I was looking for something fun to add to our Thanksgiving night dinner, a new dessert or just a little something special to finish off the evening. Some time spent on Pinterest and I completely fell in love with the idea of a hot cocoa bar or hot chocolate bar. Totally LOVE this idea! And it’s not limited to hot chocolate, there’s no reason you couldn’t add in cider, teas, coffee – whatever floats your warm after dinner drink boat. You could make hot cocoa mix from scratch, use packets or even go with the K-cup route.
I think what I love most about this is you can use so many things that you might already have or find at your grocery store. There’s really no right or wrong way. When you have a nice cup of hot cocoa all of the mix-ins and add ons are like a bonus, so whatever you have, will work. Here are some great suggestions as to what you could sit out.
- Hot Cocoa (mix, packets, K-cups)
- Marshmallows (mini, Mallow Bits, peppermint, french vanilla, sugar cookie, caramel – any variety!)
- Chocolate chips (or white chocolate chips, butterscotch, peanut butter)
- Candy canes – whole for stirring, crushed for srpinkles
- Caramel – sauce or Kraft Caramel Bits
- PEEPS Marshmallows (they are an adorable hot cocoa topper!)
- Toffee Bits
- Cookies – Pepperidge Farm Pirouettes are a nice choice
- Pretzel rods
- Finely chopped nuts
- Ovation Chocolate Sticks
- Whipped Cream
- Flavored syrup
- Chocolate syrup
- Bailey’s Irish Cream, Kahlua or other favorite spirits
- Pretty straws or spoons
- To go coffee cups (not with the adult hot chocolates please!)
- Tea, Coffee or Cider are nice options to have
Hot cocoa on a stick is a super fun option for a hot cocoa bar. You can check out my recipe for Minty Hot Chocolate On A Stick over on Target’s website.
You can add on some really fun items like paper straws from Sweets & Treats Boutique, super cute spoons from The Bakers Confection or darling mugs from Amazon. And feel free to add in some Bailey’s or other beverages if you like your hot cocoa with a little something extra.
There are so many ways to set up a hot cocoa bar, from simple to elaborate. You could use a tiny little spot on your kitchen counter, or set up a big table, totally up to you! You basically just sit all of the fixings out, along with a way to heat up your milk or water, and let your friends and family Not only is this great for after Thanksgiving dinner, but perfect for holidays, having friends over before going out to look at Christmas lights, Christmas eve (surely Santa would appreciate it) or even on Christmas morning. Since I went a little overboard researching it, I thought I’d share the awesome ideas I found with you. So check out some of the amazing Hot Cocoa Bars that other bloggers have shared.
I think Jen at Pen N’ Paperflowers has created my favorite Hot Chocolate Bar. And you can get her Baby It’s Cold Outside, Warm Up Here printable for free. Totally doing that!
I would also highly recommend these hot cocoa cookies! They are one of my all time favorite recipes!
Wondering what hot chocolates are the best? Check out Huffington Post Hot Chocolate Taste Test Results