> Bless Their Hearts Mom: How to Warm Up Fall and Bring the Holiday Spirit! (review and giveaway)
Monday, November 9, 2015

How to Warm Up Fall and Bring the Holiday Spirit! (review and giveaway)

Disclosure / Disclaimer: I received this product, free of charge,froNielsen-Massey, for review purposes on this blog. No other compensation, monetary or in kind, has been received or implied for this post. Nor was I told how to post about it

We are officially in holiday season....

I know, I can scream too. I really wish we had a couple more weeks between Halloween and Thanksgiving to really enjoy the time, or that Thanksgiving came at a different time- because then we could have a longer caroling season! LOL

christmas reindeer scary

So like we just talked about, let's make a pact to be a bit more organized,
get less stressed over the small stuff, 
and enjoy the season for what it is- enjoying each other and our time together!

Nielsen-Massey Vanillas wants to help you take a break from the hectic seasonal shopping and entertaining, to warm up with cozy cocoa, to create lasting memories with your family and friends 
Studies have shown that spending time together (in non-stressful moments) increases happiness and helps alleviate depression ( Greatist.com). 

Check out this GREAT recipe from Nielsen-Massey Vanillas for a superb tasting cocoa!

Gourmet Peppermint Hot Cocoa with chocolate peppermint spoon

This recipe for Gourmet Peppermint Hot Cocoa from Nielsen-Massey Vanillas, is the perfect treat for a cozy night this holiday season. The rich cocoa in Nielsen-Massey Pure Chocolate Extract mixes with the cool peppermint, for a decadent dessert,  perfect for a relaxing evening or holiday extravaganza! It makes enough for 6 servings, but can easily be doubled, or tripled! It's the perfect thing for taking away the Fall chill and getting you into the upcoming holiday spirit!

⅓ cup unsweetened quality cocoa powder (Dutch processed)
1 1/2 cups powdered sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
4 cups whole milk
2 cups half-and-half
1/4 teaspoon Nielsen-Massey Pure Chocolate Extract

1. In a medium saucepan, combine cocoa powder, sugar and salt. Place over medium-low heat and gradually whisk in milk and half-and-half until combined. Stirring occasionally, heat to desired temperature, being careful not to let the mixture boil.

2. Stir in pure vanilla, peppermint and chocolate extracts.

3. Before serving, top with a Vanilla Bean Marshmallow, or for an extra blast of peppermint, drop a peppermint candy in the bottom of each mug before serving, or use one of the Peppermint Chocolate Spoons, from the instructions below (and shown in the picture above)!

Chocolate peppermint spoons

Peppermint Chocolate Spoons

Chocolate peppermint spoons ingredients

- Semi Sweet Chocolate Chips or Chocolate Candy Melts of Chocolate Mints
(you could use white chocolate as well)
- Peppermints or Candy canes 
(you'll note I stole confiscated some from the Halloween candy jar-
you could use other candies for different flavor variations too!)
- Nielsen-Massey Pure Peppermint Extract
- Unsweetened Dutch processed cocoa powder

1. Take your candy canes (or peppermint candies) and crush with mallet or rolling pin. You want to be able to see the striping, for the color, so try not to pulverize-LOL

Chocolate peppermint spoon directions collage

2. In glass container melt your preferred chocolate in the microwave for 20 seconds. Remove from microwave and add ½ teaspoon Nielsen-Massey Pure Peppermint Extract (if making more than 1/2 cup, add more), stir well. Taste- if too minty, add some of the Unsweetened Dutch processed cocoa powder (to taste), stir and continue. Microwave your chocolate until melted and creamy (see upper right picture in collage above).

3. Dip spoon in melted chocolate to totally cover. Hint: if you are using up some leftover sporks, dip once, then freeze and dip again to cover the end totally in chocolate. Place on silicone baking sheet on cookie sheet, or on wax paper on cookie sheet, and add peppermint pieces and/or Nielsen-Massey Pure Vanilla Sugar sprinkles (bottom left picture in collage above)

4. Keep spoons in freezer until they set up, about 15 minutes. They can then be wrapped and made ready for gift giving, or for serving. If not using right away, especially if your house is warm, you may want to keep in fridge. 

See HOW easy they are?

You could even have your family/friends make them with you, as part of your fun evening/day! It is a super easy projects for kids to do (just supervise the melting of the chocolate), and perfect for giving to Teachers! 

Nielsen-Massey ingredients and cocoa

Some other great ideas that add warmth, and merriment to the holiday season:

• Give a DIY hot cocoa kit to a friend or loved one. Write your recipe on festive cardstock, stack cocoa powder, sugar and salt in a jar, and pack in a basket with Nielsen-MasseyVanilla, Chocolate and Peppermint Extracts. Ass some of the Peppermint Chocolate Spoons too!

Skip traditional toppings for cocoa like marshmallows, instead try crumbled cookies, raspberries or a cherry on top ! Everyone will ooh and ahh over the extra care you give! Or stir in a cinnamon stick for an irresistible blend of sugar and spice.

• Invite friends and family over for a casual hot chocolate bar party. Set out mismatched mugs of various sizes, along with several types of hot cocoa, toppings and whipped cream. Use the Peppermint Chocolate Spoons or candy canes, for stirrers and have guests vote for their favorite concoction. 

flashing Win


One BTHM reader will win their own bottle of Nielsen-Massey Pure Peppermint Extract, 
for holiday entertaining and gift making!


Good luck!


  1. I'd like to try making homemade Thin Mints.
    Jennifer Rote

  2. I would like to make Brownies with the Peppermint Extract. saubleb(at)gmail(dot)com

    1. ooo and sprinkle some candy canes on top? yummy

  3. I would make peppermint sugar cookies.Cheryl Abdelnour cjabdelnour@hotmail.com

  4. Several things. Hot cocoa with a drop or two in my mug! Peppermint bark and I really love the spoons!

    1. Thanks Robin- they are SO easy to make its almost criminal when people ooh and aah over them :)

  5. I would love to put this in my hot cocoa or make some delicious peppermint cookies with chocolate chips too!
    twinkle at optonline dot net

  6. I bet this might make a fabulous peppermint cheesecake! That's what I would make if I win!

  7. I have a super easy homemade recipe for the Girl Scout Thin Mint cookies. We dress them up for Christmas with red and green sprinkles.

  8. I would make thin mint cookies.

  9. I would make my grandma's famous peppermint fudge!


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