Peppermint Hot Cocoa (Syrup version)

Cook’s notes: Inspired by a cup of hot chocolate I had recently at Starbucks. The smallest size at Starbucks, however, is 12 oz. I wanted to make a smaller version at home to keep my sugar intake down. There’s still enough to fill a coffee mug, so you won’t feel deprived. Start with the smaller amount of peppermint syrup; add more to taste.

8 oz milk (2%)
2 Tablespoons (1 oz) high-quality chocolate syrup without corn syrup (such as Torani Chocolate Sauce)
1 to 2 teaspoons (5 to 10 g) peppermint syrup (such as Torani brand)

Heat the milk in a glass measuring cup in the microwave on High for one minute. Stir in the chocolate syrup and the peppermint syrup until drink is evenly combined. Heat mixture for another 30 seconds on High.

Pour hot cocoa into a coffee mug. Top with whipped cream if desired. Serves one.

Alternate version:

3 T (45 g) water
4 tsp (20 g) unsweetened cocoa powder
4 tsp (20 g) sugar

Mix water, cocoa, and sugar together and microwave 1 to 2 minutes. Add 8 oz milk and 1 tsp (5 g) pure vanilla extract. Microwave until warm. Add a few drops of pure peppermint extract.