Vegan Hot Chocolate

In keeping with my theme of hygge for January (and as a nod to Vaganuary), there’s nothing more cosy than indulging in a hot chocolate and a slice of cake on the sofa whilst snuggled under a warm blanket. Here is my favourite hot chocolate recipe – it’s rich, smooth and vegan. It’s really quick and easy to make and requires only 4 ingredients.

Now, I’m not actually vegan, and I don’t think I ever will be (since I love meat so much), however I do recognise and value the health and environmental benefits of plant based foods. For these reasons I started incorporating vegan dishes into my diet. And I actually believe that some vegan foods actually taste better than their animal product containing counterparts. A prime example is the vegan hot chocolate recipe. It’s so creamy and delicious, and all without the dairy!

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Vegan Hot Chocolate Recipe

Makes: 1 mug
Preparation Time: 1 minute
Heating Time: 1-1.5 minutes

INGREDIENTS

  • 1.5 tsp cocoa powder
  • 1.5 tsp brown sugar
  • 1/8 tsp ground cinnamon
  • oat milk

METHOD

  1. Add the cocoa powder, brown sugar and cinnamon to a microwavable mug and mix well.
  2. Add a few drops of milk and mix well to make a paste. Keep adding the milk a few drops at a time until the paste starts to thin out. Then stir in the rest of the milk.
  3. Heat in the microwave for 1 minute. Stir and enjoy!

NOTES

  • If making hot chocolate for a number of people then just multiply the quantities by the number of mugs required. Add the dry ingredients to a sauce pan and mix well before gradually adding in the oat milk and mixing well. Heat on a low-medium heat for around 3-4 minutes. Do not let it boil.
  • Serve topped with plant based whipped cream – I love whipping up some Elmlea Double Plant Cream Alternative. Mini marshmallows are also preferable.
  • I would recommend Oatly oat drink as a non-dairy alternative to milk as it doesn’t curdle like some oat milks do and it doesn’t have the strong taste that you often get with coconut or nut-based milks.

Mango Lassi

When I eat out at Indian restaurants a mango lassi is a must. This two step recipe produces a thick and creamy mango drink. It makes a great alternative to a smoothie. It’s so rich and filling that sometimes I even have it instead of dessert.


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Mango Lassi Recipe

Serves: 2
Preparation Time: 5 minutes

INGREDIENTS

  • the flesh of 1 ripe mango
  • 50 ml milk
  • 125 g natural yoghurt
  • 2 tsp sugar
  • 1/8 tsp cardamom powder
  • 20 g toasted crushed pistachios (as a topping when serving)

METHOD

  1. Place all the ingredients apart from the pistachios in a blender and blend until smooth.
  2. Pour into two short glasses and top each glass with the pistachios.

NOTES

  • If you don’t have powdered cardamom then ground cinnamon is the best alternative.

Frappé

I love a coffee, but in my attempts to stay cool in this heat my Nespresso machine was getting a well deserved break. That was until I tried my hand at making a blended ice coffee (or frappé) and found it was just the refreshing afternoon pick me up I needed.

Now this recipe does require some forward planning as it requires frozen coffee cubes, but it’s really worth it. I think it could even rival the blended coffee drinks served at some of the major coffee chains, and of course, it’s much cheaper. Do leave a comment and let me know what you think.


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Frappé Recipe

Serves: 2

Preparation Time: 10 minutes

Cooling Time: 15 minutes

Freezing Time: 5 hours

INGREDIENTS

230 ml strong black coffee
4 tsp sugar
340 ml milk

METHOD

  1. Add the sugar to the coffee and give it a good stir.
  2. Allow the coffee to cool down to room temperature (approximately 15 minutes)
  3. Pour the coffee into an ice cube tray and freeze for around 5 hours or overnight.
  4. Remove the ice cube tray from the freezer and place to frozen coffee cubes into the blender.
  5. Add the milk and blend for around 30 seconds until the ice is slushy.
  6. Pour into two glasses. Add a straw and enjoy!

NOTES

  • For the coffee I use the mug sized decaffeinato capsule in my Nespresso Vertuo, but any strong black coffee will work. I only use decaf coffee at the moment as I’m currently breast feeding.
  • For freezing the coffee I use the standard 14 cube ice tray.
  • You can bulk freeze a couple of mugs of coffee in advance to have the frozen coffee cubes available as and when you fancy a frappé.
  • If the frappé ends up too thick then add a little more milk, otherwise you won’t be able to enjoy it with a straw.
  • I use oat milk when making this for myself as I’m a little intolerant to cows milk (although I will suffer for ice cream and cheesecake). Oat milk is my non-dairy milk substitute of choice as it has a mild flavour compared to some of the nut milks. Though I do like cashew milk if oat is not available. Both work just as well in this recipe.
  • For blending I use my old trusty Nutribullet as I find it produces a nice smooth slush.