This traditional champurrado recipe uses tablets of Mexican chocolate, pinole (ground maize flour), crushed piloncillo, and warming spices to make a hot chocolate drink that's perfect for the holidays.

Prep Time:
5 mins
Cook Time:
15 mins
Additional Time:
15 mins
Total Time:
35 mins

Warm up from the inside out with champurrado. The traditional Mexican drink is as cozy as it gets! Trust us: This champurrado recipe is deliciously decadent.

What Is Champurrado?

Champurrado is a thick, warm, sweet, and earthy Mexican beverage. The rich drink gets its complex flavor from Mexican chocolate, piloncillo (a.k.a. Mexican brown sugar) and masa de maiz, masa harina, or corn flour.

Atole vs. Champurrado

Atole is a sweet, warm Mexican drink with a masa harina base. Basic atole does not include chocolate. Champurrado, meanwhile, is a version of atole made with Mexican chocolate.

How to Make Champurrado

You'll find the full, step-by-step recipe below — but here's a brief overview of what you can expect when you make this top-rated champurrado:

1. Place the spices in water and bring to a boil.
2. Remove from heat and let the spices steep until fragrant.
3. Heat the milk, chocolate, and pinole in a separate saucepan until thick.
4. Remove from heat and add piloncillo.
5. Pour cinnamon water into chocolate mixture and stir to combine.

How to Serve Champurrado

Traditionally, champurrado is served with churros for breakfast or as a snack. It's popular during Day of the Dead celebrations and during the Christmas season, when it's often served with tamales. If you want, you can spike your mug of champurrado with rum.

How to Store Champurrado

Allow the champurrado to cool completely, then transfer to an airtight container. Store in the refrigerator for up to three days. Reheat on the stove.

Editorial contributions by Corey Williams


  • 1 ½ cups water

  • 1 cinnamon stick

  • 1 whole clove

  • 1 pod star anise

  • 4 ¼ cups milk

  • 2 tablets Mexican chocolate (such as Chocolate Ibarra®)

  • ¾ cup pinole (coarse ground maize flour)

  • 1 pinch crushed piloncillo (Mexican brown sugar cone), or more to taste


  1. Place water, cinnamon stick, clove, and star anise in a saucepan over medium heat; bring to a boil. Remove from heat and allow spices to steep until water is fragrant, about 10 minutes; strain.

  2. Heat milk, chocolate, and pinole in a separate saucepan over medium heat, whisking until chocolate is dissolved and liquid is thickened, about 10 minutes. Remove from heat; add piloncillo and let rest until sugar is dissolved, about 5 minutes more. Pour cinnamon water into chocolate mixture and stir to combine.

Nutrition Facts (per serving)

524 Calories
4g Fat
63g Carbs
3g Protein
Nutrition Facts
Servings Per Recipe 12
Calories 524
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 4g 5%
Saturated Fat 2g 12%
Cholesterol 7mg 2%
Sodium 276mg 12%
Total Carbohydrate 63g 23%
Dietary Fiber 1g 3%
Total Sugars 38g
Protein 3g
Vitamin C 0mg 1%
Calcium 110mg 8%
Iron 0mg 2%
Potassium 188mg 4%

* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.

** Nutrient information is not available for all ingredients. Amount is based on available nutrient data.

(-) Information is not currently available for this nutrient. If you are following a medically restrictive diet, please consult your doctor or registered dietitian before preparing this recipe for personal consumption.

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