Fall Favorite – Pumpkin Spice Hot Cocoa

Happy Friday! Today one of my best online friends is here sharing a delicious, warming recipe with you…. pumpkin spice hot cocoa! Perfect for these cold evenings that we’ve been having too.

I’ve know Jill almost as long as I’ve been blogging I think and we’ve been great friends almost the entire time. One of the best things about online friends is how quickly they can become the closest and best friends you ever had. This has to be one of my favorite reasons for blogging…. the friendships. They alone are worth all the time and effort that we put into blogging. 

Jill is an awesome mom to three incredible boys (19, 17 and 10-going on 32). Two of whom still live at home. And fill her social calendar faster than she can… I can attest to this too! Just check out her on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram and see all of their travels, adventures, and of course the great money saving deals that she writes about on her blog, Single Mom on a Budget.

pumpkin spice hot cocoaTemperatures are dropping, snow is starting to fall and the trees are near bare. Halloween candy is a distant memory and Thanksgiving and Christmas are on the mind.

Here in Colorado we have already had snow twice and because of that we had a beautiful fall season. The ‘pretty’ is over though, and the ground is covered in leaves. (And by covered I mean I’ve done the back-breaking job of bagging a total of nine trash bags full so far and it ain’t over yet.) The days are beautiful, but the nights are downright cold.

Something about that – the temps falling part, not the leaf bagging part – has gotten me in the holiday spirit early this year. And that never happens so I’m enjoying it.

As we settle in one chilly evening I had visions of cinnamon sticks and cans of pumpkin dancing in my head so I whipped up a pumpkin spice hot cocoa concoction and ooh la la it is delicious. Even my picky 10 year old liked it. And by picky I mean he won’t eat mac n cheese, peanut butter and jelly or cupcakes. I KNOW.

You can make your cocoa one of two ways, from a little packet or from a homemade hot cocoa recipe that we’ve used in my house for years. I make it and store it in a mason jar (recipe below).

Pumpkin Spice Hot Cocoa Directions (here is a printable version of the Pumpkin Spice Hot Cocoa recipe):


  • Hot cocoa (make your own mix with 1 c. nonfat dry milk, 1 c. sugar and ¾ c. cocoa)
  • Milk
  • Canned pumpkin
  • Nutmeg
  • Cinnamon
  • Cinnamon Stick
  • Whipped cream or marshmallows


These directions are per cup of hot cocoa.

Heat milk on stove on medium-low and watch so that the milk doesn’t boil over, because speaking from experience that is a big mess. It can also be heated in the microwave.

I like to drop a cinnamon stick in it to infuse the milk with cinnamon.

Pour milk into your favorite mug and add about 2-3 tbsp of hot cocoa mix depending on how chocolaty you like it.

Add 1 tbsp of pumpkin and mix thoroughly. Add more/less to your taste.

Add a dash of cinnamon and a dash of nutmeg.

Top of with a big dollop of whipped cream (or marshmallows) and sprinkle with nutmeg.

Curl up and enjoy.