Hot chocolate you can eat with a spoon

There are perhaps many of you out there right now that aren’t yet in the hot chocolate mood, that are reading this sitting in short sleeves and sandals and thinking no, you’re not ready for hot chocolate. But here in Canberra we’ve just had the coldest August nights in twenty years and are well and truly in the middle of frosty winter.

Although I always look forward to the warm weather, I have to admit I’m enjoying embracing the cold with nights in front of the fireplace, slow cooked duck ragu, about a billion cups of tea a day and the like. And then, every now and then I get this craving for hot chocolate.

thick hot chocolate Italian style

Not just any hot chocolate. I crave a hot chocolate that is dark and bitter, not too sweet, and most importantly, thick and creamy. So thick that you can’t sip it, you have to eat it with a spoon. It’s a craving that also creeps in when I start to get a little nostalgic about my other home in Florence, where the hot chocolate is always dark, thick and spoonable.

Many moons ago, when my husband and I first met, he worked in a bar (or two or three) in Florence. Aside from being a master at making cocktails (he can whip up the most mouth-watering negroni or aperol spritz you’ve ever come across), his hot chocolates are the perfect smooth, dark and creamy concoctions — it’s hard to go back to drinking regular hot chocolate after tasting these. They are often made with less cocoa and either cornflour or arrowroot (tapioca flour) to thicken but the extra cocoa, naturally, equates to richer flavour.

This is quite rich, so you only need a small amount — this recipe makes enough for a small teacup-sized hot chocolate craving for one. Feel free to adapt as you like (did someone say freshly whipped cream on top?).

hot chocolate feature

Marco’s thick hot chocolate

For one serve

  • 125 ml warm milk
  • 35 grams of bittersweet cocoa powder
  • 20 grams of sugar (about one heaped tablespoon of sugar), or to taste

Combine the milk and cocoa powder, little by little, whisking along the way to get rid of any lumps. Bring mixture to the boil in a small saucepan and let cook about 30 seconds, no more. Pour into a little cup and add sugar to taste.


  1. During winter I am addicted to hot chocolate– so much so that my husband stockpiles my favourite chocolate so he can make me a tiny mug before bed every night. I’ve bookmarked this recipe as I’m sure it will come in handy!

    • Emiko says:

      He sounds like a keeper 🙂 I’m sure this would be even more decadent with actual melted chocolate too but it is nice to have this on hand for those times when you run out of your stockpile of chocolate but still have a craving!

  2. PolaM says:

    I love thick hot chocolate! So difficult to find outside Italy!

    • Emiko says:

      Isn’t it?! It’s one of the things I really do miss when going out to cafes — it’s rarely done as well as they do it in Italy!

  3. With the temperatures in Canberra zooming into the minuses… hot chocolate is definitely on the menu!

  4. Mary Frances says:

    This sounds like the perfect pick-me-up, and it’s so easy to make! Also I love your spoons!

  5. Sounds divine. Divine! As do those cocktails 😉 x

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