Why Using Skim Milk For Hot Chocolate Is A Major Mistake

A cup of hot chocolate
A cup of hot chocolate - Eva-katalin/Getty Images

As the temperatures rise, some would argue that the weather for hot chocolate is slipping away. However, ask a die-hard lover of hot chocolate and they will be sure to tell you that this drink can and should be enjoyed year-round. Next time you are in doubt, just try the world's best hot chocolate recipe and you will become a convert too. It is important to note though, that making the perfect hot chocolate is a delicate art.

There are a number of ways you can elevate this cozy drink: A pinch of salt will take your hot chocolate to the next level, whereas adding cornstarch will result in thick and creamy Italian hot chocolate. However, there are also many ways that you can mess up hot chocolate -- which is sure to happen if you use skim milk instead of a richer variety like 2% or whole milk. Using skim milk will deprive you of hot chocolate's signature creamy richness. So, if you want the best possible version of hot chocolate, skip the fat-free milk to achieve a drink that has both a thick consistency and a rich flavor.

Read more: The 15 Best Milk Brands, Ranked

Why You Should Avoid Using Skim Milk For Hot Chocolate

Two mugs of hot chocolate
Two mugs of hot chocolate - Fcafotodigital/Getty Images

Your choice of ingredients will always determine the overall quality of your dish. For hot chocolate specifically, you should choose whole milk over skim milk to make a truly delicious and authentic hot chocolate. Whole milk contains fat which is what is needed to add the right flavor to your hot chocolate. If, however, you don't like the thickness or flavor of whole milk, you should use at least two percent milk, half and half, or cream. These are all better alternatives to skim milk.

Apart from ensuring that your hot chocolate is delicious to taste, full-fat dairy is also the ingredient that lends your hot chocolate the creamy consistency that it should have. In case you needed further convincing, whole milk also has health benefits as it is high in protein, potassium, Vitamin D, calcium, and other nutrients, none of which skim milk can boast of. Most importantly, as hot chocolate is an indulgent drink, don't shy away from treating yourself once in a while by ensuring you have the richest and creamiest version of it.

Other Tips To Keep In Mind While Making Hot Chocolate

Hot chocolate with marshmallows
Hot chocolate with marshmallows - Fcafotodigital/Getty Images

Now that you know the importance of avoiding skim milk while making hot chocolate at home, you may be keen to learn more tips and tricks to make delicious hot chocolate. In keeping with the advice shared above about using the best possible ingredients, you should buy high-quality unsweetened cocoa powder if you want a strong taste of chocolate. Choose a dark cocoa powder if you like a rich, complex flavor with a touch of bitterness, or stick with regular cocoa powder if you prefer the lighter, creamier taste of milk chocolate.

You could also infuse your milk with your favorite spices and add layers of flavor to your hot chocolate. Orange zest and cinnamon would work well in this context. Most importantly, you should avoid using water in place of milk as that will kill the creamy consistency of an authentic hot chocolate drink. Once your hot chocolate is ready, top it with marshmallows or other toppings of your choice. This exclusive survey of hot chocolate fans telling Daily Meal their no. 1 favorite topping will definitely give you some ideas.

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