I hope you’re all doing well! Welcome to Blogmas Day 7! Today’s post is all about hosting a hot chocolate bar for your friends and family. It’s really easy to set up and everyone always enjoys themselves! Of course, you don’t have to make it all about hot chocolate, you can use coffee or milkshakes too – it’s really customisable! I’ve put together a list of everything that you’ll need to create the yummiest of beverages to warm you through this Christmas…
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First things first, assuming you don’t want people cupping their hands and improvising, you’ll need to make sure you provide something for your guests to drink out of. It’s time to get your best sipping devices out folks! There are lots of different options when it comes to hot chocolate mugs.
Use a simple matching set or go all out and show off your festive collection (ASDA are amazing for these every year). It might be time to go and find that set you bought for “special occasions” that’s gathering dust in the cupboard. If you’re lacking in the mug department, don’t worry – charity shops are brilliant for these. Also, don’t freak out about not having a matching set – sometimes a more eclectic look is better! You can also put out helpful things like coasters, spoons and napkins so that your guests can help themselves. I’ve provided links to some bits that I’ve found below:
Reindeer Mug – Gingerbread Mug – Mrs Claus Mug – Santa Mug – Christmas Sloth Mug – Sprout Mug – Christmas Pudding Coasters – Christmas Noir Coasters – Holly Sprigs Napkins
TREATS & TOPPINGS
In my opinion, a successful hot chocolate bar is ALL about the toppings. Go crazy and fill lots of bowls and containers with sweet treats and goodies! I like to use a 3-section serving bowl so that I can fit in as much as possible. There’s all kinds of festive dinnerware in places like TK Maxx or in pound shops at this time of year so it’s worth having a browse if you want to go the extra mile! You can even make your own reusing old Mason Jars, just tie some ribbon or string around the lids and voila! If you want to go all out, you can label everything – just use some festive gift tags! If you don’t have the budget to buy all of these bits, ask your guests to bring the quirkiest ingredients or Christmas mugs that they can find. That way, it becomes more of a game and you won’t be out of pocket!
Here’s some of my favourites toppings and condiments to get you started:
- Mini Marshmallows
- Candy Canes (you can crush these so that they’re easier to sprinkle)
- Honeycomb Pieces
- Chocolate Chips
- Fudge Pieces
- Squirty Cream
- Grated Chocolate
- Flavoured Syrups
I always have mini marshmallows because they are a must have when it comes to hot chocolate. They also really take me back to when I was a little girl and I would get hot chocolates at the weekend with my dad – saving the marshmallows until last! You can even get Christmas themed marshmallows now too! Provide some different shapes and sizes if you want to give your guests lots of options.
This year, I popped some gingerbread men in a little ceramic holder that I bought from a bargain store last year! I thought they would make great dippers for those that fancied a more festive flavour. Plus, they look adorable – look at their little faces! If you’re not a fan of those, you can provide some different snacks – I usually have some chocolate biscuits available for those with a sweet tooth! It’s also a fun idea to throw a biscuit decorating party if you want to do something a little more creative!
Grated chocolate is the topping you never knew you needed! I got this little grater from Morrisons a couple of years ago and I flipping love it. Pop out some different flavours of chocolate so that your guests can pick and choose whatever they fancy! This year I included some segments of Terry’s Chocolate Orange and some mini Wispa bites to make sure I covered all bases. If you want some extra DIY fun, provide your guests with a potato peeler so that they can make their own chocolate curls!
There’s nothing quite like creating a masterpiece and piling whipped cream up on-top of your chocolatey beverage! It just feels wrong to not have this stuff at a hot chocolate party. I’m pretty sure there’s now all kinds of quirky flavours out there just waiting to be tried – including chocolate and brandy!
Now it’s time to figure out how you want to display everything. This is the most exciting part for me as it means I can get creative and embrace my inner elf! If I only have a few people coming over, I’ll use wooden boards to put everything on as they don’t take up a lot of space but they can still display all of the goodies! If you want to make your display look extra special, sprinkle some marshmallows and chocolates around the board to fill in the gaps! You can also use Christmas decorations like pine cones, baubles and garlands to make it look festive!
Sometimes I use a little trolley or a cart to display my hot chocolate bar! It means I can load it with goodies and it only takes a little bit of room. Plus, if you don’t have much space available, you can station it anywhere in your house without having to create a lot of room in your kitchen or living room! You can also decorate it with fairy lights or Christmas decorations if you want to keep it cosy.
I hope this post has inspired you to get creative this Christmas! I’m not a big drinker and I don’t really enjoy going on big nights out so I usually prefer to stay in. That doesn’t mean it has to be boring though! Hosting a hot chocolate bar is my favourite type of cosy get together, especially during the colder months. They’re fun, festive and easy to set up – plus everyone always has a good time! You can do the same with pizza, cookies, coffee, cocktails or even combine it with a sleepover for the ultimate evening in!