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Put to the Test: Drinking chocolate

Well you may have given up eating chocolates but the cold January weather means you have the perfect excuse to indulge yourself with some comforting hot chocolate! This week we tasted four hot chocolate drinks made from powder, including Cadbury's.

Both the Lidl and Aldi versions suggested that you add water but for fairness we added hot milk to all powders because we reckoned that would definitely taste better. In addition to taste, we looked at the ingredients, sugar and fat content and the price.

Tesco Drinking Chocolate 500g

Verdict: Firstly, this was the cheapest of the lot and, secondly, it was our favourite. It tastes a lot like Cadbury's version except a little bit less sweet. In fact the short ingredient list is identical to Cadbury; sugar, cocoa solids, salt and flavouring. Per 100g of the powder there is 71.3g of sugar and 6.1g of fat, both the second-highest of the four compared.

Price: €1.59 (€3.18/Kg) 8/10

Cadbury drinking chocolate, 250g

Verdict: Yes, the price difference is incredible, especially given that Tesco's offering tastes more or less the same. Still it tastes good. Like that drink, this contains 25% cocoa solids but this boasts the Fair Trade label, which is a plus. It contains the highest sugar content at 72.2g per 100g and the second-lowest fat content at 5.9g per 100g.

Price: approx €2.45 (€9.80/Kg) 7/10

Lidl bellarom hot chocolate, 400g

Verdict: A long list of ingredients here, starting with whey powder, which doesn't feature at all in the two above, this one contains 9% of "fat reduced cocoa powder". So the taste isn't as chocolatey at all, although it is better made with milk rather than the recommended water. It has the lowest sugar content at 70.1g per 100g of powder but the fat content comes in highest at 6.2g per 100g.

Price: €1.49 (€3.72 / Kg) 4/10

Aldi alcafe hot chocolate, 400g

Verdict: The same price as Lidl's and another long ingredient list starting with whey powder, this one contains 8% of "fat reduced cocoa powder". It's also the same (low) price but we felt that Lidl's hot chocolate tasted marginally better. Having said that neither are a patch on the first two. This is second-lowest for sugar content (70.2g per 100g) and the lowest for fat content with 4.6g per 100g of powder.

Price: €1.49 (€3.72 / Kg) 4/10

Irish Independent