Wondering if hot chocolate is gluten-free? Check out this post for the answer – and to see which brands are!

Plus my FAVORITE recipe for creamy, homemade hot chocolate that is naturally gluten-free!

A glass mug of hot chocolate with marshmallows on top, and more mugs of hot chocolate in the background

Is Hot Chocolate Gluten-Free?

Yes, most hot chocolate is naturally gluten-free, including the hot chocolate mixes you can find at the grocery store. The majority of hot chocolate mixes include gluten-free ingredients like cocoa powder, powdered milk, and sugar.

Still, it’s always smart to read the ingredient label and play it safe. A few select hot chocolate brands are not gluten-free.

3 boxes of packaged hot chocolate on white background

Which Brands of Hot Chocolate Are Gluten-Free?

Good news! Most brands of hot chocolate are gluten-free! You’ll have an easy time finding a gluten free hot chocolate mix at the grocery store, since most of them contain naturally gluten-free ingredients.

Here are some of the most popular brands of hot chocolate that include a gluten-free label:

  • Swiss Miss hot chocolate
  • Starbucks hot chocolate
  • Good & Gather hot chocolate (Target)
  • Dunkin’ Donuts hot chocolate

For more articles on gluten-free living, check out this article on are marshmallows gluten-free, are snickers gluten-free, are reeses gluten-free, are m&ms gluten-free and are cornflakes gluten-free.

close up photo of ingredients in swiss miss hot chocolate

These hot chocolate mixes are not labeled gluten-free, but they are not made with any gluten ingredients. This means they’re probably safe for people with Celiac disease or a gluten-intolerance, but may have a chance of cross-contamination in the manufacturing process. Use your best judgment!

  • Ghirardelli hot chocolate
  • Hershey’s hot chocolate
  • Land O’Lakes hot chocolate
  • Nestle hot chocolate
  • Trader Joe’s hot chocolate

Keep in mind, Stephen’s Gourmet Hot Cocoa and Godiva hot chocolate are not gluten-free, so you’ll want to avoid those brands.

Always check the label to make sure!

Can Gluten-Free People Drink Hot Chocolate?

Yes, people who eat gluten-free can definitely drink hot chocolate. Most hot chocolate is naturally gluten-free, including ready-made hot chocolate at a coffee shop, and hot cocoa mixes and hot chocolate bombs found at the grocery store.

You also might like these recipes for dairy-free hot chocolate and dairy-free eggnog! This maca hot chocolate also looks delicious.

A glass mug of hot chocolate with marshmallows on top, and more mugs of hot chocolate in the background

FAQs

Which cocoa powders are gluten-free?

Most cocoa powder sold in the United States is gluten-free, including Hershey’s Cocoa, Hershey’s Special Dark Cocoa, and Hershey’s Dutch Cocoa. Nestle cocoa powder is not labeled as gluten-free, but it does not contain any gluten ingredients.

Which chocolate brands are gluten-free?

Chocolate is naturally gluten-free, and so are most chocolate brands. Some of the most popular gluten-free chocolate bars include Hershey’s, Nestle, and Dove. Ghirardelli and Godiva chocolates are made with gluten-free ingredients, but do have a risk of cross-contamination with gluten products during manufacturing.

Does Swiss Miss hot chocolate have gluten?

No, Swiss Miss hot chocolate is naturally gluten-free, and does not have any gluten-containing ingredients.

Does Cadburys hot chocolate contain gluten?

No. Like most Cadbury products, Cadbury’s hot chocolate is naturally gluten-free and is not made with any wheat ingredients.

Is Nestle hot chocolate gluten free?

Nestle hot chocolate is not made with any wheat ingredients, but it does not have a gluten-free label. Because of the way the product is manufactured, there is a chance the product may contain trace amounts of gluten.

MORE ARTICLES ON GLUTEN-FREE LIVING

A hand pouring hot chocolate into a glass mug

Gluten-Free Hot Chocolate Recipe

Now that you know most hot chocolate is safe for a gluten-free diet, let’s whip some up! This hot chocolate recipe is rich, creamy, and the perfect drink for a chilly winter night during the holiday season.

Once you try my hot chocolate recipe, you won’t need any other!

Since most hot chocolate is already gluten-free, this is a recipe you can confidently serve to a crowd. It has all the main ingredients you’ll find in traditional hot chocolate!

Try dunking this amazing gluten-free biscotti, gluten-free gingerbread or these gluten-free christmas cookies in this hot chocolate! I have been wanting to make gluten-free version of these hot chocolate cookies as well!

Why You’ll Love This Recipe

  • Rich and creamy
  • Made with simple ingredients
  • Better than hot cocoa mix
  • Can be made with any milk
  • Can adjust the sweetness

Ingredients You’ll Need

Here’s what you’ll need to make this delicious gluten free hot chocolate!

Ingredients for gluten-free hot chocolate on a countertop
  • Milk: This hot chocolate tastes amazing with whole milk, but can also be made with dairy-free milk. I like using unsweetened almond milk, or you can use oat milk, soy milk, or coconut milk.
  • Cocoa powder: Use high-quality cocoa powder for the best flavor! Try Hershey’s special dark cocoa for a richer flavor.
  • Sugar: I love Domino fine sugar. Feel free to reduce the amount of sugar in this recipe if you prefer, or add more! I think 1/4 cup of sugar is a good starting point.
  • Vanilla: I always recommend using real vanilla extract. It has more depth of flavor and will make the chocolate really stand out! It’s a key ingredient that sets this recipe apart from even the best-known hot chocolate mix.
  • Chocolate chips: You can use semi-sweet chocolate chips or break a semi-sweet baking bar into chunks or shavings. If you want to use dark chocolate, that works too!

How to Make Gluten-Free Hot Chocolate

Gluten-free hot chocolate in a saucepan with a whisk, and gluten-free hot chocolate in a saucepan
  • In a medium pot or saucepan, combine your gluten free milk of choice, cocoa powder and granulated sugar. Heat over medium heat, whisking frequently, until warm (but not boiling). 
  • Add the chocolate to the hot milk mixture and whisk constantly, until the chocolate is melted and the hot chocolate is totally smooth. Whisk in the vanilla extract. Serve and enjoy!

Storage Instructions

Let hot chocolate come to room temperature, then store it in a glass jar or sealed container for up to three days. Reheat in a small saucepan over the stove and whisk vigorously before serving.

A wide shot of three mugs of hot chocolate

Gluten-Free Hot Chocolate Expert Tips & Tricks

  • Use any kind of milk you like! I particularly love gluten-free oat milk. If using dairy milk, I recommend whole milk. But if you want to reduce the fat, you can use skim or nonfat milk.
  • Use any chocolate you like! Most real chocolate is gluten-free, but be sure to check the label to confirm. My favorite brand of gluten-free chocolate is Guittard!
  • Adjust the sweetness to your liking: ¼ cup sugar is a good starting point.
  • Top with mini marshmallows, candy canes, or whipped cream!

Serve the hot chocolate with gluten-free gingerbread for a festive treat!

A hand holding a glass mug of hot chocolate with marshmallows on top

MORE RECIPES YOU MIGHT LIKE

I hope you love this recipe as much as we do! If you try this gluten-free hot chocolate, be sure to leave me a comment/rating below. I’d love to hear from you!

A closeup shot of a mug of hot chocolate
5 from 1 vote

Gluten-Free Hot Chocolate

Prep Time 5 mins
Cook Time 10 mins
Total Time 15 mins
Servings 4 servings
This gluten-free hot chocolate is a MUST for the holiday season! It's RICH, CREAMY, and perfectly sweet. Whip some up for your next party!

Ingredients

  • 4 cups milk of choice
  • 1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar (or add to desired sweetness)
  • 1/2 cup semisweet chocolate (chips, chunks or shavings)
  • ½ tsp vanilla extract

Instructions 

  • In a medium pot or saucepan, combine the milk, cocoa powder and granulated sugar. Heat over medium heat, whisking frequently, until warm (but not boiling).
  • Add the chocolate and whisk constantly until the chocolate is melted and the hot chocolate is totally smooth. Whisk in the vanilla extract. Serve and enjoy!

Notes

RECIPE NOTES
  • Use any kind of milk you like! I particularly love gluten-free oat milk. If using dairy milk, I recommend whole milk. But if you want to reduce the fat, you can use skim or nonfat milk.
  • Use any chocolate you like! Most real chocolate is gluten-free, but be sure to check the label to confirm. My favorite brand of gluten-free chocolate is Guittard!
  • Adjust the sweetness to your liking: ¼ cup sugar is a good starting point.
  • Top with mini marshmallows, candy canes, or whipped cream!

Nutrition

Calories: 335kcal | Carbohydrates: 38g | Protein: 10g | Fat: 17g | Saturated Fat: 10g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 4g | Trans Fat: 0.02g | Cholesterol: 31mg | Sodium: 96mg | Potassium: 573mg | Fiber: 4g | Sugar: 32g | Vitamin A: 406IU | Calcium: 321mg | Iron: 2mg

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Hi, I’m Erin!

BS Food Science,

MS Nutrition

I believe you can make amazing, gluten-free food with everyday ingredients that everyone will enjoy. I’m here to share my tried-and-true recipes with you!

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