I’m as much of a Starbucks fiend as the next person.
Okay, more. Maybe a lot more. I’m slightly recovered from my three-a-day habit (I live in Seattle! There were three within close walking distance from my office and I needed the caffeine!), though I must admit the addiction has seen a bit of a resurgence since I’ve recently discovered that, indeed, it is difficult to get much sleep when you have a baby, even when the baby is nearly a year old. This discovery goes hand in hand with how I’ve really discovered the true beauty of the Starbucks drive-thru for new moms … so convenient when you’ve got a sleeping baby strapped in the back (oh now she sleeps).
Now if only we could have drive-thru grocery stores. That would be amazing.
But for now, we have Starbucks, and for those times when we can’t leave home – or don’t want to – we can make a pretty close impersonation of one of their yummiest holiday drinks right at home. Even better? We can do it in our Crock Pot. Peppermint mochas are just an hour or two and a ladle away when you make them at home.
They’re a tad cheaper when you make ’em at home, too. Or maybe a little bit more than a tad. I love my Starbucks, but back when I had that three-a-day habit? Yeah, that got expensive.
Up until yesterday when I made eggnog lattes in the Crock Pot (ohmygosh yum, recipe coming soon), I thought these slow cooker peppermint mochas were a shoo-in for Christmas morning beverage. Now I’m thinking I need to make and try both several more times before I decide which one wins the coveted spot.
The sacrifices I make to make sure Christmas is just right.
These really are perfect for the holiday … they brew up while the (very awake) kids are checking out their Santa loot, and are ready just in time for breakfast.
And they’ve got caffeine. And they don’t cost five bucks a mug. And! They’re delicious.
I’ve made this with both whole milk and 2% milk – equally delicious both ways. I’d imagine nonfat milk would taste great, too. Of course, you lose some of the creaminess the less fat your milk has, but they’re still great!
Slow Cooker Peppermint Mochas
- 4 cups milk
- 4 shots of espresso -or- 4 rounded teaspoons instant espresso powder plus 1 1/2 cups water -or- 2 cups very strong brewed coffee
- 3/4 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
- 1/4 cup peppermint syrup
- Whipping cream and shaved chocolate bar for garnish
- 1 cup sugar
- 1 cup water
- 2 teaspoons peppermint extract
- Make the peppermint syrup: In a small saucepan over medium heat, bring the water and sugar to a boil, stirring until sugar is dissolved (about a minute). Remove from heat and stir in the peppermint extract. Store in a glass jar in the refrigerator for up to 3 months.
- Make your peppermint mochas: In a 3-quart or larger slow cooker/Crock Pot, stir together the milk, espresso/coffee, chocolate chips, and peppermint syrup.
- Cook covered on low for about 2 hours, stirring occasionally to help distribute the melting chocolate, until steaming. You can also cook it on high for about an hour and fifteen minutes (depending on your slow cooker), stirring often - just watch it a little more carefully when the slow cooker is on high. Reduce heat to warm and keep covered once the mocha has heated to steaming.
- Serve in festive mugs, topped with whipped cream and a sprinkle of chocolate shavings.