Hot Cocoa Gift Jars


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Make cute hot cocoa gift jars for gift this year!

These cute jars go in the slow cooker along with a half-gallon of milk for a perfect treat.

layered hot cocoa mix in glass jars

I created these adorable Hot Cocoa Gift Jars for Christmas gifts. Most everyone makes hot chocolate during the holiday season and I have so many people to buy gifts for anyway. I made a few extra for our family, so after shopping or on Christmas eve I can easily make a really delicious homemade hot cocoa.

I use half-pint wide neck Kerr brand canning jars that I sanitize in the dishwasher. The only layer that takes some effort is the peppermint layer. For the peppermint layer, I put starlight candies in a large ziplock bag, and with a rolling pin, crush them.

Labels for how to make hot cocoa mix from jar

For making the prepared jars of cocoa mix into hot cocoa, add the entire jar of prepared cocoa mix, and a 1/2 gallon of whole milk to a 5-quart or larger crock pot and cook on HIGH for 1.5 hours, stirring occasionally. Or for the stove-top, cook on medium heat until melted and heated through.

More hot drinks to make in your slow cooker:

This cocoa prepared is not overly sweet, it is just right. This makes about 8 servings of cocoa, I put the leftovers in the fridge and reheat in the microwave for the next night, still tastes great.

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jars filled with peppermint hot cocoa mix

Hot Cocoa Gift Jars

5 from 4 votes
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 1 hour 30 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour 45 minutes
Servings: 8
Deluxe hot cocoa mix made in gift jars. Mix with a half gallon of milk and prepare in the slow cooker or stove-top.


Per Jar (1/2 Pint Size Jar, I use Kerr wide neck)

  • 1/4 cup white sugar, (regular granulated sugar, not powdered)
  • 2 Tbsp. unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1/4 cup crushed peppermint candies, candy canes or starlight candies
  • 1/4 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips,
  • 1/4 cup white chocolate chips

For Serving

  • 1/2 gallon whole milk


  • Mix together the semi-sweet chocolate chips and the white chips in a small bowl, set aside.
  • Add the layers down evenly into a ½ pint wide neck canning jar, starting with the sugar and ending with the chocolate chip mix. Place the lid on, and decorate if desired. Don't heap any of the measurements or you won't be able to get the lid on. Add a handwritten label with instructions.

To prepare the hot chocolate:

  • Slow Cooker: In a 5-quart or larger slow cooker, add the contents of the gift jar and a ½ gallon whole milk. Stir, cover and cook on HIGH for about 1.5 hours until warm and everything is melted completely, stirring occasionally.
  • Stove-top: In a large pot, add the contents of the gift jar and a ½ gallon of whole milk. Heat on medium-high heat until warm and everything is melted completely, stirring occasionally.


Nutritional values are approximate. Please use your own calculations if you require a special diet. The values below are for 1/8 of the recipes and include the milk.


Calories: 261kcal | Carbohydrates: 31g | Protein: 9g | Fat: 12g | Saturated Fat: 7g | Cholesterol: 25mg | Sodium: 108mg | Potassium: 417mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 27g | Vitamin A: 383IU | Calcium: 287mg | Iron: 1mg

Nutrition info is auto-generated. This information is an estimate; if you are on a special diet, please use your own calculations.

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  1. Amanda Stevens says:

    This is a great recipe! We decided to make these for teacher and neighbor gifts but, I wanted to try it too to make sure we liked it. I’m happy to report, it’s delicious! I put a pot on while we were washing the jars and unwrapping the candy canes. I used the pressure cooker, instead of the crock pot and set it for 10 min. It was perfect! We made a dozen jars in about an hour (including washing jars and cooking/sampling the test pot). If you’re wondering how much to buy, we used 4 dozen candy canes, 1.5 bags of chocolate chips, 1 bag of white chocolate chips, less than one tub of cocoa powder and 3 cups of sugar. I just need to make labels and they’ll be ready to go.

    1. Sarah Olson says:

      great tips, thank you for sharing!

  2. Lacey says:

    Granulated sugar or powdered sugar?

    1. Sarah Olson says:


  3. Ellie says:

    I love this idea! I plan on substituting the peppermint candies with purple melty mints and using these as wedding favors…since the mason jars seal so tight, there shouldn’t be a problem doing these a few weeks in advance, right?

    1. Sarah Olson says:

      I did mine a few weeks in advance, the sugar and mints kind of stick together, but unpacks easily from the jars. If you are substituting the peppermint layer, do a test jar to make sure that layer will be sweet enough for the cocoa. 🙂

  4. Jennifer says:

    It looks like more than 2 tbsp of the cocoa powder?? Or is it just layered around the edges to make it look like more?

    1. Sarah Olson says:

      Yes 🙂 The jars are small (1/2 pint) and 2 Tbsp. is just a little smaller than a 1/4 cup. I hope this helps