I like hot chocolate just as much as the next chocoholic, but the warm, chocolatey beverages I’ve come across in the States cannot compare to the decadent hot chocolate I tasted in Rome, Italy.

Italian hot chocolate is more of a warm, thick, chocolate pudding, or as my sister described “the inside of a lava cake.” Sounds killer, right? Don’t worry, I won’t leave your mouth watering for much longer.

I worked through the passed-down archive of cookbooks from my two Italian grandmothers and synthesized a formula for the ultimate chocolate-stache-making treat. My family likes to enjoy this recipe for dessert (ideally with a biscotti) and a spoon. Buon appetito!

#SpoonTip: The recipe makes one serving, but it could really be shared between two or three people in smaller glasses (maybe even shot glasses if you’re having a party), depending on how much chocolate you’re hankering for.

Italian Hot Chocolate

  • Prep Time:5 minutes
  • Cook Time:8 minutes
  • Total Time:13 minutes
  • Servings:1 serving
  • Medium


  • 1 cup chocolate chips
  • 1/2 tablespoon sugar
  • 3/4 cup half and half (or milk)
  • 1 orange
  • Step 1

    Pour half and half (or milk) into a small saucepan and bring to a simmer over low heat.

    Photo by Carly Zaladonis
  • Step 2

    Whisk in sugar once the half and half is simmering (you’ll know it’s simmering when you see small bubbles formed around the edges).

    Photo by Carly Zaladonis
  • Step 3

    Add chocolate and whisk until thoroughly mixed and smooth.

    Photo by Carly Zaladonis
  • Step 4

    Pour into mug or cup of choice.

    Photo by Carly Zaladonis
  • Step 5

    Garnish with orange zest.

    Photo by Carly Zaladonis