This vegan hot white chocolate is thick, rich and pretty much unforgettable. It has simple flavors, but the vanilla is important so don’t forget it like I did in batch two. I kept wondering why it was bland, sigh. It’s been that kind of…well…winter.
Is Starbuck’s White Hot Chocolate Vegan?
It is not and most white chocolate syrups have dairy in them too.
Can This Be Made Oil-Free?
I have to tell you the truth, this is the opposite of fat-free. If you are on a fat-free eating plan try leaving out the cacao butter, but add extra vanilla and some cacao powder to make an oil-free hot chocolate.
What is White Chocolate?
Is White Chocolate Vegan?
It’s hard to find good dairy free white chocolate, but you can find a vegan white chocolate recipe here. There are a few brands that are called white chocolate that don’t have cacao butter. To me that’s not really white chocolate at all.
What started this whole thing is the cacao butter that I found at Whole Foods. I had been looking for some for awhile and they never had it. But there it was on the shelf calling my name.
I also decided to make some homemade milk and scrape some the vanilla bean I’ve been saving. I think vegan hot white chocolate qualifies as a special occasion!
Tip: Put the rest of the vanilla bean into a container with sugar to make vanilla sugar. Never let any part of a vanilla bean go to waste!
What Can I Use in Place of the Vanilla Bean?
I created this recipe when vanilla was a little cheaper than it is now. Feel free to use vanilla extract, unless you have a vanilla bean hidden away like I usually do.
This is the fine mesh strainer I use. If you use a nut milk bag resist the temptation to squeeze every last bit of liquid out. When you are using oats a little restraint is needed so the mixture doesn’t get that slimy texture.
First You Make the Plant Based Milk
You should have about this much pulp after you strain your homemade milk. Doesn’t the milk in the pan above look luscious?
Then Strain It Into the Rest of The Ingredients
You can see in the photo above that the cacao butter is just starting to melt a little. The lumps are not completely melted yet, but the yellow spots are melted cacao butter.
You’ll see a mine field of cacao oil all over the top of your beautiful homemade milk.
Do not panic! This is what it should be doing right now. Full disclosure, I totally panicked when I saw this on the first batch I made. I also found out that whisking is surprisingly calming.
Put That Whisk to Work!
And do a little zen breathing if you’re still stressed. Between the heat, the oats in the milk and whisking, the oil will start to incorporate into your hot white chocolate.
Then It Starts to Emulsify
Before you know it, it will start to look like something you want to drink. Don’t underestimate the power of the whisk.
It’s Ready When the Color Is More White Than Yellow
Taste, and add more sweetener or vanilla if you think it needs a little more. Now ladle out into 2 small mugs. Try it with some coffee one morning for a vegan hot white mocha.
Vegan Hot White Chocolate
For the milk
- 2 cups water
- 2 tablespoons raw cashews
- 2 tablespoons raw almonds
- 1 tablespoons oats Steel-cut, Scottish or Rolled will work
- 4 dates ,optional
After the milk is made
- 4 tablespoons cacao butter chopped
- 1/2 vanilla bean split or 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- sweetener of choice ,to taste if not using dates
- Soak the milk ingredients (the water, cashews, almonds, oats and dates) at least 8 hours. I like to toss everything in my Vitamix before I leave the house for work.
- After it's soaked, blend well. Put a fine mesh strainer over a saucepan and strain the milk mixture to remove the sediment.
- Please note that you should have pulp left over. You can use this in a baked good or your morning bowl of oatmeal.
- Add the cacao butter, vanilla (either scraped or extract) to the saucepan. If you didn't use dates earlier, now is the time to add your sweetener.
- I used 2 tablespoons sugar in one batch, dates in another and monk fruit in the last. They all worked well and you will be able to add more later if it's not sweet enough for you.
- Heat over medium heat whisking all the time. First the cocoa butter will melt and cover the top of the mixture like an oil slick. Don't panic - this is supposed to happen.
- Keep whisking and the oil will incorporate and the oats in the milk will begin to thicken ever so slightly.
- It's a fine line between making it just right and cooking it too long until it looks like gravy. It is tasty gravy, so if that happens just whisk in some nondairy milk you have hiding in the fridge.
- I like to take it off the heat as soon as the oil droplets disappear (this takes between 5 to 10 minutes), but still whisking a minute more. If it doesn't thicken up enough put it back on the heat for another minute or so.
- I've made this thick like a liquid truffle or French hot chocolate and I like it that way. It will continue to thicken, so err on the side of thinness.
What coffeehouse drink to you miss since you’ve gone vegan?
More Recipes to Try
- Keep the Chill Away with these Vegan Hot Drinks
- 11 of the Very Best Vegan Holiday Cookies
- Homemade Chai Concentrate – Stovetop or Slow Cooker