The Good: Tastes absolutely amazing!
The Bad: Not the most environmentally impressive packaging, Seems to be more expensive.
The Basics: Subtle on the chocolate, rich on the caramel flavoring, Nestle’s Caramel Hot Cocoa is a real treat for hot cocoa enthusiasts this winter!
For those who know my tastes, I am a HUGE fan of Chocolate Mint. I love anything with mint and chocolate: I make my own dark chocolate mint fudge and I make my own chocolate mint ice cream. So, when I tried Nestle’s Chocolate Mint Hot Cocoa, I was a little disappointed by how it was not as minty as I hoped it would be. I still like it, but I have discovered Nestles has made an even better hot cocoa: Caramel! Yes, Caramel hot cocoa by Nestle turns out to be one of the best hot drinks I have ever tried!
Caramel is an oft-neglected flavor, so it is surprising that Nestle is breaking into the market with their hot cocoa. In fact, this follows on the heels of Land O'Lakes Caramel & Chocolate Hot Cocoa, which was the only other major brand to market a caramel-flavored hot cocoa powder. With Caramel Hot Cocoa, Nestle creates a drink worth stocking up on!
Nestle Caramel Hot Cocoa mix is a hot chocolate mix put out by Nestle. The box of hot cocoa packets is a pretty standard package of a dozen packets in each box. Each packet contains .91 ounces packets of hot chocolate mix. Trading on the flavor of caramel and chocolate, which is very popular as anyone who has ever had a chocolate sampler knows, Nestle establishes a very drinkable hot cocoa is likely to amaze the naysayers and impress anyone looking for something delightful for the palate. This hot cocoa is relatively new to the market, though now it does seem to be in every major grocery store I shop at.
Ease Of Preparation
Nestle Caramel Hot Cocoa mix is very easy to prepare, as most hot chocolate products are. Because each packet in the box is a single serving, one need only have a mug large enough to accommodate the powdered mix and some water with a little room for mixing it around. Because the powder has some mass to it before it is dissolved, I recommend using an 8 oz. mug.
Preparation is simple; empty the contents of a single packet from the box into an eight ounce mug. Bring a pot of water to a near-boil - the Caramel hot cocoa does not require boiling water, just very hot water. Boiling the water does not cook the powder, so if one does boil the water, there is no adverse consequence to the beverage. Once the water is hot, simply pour six fluid ounces of water over the powder and stir it up. It is that easy to make!
Nestle Caramel Hot Cocoa has a delicious smell that is buttery and chocolate-scented. The steam that comes off mugs of this cocoa embody chocolate and the scent of caramel that is distinct to anyone who has ever made caramel apples or other times when they have had caramel heated up and emitting its buttery, sweet aroma.
This prepares the consumer incredibly well for the experience of drinking the beverage as well. The best way to describe this might be to say it’s like eating a melted Twix bar without the cookie inside (and without the texture). Smooth and creamy like any good hot cocoa, the drink washes over the tongue with the sweet taste of caramel and only a hint of milk chocolate that chases it over the tongue. This is a deliciously sweet drink, but unlike “French vanilla” flavors I’ve tried where they are just generically sweet, this actually tastes like caramel. As such, even as it is sweet, there is a slight dry aftertaste as it passes over the tongue.
As the caramel hot cocoa cools, the drink takes on more of the dry aftertaste of caramel as well as the sweetness of the standard milk chocolate cocoa. This is, by no means, a detraction. The flavor never becomes bland or generic like a standard milk chocolate cocoa. This is always delightfully sweet, infused with caramel!
Nestle Caramel Hot Cocoa is a sugary drink, so any expectation that this is a beverage that is going to meet a lot of one's daily needs is fairly unrealistic. Still, there are worse beverages out on the market. One serving - a single packet - has 100 calories, twenty-five of which are from fat. With three grams of fat, this drink is not a dieter's beverage, but it could be worse. This caramel flavored hot cocoa has no cholesterol or any vitamin or mineral nutrients, outside calcium (which it has an impressive 30% of the RDA!), but it does have 190 mg of sodium. This is not a food to try to live off of.
It is hardly a surprise that Nestle caramel Hot Cocoa is not a nutritious food product considering that the primary ingredients are sugar, corn syrup solids, and dairy product solids (from milk). For those with allergies, it is noted on the package that the powder contains milk and the powder is processed on equipment that also process soy and wheat.
Nestle Caramel Hot Cocoa mix is ridiculously easy to store and clean up. Because the packets are individual servings and self-contained, as long as one does not store the packets underwater, they will last. Strangely, though, Nestle has very conservative expiration dates on this product. My box of cocoa, purchased in October 2010, has an expiration date in January 2012, but it is hard to imagine this would not last past the expiration date so long as the packets inside are kept cool and dry.
Cleaning up Nestle Caramel Hot Cocoa mix is easy, as it is a powder which may be easily brushed up. If one spills it after it is mixed with water, it is likely to stain lighter fabrics and one ought to consult one's fabric guide for cleaning if that happens. Mugs, though, clean right out with hot water as this fluid does not stain ceramics.
Winter is here and those looking to stock up on hot cocoa will discover that Nestle’s Caramel Hot Cocoa is a delightful way to go, tasting exactly like what it is supposed to!
For other hot cocoas, please check out my reviews of:
Land O' Lakes Chocolate & Mint Cocoa
Swiss Miss Hot Chocolate With Marshmallows
Swiss Miss Dark Chocolate Sensation
For other food and drink reviews, please visit my index page by clicking here!
© 2010, 2009 W.L. Swarts. May not be reprinted without permission.