Holiday Hot Cocoa Bar

Holiday Hot Cocoa Bar - roomfortuesday.comI have always wanted to set up a hot cocoa bar for the holidays and this year I vowed to finally do it! It’s perfect for seasonal entertaining and trust me when I say- if you’re not enjoying sipping chocolate or spiked hot cocoa this winter, you’re doing it wrong. I invited a few friends over to have a hot drink, hangout, and relax before the season gets too crazy busy. Click through to see how I set things up and pin five of my favorite hot cocoa combinations I crave all winter long!

Holiday Hot Cocoa Bar - roomfortuesday.comI’ll start by saying, I’ve been spoiled by my coffee bar. When it comes time to move and renovate another kitchen… you better believe I’ll be designing another designated coffee spot. It’s one of the most frequently used areas in the kitchen. Lucky for us, the pot filler and espresso maker also come in super handy for hot cocoa.

Holiday Hot Cocoa Bar - roomfortuesday.comIt didn’t take me very long to set up the station- probably 10 minutes, max. I set out some of my favorite vintage mugs, saucers, and all of the fixings for a decadent cup of hot cocoa.

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Holiday Hot Cocoa Bar - roomfortuesday.comIf you’re wondering what kind of items to include, this list should help… just pick and choose what sounds good:

Holiday Hot Cocoa Bar - roomfortuesday.comIt’s more fun to let your guests make their own hot chocolate concoctions, but sometimes it can be daunting staring at a counter filled with delectable ingredients. I wanted to share five of my favorite combinations you could offer as suggestions, that are typically loved by all. Feel free to pin or save them for later!

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Holiday Hot Cocoa Bar - roomfortuesday.comFirst up… classic hot cocoa with mini marshmallows. This is exactly what comes to mind when I think of my childhood during the holiday season. I’d go out and romp in the snow with my family and come into a cozy house, wood stove burning, and hot cocoa on the counter waiting for me. If you’re a sipping chocolate purist, hold the marshmallows!

Holiday Hot Cocoa Bar - roomfortuesday.comNext, we’re moving onto something a bit more fun. I personally like hot chocolate best when it’s spiked… who else is with me?


Holiday Hot Cocoa Bar - roomfortuesday.comThis is definitely as good as it sounds! Obviously you already know this, but Emmett and I moved to Utah for the breathtaking scenery and landscape. We really enjoy packing things up (dogs included) and heading into the mountains to camp. One of our traditions is to take a bottle of High West (local whiskey) with us. It’s a campfire ritual we enjoy. I invented this hot chocolate recipe that includes our favorite whiskey and it’s SO perfect for the holiday season.

Holiday Hot Cocoa Bar - roomfortuesday.comIt’s definitely a dessert cocktail, and if I’m feeling extra wild- I’ll add a chocolate stir stick in addition to the s’more marshmallow to cut the whiskey.

Holiday Hot Cocoa Bar - roomfortuesday.comMoving onto a hot chocolate combo the coffee lovers will enjoy…


Holiday Hot Cocoa Bar - roomfortuesday.comI’m a big fan of hot espresso served over a scoop of gelato- otherwise known as the affogato. I like to do the same with hot cocoa… basically, I’ll make a mocha using hot chocolate and add a scoop of vanilla bean ice cream to it.

Holiday Hot Cocoa Bar - roomfortuesday.comThere’s something about silky smooth ice cream dunking down into piping hot chocolate that is incredibly delectable and rich tasting.

Holiday Hot Cocoa Bar - roomfortuesday.comThis recipe from bon appetit uses peppermint ice cream instead of vanilla bean- which I think would also taste delightful and festive! Next up… another boozy hot chocolate.


Holiday Hot Cocoa Bar - roomfortuesday.comKahlua is a my step dad’s favorite… he’s a rum lover and I remember the first time he splashed a float of Kahlua into my hot cocoa (don’t worry- I was of drinking age, haha). I looked at him with doubt, but he made my try it and I was pleasantly surprised how amazing it tasted. It’s still a drink that reminds me of him.

Holiday Hot Cocoa Bar - roomfortuesday.comI liked to top it with fresh whipped cream, a drizzle of dark chocolate, and salted caramel syrup. If you like your boozy holiday drinks extra strong (like my step dad), feel free to add a splash of rum. Last, but not least… a classic peppermint option!


Holiday Hot Cocoa Bar - roomfortuesday.comI actually don’t love the chocolate and mint combination, but I think I’m the anomaly because most people do! If you’re one of those people, add some peppermint syrup to your hot cocoa. Feel free to layer on the toppings too: crushed peppermint, marshmallows, whipped cream, and a chocolate wafer stir stick.

Holiday Hot Cocoa Bar - roomfortuesday.comI’m so happy I decided to make the most of the pre-holiday season and invite friends over for hot cocoa. What do you think of the hot chocolate bar? Is it something you’d try? If so- what is your favorite recipe or cocoa combination? I just love this festive time of year!

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  1. Festive! I love the greenery at the ceiling. A coffee bar is definitely on the wishlist for my next house, and who could resist a hot cocoa bar? I also prefer mine with a splash of bourbon. Every year Pinterest tries to convince me that homemade marshmallows are a thing…maybe this will be the year I try them!

    1. Thanks Peggi! A splash of bourbon in hot cocoa is simply the best. We’re kindred spirits! I’ve tried homemade marshmallows before and they’re such a pain. I ended up buying this big pre-made sheet at World Market and cut them to size. So much easier and they taste delicious.

  2. I did a cocoa bar for my sister’s sweet 16 a few years ago (so obvi no alcoholic versions 😂) and it was a huge hit! I’d love to do another one, maybe we’ll get some snow this winter and I’ll do it!

    1. That’s so fun! What an amazing sister you are :) xox

  3. Cathy | the Grit and Polish says:

    Love this post, Sarah! I knew we could count on you for awesome boozy chocolate recipes :) I saw your stories yesterday and know how quickly you put this all together…I have to say you’re the best and hardest working blogger I know! We all have so much to learn from you (boozy hot chocolate included)!

    1. Thanks Cathy! Lol! You know I like my hot chocolate with a splash of whiskey. haha! Your comment made my day. The hours are long but I love what I do! The feeling is mutual- I have so much to learn from YOU :) Have the best weekend. xox

  4. Hot chocolate is my favorite hot drink! Im so glad I have found another who enjoys it as much! My family makes fun of me because Ill drink that instead of coffee. To each their own…right? You have given me some really good ideas for this winter. The kahlua one sounds divine! Did you make your own marshmallows? Love the size! Cheers!

    1. Yay!! I’m a big hot chocolate fan too. It’s not winter or the holidays without it. To each their own- you keep on drinking your cocoa Danna :) I didn’t make the marshmallows. I cheated and bought this big marshmallow sheet and cut them to size. Cheers! xox