Does Hot Chocolate Have Caffeine?

Hot chocolate is the perfect beverage to drink on a cold winter day. Not only is it sweet and delicious, but it can also help keep you warm and cozy. Depending on how it's prepared, hot chocolate can have a surprisingly healthy nutritional profile (via Livestrong). While it does have quite a bit of sugar and calories, hot chocolate is a good source of protein. A single-cup serving of hot chocolate made with skim milk contains 221 calories, 32.8 grams of sugar, and 9.4 grams of protein (via MyFoodData). 

Hot chocolate is also a great source of essential vitamins and nutrients, such as calcium, potassium, magnesium, and zinc, according to MyFoodData. In fact, one cup of hot chocolate contains 24% of the recommended daily intake for calcium, 12% for potassium and magnesium, and 13% for zinc. While some hot chocolate mixes can be high in sugar, that may not be the only stimulant to watch out for.

Hot chocolate's caffeine content compared to other beverages

Since hot chocolate is made with cocoa, you may be wondering if it also contains any caffeine. The answer is yes, but the amount of caffeine is variable. That's because caffeine contents vary according to the brand and ingredients within a mix (via Healthline). Most standard cocoa mixes tend to have less caffeine unless they're made with dark chocolate. However, as a general rule of thumb, if a mix contains chocolate, it will have caffeine.

So, how much caffeine are we talking? One serving of Swiss Miss contains 5 milligrams of caffeine, while a 16-ounce serving of Starbucks hot chocolate contains 25 milligrams of caffeine, according to Healthline. This is relatively low compared to most caffeinated beverages. To put this into perspective, an 8-ounce cup of regular black coffee contains around 95 milligrams of caffeine, and a cup of black tea contains between 25 to 48 milligrams of caffeine.