The Vintage Kitchen

Iced or Hot Peruvian Chocolate

Three cups on saucers. Each cup is filled with dark hot cocoa and is topped with whipped cream.
Hot Peruvian chocolate from a 1920s recipe.

This chocolate drink recipe says it comes from the land where chocolate is taken seriously. Much more seriously than it is in the United States. Is this really a Peruvian 1920s recipe? I have no idea, but it tastes different from any other chocolate I’ve ever had. The 1920s article said this Peruvian chocolate is good iced or hot. And it is.

Two glasses of chocolate milk on an embroidered cloth. From recipe for Peruvian chocolate.
Not as sweet when cold, but definitely just as rich: Iced Peruvian Chocolate.

This Peruvian chocolate tastes like something between a normal hot cocoa recipe like you’ll find here, and the thick drinking chocolate that you find in caf├ęs. This is a drink to savor. It’s not too sweet. Enjoy this one with a friend or friends and some good conversation.

A half-full canning jar sits on a counter, holding coffee. Leaning against it is a box of Baker's baking chocolate. For Peruvian chocolate recipe.
Chocolate and coffee combine to make a rich drink.

Thick drinking chocolate can be difficult to make. This recipe is relatively easy, and it makes four 1-cup servings. You can easily cut the serving size to 3/4 cup and serve five. The servings look small until you taste it.

You might want to serve a glass of water along with this cocoa, especially if you are serving anything with it, such as dessert. Too rich to drink quickly, guests might appreciate another drink option on the table besides this chocolate.

Pan of melted chocolate with sugar sprinkled over the top, part of a recipe for Peruvian chocolate.
Step 1. Melt the chocolate over hot water and stir in sugar and vanilla.

This drink requires a lot of chocolate, four ounces to be exact. It needs an entire box of Baker’s choclate from the grocery store baking aisle. You can substitute four ounces of any chcolate that you wish. The better quality of chocolate you use, the better the drink will be.

Smooth liquid chocolate mixed with coffee. Making Peruvian chocolate.
Step 2: Chocolate and sugar mixed with the coffee. Ready for the milk.

You will need:

  • 4 ounces chocolate, unsweetened or semi-sweet
  • 3 cups milk
  • 1 cup strong coffee
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • sweetened whipped cream, optional

If you have all this in stock, the recipe is straighforward and easy. Using a double boiler makes the recipe almost fool-proof, since you can’t easily burn the chocolate when it heats over water.

Using coffee makes this an “adult drink.” If you make this for children, substitute 1/2 cup water for the coffee and increase the milk to four cups. (Don’t worry; this variation is included in the printable recipe below.) Iced or hot, this Peruvian Hot Chocolate is a keeper.

Iced or Hot Peruvian Chocolate

This rich, not-too-sweet 1920s chocolate recipe falls somewhere between hot cocoa and French drinking chocolate.
Prep Time10 minutes
Cook Time20 minutes
Total Time30 minutes
Course: Drinks
Cuisine: American


  • Double boiler
  • Whisk or egg beater
  • Additional large saucepan


  • 4 ounces unsweetened chocolate I used Baker's unsweetened
  • 2 tbsp sugar
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 cup strong coffee
  • 3 cups milk
  • 1/2 cup sweetened whipped cream

For Iced Peruvian Chocolate

  • 1 ice cube per serving


  • Scald the milk in a large saucepan and set aside.
  • Melt the chocolate in a double boiler (or in a heatproof pan over hot water). If unsweetened chocolate is used, add the sugar and vanilla.
  • Add the coffee and continue to cook over hot water until thick and smooth. Cook until steam rises from the mixture. If you use hot coffee, and the mixture comes to a boil, boil for one minute. Stir constantly.
  • Add the scalded milk to the chocolate mixture and whip to a froth with an egg beater.
  • Cook in double boiler over hot water for ten minutes. Whip again with the beater.
  • Serve with sweetened whipped cream.

For Iced Peruvian Chocolate

  • Chill. Then shake each serving with a piece of ice before serving.

For Children's Peruvian Chocolate

  • Substitute 1/2 cup water for the coffee, and increase milk to 4 cups. Serve warm or iced.


This recipe makes four cups, to serve four. It is so rich, however, that serving 3/4 cup to five people works well too.