Chocolate and sugar: Chocolate comes to Europe
Welcome to Quatr.us Study Guides!

Chocolate and Sugar

Aztec man with a cup of cocoa
Aztec man serving a cup of cocoa

September 2016 - When Spanish invaders came to the court of the Aztec ruler Montezuma in 1519, Montezuma naturally served them chocolate in gold cups. The Spanish soldiers didn't like chocolate very much, but they drank it to be polite. When they realized that chocolate had caffeine in it like coffee, they thought maybe they could sell it back home in Spain, where coffee was the new big thing. Some Maya people travelled with the Spanish to Spain and brought samples of cocoa with them.

Chocolate house
A chocolate house in England (1700s)

Sure enough, rich people in Europe loved chocolate drinks. People said chocolate was the food of love. Europeans mostly drank chocolate hot, like coffee, and they added sugar, because sugar was also a new big thing and people were already adding sugar to their coffee. By 1689, Hans Sloane in Jamaica thought of adding milk to chocolate, and with milk and sugar hot chocolate became more like the hot chocolate we drink today. In 1674, a coffeehouse in London began to mix chocolate with flour and eggs to bake the first chocolate cakes and cookies.


Try Equal Exchange organic chocolate
- fair trade and delicious!

But only rich people could have chocolate, or coffee, or sugar, or eggs - all these things were much too expensive for most people. And people thought chocolate was for grown men, like coffee - not for women and certainly not for kids.

Meanwhile in Mexico, Spanish Christian nuns began to add cocoa to traditional Aztec sauces (mole, from the Aztec word for "sauce"). Soon a lot of people in Mexico were making sauces with chocolate in them, often with chili peppers as well.

More about Chocolate
Early History of Chocolate
Learn by Doing - Chocolate Mousse Project

Bibliography and further reading about chocolate:

Chocolate Mousse Recipe
Chocolate Strawberries Recipe
Chocolate Cake Recipe
Latin American food page
Quatr.us home


Please help other teachers and students find us: link to this page from your class page.
Karen Carr is Associate Professor Emerita, Department of History, Portland State University. She holds a doctorate in Classical Art and Archaeology from the University of Michigan. Follow her on Instagram, Pinterest, or Twitter, or buy her book, Vandals to Visigoths.
Karen Carr is Associate Professor Emerita, Department of History, Portland State University. She holds a doctorate in Classical Art and Archaeology from the University of Michigan. Follow her on Instagram or Twitter, or buy her book, Vandals to Visigoths.
Sign up for more free articles and special offers in Quatr.us' weekly newsletter:
We will never share your e-mail address unless you allow us to do so. View our privacy policy. Easy unsubscribe links are provided in every email.
Check out our new ebook: Short and Simple: Ancient Greek Myths! - just out! Twenty-five easy to read, illustrated stories, from Pandora to Medea, Icarus, and the Trojan Horse (you can read these online as samples). Get it this week for just $14.99, five dollars off the regular price of $19.99.
Cite this page
  • Author: K.E. Carr
  • Title:
  • Site Name: Quatr.us Study Guides
  • Publisher: Quatr.us
  • Date Published:
Did you find what you needed? Ask your teacher to link to this page so other people can use it too! Send it in and win a Quatr.us "Great Page!" award!
Sign up for more free articles and special offers in Quatr.us' weekly newsletter:
We will never share your e-mail address unless you allow us to do so. View our privacy policy. Easy unsubscribe links are provided in every email.
Comment on This Article
Quatr.us is loading comments...
(Comments will appear after moderation, if they are kind and helpful. Feel free to ask questions, and we'll try to answer them.)
Cite this page
  • Carr, K.E. . Quatr.us Study Guides, . Web. 16 October, 2017
ADVERTISEMENT