This Polar Express Hot Chocolate Recipe is super rich and creamy, and is the ultimate cozy weather treat. It’s easy to make in the slow cooker and is perfect for your next Christmas movie night!

For more holiday drink ideas, be sure to check out my Peppermint Oreo Milkshake, Cranberry Limeade Spritzer, and Slow Cooker Spiced Wine.

mugs of hot chocolate next to pine cones

The Polar Express is always one of our favorites during the holiday season. The classic story about a young boy taking a train ride to the North Pole and learning to believe in the magic of Christmas always puts me in the Christmas spirit!

During my teaching days, we always had a fun Polar Express themed day at school before Christmas break. It was always one of my favorite days of the whole school year when the kiddos all came to school dressed in their pajamas, and we spent the day watching the movie, eating cookies, and drinking hot chocolate!

mugs of hot chocolate next to pine cones

During the train ride in The Polar Express story, the pajama clad passengers are served Christmas cookies and steaming mugs of HOT! HOT CHOCOLATE!

And THIS recipe for thick, rich, super decadent hot chocolate is just the ticket! The Golden Ticket, one might say!

hot chocolate in a mug with whipped cream and a candy cane

It’s super easy to make in the Crockpot and only takes a few minutes to prep. It’s perfect for a group because it makes a large batch. It’s so so good!

If you’re making it for a class of kiddos, your family’s next movie night, or any Christmas get together, you’re going to have some truly happy and festive elves on your hands after just one sip of this delicious Polar Express Hot Chocolate!

Ingredients for Polar Express Hot Chocolate 

  • heavy cream
  • unsweetened cocoa powder
  • whole milk
  • sweetened condensed milk
  • semi-sweet baking chocolate
  • vanilla extract
  • your favorite toppings!

ingredients laid out to make hot chocolate

How to Make Polar Express Hot Chocolate – Step by Step

Step 1: Add ingredients to slow cooker

Add half of the heavy cream to the slow cooker. Whisk in the cocoa powder until combined. This step will require a few minutes of whisking to incorporate the powder thoroughly into the cream. 

a whisk stirring chocolate and milk

Step 2: Stir

Add the remaining cream, milk, sweetened condensed milk, chopped chocolate, and vanilla. Stir well to combine.

condensed milk is being poured into a crockpot of milk and chocolate

Step 3: Slow Cook

Cook on low heat for 3 hours, stirring every 20 minutes or so until the chocolate is melted and fully combined. Keep on the warm setting for up to 3 hours for serving. If the hot chocolate gets too thick while it sits, you can stir in more milk to your desired thickness.

a ladle full of hot chocolate

Step 4: Serve

Serve with your desired toppings such as marshmallows, whipped cream, chocolate syrup, or crushed candy canes!

hot chocolate in a mug with whipped cream and a candy cane

Tips and Notes

  • Don’t add all ingredients at once. It’s important to follow the directions in step 1 so that the cocoa powder mixes in easier. If you add everything into the slow cooker at once it will take a very long time to mix the cocoa powder in. It tends to want to just sit on top and not mix in, so I find adding ingredients incrementally in this way makes it easier.
  • Stir intermittently. Make sure you are whisking/stirring every 20 minutes or so. This will keep the chocolate from burning onto the sides of the crockpot.
  • Adjusting the thickness. This makes a very thick and creamy hot chocolate, which is thicker than a classic packet of hot chocolate from the grocery store. If you want it thinner, use 2 cups of heavy cream instead of 4, and add 2 cups of milk in its place. You can also use 2% milk to thin it out. I personally love it as is; it’s so luscious and decadent, a true treat!
  • Use good quality chocolate! You can use semi-sweet chocolate chips in place of the baking bar. I suggest using higher quality chocolate so it melts nicely. 

polar express hot chocolate next to a crockpot

How to Store Leftover Hot Chocolate

Leftovers can be stored in an airtight container in the fridge and reheated on the stove or in the microwave.

How to Make Hot Chocolate on the Stove Top

If you don’t have a slow cooker, you can easily make this Polar Express Hot Chocolate on the stove. Follow the directions for adding the ingredients to a large soup pot or dutch oven and warm the hot chocolate over low heat until the chocolate bar pieces have melted. Keep on low heat uncovered and stir occasionally to keep the hot chocolate from burning.

hot chocolate in a mug with whipped cream and a candy cane

Here’s some Cookie Recipes to pair with your Polar Express Hot Chocolate!

polar express hot chocolate next to pine cones
5 from 5 ratings

Polar Express Hot Chocolate Recipe

Yield: 12
Prep Time: 5 mins
Cook Time: 3 hrs
Total Time: 3 hrs 5 mins
This Polar Express Hot Chocolate Recipe is super rich and creamy, and is the ultimate cozy weather treat. It's easy to make in the slow cooker and is perfect for your next Christmas movie night!

Ingredients

  • 4 cups heavy cream
  • 1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 4 cups whole milk
  • 14 ounces sweetened condensed milk
  • 12 ounces semi-sweet chocolate baking bar, finely chopped
  • 1 Tablespoon vanilla extract
  • marshamallows, whipped cream, chocolate syrup, candy canes, etc, for topping

Equipment

  • Slow Cooker

Instructions
 

  • Add half of the heavy cream to the slow cooker. Whisk in the cocoa powder until combined. This step will require a few minutes of whisking to incorporate the powder thoroughly into the cream.
  • Add the remaining cream, milk, sweetened condensed milk, chopped chocolate, and vanilla. Stir well to combine.
  • Cook on low heat for 3 hours, stirring every 20 minutes or so until the chocolate is melted and fully combined. Keep on the warm setting for up to 3 hours for serving. If the hot chocolate gets too thick while it sits, you can stir in more milk to your desired thickness.
  • Serve with your desired toppings such as marshmallows, whipped cream, chocolate syrup, or crushed candy canes!

Notes

  • Don't add all ingredients at once. It's important to follow the directions in step 1 so that the cocoa powder mixes in easier. If you add everything into the slow cooker at once it will take a very long time to mix the cocoa powder in. It tends to want to just sit on top and not mix in, so I find adding ingredients incrementally in this way makes it easier.
  • Stir intermittently. Make sure you are whisking/stirring every 20 minutes or so. This will keep the chocolate from burning onto the sides of the crockpot.
  • Adjusting the thickness. This makes a very thick and creamy hot chocolate, which is thicker than a classic packet of hot chocolate from the grocery store. If you want it thinner, use 2 cups of heavy cream instead of 4, and add 2 cups of milk in its place. You can also use 2% milk to thin it out. I personally love it as is; it’s so luscious and decadent, a true treat!
  • Use good quality chocolate! You can use semi-sweet chocolate chips in place of the baking bar. I suggest using higher quality chocolate so it melts nicely. 
  • How to Store Leftovers: Leftovers can be stored in an airtight container in the fridge and reheated on the stove or in the microwave.
  • How to make on the stove top: If you don't have a slow cooker, you can easily make this Polar Express Hot Chocolate on the stove. Follow the directions for adding the ingredients to a large soup pot or dutch oven and warm the hot chocolate over low heat until the chocolate bar pieces have melted. Keep on low heat uncovered and stir occasionally to keep the hot chocolate from burning.
Cuisine: American
Course: Dessert, Drinks
Calories: 602kcal, Carbohydrates: 40g, Protein: 9g, Fat: 46g, Saturated Fat: 28g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 2g, Monounsaturated Fat: 13g, Trans Fat: 1g, Cholesterol: 130mg, Sodium: 111mg, Potassium: 488mg, Fiber: 3g, Sugar: 33g, Vitamin A: 1400IU, Vitamin C: 1mg, Calcium: 258mg, Iron: 2mg
Did you make this recipe?Let me know! Mention @TheBelleoftheKitchen on Instagram or tag #BelleoftheKitchen.