A Milk Frother Is The Easiest Way To Step Up Your Hot Chocolate Game

Few things are better than hot chocolate on a cold day. Whether you're using a readymade cocoa mix or trying to recreate Alton Brown's toasty hot chocolate, there are many ways to mix up how you make this warm, comforting drink. While most recipes recommend heating up this beverage in a pot, don't head to your stovetop just yet. Let your milk frother do the job instead.

When you use a milk frother to make hot chocolate, simply pour your milk and hot chocolate powder into the machine's container. Because your appliance will do the heating and mixing for you, you'll only have to wait until everything becomes warm and ready to serve. This will also make cleanup quite minimal, as you won't have to wash cookware and mixing utensils. For tastier results, try incorporating some cinnamon or vanilla into your mix, and top everything off with a marshmallow or two.

Using a frother helps prevent milk from burning

Getting the perfect temperature to heat milk might be one of the biggest challenges when using a saucepan to make hot chocolate. Because milk easily burns when exposed to high heat, you'll constantly have to keep watch over your stovetop to prevent any bad flavors from creeping into your mix. This problem becomes a bigger headache when you consider that your milk also has to warm up enough for you to properly mix in your chocolate powder and other spices. Milk frothers, on the other hand, are unlikely to burn your milk unless their insides are not properly cleaned.

The only advantage of using a pot is that it allows you to make large quantities of hot chocolate in one go. Most milk frothers can only hold a small amount of liquid, so if you're making this beverage for a large crowd, you'll have to make multiple batches. But if you have the time, stick to your milk frother. Its convenience really can't be beaten.

Use whole milk to maximize your flavors

Hot chocolates are typically dense in texture, giving them a signature mouthfeel that sets them apart from similar hot cocoa. Therefore, you'll want to use creamier milks, such as whole or plant-based alternatives like coconut, as their high fat content will make your beverage feel extra luxurious and smooth. And since thick, rich liquids tend to foam up better than skim ones, you'll also want to use a fattier milk when making hot chocolate in your milk frother. (Don't worry: The milk frother will still aerate your thick milk texture, so it will feel indulgent, but not too heavy.)

While skim milks can be used to make hot chocolate, their toned-down flavors and lighter consistency do not pair well with the ideal, syrupy texture of this decadent treat. For even more creaminess, you can also let a chocolate bar melt into your hot beverage. This sugary tablet not only serves as a great decorative piece, but will slowly melt into your drink, adding extra flavors.