Friday, December 16, 2022

Trader Joe's Peppermint Hot Chocolate

This was an enthusiastic recommendation from the Trader Joe's clerk. After seeing my bottle of peppermint liqueur, he asked, "Have you tried the peppermint hot chocolate!? It's my favorite this time of year!" Before I could answer, he jumped away from the register and started walking towards the tea and coffee aisle and bid me follow. So I did.

He inserted himself in between the product shelves and some older ladies who looked at him rather indignantly for interrupting their beverage hunt. Having obtained a tin of this peppermint hot chocolate mix, he held it aloft and shouted, "This! Right here! You have to try it!"

Neither Sonia nor I are "must have everything peppermint" people, but I felt like this guy might burst into tears if I said I wasn't interested, and well, you know, trying new-to-us Trader Joe's stuff is kind of a thing we do, so I told him to throw it in with my groceries.

I know this product has been around for years, and you know what? It's pretty darn good. I don't know if I can muster quite the level of enthusiasm that TJ's clerk did, but I definitely see where he's coming from, especially if you're a big fan of peppermint.

The dominant flavor here is peppermint, even more than chocolate I'd say, but somehow it's balanced and tempered. There's no peppermint overload, despite it being peppermint-forward. The chocolate aspects are basically what you'd expect. It's a "bittersweet chocolate" they used. It's a tad richer than your basic sweet milk chocolate and it helps keep the mintiness in check.

We made ours with cow's milk and added whipped cream, so it was nice and creamy and dessert-like. I really can't get into hot chocolate made with water. I suppose if you're in it for the peppermint rather than the chocolate, hot water would do in a pinch.

$4.99 for eight servings, according to the info on the package. I would have guessed closer to 12 servings, but I suppose that depends on how much powder you use and the size of your mug, etc, etc. Four and a half times two from Sonia and me for Trader Joe's Peppermint Hot Chocolate.

Bottom line: 9 out of 10.


  1. As an occassional cake baker, I have been informed that water is better than milk for accentuating chocolate flavor. I assume the same is true for hot cocoa, though I too prefer it creamier.