Where has this cashew hot cocoa been all my life? I’m seriously blown away by the flavor of this naturally sweetened, creamy, hot cocoa-y goodness. And I’m even more excited to share it with you all here!
Soaked cashews and dates are the base of this beverage. Together they provide creaminess and sweetness – a must for every hot cocoa drink. This goes to show you don’t need corn syrup solids, modified whey or hydrogenated oils to have amazing hot cocoa (lookin’ at you powdered hot cocoa mix). You just need a handful of cashews and dates!
If you’ve never tried soaking your own cashews and dates, today is the day to start! I’m telling you, this is a game changer if you want all-natural, plant-based creaminess and sweetness. So go stock up on all the raw cashews and dried dates you can get your hands on. DO IT.
If you don’t have raw cashews at the ready, you can always try another nut you have on hand such as almonds or walnuts. And instead of dates, you could try raisins instead. I personally have not tried these substitutions, but would love to know if any of you try it and what you think!
The best way to soak nuts and dried fruit is to pour boiling water over them and let them sit for at least 30 minutes to soften. I know that may sound like forever, especially when you need your hot cocoa stat. But doing it this way does two things: 1) it allows the cashews and dates to blend better and 2) you have to wait for the boiling water to cool down anyways before blending. Distracting yourself with a few loads of laundry will make the time fly – trust me.
The next step after soaking for 30 minutes is to blend all the hot cocoa ingredients together. Like I said, the water will no longer be piping hot but will still be warm. I didn’t have any issues with hot cocoa explosions when I followed these steps, so I can bet yours will also turn out the same.
The last step is to filter out any cashew or dried date chunks by using a sieve, colander or cheesecloth. Whatever you have on hand should work. And viola! There you have it. A perfect hot cocoa beverage made of simple, all-natural ingredients. I’ll take this over crappy hot cocoa mix any day!
- ¼ cup raw (steamed) cashews
- 4 dried dates
- 1 tablespoon semi-sweet chocolate chips (vegan option: use chocolate chips made without milk/dairy)
- 2 teaspoons cocoa powder
- ¼ teaspoon vanilla extract
- pinch of salt
- 1 cup boiling water
- Bring water to a boil.
- Add cashews, dates, chocolate chips, cocoa powder, vanilla extract and pinch of salt to a small blender or food processor.
- Pour boiling water into blender/food processor and allow all the ingredients to soak in the boiling water for 30 minutes (meanwhile you can fold some clothes, unload the dishwasher, watch funny YouTube videos or whatever makes time go by fast for you).
- Once the 30 minutes are up and the water is warm but not scalding hot, blend on high for 30 seconds.
- Slowly open the lid (so hot cocoa doesn't spew everywhere).
- Grab your desired mug and begin straining the hot cocoa into the mug using a sieve, colander or cheesecloth. This keeps out all the chunks from the cashews and dates. Discard the cashew/date chunks or save them and mix them in your oatmeal for breakfast the next morning.
- Serve warm and enjoy!
As always, if you make a recipe don’t forget to snap a picture and tag me @unrefinedrd on Instagram.
Looking for other hot beverages? Check these out from the archives:
- Matcha Latte
- Lemon Tulsi Tea
- Ginger Beetroot Latte
- Sage Tea with Ginger and Honey
- Chai-Spiced Chamomile Tea