Pumpkin Spice French Hot Chocolate

Have you ever tried French hot chocolate?

Pumpkin Spice French Hot Chocolate | Sempre Dolce
I remember the first time I did. It was experienced at Thinking Cup on a very chilly day in Boston.

We were visiting family for Thanksgiving (Boston is one of the best places to be for Thanksgiving, btw) and on the day of our departure home, we visited Thinking Cup Coffee Shop somewhere in Boston’s North End. It was a cozy place with an enjoyable atmosphere; unfortunately I haven’t been back since then. :( Anyway, while there, my brother and I ordered the French Hot Chocolate – now I must break here to say that before then, I hadn’t of heard of French Hot Chocolate and therefore did not know what I was in for. And hot chocolate from a coffee shop, bakery, etc. can be very hit or miss (and it’s usually the latter). But this hot chocolate, this French Hot Chocolate, was a hit – a big hit. It was the most decadent hot chocolate drinking experience e.v.e.r. My brother and I were in pure chocolate bliss, and probably in a state like something out of Willy Wonka. It was so luscious and rich – I had never been so happy drinking a cup of hot chocolate!

Pumpkin Spice French Hot Chocolate | Sempre Dolce

Pumpkin Spice French Hot Chocolate | Sempre Dolce

After that trip, I had to find a recipe for enjoyment at home. I’ve tried David Lebovitz’ recipe and more recently a recipe from Well Plated – both delicious. I mean, like you could ever go wrong with heavy cream and melted chocolate, right? So it should come as no surprise that when trying to figure out how I was going to execute a pumpkin spice hot chocolate, I ended up with this recipe as a result.

Pumpkin Spice French Hot Chocolate | Sempre Dolce

It took me a few tries, lots of chocolate (over one pound!), milk, cream, and pumpkin to get this where I wanted it, but I’ve finally put together a recipe for a rich, pumpkin-chocolaty experience I think you are going to ♥.

Pumpkin Spice French Hot Chocolate | Sempre Dolce

Before you go any further, though, I must note that this recipe is not for the faint of chocolate hearts; it’s like drinking pure chocolate (heaven for chocolate lovers!) and is extremely rich – to be enjoyed in small quantities only. You have been warned…

When making, I would recommend having all of your ingredients ready so nothing gets burnt. Every time I made this, I had my milk and cream measured out and all other ingredients ready to go. It’s not necessary, but highly recommended!

Pumpkin Spice French Hot Chocolate | Sempre Dolce

The Lowdown: This fall/winter beverage combines all that there is to love about pumpkin spice and hot chocolate: pumpkin and pumpkin pie spice blended with chopped chocolate, heavy cream, along with vanilla and a touch of espresso powder, take this French Hot Chocolate to a new level.

Pumpkin Spice French Hot Chocolate
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  • 6 tbsp. pumpkin puree
  • 2 tsp. pumpkin pie spice
  • 2 tbsp. sugar
  • 1 tbsp. vanilla extract
  • 1/2 tsp. espresso powder (coffee granules can also be used)
  • 1 1/2 C. milk (I used and would recommend whole milk)
  • 1/2 C. heavy cream (or heavy whipping cream)
  • 1 C. bittersweet (or dark) chocolate, finely chopped


  1. In a medium-sized saucepan (no smaller than 1 qt) set over medium heat, cook pumpkin and pumpkin pie spice for 2 minutes, whisking constantly.
  2. Add sugar and stir until it forms a thick syrup, about 30 seconds.
  3. Whisk in milk, heavy cream, espresso powder, and vanilla. Cook, stirring occasionally, over medium-high heat until very warm (what I mean is not boiling hot but definitely not lukewarm), about 7(ish) minutes.
  4. Remove pan from heat and add chopped chocolate, whisking until completely melted. (If chocolate is not melting all the way, put pan back on burner and whisk mixture until chocolate is thoroughly melted.)
  5. Ladle into mugs and serve with desired toppings - whipped cream with chocolate shavings is extremely tasty, just saying... :)
  6. This recipe serves 3-4


If you can get it, I highly recommend using Trader Joe's 72% dark chocolate bar (bittersweet) or their dark chocolate bar (I get the pound plus bars - so good for baking!).




  1. Reply


    October 24, 2016
    I just happen to work down the street from the Thinking Cup, so I guess I'll have to take a little walk over at some point this week! But now I really, really want a pumpkin version!! So, maybe I'll just have to make this! Pinned :)
    • Reply


      October 25, 2016
      Ooh, lucky you! I would be there all the time. :) Please have a cup of hot chocolate for me!
  2. Reply


    October 29, 2016
    I've never had french hot chocolate but it sounds amazing and rich. And with the pumpkin spice...it is fall perfect!!
    • Reply


      October 29, 2016
      It's definitely rich and quite the indulgent treat but soo worth it! :)
  3. Reply

    Karen @ The Food Charlatan

    October 30, 2016
    This looks amazing and totally Willy-Wonka-esque! I would gladly take a rowboat in it :) Love the new design Lexi!
    • Reply


      October 31, 2016
      Thanks, Karen!! :)


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