(Bobbi Lin/Food52)

Ditch the mug & make this hot cocoa cake instead

Complete with a peppermint marshmallowy topping

Grant Melton
December 15, 2018 11:59PM (UTC)
This story first appeared on Food52, an online community that gives you everything you need for a happier kitchen and home – that means tested recipes, a shop full of beautiful products, a cooking hotline, and everything in between!

When I was a kid, I loved nothing more than a mug of hot cocoa on a cold day. After stomping the snow off my boots and shedding my puffy, woolen layers, I’d head to the kitchen to whip up a cocoa creation.

After countless cups of just-add-water mixes, I couldn't help but get creative. I learned adding a little less water than directed made the drink thicker, more chocolatey. A splash of heavy cream gave the cocoa a richer, delightful consistency. I occasionally stirred in some of my parent’s French-vanilla flavored coffee creamer (shh!) or, I’d replace the hot water for some warm coffee for a DIY mocha.


But my favorite add-in of all was using a candy cane to mix up the cocoa, giving the drink a peppermint twist. I topped off the steamy mug with a dollop of marshmallowfluff that would melt almost instantly, resulting in a sticky sweet, chocolatey mess that enjoyed to the last drop.

Every Christmas I make a special cake to celebrate the season. This year, I’m using my favorite childhood cocoa creation as inspiration.

For the cake, I whip up a one-bowl chocolate cake batter. It’s simple and classic because, like the hot cocoa drink of my youth, it’s all about the minty marshmallow topping. Instead of using marshmallow fluff, I make a Swiss Meringue instead, adding a hint of peppermint extract so that it tastes like it was mixed up with a candy cane. Don't worry—it’s just as sticky and superbly sweet as the stuff from the jar.

Top the cake with fluffy peppermint meringue, then drizzle everything with a warm milk chocolate ganache. The cake becomes a decadent frothy mess that, like a warm mug of cocoa, you’ll enjoy to the last drop… er, bite.

Hot Cocoa Cake with Peppermint-Marshmallow Frosting
Serves: 8-10

For the cake

1 1/4 cups flour
1/2 cup cocoa powder
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup sugar
3/4 cup milk
1 egg
1/4 cup canola oil

For the peppermint-marshmallow topping & chocolate ganache

3 egg whites
3/4 cup sugar
1 drop peppermint extract
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon cream of tartar
1/4 cup heavy cream
1/2 cup milk chocolate chips

Click here to read the full recipe.


Grant Melton

MORE FROM Grant Melton

Related Topics ------------------------------------------

All Salon Dessert Recipes Desserts Food Food52 Hot Cocoa Recipes


Read Now, Pay Later - no upfront
registration for 1-Hour Access

Click Here
7-Day Access and Monthly
Subscriptions also available
No tracking or personal data collection
beyond name and email address


Fearless journalism
in your inbox every day

Sign up for our free newsletter

• • •