This warm drink is just what you need on a cold day. With only four simple ingredients, you can skip the Starbucks line and enjoy a cozy mug of White Hot Chocolate in the comfort of your own home.
Rich, creamy, and sweet, get ready to savor “winter in a cup”.
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Ingredients in the White Hot Chocolate Sold at Starbucks
Starbucks always plainly lists its drink ingredients online. Here is the ingredient list for the Starbucks White Hot Chocolate:
MILK, WHITE CHOCOLATE MOCHA SAUCE [SUGAR, CONDENSED SKIM MILK, COCONUT OIL, COCOA BUTTER, NATURAL FLAVOR, SALT, POTASSIUM SORBATE, MONOGLYCERIDES], WHIPPED CREAM [CREAM (CREAM, MONO AND DIGLYCERIDES, CARAGEENAN), VANILLA SYRUP (SUGAR, WATER, NATURAL FLAVORS, POTASSIUM SORBATE, CITRIC ACID)]
This drink uses simple ingredients which we are going to easily replicate.
Only 4 Ingredients for This Recipe
You’ll love how quickly this easy recipe comes together with just four simple ingredients:
Milk: Starbucks uses 2% milk as the default option. I prefer whole milk for richer-tasting hot chocolate. If you want it to be absolutely decadent, replace 1 cup of milk with 1 cup of heavy cream.
Nestle White Chocolate Morsels: These white chocolate chips are labeled gluten-free and perfectly replicate the flavor of Starbucks’ white mocha sauce.
Vanilla Extract: This small addition to the recipe enhances the other flavors and adds depth to this cozy beverage.
Whipped Cream: Just like at Starbucks, the whipped cream is optional. I recommend including it!
- Caramel Drizzle: Hershey’s Caramel Syrup and Torani Caramel Sauce are both labeled gluten-free
- Chocolate Drizzle: Hershey’s Chocolate Syrup and Torani Dark Chocolate Sauce are both labeled gluten-free
- Dark, Milk, or White Chocolate Shavings: Hershey’s 1.55 oz chocolate bars are labeled gluten-free. Or look for a gourmet chocolate bar with a gluten-free claim on the label at Whole Foods or your regular grocery store.
- Nestle Mini Chocolate Chips: labeled gluten-free
- Mini Marshmallows
- Candy Canes: Yum Earth Mini Candy Canes and Spangler Mini Candy Canes are gluten-free.
- Betty Crocker Holiday Sprinkles: Check the package, most are labeled gluten-free.
Gluten-Free: Like everything on Go Gluten Freely, this recipe is gluten-free. No modifications are needed. Be sure to use Nestle White Chocolate Morsels or another gluten-free brand of white chocolate chips. The other ingredients should all be naturally gluten-free. I personally make my own whipped cream or use Reddi-Wip.
Dairy-Free, Vegan: Use dairy-free and vegan Enjoy Life White Baking Chips, which are free of gluten and 14 allergens, but full of flavor. Just like at Starbucks, you can choose your favorite non-dairy milk, such as coconut milk, almond milk, or certified gluten-free oat milk. Top with non-dairy whipped cream.
In a medium saucepan, combine milk, white chocolate morsels, and vanilla over medium heat.
(For peppermint white hot chocolate, add ½ teaspoon of peppermint extract to the saucepan with the other ingredients.)
Use a whisk or spoon to stir frequently until the white chocolate is completely melted.
Frequent stirring is critical, to make sure the white chocolate doesn’t burn. It only takes approximately five minutes to melt.
Divide the white hot chocolate between four mugs, top with whipped cream, and serve.
White hot chocolate is rich, making 1 cup portions the perfect size for this warm, sweet, beverage.
Want to indulge a little more? Divide the mixture between two large mugs and enjoy white hot chocolate for two!
Enjoy White Hot Chocolate for One
Need a warm drink for one during the cold winter months? This simple recipe gets even easier when you make White Hot Chocolate for One.
Here are the quantities for one serving:
- 1 cup of milk
- ¼ of Nestle white chocolate morsels
- ⅛ teaspoon of vanilla: If you don’t have a ⅛ teaspoon measuring spoon, simply use a ¼ teaspoon measuring spoon and fill about halfway.
Make the recipe as directed or, even better… Use your microwave to cut down on dishes when making hot chocolate for one.
Simply place the ingredients in a microwave-safe mug. Heat in the microwave on high for 30-second intervals. Stir the white hot chocolate between every interval, to melt the white chocolate morsels and prevent irrevocable clumping and burning.
Double the Recipe (or More) for a Crowd
This Starbucks copycat recipe is the perfect drink for a holiday party or any winter gathering. It will be a huge hit with guests having a sweet tooth.
Most stores sell Nestle white chocolate chips in 12 oz or 24 oz. bags, which contain approximately 2 cups and four cups of chocolate chips, respectively, making it so easy to multiply the recipe.
Here are the quantities for doubling and quadrupling the recipe:
For 8 servings:
- 8 cups milk
- 1 – 12 oz bag Nestle Premier White Chocolate Morsels (equivalent to 2 cups of white chocolate chips)
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
For 16 servings:
- 16 cups milk
- 1 – 24 oz bag Nestle white chocolate morsels (equivalent to 4 cups of white chocolate chips)
- 2 teaspoon vanilla extract
You get the idea. Making Starbucks white hot chocolate for a crowd is a breeze.
More Copycat Starbucks Drinks with This White Mocha Base!
The options are endless!
Starting with this delicious White Hot Chocolate as a base, you can recreate all of your favorite Starbucks white chocolate recipes, including cozy, holiday drinks:
Peppermint White Hot Chocolate: Include 1/2 teaspoon of peppermint extract when heating the white hot chocolate ingredients, then make the recipe as directed.
To accurately replicate the Starbucks version, top with whipped cream and dark chocolate shavings (use a vegetable peeler to shave a bar of chocolate) or Nestle mini chocolate chips. Or for a festive twist, add sugar sprinkles and hook a mini candy cane over the mug rim, or sprinkle crushed candy canes on top.
Starbucks White Hot Chocolate and Peppermint White Hot Chocolate are not caffeinated drinks. When you’re looking to add a little pep to your step, try one of these caffeinated options:
Peppermint White Chocolate Mocha (for one): Add one shot of espresso to a mug, and top with one cup of the peppermint white hot chocolate drink (instructions above). Finish with whipped cream and chocolate shavings.
Toasted White Chocolate Mocha (for one): Pour one shot of espresso into a mug, add 2 teaspoons caramel sauce (homemade or storebought like Torani Caramel Sauce or Hershey’s Caramel Syrup) and one cup of the white hot chocolate recipe. Top with whipped cream and holiday sugar sparkles. Carry this drink through the holiday season with red sugar crystals for Christmas and gold cupcake gems for New Year’s Eve.
White Chocolate Mocha (for one): Add one shot of espresso to a mug. Top with one cup of the white hot chocolate recipe and add whipped cream.
Starbucks White Hot Chocolate: Copycat RecipeRate this Recipe
- 4 cups whole milk (vegan option: non-dairy milk)
- 1 cup Nestle Premium White Chocolate Morsels (vegan option: Enjoy Life White Chocolate Morsels)
- ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
- whipped cream (vegan option: non-dairy whipped cream)
Optional Toppings and Mix-Ins
- caramel sauce (Torani Caramel Sauce and Hershey's Caramel Syrup are labeled gluten-free)
- chocolate sauce (Torani Dark Chocolate Sauce and Hershey's Chocolate Syrup are labeled gluten-free)
- white, milk, or dark chocolate shavings
- Nestle Semi-Sweet Mini Chocolate Chips
- Kraft mini marshmallows
- mini candy canes (Yum Earth are gluten-free)
- Betty Crocker Christmas sprinkles (most are labeled gluten-free)
- ½ teaspoon peppermint extract for peppermint white hot chocolate
- In a medium saucepan, combine milk, white chocolate morsels, and vanilla over medium heat. Stir frequently until the white chocolate is completely melted.
- Divide between four mugs, top with whipped cream, and serve.