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two cups of French hot chocolate with a spoon
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5 from 2 votes

French Hot Chocolate Recipe

You don’t need to go to Paris to enjoy rich, creamy French hot chocolate!  Make this easy recipe on the stovetop, then garnish with Chantilly cream.  You’ll love every sip of this French drink!
Prep Time25 mins
Total Time25 mins
Course: Drink
Cuisine: French
Keyword: chocolat chaud, french hot chocolate
Servings: 3 servings
Calories: 562kcal
Author: Emma


For the Drink

  • 2 cups whole milk
  • 6 ounces good-quality 70% dark chocolate finely chopped
  • 2 tablespoons light brown sugar optional
  • pinch of coarse sea salt for garnish

For the Chantilly Cream

  • cup heavy whipping cream
  • ¼ teaspoon caster sugar
  • teaspoon vanilla extract


  • Pour the milk into a 2-quart, heavy-based saucepan and set over medium heat, stirring occasionally.  Heat the milk until it is gently steaming, but not simmering.
  • Meanwhile, finely chop the bar with a sharp knife.
  • Once the milk is gently steaming, remove the pan from the heat and dump in the chopped chocolate.  Whisk continuously until it is melted and the mixture is smooth.  Be patient; this will take a couple minutes.
  • Place the saucepan over medium heat and bring to a gentle boil and cook until thickened, about 5 minutes.  Taste and whisk in the brown sugar if desired.
  • Serve hot in small cups, garnished with a sprinkle of coarse sea salt and a dollop of Chantilly cream.  Alternatively, let it cool completely to room temperature and refrigerate for up to 3 days.  Reheat in the microwave or on the stovetop over gentle heat.
  • Pour the chilled whipping cream into a bowl and add the sugar and vanilla extract.  Whip with a handheld electric mixer on medium speed until the cream is stiff.  It shouldn't fall out of the bowl if it is turned upside down.
  • Place a dollop of the Chantilly cream in each cup.  Chantilly cream is best when enjoyed right away, but you can store leftovers covered tightly in the fridge for a day.


  • Don't use chips or baking wafers; use only the bar form with a minimum of 70% cocoa solids.
  • Keep the heat around medium.  Don't turn the heat to high, or it may burn.
  • Want it thinner or thicker? For a thinner drink, reduce the chocolate to 5 ounces (141g) and don't boil it.  For a thicker drink, increase the it to 7 ounces (198g) and gently boil it for 3-5 minutes.
  • Make it in advance.  It tastes great a few hours or even up to 3 days later.
  • Reheat in the microwave or on the stovetop with medium heat.


Calories: 562kcal | Carbohydrates: 43g | Protein: 10g | Fat: 39g | Saturated Fat: 23g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 11g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 54mg | Sodium: 94mg | Potassium: 651mg | Fiber: 6g | Sugar: 30g | Vitamin A: 674IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 249mg | Iron: 7mg