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This simple recipe is a creamy, smooth, chocolatey Peppermint Hot Cocoa Mix perfect for gifting to loved ones! The crushed peppermint candies dissolve, combining the sweet and minty flavors of the mix—SO delicious!

A glass mug filled with peppermint hot chocolate.

Layers of tasty ingredients to make peppermint hot chocolate mix encased in an adorable mason jar with an instruction tag and all—this recipe SCREAMS Christmas! But, with a few simple changes, you can make it to fit any occasion, including Valentine’s Day right around the corner!

It’s the perfect gift made with love for teachers, postal workers, neighbors, and anyone else you’d like to share your appreciation with. Don’t forget your own cravings, though! You can make several of these jars to stock away for when you need a chocolate pick-me-up on a gloomy day. This homemade hot chocolate mix is not only for the holiday season, it’s good all winter long!


  • Hot chocolate mix: Choose your favorite brand of hot cocoa mix. If you’re making several mason jars, remember to get plenty of hot cocoa mix!
  • Peppermints: Some stores offer pre-crushed peppermint candy. But if you can’t find the product, just crush the peppermint candy cane pieces yourself—All you need is a plastic bag and a rolling pin.
  • Chocolate chips: Use semi-sweet mini chocolate chips rather than the regular size. Small chips will melt better in hot cocoa.
  • Marshmallows: You’ll also want to use mini marshmallows instead of standard ones. It’s challenging to sip your hot cocoa when giant marshmallows are in the way. Plus, they won’t fit in the jar. 
  • Candy cane: The final touch is a candy cane tied to the outside of your mason jar and the cute little gift tag. Use whatever size or style of candy cane you’d like. 
Labeled ingredients needed for peppermint hot cocoa mix in a jar.

Variations and Substitutions

  • Valentine’s Day Hot Cocoa Mix: The holiday of love is coming up, and it’ll be here sooner than you know! Gift your loved ones with a handmade hot cocoa mix! Try using white or even pink chocolate chips to make this recipe more fitting for Valentine’s Day. Then, swap the candy cane for a small bag of conversation hearts or Hershey’s Kisses. In this case, you can leave out the crushed peppermint if you prefer. Try substituting them for pink, red, and white sprinkles instead!
  • Dark Chocolate Hot Cocoa: Use a dark chocolate hot cocoa mix for a richer and slightly more bitter hot cocoa experience.
  • White Hot Cocoa: Layer the jar with white hot cocoa mix instead of ordinary milk chocolate. Then, add white chocolate chips in place of the semi-sweet ones. Or use a combination of both!

I love the idea of making this homemade peppermint hot cocoa recipe ahead of time for a kid’s slumber party or birthday party favors– each jar makes 3 mugs of hot chocolate. Honestly, I could go on forever listing how perfect this sweet gift is for just about anything—Galentine’s dinner, family gathering surprise, vacation house pantry staple… and on and on.

Oh, and speaking of– so many kids these days cannot have whole milk. So, making these gifts in individual jars is a perfect idea! Then, the recipient can add anything from heavy cream to one of the nut milks, or coconut milk.

But let’s get into how to make this hot cocoa mix recipe! Before you move on, check out more of my seasonal drinks to warm your soul this chilly winter, like my Homemade Eggnog Recipe or this Biscoff Cookie Butter Latte.

Equipment Used

How To Make Peppermint Hot Cocoa Mix in a Jar

Be sure to see the recipe card below for exact ingredients and full recipe instructions!

A collage image showing numbered steps to make peppermint hot cocoa in a jar.

Step 1 | Make the Gift Tags

Start putting together this sweet little gift by downloading the peppermint hot cocoa tag. Next, load your printer with thick white cardstock and print the label. Then, carefully cut around the edges and use a hole punch to cut out a hole at the top center of the tag. 

Step 2 | Layer the Ingredients

Now, grab one standard-sized mason jar and begin layering the ingredients one by one. First, pour the hot chocolate packet in, followed by the mini chocolate chips. 

If you still need to crush the peppermint candies, now is the time! Dump them into a plastic bag and use a rolling pin to smash them into tiny pieces. Then, add them to the mason jar above the chocolate chips. 

Finally, top it off with mini marshmallows. 

Step 3| Finish Assembling the Gift

Complete this lovely homemade gift by closing the lid to the mason jar and tying a bow around the top with twine. Add the gift tag and peppermint stick to the bow, and you’re all set! Now, step back and admire how adorable your little jar of hot cocoa mix is!


  • Buy in Bulk – If you want to make many mason jar hot cocoa mixes, buy the ingredients in bulk from the grocery store.
  • Finely Crushed Peppermints – The finer you crush the peppermint candies, the quicker they will melt when you add hot water or milk to the mix. Use a food processor to make the candies into light, fluffy powder, if desired.

Recipe FAQ’s

Can you make the hot chocolate mix from scratch?

Sure, you can! And it may be easier than you think—All you need is unsweetened cocoa powder and granulated sugar. Add hot milk, and you’ll have yourself a cup of hot cocoa! If you want to be able to add water to the mix and still have creamy hot cocoa, include powdered milk or powdered coffee creamer in the dry mixture, then add hot water. 

Does hot chocolate have caffeine?

Believe it or not, the answer is YES. However, some brands will label their product as caffeine-free. In that case, the caffeine has been removed. 
Cocoa powder naturally contains caffeine. So, most quality mixes will be subtly caffeinated.  

What are the best hot cocoa mix brands?

Of course, there is no definite answer to this question. But some brands outshine others, like the Williams Sonoma Classic Hot Chocolate or Ghirardelli Cocoa Beverage Mix.
Most people use Swiss Miss, which is still very yummy!

A mason jar with hot cocoa mix, chocolate chips, crushed peppermint, and marshmallows labeled with an instruction tag.

What to Serve with Your Peppermint Hot Cocoa

When I think of what goes with a steaming cup of hot peppermint cocoa, I think of cookies and brownies! Give your loved ones a little something extra by pairing this adorable jar of hot chocolate mix with a sweet homemade treat like my Peppermint Meltaway Cookies or these Peppermint Brownie Mix Cookies

For something even more unique, make these delicious Red Velvet Brownies or  Red Velvet Brownie Cups—they work perfectly for Valentine’s Day!


How Long is This Peppermint Hot Cocoa Mix Good For? 

The ingredients in this jar of yumminess will last just about as long as the expiration date on the chocolate chips. I think it’s safe to say you can keep the mason jar in the pantry for at least a month, possibly longer. But who wants to do that? Most of your giftees will dive right in!

More Great Gift Ideas Made with Love

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A cup of peppermint hot cocoa in a glass mug topped with crushed peppermints and mini marshmallows.
5 from 7 votes

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Peppermint Hot Cocoa

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 10 minutes
Servings: 1 Jar
Author: Nikki Lee
This simple recipe is a creamy, smooth, chocolatey Peppermint Hot Cocoa Mix perfect for gifting to loved ones! The crushed peppermint candies dissolve, combining the sweet and minty flavors of the mix—SO delicious!
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  • ¾ cup hot chocolate mix
  • 3 tablespoons crushed peppermints
  • ¼ cup semi-sweet mini chocolate chips, (miniature work best and melt better)
  • ½ cup miniature marshmallows
  • 1 candy cane


  • Print your peppermint hot chocolate gift tags onto thick cardstock, and cut out and hole punch.
  • In your 16-ounce mason jar, layer hot chocolate mix first, followed by chocolate chips, crushed peppermint, and then marshmallows.
  • Use a piece of twine to attach the gift tag and a candy cane.

Directions for making hot chocolate

  • Combine mix with 3 cups hot milk, makes 3 servings.


Nutrition Information

Serving: 1serving Calories: 341kcal (17%) Carbohydrates: 48g (16%) Protein: 3g (6%) Fat: 17g (26%) Saturated Fat: 12g (75%) Polyunsaturated Fat: 0.2g Monounsaturated Fat: 2g Trans Fat: 0.1g Cholesterol: 1mg Sodium: 273mg (12%) Potassium: 112mg (3%) Fiber: 3g (13%) Sugar: 38g (42%) Vitamin A: 13IU Calcium: 65mg (7%) Iron: 2mg (11%)

Nutritional Disclaimer

Soulfully Made is not a dietician or nutritionist, and any nutritional information shared is only an estimate. We recommend running the ingredients through an online nutritional calculator if you need to verify any information.

©️Soulfully Made

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  1. 5 stars
    This recipe is perfect for gift giving or just enjoying yourself! I’m going to make up a few for teachers Valentine’s Day gifts – they will love this!