Conventional Drink Toppings to consider Adding to your Hot Drink

Conventional drink toppings for your hot drink can be as upscale as shaved dark chocolate and milk foam on a cappucchino, or as homey as marshmallows on hot cocoa. The hot drink is delightful. The topping is perfection.


Whipped cream or milk foam have become conventional drink toppers for many different kinds of coffee. If you are watching calories, the foam can be made from skim milk.

Other toppings can be added as well, either on top of the whipped cream or milk foam, or by themselves. These are almost limitless, but some of the most popular are grated cinnamon, chocolate or coconut shavings, nutmeg, and mint. Sprinkle them lightly on the surface of the coffee, cream, or foam.


Opinions about conventional drink toppings for tea are strongly divided. On one side are the purists, who believe the only appropriate topping for tea should be a slice of lemon. On the other side are green tea and herbal tea drinkers, who often add complementary or contrasting tastes to their teas. Some common toppings for these teas include mint leaves, sprigs of fruit, and nutmeg.

Close by, but no longer on the fringe, are the bubble tea enthusiasts, who believe no glass of tea is complete without tapioca pearls. Pearls are divided into 1/12-inch pearls and 1/4-inch pearls. Most places only have the larger pearls. No matter how the tea is made, the pearls sink right to the bottom, which is why the best way to drink bubble tea is with a large straw which can suck up the pearls. Otherwise you will sip away all the tea and leave the pearls on the bottom.

Hot chocolate or cocoa

Here, you have 2 very popular basic choices. You can top it with whipped cream and add a sprinkling of chocolate shavings or cinnamon. Alternately, you can put in a few mini-marshmallows or a single large one. Purists argue endlessly over which choice is better, but both are delicious.

For something a little more exotic, you could make your hot chocolate the way they did in the movie “Chocolat,” with a hint of chili pepper. To get it absolutely right, you really should make it from scratch.

Apple cider

A cinnamon stick is a perfect addition for every cup of apple cider. You can also sprinkle a bit of cinnamon or mulling spices on top of the hot cider, but keep it light.


Some of these toppings work even better with flavored hot drinks. The flavoring is also considered a topping when it is added to a cup of coffee or tea, rather than to the beans or leaves.

Making flavored hot drinks is as simple as choosing a flavoring and mixing it with your hot drink, either before or after adding hot water. When blending flavorings before brewing, a good starting rule of thumb is to add 1 teaspoon of flavoring per cup of beans, leaves, or powder.

Mulling spices work best with apple cider. Vanilla extract and mint work for coffee, tea, and hot chocolate. Many other flavorings work for tea and coffee, including almond, hazelnut, and even fruit extract, but you may have to experiment a bit to discover which flavorings best suit your taste.