Everybody is talking about hot chocolate bombs and hot chocolate charcuterie boards right now and I’m over here just content with a good spiked hot cocoa recipe. Enter my bourbon gingerbread hot cocoa. It’s cozy and comforting, just as hot cocoa should be. And it has the familiar spices of a gingerbread cookie plus a kick of bourbon whiskey because 2020 has been a freaking year. I deserve nostalgic holiday flavors, booze, and hot chocolate all wrapped into one delicious package. And so do you. So let’s get into how to make bourbon gingerbread hot cocoa.

More of my Favorite Hot Boozy Beverages

two mugs of bourbon gingerbread hot cocoa surrounded by jumbo marshmallows

Is it Hot Cocoa or Hot Chocolate?

We’ve talked about the difference between hot chocolate and hot cocoa before but just in case you need a refresher, hot chocolate uses milk chocolate while hot cocoa uses cocoa powder. This recipe uses cocoa powder, hence bourbon gingerbread hot cocoa. I’m all about spicing up hot cocoa and hot chocolate recipes and this one is one of my favorites.

mug of bourbon gingerbread hot cocoa on stack of white plates

Gingerbread hot cocoa is good but adding a shot of bourbon makes it even better, assuming you’re after a boozy hot chocolate recipe. If you are just looking for a solid holiday hot cocoa that’s suitable for all ages, you can nix the bourbon and still have a Christmas hot cocoa recipe that everyone can enjoy. You might have arrived at this post by searching how to make spiced hot cocoa and this recipe certainly fits the bill, with or without bourbon. Best of all, it takes less than 15 minutes to make. You simply can’t beat that for homemade hot cocoa.

Spiked Gingerbread Cocoa Ingredients

The ingredient list for this recipe is super simple. You’ll recognize my favorite gingerbread spices and the basics of a hot chocolate recipe plus molasses and brown sugar for that classic gingerbread vibe. And it all plays so well with a good buttery bourbon.

  • Bourbon
  • Brown Sugar
  • Cinnamon
  • Cocoa Powder
  • Ginger
  • Milk or Water
  • Nutmeg
  • Molasses
  • Sea Salt
  • Vanilla Extract

Keep scrolling for the full recipe card.

placing jumbo marshmallow in mug of bourbon gingerbread hot cocoa

Tips for Making Bourbon Hot Cocoa

This hot cocoa recipe is fairly rich so feel free to substitute some or all of the milk with water, if you prefer. I won’t be offended. Also, when you add the bourbon matters. If you want both the flavor and affect of the liquor in your cocoa, stir it in it just before removing the hot cocoa from heat or even after doing so. This will minimize the amount of alcohol that evaporates. But if you just want bourbon flavor in your hot cocoa, add it earlier on in the process so that the alcohol has more of a chance to cook off.

I also encourage you to get creative with the garnishes. Topping your mug with more cocoa powder, marshmallows, and whipped cream are easy options. But why not take it to the next level with mini chocolate gingerbread people floating on top? Do it.

Bourbon gingerbread hot cocoa should be on your winter happy hour list and I hope you enjoy it soon. Sharing is caring so make sure you pin this recipe on Pinterest. Thanks for reading!

P.S. more gingerbread recipes you’ll love:

Bourbon Gingerbread Hot Cocoa Recipe

5 from 1 vote
mug of bourbon gingerbread hot cocoa with jumbo marshmallow on top
Bourbon Gingerbread Hot Cocoa
Prep Time
5 mins
Cook Time
8 mins

Spiced hot cocoa with a shot of bourbon makes for a cozy and indulgent seasonal treat.

Course: Drinks
Cuisine: American
Keyword: Christmas hot cocoa, holiday hot cocoa, hot chocolate with bourbon, how to make gingerbread hot cocoa, spiced hot cocoa recipe, spiked hot chocolate
Servings: 2 servings
Author: Jazzmine from Dash of Jazz
  • 1 3/4 cup milk
  • 1/4 cup cocoa powder
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 2 teaspoons molasses
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon ginger
  • 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 pinch sea salt
  • 1 shot bourbon whiskey
  • whipped cream, cocoa powder, cinnamon, marshmallows for garnish optional
  1. Add all ingredients except bourbon to saucepan over medium heat. Whisk until dry ingredients are dissolved and mixture is uniform.

  2. Cook for about six minutes until mixture is steaming. Do not bring to a boil. Remove pan from heat and stir in bourbon. Alternatively you can add bourbon as hot cocoa cooks for less of an alcohol taste.

  3. Divide cocoa between two mugs and garnish as desired. Enjoy carefully and responsibly!

Recipe Video

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