December 15, 2014 9:34 AM EST

What’s better than a steaming mug of thick, creamy hot chocolate on a chilly day? Not much—except maybe a mug scented with cardamom, cinnamon and other chai spices, or a grown-up version spiked with amaretto and sea salt. Can’t decide? You don’t have to. Take a look at our rich and chocolatey master recipe—plus a few of our favorite hot chocolate “hacks”—all of which are as easy to make as they are indulgent.

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