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Does Salt in Chocolate Milk Make it Taste Better?

Does Salt in Chocolate Milk Make it Taste Better?

The other day, I read about that salted hot chocolate trick and had to try it out for myself, as I wanted to know if it makes the chocolate milk taste even better. And guess what; it actually does! 

Salt and chocolate is a mouth-watering combination, as salt enhances the milk’s sweetness and intensifies the chocolate’s flavor, making it stick out more. You will achieve the best taste by using pure cocoa powder and flaky sea or mountain salt. 

Read on if you want to know how much salt you should add to your chocolate milk and if this taste enhancer also works for other drinks like milkshakes and oat-based chocolate milk. 

Does Chocolate Milk Taste Better with Salt?

a cup with hot chocolate topped with salt, whipped, cream, and marshmallows for added sweetness

So the other day, I read about that hot chocolate salt trick from the show “Modern Family”. It’s a big topic of discussion in various forums and, apparently, quite the trendy thing. 

At first, I was skeptical; I mean, sweet, hot chocolate milk and salt, no way, right?

But then I thought of my beloved Starbucks salted caramel hot chocolate!

And there it was again; the salt in the chocolate! I just had to try it out at home and see what all the fuzz was about. 

And believe it or not, it was a real revelation! Hot chocolate is one of my favorite drinks. I love it because it’s so delicious and rich in flavor. Or so I thought.

It was like tasting hot chocolate for the first time again when I added that salt to it!  

But how can that be, I asked myself. How can something salty make something sweet even sweeter and tastier? 

As it turns out, sweet foods get sweeter when you add salt to them. The added salt will also make you taste the sweetness faster. Of course, the same goes for sweet drinks, such as hot chocolate milk. 

All in all, salt has “superpowers” when it comes to enhancing sweet tastes:

Enhances Sweetness

Sodium actually triggers our taste buds to register the sweetness in glucose, acting as both a sweetness enhancer and an accelerator. 

This goes both for chocolate and other types of food, which is why we often add salt to our favorite desserts and baked creations!

Enhances Flavors

Salt can also “unlock” certain flavors and tastes and make them “pop”. Dark chocolate and cocoa powder are often said to keep their unique and wonderful flavors under the surface, and it’s not always easy to bring them forth. 

However, with salt, you can make those flavors explode in no time!

flaky himalayan salt mixed with cocoa poweder on a wooden plank

Blocks Bitterness

Sodium also has the ability to suppress unpleasant flavors, one of them being bitterness. This, of course, is perfect when it comes to hot chocolate, as the cocoa powder in it has a very strong natural bitterness.

So as you can see, salt is the perfect fit for hot chocolate milk. If you haven’t tried it yet, I strongly urge you to do so. It’ll rock your world (and taste buds)!

Let’s see what type of cocoa powder and salt you should be using for this delicious mix.

What Is the Best Cocoa Powder for Hot Chocolate?

Keep your hot chocolate all-natural. Use only 100% unsweetened cacao powder!

PRO TIP: You can find one of the best and purest cacao powders on the market on Amazon here

The sweetened stuff is usually packed with sugar and is really more of a candy than anything else. It’ll definitely impact the flavor of your hot chocolate negatively, making it way too sweet if you ask me.

The unsweetened powder works best with both the added salt and the bittersweet chocolate chips (if you want to add those as well).

PRO TIP: Amazon’s also got the perfect bittersweet chocolate chips if you need to buy some!

Add just a little sugar to that, and you got yourself the perfect flavor experience!

For even more sweetness, you can top your hot chocolate with some whipped cream and mini marshmallows. Yummy!

What Type of Salt Should You Put in Your Chocolate Milk?

flaky sea salt for hot chocolate on a wooden plank

Okay, now that we’ve got the cocoa powder covered, let’s talk salt! 

Stay away from your regular table salt! It’s usually both processed and bleached and has a fairly dull flavor. 

Instead, use quality sea or Himalayan salt. This type of salt is very pure, unprocessed, and has a very rich flavor. 

Additionally, these salts are usually flaky, making them easier to spread over your hot chocolate and making it look really classy! 

PRO TIP: You can find delicious, high-quality sea salt and Himalayan salt on Amazon here

How Much Salt Do You Put in Hot Chocolate?

This really depends on your personal flavor preferences.

Put just a pinch of salt over your hot chocolate if you merely want to enhance its sweetness.

On the other hand, if you prefer your hot chocolate sweet and salty, you can add more salt to it.

Personally, I want the salt to leave a mild aftertaste on my lips when I drink my hot chocolate, not more than that.

Just start with a few flakes and then adjust after your liking. It’s the best way to find that perfect balance!

What Type of Milk Is Best for Hot Chocolate?

Whole milk is definitely your best pick for hot chocolate if you can and want to use it!

It’s creamier than other types of milk and has a natural sweetness to it, which blends well with the hot chocolate’s other ingredients.

And, once again, it’ll work wonders with the added salt!

PRO TIP: Further down in the article, I also talk about oat milk and whether or not it’s a good idea to add salt to it. So make sure to keep reading!

Can You Add Salt to Milkshakes?

Much like with hot chocolate, salt works great in milkshakes as well.

The same flavor principles apply here; keep it natural and unprocessed!

Adding salt to your store-bought milkshake won’t do you much good because those shakes are usually full of sugar and other additives.

If we’re talking milkshakes prepared by a barista or at home, adding a little salt can definitely improve that milkshake’s flavor.

Can You Add Salt to Chocolate Oat Milk?

Oat-based milk is a vegetarian and vegan-friendly alternative to dairy milk, and hot chocolate made with oat milk can be just as delicious.

When it comes to salt, though, you shouldn’t use ready-made chocolate oat milk, as it contains a little too much added sugar.

Instead, use conventional oat milk and add your sweeteners and cocoa powder to that, just as you’d do with regular milk.

You can then add a little salt to your hot oat chocolate and enjoy its enhanced flavors.

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