Spicy Mexican Hot Chocolate

Día de los Muertos is the perfect time of year for Mexican hot chocolate. This recipe is a twist on the classic plain chocolate caliente; it’s spiced with chile guajillo, which lends a mildly spicy flavor and an earthy and fruity bouquet to this traditional beverage.

Spicy Mexican hot chocolate recipe via theothersideofthetortilla.com

The difference between regular chocolate used for making hot chocolate and Mexican chocolate is that the Mexican chocolate discs have sugar granules inside the disc, giving it a rough texture before it melts. You can get a close up look at what the inside of a Mexican chocolate disc looks like in my recipe for champurrado, which is a chocolate atole. If you’re not familiar with atoles, they differ from hot chocolate because they are thickened with corn masa, while hot chocolate is typically made with milk or water.

RELATED RECIPE: Atole de calabaza

Spicy Mexican hot chocolate recipe made with guajillo chiles and Mexican cinnamon via theothersideofthetortilla.com

This version uses whole milk for a thick and rich chocolate caliente; you can substitute 2%, 1% or skim milk if you’d like a version that is a little less rich and to cut calories.

RELATED RECIPE: Atole de vainilla

Spicy Mexican Hot Chocolate

Prep Time: 5 minutes

Cook Time: 15 minutes

Total Time: 20 minutes

Yield: 4 servings

Spicy Mexican Hot Chocolate

Guajillo chiles lend an earthy, fruity bouquet and a spicy twist on a classic Mexican hot chocolate recipe.



  1. In a saucepan, add 2 cups whole milk, 1 chile guajillo and 1 Mexican cinnamon stick. Stir to submerge the chile and the cinnamon stick. Warm over medium-low heat for about 10 minutes, stirring frequently.
  2. Chop the chocolate disc into very small pieces. Add to the saucepan and stir with a whisk or molinillo to incorporate the chocolate.
  3. Continue heating for another 5 minutes, stirring frequently.
  4. Pour into a heat-safe pitcher and serve or ladle into small mugs.


This recipe includes affiliate links to my Amazon aStore, El Mercadito, for the brands of chocolate recommended.


RELATED RECIPE: Atole de fresa

This original recipe from The Other Side of The Tortilla originally appeared in the ebook we co-authored for Day of the Dead, “Ofrendas: Celebrando el Día de Muertos.”

What’s your favorite twist on classic Mexican hot chocolate?



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