Chocolate Santafereño - Hot Chocolate with Cheese


Recipe Intro From mariselmsalazar

This Colombian hot chocolate is traditionally made with a chocoletera or an olleta (small metal pot). The chocolate is crushed and frothed using a molinillo (wooden whisk). Melted cheese adds a decadent, salty flavor and texture to the chocolate — making it thicker and creamier. Traditionally this is made with queso fresco, which act like a salty marshmallow for a pop of salt and umami! 

When making this recipe look for Latin American brands like Luker or Diana (Colombian) or Taza (Mexican). If your chocolate bar comes sweetened, reduce the amount of sugar or adjust added sugar to your liking. If you want to create even more froth (and don’t have a molinillo), use an electric frother. Feel free to switch up the spices to your liking with cayenne, cardamom, or allspice! Each household has their own blend of spices for this recipe! 

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  • Recipe Card
Prep time 5mins
Cook time 10mins
Serves or Makes: 4

Recipe Card


  • 4 cups whole milk or milk of choice
  • 6 squares 70% dark chocolate - or higher
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 1/4 cup sugar, agave, or sweetener of choice
  • 4 ounces white cheese, such as queso fresco, cotija, halloumi or mozzarella


  • Step 1

    Add ingredients except cheese to a pot or pan; bring to a boil over high heat until frothy, stirring occasionally so a skin does not develop or liquid boils over.

  • Step 2

    Reduce heat to medium when it boils and froths.

  • Step 3

    Cut cheese into cubes and divide evenly into four mugs.

  • Step 4

    Pour hot chocolate into the four mugs and serve immediately with a spoon.