How Hot Chocolate was Invented


Karly Wampler, Writer

Hot chocolate has been a staple in many people’s Christmas. Whether it’s making your own hot chocolate, or buying it from the store, many people enjoy the delicious drink. Many don’t know that hot chocolate was invented a long time ago. Hot chocolate dates back to as early as 500 BC, and was made by the Mayans. They made it by grinding up cocoa seeds, and mixing it with cornmeal, water, and chili peppers. After mixing the ingredients, they would pour it back and forth in a cup till it became a thick foam, and they then drank it cold.

In the early 1500s, a spanish explorer named Cortez brought back the cocoa seeds, and the tools to make it. King Charles V of Spain adopted the drink, and created it as a drink that wasn’t bitter tasting, warm, and without the chili peppers. The upper class was the ones that mainly drank this new drink, and Spain kept their drink hidden for over a hundred years. When the drink came to London in the 1700s, chocolate houses (similar to a coffee shop) became very popular even though chocolate was expensive.

In the late 1700s, the president of the Royal College of Physicians, bought a recipe from Jamaica for mixing chocolate with milk, to make the drink creamier. Others in England took note of his version, and started making it with milk. After it became creamy, the English made the drink into a after-dinner beverage.

Until the 19th century, hot chocolate was used as a treatment for diseases of the stomach and liver. It was also used as a special drink. Now, there are many different flavors, and versions of hot chocolate. Spain’s chocolate a la taza, is a thick drink, that is like chocolate sauce, that is mostly used for dunking churros. Latin America’s chocolate para mesa, is a spicy, sweet drink, and is usually served with sweet bread which you dunk in the drink. Italy’s cioccolata calda, has the consistency of pudding, and tastes just like it, and is usually served with whipped cream on top.


Cioccolata Calda: Italy’s Hot Chocolate