Posted October 22, 2012 by Big Red Boots in Brewed Coffee

Swiss Miss Pick Me Up Hot Chocolate mix

I can feel in that Autumn ( my favorite season) is here when I get cravings for hot chocolate.  You know have gotten the beverage addict tick when you start measuring the holidays by drink specials (Monster Slurpees in June, Kosher Coca Cola in April, and Pumpkin Spice Lattes at Starbucks for Halloween).  For me, fall alwas means stocking up on hot chocolate.   The one drawback to hot chocolate is the lack of caffeine most contain.  This all changed the day I found out Swiss Miss has been holding back on me.  For a short time, ConAgra foods did something spectacular – coming out with the first commercially available caffeine-added hot cocoa on the market.

Of course, this was discontinued in early 2010, leaving chocolate lovers everywhere no place to go for their chocolate caffeine fix.   There is one other brand doing caffeinated hot chocolate, but so far they seem to be relegated to online purchases only, through outlets like Thinkgeek.com.  My sample also came only online, where I paid an exorbitant fee to try someone’s back-stock supply, gouging poor chocolate lovers who just need their fix. People  online seem to be flooding boards, ConAgra phone lines, and even talk of signing petitions to get it back into stores.  Now the two-dollar boxes are going upwards of Ten Bucks a Box. 

And after trying a couple envelopes of this stuff, it is totally and completely worth it.

These hot chocolate envelopes have been coming out in pretty much the same thing for decades – certainly since I have had them as a kid.  The only difference here is I can not afford the whole box auction, and ended up getting just two plain envelopes in a packing envelope.  Fortunately it made the journey safely, not ripping the little metallic lined pouch it came in.

I like the idea behind these swiss miss boxes – labeling all their products clearly on the front and color coding them. It made it easy for me to scan the shelves of all the stores I went into to try and find the stuff before I learned they are no more.  They graciously listed the caffeine content  as well as all the other nutrition on the little packet too – almost like they knew this was going to become a hot commodity and split up into smaller bits to be sold on the brown mocha market  ( they sell sweets you cant find anymore, like Count Chocula in March and Butterfingers Buzz bars).   There might be a conspiracy here – like The McDonalds Shamrock Shake.  Maybe this time we can see it coming back with the help of the Swiss Miss Girl’s crazy hyped up cousin, like Grimace’s green Uncle O’Grimacy did for the green McD shake.

I love the taste of powdered hot chocolate, and Swiss Miss is one of the best.  I hate the Nestle variety, and I don’t have the  wherewithal to spend serious money on hot chocolate – especially when I have three kids with child taste buds in the house.  If ever I go outside of the store brand, Swiss Miss is the way to go – and the Pick Me Up flavor does not disappoint!  It is true at mere mention of powdered hot chocolate King Charles V is screaming in his grave, but for what it is, and the memories it brings back Pick-Me-Up rocks!

There is absolutely no trace of caffeine bitterness or anything other than delicious powdered hot chocolate in here, especially if you use two packets and a bit of milk to make things extra creamy.  Since I only had two packages, I had to make it count and use a full 10 ounce mug of milk for both packages, since I am physically incapable of using just one packet for hot chocolate. There is really nothing else out there for those who like the chocolate but not the coffee – although I think those people are crazy.   For those people who like a warm drink to get moving but prefer not to have to drink the deliciousess of java, this stuff it absolutely perfect (Sorry to rub it in).

For most people, a mug of Swiss Miss Mick-Me-Up will have 134mg of caffeine, about as much as a cup of similar sized drip coffee.  Of course it is still powdered hot chocolate, which has been a unhealthy treat full of chemicals and processed junk since it was made by the Sanna Dairies back in the early 60s.  Now it is even more processed – enough that I was actually a little surprised there was real cocoa in here – along with all the chemicals.

As it proudly states on the package, this also contains  30% RDA Calcium and 25% RDA Vitamin D, as if that makes things better.  A cup of coffee has ZERO calories compared to the 110 calories, or 220 calories respectively,  per serving.  Of course, I could really care less as I am drinking this – full of sweet creamy deliciousness.  Maybe they will bring this back to the public in regular and diet formulas – doing a No Sugar Added version of it too!  Until then, I guess we will just have to stick to boring hot chocolate, and just melt some Foosh Mints in the cup.

Big Red Boots