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Eggnog or Hot Chocolate? We Help You Decide

In this food fight, it's a battle of two holiday classics: eggnog vs hot cocoa. Find out which is healthier and which one is the better holiday pick.

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In the battle over these holiday favorites, find out which beverage is better for you to snuggle up by the fire with: hot cocoa or eggnog?

Does cocoa have more calories?

When it comes to warming up with cocoa, you may want to pay attention to the calories.

In fact, some varieties of instant cocoa can have as much as 150 calories per serving or more! But, when it comes to eggnog, hot cocoa pales in comparison.

Regular eggnog could have as much as 180 calories per half-cup serving, and could contain as much as 6 grams of saturated fat, which is actually 30% of your daily recommended intake. This is mostly because eggnog is made with whole milk, contains a ton of sugar and is usually made with heavy cream.

Eggnog does contain protein, but it comes with the steep price of calories and fat.

On the flip side, hot cocoa can contain a ton of calories but it doesn’t contain as much saturated fat per serving. Generally, about 150 calories per 12 ounce serving. However, this can increase dramatically if you add whipped cream, which can jump up the calorie count to about 210.

On average, though, hot cocoa wins the battle of fewer calories.

Nutritional benefits for both?

In addition to being lower in calories, hot cocoa actually has a number of different health benefits.

If you make your cocoa with natural cocoa powder, you will actually be drinking a healthy dose of antioxidants. Natural antioxidants have been shown to improve stress levels and have also been shown to lower your risk of heart disease.

So, with all of its low-calorie goodness and it’s sweet chocolate flavor, hot cocoa is definitely the way to go this holiday season!

Written By bistroMD Team. Published on November 07, 2012. Updated on September 14, 2019.

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