Chocolate de Agua

Oaxacan-Style Drinking Chocolate


Preparation info

  • Difficulty


  • Serves


Appears in

Oaxaca: Home Cooking from the Heart of Mexico


By Bricia Lopez and Javier Cabral

Published 2019

  • About

Chocolate is as important to Oaxaca as mole. You can’t have one without the other. Chocolate is a way of life, and it is something you drink every single day because it traditionally uses water instead of milk. During the Day of the Dead celebrations, chocolate is on every single altar in Oaxaca. In my mom’s hometown of Mitla, when somebody dies, it is tradition to bring their surviving family cacao beans at the wake as an offering. When you go to a wedding or baptism, the first thing they greet you with is a cup of chocolate and pan dulce. It’s not your regular hot chocolate and it is definitely not Abuelita’s brand chocolate, which is not even real chocolate to begin with. I highly recommend that you take the time to seek a true Mexican chocolate made with real stoneground cacao beans that actually tastes a little bitter. Always look at the ingredient label to make sure you’re not just buying chocolate-flavored tablets as opposed to ground-up cacao. Real Mexican chocolate is usually a little more expensive. We sell Villa Real in our online shop.


  • ounces (150 g) Mexican chocolate


In a large saucepan, bring 4 cups (1 L) of water (see Tip) to a boil. Right before it boils, add the brick of chocolate and turn off the heat.

Using a molinillo or whisk, mash the chocolate as best as you can until it dissolves and then whisk until frothy.