A hot chocolate bar with homemade hot chocolate is a creative way to bring joy to kids and adults at any cold-weather gathering!
I love a serve-yourself spread at a party, whether it’s a make-your-own taco bar, an appetizer board, or a breakfast grazing board. Knowing this, Van knew that Platters and Boards by Shelly Westerhausen would be the perfect gift for me at Christmas last year.
It was too late by then to use one of my favorite ideas from the book: a hot chocolate bar! Well, technically theirs was a “board,” but you know what I mean.
All those toppings in their vessels are so pretty on their own that it’s easy to make it look as simple or fancy as you want. Pair them with a decadent slow cooker hot chocolate and you have a spread that the kids (or adults… more about that below) are sure to love.
What to Put on Your Hot Chocolate Bar
- Whipped cream
- Chocolate chips (big, mini, white chocolate, butterscotch, etc.)
- Chocolate and caramel syrups
- Crushed candy (Heath bar, Reese’s cups, Butterfingers)
- Crushed Cookies (Oreo, chocolate chip)
- Candy canes and crushed peppermints
- Pirouette Cookies
- Sea Salt
- The white chocolate syrup from our White Chocolate Mocha recipe.
Put all of this next to a big plate of Sourdough French Toast and you’ll have some happy folks.
Other Items You May Need for Your Hot Chocolate Bar
- Cute mugs or disposable cups with lids and sleeves
- These adorable little spoons
- Chalkboard signs for ingredients
- A slow-cooker for keeping it hot!
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What about the adults?
I’m so glad you asked. If it’s “that kind of party,” bust out those liqueurs and whiskeys because this hot chocolate bar is not just for kids! These spirits are perfect for mixing in to make spiked hot chocolate.
- Grand Marnier
- Peppermint Schnapps
- Skrewball Peanut Butter Whiskey
- Simple Syrups for Cocktails
How to Make Homemade Hot Chocolate
This recipe is made using the simplest ingredients on purpose. We want you to have a clean canvas for all those decadent toppings! It’s plenty rich and creamy on it’s own, though, so enjoy it however you want it.
Best of all, you can make your hot chocolate on the stove and then transfer it to a slow cooker to keep it hot, or you can just make it right in the slow cooker!
Homemade Hot Chocolate
- 5 cups milk
- 2 cups heavy whipping cream
- 2 cups milk chocolate chips
- 14.5 oz sweetened condensed milk
- 1.5 tsp vanilla extract
- Combine all ingredients in a pot or a slow cooker on medium high heat. Whisk until all chocolate has dissolved.
- Let cook for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally. Keep on low heat until ready to serve.
If you’re here you must, so you’ll want to check out these recipes too:
- Double Chocolate Cookies (they’re so easy)
- Hot Fudge Pudding Cake (made in a cast iron skillet)
- Chocolate Chip Mini Cheesecakes
- Cookies with Coconut, Brown Butter & Chocolate Chips (did we say Brown Butter? Yup, we did!)
- Mini Brownie Trifles
If you make this or any of our recipes we’d love for you to leave us a comment and star rating. If you’re into sharing your creations, snap a photo and tag us when you post it to Facebook or Instagram.
Taylor Kiser says
So fun and creative! This will be perfect to do for our family holiday gathering!
Hope y’all enjoy! Thanks, Taylor.
Just made this Hot Chocolate Bar for my kiddos while we sat by the fire and my kids thought I was the coolest Mom ever!
We agree! You are the coolest!
Toni Dash says
This is so amazing!! Such a great idea for the holidays!
This homemade hot chocolate is delicious and so creamy! I love the hot chocolate bar idea, it’s a fun way to get everyone involved! I’m definitely doing this for my family Christmas!
Y’all will love it. Thanks, Luci!
Love this idea! So much fun for a family afternoon.