Gather the hot cocoa toppings and sweet treats and make a Hot Chocolate Charcuterie Board for Christmas!
This fun and festive dessert idea is great for a cozy family afternoon at home or a holiday party with friends.
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The minute the weather starts to cool down, my boys always ask for hot chocolate! But this year I decided to level up and make a full-on Hot Cocoa Board!
This fun topping bar idea takes your standard mug of hot cocoa and makes it out of this world.
It’s easy to make and so fun to serve.
Whether you make a gourmet hot chocolate from scratch (like my Orange Cardamom Hot Chocolate) or use a store-bought packets, these toppings will let each person create a delicious dessert drink that they’ll love.
How to Make a Hot Chocolate Charcuterie Board
Make your board as elaborate or as simple as you’d like. You can keep it to just hot cocoa toppings or you can include small cookies and treats like I have.
Decide what your ultimate goal is for the board. Are you trying to keep it themed to one flavor, like chocolate or peppermint? Or do you like the look of something monochromatic?
Before you start picking up items, you will want to think ahead to the finished look.
Find a tray or board
I like to use a tray with sides rather than a flat board. While a flat board looks great for a charcuterie platter that will be enjoyed by adults, children will eff that s up.
Using bowls keeps everything tidy and also means you need fewer treats. You can easily fill in any empty space with decorations.
If you are trying to keep costs down, look for a smaller tray. Sometimes we love the look of an overflowing tray of goodies but that can get really expensive.
Also consider where you will be setting up your bar so you know if you need to leave room on the tray for the mugs.
These Santa mugs are stupid cute, right?!
Gather the cocoa toppings and treats
Although I wasn’t going for a one color look, I did try to keep things to white, chocolate, beige and red. That way, it would still have a cohesive look but not be really hard to put together.
I bought way more than I needed but I knew that we would enjoy anything we didn’t use right now at a later date.
If something was on the expensive side, I just bought one or two and bought less expensive items to fill in.
Things to use on the toppings board:
- Hot cocoa mix
- Peppermint candies
- Candy Canes
- Rolled cookies
- Chocolate covered pretzels
- Hot chocolate on a stick
- Flavored syrups
You could even put Hot Cocoa Bombs (or make them) since those are so hot right now!
You may also want to have some sort of whipped cream (or dairy alternative). Kids love whipped cream!
Set up the hot cocoa board
Since I know that the hot cocoa is a focal point, I wanted to place that first and then build the board around that.
I grabbed a variety of white bowls, in different sizes, and spread them out on the tray.
I added the treats in the bowls making sure to pay attention to how the colors were spread out and also making sure the heights were different so it kept everything looking interesting and intentional.
I filled in the empty spaces with some cute green vase filler. It really added to the holiday look.
But you could fill in with other cookies, popcorn, etc. And if you’re totally crazy, you could fill in the whole tray with sugar and then nestle the bowls into that to make it look like snow…
It would look SO cute. But I am ant and mess averse, so I couldn’t do it.
You can also decorate the area around the board with a sign kit.
Serve hot cocoa with toppings
Set out some mugs and gather the kids! When I saw these Santa face mugs I knew I needed to get some. They have a few different skin tones which I LOVE.
Fill the mugs with hot water and put whatever size measuring spoon your hot chocolate mix calls for in the jar to make keep things easy.
Use spoons or a frother to mix the cocoa.
Then stand back and let everyone go to town.
For the most part, you don’t even need serving utensils, just let the kids use their hands.
While this is 2020 and we’re all worried about cooties, I’m guessing for the most part, these trays will be made to share with immediate family.
Set out little appetizer plates if you have also included cookies on your cocoa bar.
While this toppings board is a little bit elaborate, I think we all could use some extra special touches and details right now.
Not only is this a fun idea for a cozy afternoon, you could also set a hot cocoa station up Christmas brunch, a winter birthday celebration or any other time someone needs a treat.
It’s easy to make this more winter focused by just swapping out the Santa mugs for some plain ones.
And if you wish you were enjoying a cup of hot cocoa with your friends, you could always drop off a mini version for them to enjoy.
More holiday fun to check out:
- Make Candy Bar Trains! This train activity is a little bit easier than making gingerbread houses and still super fun. Use Christmas miniatures to make them festive as centerpieces.
- Sip along to my Hallmark Christmas Movie Drinking Game! You can even use a cup of hot chocolate.
- Save this list of Holiday Movies on Netflix for when it’s time to wrap all the presents!
Build your own Hot Chocolate Board
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