Mexican Hot Chocolate with Tequila and Cayenne Pepper

For very many years I only associated tequila with bad margaritas or single shots taken quickly and finished with a lick of salt off of my hand followed by sucking on a wedge of lime (oh yes I did!).  About a decade ago I was schooled a bit about the value of aging and discovered the beauty of Reposado and Anejo tequilas. I began making my favorite margaritas and enjoyed good sipping tequila. It was a great lesson learned and those cocktails were good…but that was it, that was all tequila was good for, right?

Absolutely not! Last year I made a warm coffee cocktail

that was spiked with tequila and Kahlau and it was so good. I think using tequila typically in conjunction with citrus has too often limited our imaginations when thinking about possibilities. Used in a cocktail like this one the effect is warming and rich and wonderful. You have to promise to try it so you can also enjoy how good it is!

I feel most fortunate to have developed relationships with some brands both new and previously unfamiliar that help to support this weekly effort by providing me with the adult beverages I need to do a cocktail each week. The best part might be trying something new and this tequila is a keeper. Peligroso Tequila is is a rare, 84 proof ultra premium Tequila from agave that is grown on an estate in Jalisco, Mexico. Their Silver tequila is just barely aged so not as smooth as a Reposado would be so I thought it would be perfect blended in this cocktail…a hot chocolate made from milk, Ibarra; a Mexican chocolate bar with cinnamon that is perfect for hot chocolate and the addition of Scharffenberger Natural Cocoa Powder that I thought would really up the chocolate factor; making it an even richer component.

We had some snow last night in Denver; fall here is as wacky as spring! 80 degrees one day; snow the next before all the leaves have turned and fallen! I’m going to try and survive…and this cocktail is going to help!

Mexican Hot Chocolate with Tequila and Cayenne Pepper
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
A wonderful and warming cocktail for fall and winter.
  • 3 cups Milk (I used 1% and it was good)
  • 1 and ½ bars Ibarra chocolate; broken into chunks
  • 6 Tbsp Scharffenberger Cocoa Powder
  • 2 Tbsp Cane Sugar
  • ⅛ - ¼ tsp Cayenne Pepper (start with ⅛ tsp and season to taste)
  • 4 ozs Tequila
  • ½ cup heavy whipping cream
  • Ground Cinnamon for Garnish
  1. Warm the milk in a medium size heavy saucepan on medium heat, watching carefully.
  2. Add the Ibarra chocolate, the cocoa powder and the sugar.
  3. Heat until the chocolate dissolves, whisking to combine all ingredients.
  4. Season with the cayenne pepper. Start with ⅛ teaspoon and season to your taste.
  5. Pour the warm milk into 2 large mugs and add 2 oz of tequila.
  6. Top with whipping cream; sprinkle whipping cream with cinnamon.
Nutrition Information
Serving size: 2 large servings

Warm and while I can’t exactly say nourishing…it sure feels good!!


  1. Deb Kelley says

    Hi. The hot chocolate with tequila recipe sounds amazing! I have a crowd here on Christmas Eve. Do you think it could be made and kept in a crockpot?

    Happy holidays!

  2. says

    The boyfriend and I put this together tonight for the intermission in our classic horror flicks double-feature. We used a few chunks of ginger chocolate in there, on top of the recipe. It was a perfect twist for the evening!

    • Creative Culinary says

      Nice! Just one of my favorite things to drink in the winter. I love to surprise friends with them; the combination sounds a bit strange but the end result is certainly an example of the sum being greater than the parts. Cheers!

  3. Dana says

    I just found this recipe via How Sweet Eats. It looks delicious! I’m wondering where you go the Ibarra chocolate? Would it be in the hispanic food section of my Walmart? Or do I need to go to a specialty store?

    • Creative Culinary says

      I’m not sure but it could be; I found it in a small, local Mexican food store and I’m trying to remember if I’ve seen it at Walmart (without success!). I would try there first if it’s convenient. Worse case scenario? Use another chocolate bar and add some cinnamon to the mixture; Mexican chocolate bars have cinnamon in them.

  4. says

    Chocolate, peppers, cinnamon and tequila are a fantastic combo! I make a pie that is very similar – The New Mexican Hot Chocolate Pie. [ ]. If you don’t want to jump straight into the deep end with straight tequila, try using 1921 Tequila Cream. Think Bailey’s, but done with tequila – absolutely wonderful. Cheers!
    Bob Most Recent Post: What’s Your Definition of a “Great” Tequila Bar?

    • Creative Culinary says

      Oh this would be right up my alley; something I’ve thought of even since I LOVE that hot chocolate and also a pie called a French Silk pie; sort of wanted to combine the two. I’ll let you know when I do! Wish I had some right this moment.

    • Creative Culinary says

      I hope you do…it’s great. I have another wonderful, hot tequila drink coming this Friday; would be hard pressed to choose my favorite from the two of them!

  5. Marilla says

    Hi! I’m making this mix for a bunch of friends for Christmas. Sorry, for being dense, but when you say “1 1/2 bars Ibarra chcolate” are you counting a disc as a bar? Or one wedge as a bar? Thanks for the clarification!

    • Creative Culinary says

      Yes Marilla, that’s exactly what I did. One disc is a bar so it would be 1 and 1/2 bars. Be prepared…this is amazing!! Enjoy…Barb

    • Creative Culinary says

      Heck, you are almost there. This is so hard to describe; I think mostly because we bring the citrusy notes we so associate tequila with into the chocolate? I did a Mexican coffee last year and that was the first step in my hot beverage with tequila education…makes it just that much warmer in a very good way!

  6. says

    LOL!!! My best friend loved tequila shots, but has since stopped that love….she has bad memories LOL! BUT the funny part, she thinks tequila shots taste delicious, I could never understand that:-) I do have to say, I love tequila mixed in delicious drinks, especially this lovely drink! Your addition of cayenne pepper sounds awesome! Hugs, Terra

    • Creative Culinary says

      My daughter came over to try one the other night; she had to try it to get it. It’s not like it doesn’t taste like there is no alcohol but the tequila and cayenne just serve to bring some warmth to the chocolate; some amazing warmth. I’m betting your friend could drink this and start new memories! Hugs back at ya!

    • Creative Culinary says

      I was sent a box full of goodies to stage a summer picnic and the stuff came from a couple of places. I’m thinking it was Crate and Barrel that sent the mug glasses with handles. I’ve used Mason jars before too but without handles. Truth be told…so wish I had shot the other, plain side. Just one of those moments when I didn’t see the rooster/country thing in the process! I just found these at Pottery Barn; maybe they’ll work for you?

    • Creative Culinary says

      Sort of amazing how they are together isn’t it. Unexpected but I think a true marriage that was meant to be.

  7. says

    I came across your site from “Miss Bee’s Haven” and I’m so glad I did! Can’t wait to mix up some of these delicious looking drinks! But for now I have to move on to the appitzer section :)
    Good Work!
    Connie M

  8. says

    We had a few days of late with wonderfully warm temps (for our area at this time of year) but we know it isn’t going to last. Before we know it we will wake up to a scene like you have photographed here.
    I’ll have to remember this tequila hot cocoa when the wind and snow are howling outside. Looks like the perfect drink to cozy up around a hot fire with.
    Paula Most Recent Post: Halloween Hooters

    • Creative Culinary says

      It is SO good Holly…I think it’s about time for another girls nite…this time with a warm cocktail!

    • Creative Culinary says

      I had not heard of it before until they asked me to try it..a very nice tequila and yes, these are soooo good. Tossup tonight. Caramel apple cocktail or hot chocolate with tequila. Decisions, decisions! :)

    • Creative Culinary says

      I haven’t had one of those in a long time but they are on my list to make; I do have fond memories at least!

    • Creative Culinary says

      I’m betting if you tried a better brand and didn’t over-imbibe it might be a totally different experience? The stuff I tried when I was younger I wouldn’t think of drinking today…harsh is the word and good tequila really isn’t.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

CommentLuv badge