Updated: Mar 4, 2021
I'm not normally a coffee chain kind of gal, but when I visit my parents in Minnesota, I can't help getting multiple Caribou Coffee (a Minnesota-based chain) mochas on my trip. Something about them is just a step above the rest... probably just loads of some miraculous dark chocolate mixture. This is my at-home version, when I'm back on the West Coast. Sweet, rich, chocolatey, and oh so comforting. It has about half the sugar of soda, which is not saying much, but ope! whatcha gonna do. (See that there Minnesota accent?).
1/4 c. espresso or dark roast coffee beans
1/2 c. milk or plant milk*
1 tbs. unsweetened cocoa powder (Ghirardelli preferred)
1 tbs. Ghirardelli 60% bittersweet chocolate chips
1 ½ tbs. sugar
¼ tsp. vanilla
*My favorite is Ripple Unsweetened, but any creamy non-dairy milk works well (pretty much everything except almond milk).
Grind coffee beans and brew using either an espresso machine, Bialetti, or Aeropress. If using an espresso machine, pull a double shot. If using a Bialetti or Aeropress, brew with 6 oz water. If you only have ground beans, use slightly less than a 1/4 c. Nespresso pods should work as well! Ultimately, you want a very concentrated dark coffee base resulting in about 4-6 oz of liquid.
In a small saucepan, over medium low heat whisk milk, cocoa, chocolate chips, and sugar until hot and chocolate has melted. When heated to your desired temperature, pull of the heat and stir in vanilla.
To froth your milk if you want to get fancy: 1) Use a milk frother. 2) If you have a French press, pour milk mixture in and froth by vigorously pumping french press up and down until your desired frothiness is achieved. 3) In a pinch, you can shake up the milk in a large glass jar with lid. The milk should fill no more than 1/3 of the jar. Shake for 30-60 seconds. Then, tap bottom of the jar on a counter, and let the foam settle for 30 seconds.
Pour coffee into mug, top with chocolate milk mixture, stir and enjoy with some afternoon fika (Swedish coffee and treat time).