Despite the economic downturn, recent research reveals that only 24% of us are trying to save money by purchasing fewer chocolate products. Hot chocolate, in particular, looks set to retain its position, not just as a holiday season staple, but a drink that can be enjoyed at any time of year. To meet demand there are now a host of high quality hot chocolate options available.
Hot chocolate options with a twist
As Christmas approaches consumers are looking for an extra spark of magic when it comes to their hot chocolate options, both in terms of flavours and packaging. Some flavours have proven to be more popular than others with caramel, for example one of the number one flavours for getting people into the party mood last Christmas.
Also in the mix are hot chocolate products flavoured with hazelnut, strawberry and mint, as well as drinks designed to please a grown up crowd, with an added shot of rum, Irish Cream or whiskey.
As well as multiple flavour options, consumers are busy trying out new and inventive ways to make their hot chocolate - with hot chocolate shavings, hot chocolate bombs and hot chocolate stirrers to select from. Let’s look at these hot chocolate options in a bit more detail.
Popular hot chocolate options
1 Hot chocolate bombs
Hot chocolate bombs come in a variety of flavours including white and dark chocolate, as well as vegan-friendly hot chocolate options, and bombs that arrive with an explosion of mini mallows. They make the perfect gift for all kinds of occasions, as well as an indulgent treat for any night of the week. To make, it’s a case of popping the bomb into a cup and pouring over steaming hot milk - dairy or otherwise - to see the bomb melt away and create the most satisfying hot chocolate drink ever.
2 Hot chocolate stirrers
Hot chocolate stirrers or spoons make great gifts for chocolate lovers, especially if they’re attractively packaged. They make a fun inexpensive treat and stocking filler, and they’re a great addition to a hamper or party bag - for kids and adults alike. Stirrers can be found in all kinds of flavours, from salted caramel and indulgent dark chocolate, to strawberry, whiskey and Irish Cream. And of course you’ll find chocolate stirrers that are suitable for vegans.
3 Hot chocolate shavings
True hot chocolate aficionados almost always prefer real chocolate shavings to powdered cocoa. Hot chocolate shavings provide an easy way to create unbelievably smooth, real hot chocolate that’s richer and darker than anything you can get from a powdered chocolate mix. To make the ultimate hot chocolate drink, all you need to do is stir several teaspoons of real chocolate shavings into hot milk. Add frothy cream and mini marshmallows for an extravagant touch.
Hot chocolate shavings can also be added to cakes and desserts - or to ice cream and ice cream sundaes. Hot chocolate shavings can be purchased in pouch form, for a convenient “no fuss” way to achieve a perfect single serving. And, since pouches come in such a wide variety of flavours, they provide the perfect way for newbie hot chocolate drinkers to discover which flavour they prefer.
Whichever hot chocolate options you prefer, it pays to opt for the highest quality, sustainable products you can afford. This is good news for cocoa farmers and consumers alike. Hames’s hot chocolate products support sustainable farming practices - plus they’re made in the UK and our hot chocolate pouches are fully recyclable.