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Chai Spiced Hot Chocolate Recipe (Dairy Free!)

Dec 20, 2022 | Recipes | 0 comments

Chai Spiced Hot Chocolate Recipe

This Chai Spiced Hot Chocolate recipe is the elevated, grown-up version of the childhood classic. Made with coconut milk, it's dairy free.

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I love tea and I love chocolate…so, I'm pretty much obsessed with this recipe 🙂 It gives me that cozy fall / winter feeling, regardless of what the weather is like here outside of Austin.

Chai tea, cacao powder, honey and coconut milk are the only ingredients you'll need for this one.

You'll start by brewing 2-4 chai tea bags in 4 cups of boiling water. You can control how strongly spiced your cocoa is by how many tea bags you use. After brewing the tea, whisk in 2 T cacao powder (or, sub cocoa powder), along with 2-4 T honey (optional) and 1 can of lite coconut milk.

That's all there is to it! This recipe makes enough for the whole family to enjoy, perfect for a movie night or to sip after playing in the snow.

Looking for more dairy free iterations of classic favorites? Watch my video, 10 Dairy Free Alternatives to Your Favorite Foods!

Chai Spiced Hot Chocolate Recipe
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Chai Spiced Hot Chocolate Recipe


  • 2-4 chai tea bags*
  • 2 T cacao powder (or sub cocoa powder)
  • 2-4 T honey (optional)
  • 1 can lite coconut milk


  • Brew 2-4 chai tea bags in 4c boiling water.
  • Whisk in 2T cacao (or cocoa) powder, 2-4 T honey (optional) and 1 can lite coconut milk. Enjoy!


*Read ingredient list to avoid added gluten, sugars & msg.

Variations on Dairy Free Hot Cocoa

If you have an extensive tea collection, experiment with different teas and see what flavors you come up with! Peppermint tea or cinnamon tea would both be totally delicious here.

You can also use maple instead of honey for a slightly different flavor profile.

I also urge you to vary the strength of the tea and the amount of sweetener you add to suit your preferences. You can always start with a bit of honey and add more until you reach your desired sweetness.

Finally, experiment with other “milks”! I haven't tried it myself but I bet oat milk would be quite tasty here as well. If you don't like coconut, I would definitely give that a try.

What's the difference between cacao and cocoa powder?

You might see “cacao” marketed as an extra nutritious version of cocoa powder…and it can be. Unfortunately though, it's not always that simple.

The label “cacao powder” sometimes indicates a less processed product, which likely contains even more antioxidants. There is no clear and consistent definition of the term “cacao” though. If you want to be sure you're getting a less processed product with maximum nutrition, you'll have to read a bit more about the company. Thrive Market offers a good option for cacao powder that is processed at a low temperature in an effort to preserve as many nutrients as possible. (<< Prep Dish is a Thrive Market affiliate. All opinions are my own. Thank you for your support!)

(You can read more about cocoa, cacao and how they're processed here.)

What's the nutrition like for this chai spiced hot chocolate recipe?

For such a decadent-tasting treat, this chai spiced hot chocolate recipe is actually quite nutritious! First of all, it's naturally sweetened with honey and you can control the sweetness level. You can even make it without any sweetener if you like! It's still rich and delicious. Furthermore, chai tea and cacao powder are both antioxidant powerhouses, as detailed below. This is definitely a treat you can feel good about!

Chai Tea (Antioxidants)

Chai tea (also known as masala chai) is a blend of black tea and different spices. The exact spices vary but often include ginger, cardamom cinnamon, cloves, black pepper and fennel. Each of these ingredients offers substantial nutritional benefits, making chai tea quite a healthy beverage.

Black tea is full of antioxidants, including polyphenols and flavonoids. Consuming black tea may help reduce inflammation, benefit your heart and lower cholesterol. The polyphenols also may help improve gut health.

Frequently used in traditional medicine, cinnamon is good for your heart and also may help stabilize blood sugar. Research also suggests that cinnamon may help lower cholesterol. Ginger helps with nausea and indigestion and also provides antibacterial and antioxidant benefits. Cloves are good for your liver and support stable blood sugar.

Cacao Powder / Cocoa Powder (Antioxidants)

Rich in the antioxidant known as polyphenols, cocoa powder may help decrease inflammation and improve blood flow to your brain. Possibly due to its flavanols, cocoa also positively impacts mood! Cocoa powder's flavanols may also help reduce blood pressure. Less processed chocolate products have more flavanols.

Honey (Antioxidants)

Honey has antibacterial and antioxidant properties, which are strongest in darker honey. Buy raw local honey when possible as filtering the honey can diminish its nutrients.

Coconut Milk (Manganese, Copper, Iron, Magnesium, Selenium)

Made of the white flesh of coconuts mixed with water, coconut milk is high in manganese, copper, iron, magnesium and selenium. It's also a good source of potassium, vitamin C and folate. Some studies have shown that coconut helps to reduce inflammation, fight bacteria and viruses and fight stomach ulcers.

I want more easy, dairy free dessert recipes!

I've got you covered! Coming up with treats that everyone can enjoy is a bit of a passion for me and that includes plenty of dairy free dessert recipes! We have TONS of dairy free desserts on the Prep Dish blog as well as in our weekly meal plans but here are three of my favorites to get you started:

Gluten Free Mug Cake Recipe

Vanilla Mug Cake

This is the perfect dessert when your sweet tooth strikes and you want a tasty treat FAST. Completely dairy free, it cooks in the microwave in a matter of minutes. Almond flour and coconut flour combine for the perfect gluten free texture.

While the plain vanilla mug cake is delicious as-is, this recipe is also the perfect chance to use your culinary creativity. Top with fresh fruit or dairy-free whipped cream, add in chocolate chips or nuts, the possibilities are endless!

Strawberry Nice Cream

Strawberry “Nice” Cream

For many who struggle with a dairy intolerance, ice cream just may be the hardest thing to give up! That's why I'm so pleased with how this strawberry “nice” cream recipe turned out. It will totally satisfy that ice cream craving, with none of the dairy. The main ingredients are strawberries, banana and coconut milk. A touch of honey adds just the right amount of sweetness while vanilla extract and chocolate chips create the perfect flavor. And that's it! You don't even need an ice cream maker for this one, just your freezer 🙂

Gluten Free Flourless Chocolate Cake

Gluten free Flourless Chocolate Cake

This cake is so rich and decadent, yet has no gluten or dairy. The actual cake has only four ingredients: coconut oil, eggs, dark chocolate chips and coconut sugar. It doesn't get any simpler than that! I love topping this beauty with homemade coconut milk whipped cream for the perfect finishing touch.

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