Is Cheesy Hot Chocolate Genius Or Gross?

Who doesn't like to snuggle up on a couch and wrap themselves in a blanket with a steaming cup of hot chocolate in hand? Institute of Culinary Education reports that chocolate can be traced back to the Aztec, Olmec, and Mayan cultures. Back then, when they referred to chocolate, it had nothing to do with the chocolate bars of today. Instead, people used to drink a beverage made with chocolate, water, flowers, and various spices, without any sugar. Once the missionaries brought chocolate back to Spain, it was served warm and frothy with sweeteners. 

From there, the popularity of hot chocolate spread like wildfire. Nowadays, people in the U.S. love drinking hot chocolate as well. In 2017, Statista reported that 14% of Americans drank "two to three cups of hot chocolate per day on average." But there's more: When it's time for holidays, and especially during the festive Christmas season, Americans over the age of 21 also love their hot chocolate. 

A YouGov survey found that hot chocolate is the favorite holiday beverage for 34% of Americans, followed closely by eggnog and apple cider. But have you ever thought about putting cheese in your cup of hot chocolate? If the thought of cheese in hot chocolate grosses you out, you're not alone, but maybe you should reconsider because many people love the unlikely combination.

Most TikTok users found the traditional Colombian cheesy hot chocolate gross

A TikTok user, @misslegarda, posted a video where we can see her with a cup of hot chocolate. Soon, she starts munching on strings of melted cheese that were hidden in her hot chocolate, saying, "If you're not putting cheese in your hot chocolate, then what are you doing?" 

The video was accompanied by Mariah Carey's festive hit "All I Want For Christmas Is You" and captioned, "Have u ever had Colombian hot chocolate w/ cheese?" And fans of @misslegarda were quick to comment, saying things such as, "I am being normal," "More like what are youuuu doing??" and "I love cheese but I wouldn't put it in my hot chocolate." 

Well, it seems like those who wrote negative comments don't know about a traditional Colombian concoction called either chocolate completo or chocolate santafereño. In order to prepare it, pastilla chocolate blocks enriched with cinnamon and cloves are placed in a pot with water or milk, then stirred with a molinillo whisk to perfection. Next, the salty queso Campesino white cheese is added to the hot chocolate. Apparently, all that's left to do is to enjoy the mixture or write negative comments on social media (via Atlas Obscura). 

And Seasoned Traveller reveals that you can replace queso Campesino with queso doble crema or the Mexican Oaxaca cheese. If all else fails, try using mozzarella, as it's the closest thing to those stringy cheeses.