depending on output and please remember to stir well, that pocket of heat in the centre is not fun when it makes contact with the roof of your mouth!


Biscuits Optional

For more easy recipes for busy families click the link!

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31 comments

  1. Mummy will have to try this - she tries to avoid buying things with lots of 'stuff' we don't need in it x

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    1. Very wise! Your happy tummy will thank her later!

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  2. This is a great saving. Hot chocolate isn't for me but my daughters like it very much

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    1. My daughter likes squirty cream on top, with marshmallows!

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  3. ooh fab!! im not usually a fan of the cheapie ones but ill have to try this!

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    1. Shut your eyes, you'll never know! ;-)

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  4. I've seen some people mention making hot chocolate out of cheap chocolate spread.

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    1. That sounds interesting, it has a similar texture to the nesquik syrup, so it should work.

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  5. Ohh I shall have to try this, I'm trying my best to save some pennies so this will be good! x

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    1. It lasts for ages, so it even saves petrol going back to the shop for more!

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  6. I love it with Hazelnut milk! :-)

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    1. Ooh, yeah, hazelnut milk would be lovely, and good for you too!

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  7. We don't do hot chocolate, but it's quite a saving using the cocoa isn't it? We always have cocoa in for baking anyway.

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    1. Handy if you have an unexpected guest who likes it. :-)

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  8. I'm a huge fan of cocoa. My Mum always bought it instead of hot chocolate and I also prefer it. We make it the other way round to you. We mix a small amount of milk in the bottom of the cup with the cocoa then top it up with boiling water. It takes just as chocolatey x

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    1. That's a great idea, I will do that in future if I only have 'normal' milk, then I won't have to consume as much!

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  9. I love the sound of hot choc made with almond milk, might give that a go.

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  10. I use Cocoa powder too, since I bought it to make cakes. it makes a brilliant hot chocolate if you add lots of hot milk ( I use soya milk)

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    1. Try the nutty milk, it's amazing and still dairy free! Or if you don't like nuts, coconut is lovely too!

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  11. I think we are all guilty of being brand snobs and need to try the supermarkets own brand to see if we can taste the difference

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    1. I agree, we should all eat and drink blindfolded for a week!

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  12. Weird coincidence, I made a cup of hot choc the other night using cocoa and coconut milk!

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  13. What a super idea! i often wondered how to miss out the milk .. milk is not good with me so this is fab

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  14. We have always made out on hot chocolate. You can also grate the cheap bars of chocolate and use them

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  15. Home made hot chocolate is always nicer than packet ready ones. Have you tried stirring some milk chocolate in the milk as a treat? IT TAKES GREAT.

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  16. Hot chocolate is the best comfort drink ever

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  17. I won't buy the value Hot Chocolate again - its far too watery!

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  18. You really do have to check out labels and compare products to make sure you're getting a good deal these days. Thanks for sharing this, it will make me think about my shopping a bit more

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  19. It's amazing how many things contain milk, I'm constantly checking since my daughter was diagnosed with cows milk allergy, will try making my own hot chocolate for her now.

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  20. Super idea, I am so glad i have read this post!
    My little girl loves hot chocolate and some brands are really expensive.

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