The History of Hot Chocolate

The tradition of drinking hot chocolate dates all the way back to the time of the Aztecs. Cocoa beans were not only regarded for their decadent culinary wonders, but they were also traded as currency in exchange for commodities. During cultural festivals, special ceremonies and traditional festive holidays, cocoa beans were exchanged as gifts.

They began the tradition of roasting fresh cocoa beans to create a chocolate drink; however, their recipe is a lot different from the hot chocolate we know and consume today, at home or in coffee shops. The Aztecs preferred their hot chocolate cold, blended with the spicy tinge of chilli peppers and mulled wine (or some would have you believe they used blood). The taste was far from the sweet decadence that we know today.


In the early 15th century, Cortez the explorer discovered the indulgent delicacy that is chocolate and introduced it to the nobles and peasants of Europe. It all began in Spain; hot chocolate was prepared as a hot beverage, sweetened without the addition of spicy peppers. For a hundred years, the Spanish devotedly protected the recipe of hot chocolate and Aztec spices, refusing to share this scrumptiously delicious new beverage. It took an entire century for Europe to find out the incredible culinary secret behind hot chocolate.