Easy Hot Cocoa Cookies Recipe with Cocoa Powder Mix

It’s now the time of year when a plate of delicious cookies is typically sitting on my kitchen countertop. This recipe for hot cocoa cookies is part of my holiday season rotation and a favorite for holiday cookie exchange lineups.

Why, you might ask?

They’re tasty and very easy to make, and the recipe calls for ingredients I typically have on hand.

If you are craving a rich chocolate cookie, I highly recommend this hot cocoa cookie recipe. One of these cookies with a steaming mug of hot chocolate on a cold winter day is the ultimate holiday treat.

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Hot cocoa cookies recipe with cocoa mix powder from package and chocolate chips and mini marshmallows - Press Print Party!

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Chocolate chip cookies are the most iconic cookies out there, at least in the U.S.

Count how many times you see chocolate chip cookies on the dessert table at holiday parties this year, versus when you don’t. Odds are, the majority of the parties will, at the very least, have store-bought chocolate chip cookies.

But these gooey hot chocolate cookies will stand out from the rest.

And you can try out different hot cocoa mix packets to find one you really like. A minty hot cocoa cookie would probably be tasty! Or Ghiradelli hot cocoa?? Mmm, mmm, mmm!

Honestly, Christmas cookies are a weakness of mine. I think they are for a lot of other people too. That’s why I like to compile the best cookie recipes for homemade gifts.

These easy hot cocoa cookies plus my Ranger Cookie recipe (my family’s favorite cookies EVER!) would be great as gifts. Also, I have printable cookie gift tags that pair with cookies almost as well as milk does!

Making an assortment of cookies as teacher appreciation gifts, treats for friends, or gifts for coworkers is a great way to spread a little holiday cheer.

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Why Marshmallows and Hot Cocoa?

This hot chocolate cookies recipe with marshmallow bits is the cookie version of the classic cup of hot cocoa.

Rich chocolatey goodness topped with the subtle sweetness of marshmallows.

But how did that combination even begin?

According to Smithsonian Magazine, while hot cocoa and the idea of marshmallows have been around for thousands of years, the two weren’t formally acquainted until 1917. That’s when the Angelus Marshmallow company commissioned a recipe booklet that explained various ways marshmallows could be incorporated into common recipes.

The booklet popularized hot cocoa and marshmallows AND…s’mores! Talk about a successful marketing campaign!

And what about the history of marshmallows? The ancestors of our modern gooey treats were made from the root of the marsh mallow plant and used to treat sore throats. Its medicinal uses have been traced back to ancient Egypt.

Today, our marshmallows are not made with plants, nor do they have any healing properties, aside from the joy they bring when floating in a mug of steaming hot cocoa by a rosy fireplace. Or when baked into hot cocoa cookies!

That brings me back to the point of this post. Let’s get baking!


Ingredients for Hot Cocoa Cookies

Ingredients - Hot cocoa cookies recipe with cocoa mix powder from package and chocolate chips and mini marshmallows - Press Print Party!
  • 1 cup unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • ⅔ cup brown sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 3 ½ cup flour
  • 1 cup hot cocoa drink mix – about 4 packages
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 cup dark chocolate chips
  • 1 cup mini dehydrated marshmallows

Step by Step Instructions

1- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.  Line your cookie sheet with parchment paper and set aside. 

2- In the bowl of a stand mixer, combine the softened butter, sugar, and brown sugar.  Cream until smooth.

In process photo of dough - Hot cocoa cookies recipe with cocoa mix powder from package and chocolate chips and mini marshmallows - Press Print Party!

3- Add in the eggs and vanilla and mix well. 

In process photo of dough - Hot cocoa cookies recipe with cocoa mix powder from package and chocolate chips and mini marshmallows - Press Print Party!

4- Add the flour, hot cocoa mix, salt, baking soda, and baking powder.  Switch to the paddle attachment and mix thoroughly.  

In process photo of dough - Hot cocoa cookies recipe with cocoa mix powder from package and chocolate chips and mini marshmallows - Press Print Party!

5- Add in the chocolate chips and the marshmallows.  Mix well.  If your mixer is struggling, mix by hand until the chips and marshmallows are thoroughly combined.  

In process photo of dough - Hot cocoa cookies recipe with cocoa mix powder from package and chocolate chips and mini marshmallows - Press Print Party!

6- Scoop out golf-ball-sized balls of dough and place them on the prepared baking sheet. 

In process photo of balls of dough on counter - Hot cocoa cookies recipe with cocoa mix powder from package and chocolate chips and mini marshmallows - Press Print Party!

7- Bake for about 9-11 minutes or until the edges are set and the center is no longer shiny.  Allow them to cool completely. A wire rack can be helpful.

Hot cocoa cookies recipe with cocoa mix powder from package and chocolate chips and mini marshmallows - Press Print Party!

Hot Cocoa Cookies

Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Keyword chocolate, hot chocolate, hot cocoa, marshmallows
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Servings 24 Cookies

Ingredients

  • 1 cup unsalted butter softened
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • cup brown sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 3 ½ cup all purpose flour
  • 1 cup hot cocoa drink mix – About 4 packets
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 cup dark chocolate chips
  • 1 cup mini dehydrated marshmallows

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Line your baking sheet(s) with parchment paper and set aside.

  2. In the bowl of a stand mixer, combine the softened butter, sugar and brown sugar. Cream until smooth.
  3. Add in the eggs and vanilla and mix well.
  4. Add in the flour, hot cocoa mix, salt, baking soda, and baking powder. Switch to the paddle attachment and mix thoroughly.
  5. Add in the chocolate chips and the marshmallows. Mix well. If your mixer is struggling, mix by hand until the chips and marshmallows are thoroughly combined.

  6. Scoop out golf-ball sized balls of dough and place on the parchment lined baking sheets.
  7. Bake for about 9-11 minutes or until the edges are set and the center is no longer shiny. Allow to cool completely on a wire rack.

Recipe Notes

Storage: Cookies can be stored in an airtight container for about one week or frozen for 3 months.


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FAQs:

What the heck are dehydrated mini marshmallows?

Dehydrated marshmallows are just regular marshmallows that have been dehydrated. They’re typically crunchy and small. You remember those crunchy, little bits in Lucky Charms? Yep, those.

Can I use regular mini marshmallows instead of dehydrated ones?

Regular mini marshmallows work. But be warned, they tend to melt into one gooey marshmallow at the center of the cookie rather than create pockets of marshmallow-y goodness. But this is a great opportunity to use those old, crusty mini marshmallows that have been in the back of your cupboard for who knows how long. You’re not a poor housekeeper!! You were purposely creating homemade, dehydrated mini marshmallows just for recipes like this. I bet Martha Stuart doesn’t dehydrate her own marshmallows!!!

Can I cut full-size marshmallows and just use a half or a quarter marshmallow per cookie?

For best results, use the dehydrated mini marshmallows. If you use regular mini marshmallows, they keep their shape better than chopped full-size marshmallows. But if you forget the dehydrated minis and don’t want to make one more run to the grocery store, regular minis or cut-up marshmallows are not bad substitutes.

OK. So if dehydrated marshmallows work so much better can I dehydrate my own?

Sure! Set your dehydrator to 160, spread your minis on the tray with a little extra room because marshmallows are from outer space and expand when dehydrating rather than constrict and let them go for 2-3 hours. Don’t have a dehydrator? Try your oven on the lowest setting or some folks even cook with the oven slightly open to reduce the heat even more. Cook for roughly the same period of time but checking on them periodically probably makes sense.

So, all I have is full-sized marshmallows. Could I cut them down and dehydrate them?

Geez, man. Are you into pain or something??? Yes, you can absolutely cut down full-sized marshmallows and then dehydrate them at home. You may want to coat the sticky side in a 1 to 1 mix of powdered sugar and cornstarch to reduce the stickiness but beyond this, you’re on your own. If you’re taking it this far you probably grew the wheat yourself and ground it into flour in a mortar and pestle that you hand-made during a break from your Ph.D. thesis. So, go for it!

What different varieties can I make with hot cocoa cookies?

If it exists in a hot cocoa packet, you can bake it into these cookies! Mint, dark chocolate, raspberry, you name it! If you have a favorite cup of hot chocolate, try it in this recipe! You could also get really fancy with it and make hot cocoa mix from scratch. But, I know, you already thought of that.

What is the best way to store these cookies?

You can store these easy hot cocoa cookies at room temperature in an airtight container for about one week or in the freezer for three months.

Can I freeze the dough to bake later?

Sure! I recommend freezing the dough in scoops so you can easily bake the dough without thawing it.

Why are my cookies flat?

Just like with any cookies, your baking powder is probably the culprit. If your cookies are turning out flat, try a new box for better results.

Can I use cocoa powder instead of hot chocolate mix?

Hot chocolate mix contains sweeteners in addition to ground cocoa beans. Cocoa powder does not. If you use cocoa powder, your cookies will probably have a more subdued, less sweet flavor. Or you could just toss in a little extra sugar.


Enjoy!

Did you try this hot chocolate cookie recipe? Let me know in the comments how it went!

And don’t forget to check out more delicious and easy dessert recipes.

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Hot cocoa cookies recipe with cocoa mix powder from package and chocolate chips and mini marshmallows - Press Print Party!

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Hot cocoa cookies recipe with cocoa mix powder from package and chocolate chips and mini marshmallows - Press Print Party!
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