Hot chocolate is something that conjures up childhood. My mom used to make Ovaltine for breakfast with scrambled eggs, cheese grits, homemade biscuits with bacon everyday before we headed out to school. Not one to wake up with a strong appetite, I would wrap up breakfast into a paper towel and give to my best friend at the bus stop. But I always, always finished my hot chocolate!
Now that I’m grown up and don’t do well with coffee on an empty stomach, I crave something with a lil’ more oomph that herbal tea. Lately I’ve been creating protein hot chocolate as my personal hot breakfast beverage of choice. I’ve tried to do the coffee thing, but it makes me terribly hungry in an hour. Like, ravenous for the rest of the day. It seems to throw my metabolism way outta whack so I’ll enjoy it after a meal or on occasion, take a couple of sips of Tim’s cappuccino.
Since the weather has snapped, I started to experiment with a hot breakfast drink that could double as a mini protein shake without all the fuss. I’ve created this protein hot chocolate drink with medicinal mushrooms that is my jam! BTW cacao + earthy mushrooms pair so incredibly well together this has made my hot chocolate next level and gives me the energy boost and mental edge I’ve been looking for.
This weekend I started adding in a pinch of cayenne pepper for that !arriba! Mexican vibe and really like it. The pepper is optional, but I highly encourage you to check out the Sacred 7 mushroom blend.
I’ve actually started adding in a teeny pinch into Kingston’s dinner and switch up superfoods in his meals – think teeny tiny pinch of either turmeric, moringa and now mushroom extract. You can read more about why I love mushroom extracts at this blog post with other supplements I recommend here.
Are you ready to start making this for breakfast? If you are a hot chocolate lover like me, then work with the portion sizes to your personal taste because mine lean towards a thick hot chocolate similar to the thick chocolate river that Augustus Gloop fell into on Charlie and the Chocolate Factory – THICK HOT CHOCOLATE!
8-10 oz Califia Toasted almond/coconut milk *
1 heaping tablespoon raw cacao powder **
1 scoop Sprout Living cacao/maca protein powder (this is my JAM! I buy the 5 lb bag)
1/4 teaspoon Sacred 7 medicinal mushroom extract OR use the chocolate flavor
1/16 teaspoon cayenne pepper, optional
1-2 teaspoons coconut sugar or SweetLeaf liquid stevia ***
Heat milk over medium heat until the edges start to bubble.
Turn down heat to low and warm for about another minute, whisking milk to distribute heat. Add powders and sweetener, whisk well. Take a sip and add more chocolate, protein, or spices as needed.
If you are experimenting with cayenne pepper, take a teeny TINY pinch, whisk and taste before adding more. A lil goes a long way. If you mess up, just dilute with more liquid and adjust powders as needed. I’ve finally got my formula down and tend to add a generous scoop of cacao, protein and mushroom extract.
There are several ways to create your ideal protein hot chocolate so be open to experimenting until you find the ratios that work with your taste buds. My favorite is crafted with Califia but sometimes I’ll make a combination of a nut milk [like Silk unsweetened almond/cashew milk] with an unsweetened coconut milk like Trader Joes [in the green container] or I really like Kroger’s Simple Truth unsweetened coconut milk in the healthy/organic cereal section. It contains natural flavors, carrageenan, guar and xanthan gum but I love the texture of it if I don’t purchase Califia Farms.
**LIVfit is a great price for 1 lb bag, many companies overcharge for raw cacao powder or add fillers. I tend to shop around for the best bargain but buy in bulk at Thrive market and use their private label brand frequently- it’s delish! Same holds true for coconut sugar.
**1% of Simply Organic product sales goes to support organic farming
***I support SweetLeaf because they don’t add a lot of fillers or bulk to their products. While they might be more expensive, you use less because they are sweet. Many stevia products are filled with maltodextrin or fillers to reduce bottom line and increase profits so you really do get what you pay for and I have been a fan of SL since they came on the market. Their toffee flavor is good too. I use the liquid stevia’s a lot for smoothies and smoothie bowls but powdered stevia for hot beverages like tea or hot chocolate.
As always, let me know what you think!