Entertaining | Set Up a Hot Cocoa Bar

hot cocoa set up

My kids love hot cocoa and it seems like they ask for it on a daily basis during the winter months.  Thanks to my friend Jessica who snapped a photo on Instagram of her hot cocoa bar, I was inspired to set up my own so the kids could help themselves.  As a mom I think we sometimes get so used to doing things for our children that we forget that they’re growing up and able to do things on their own.   This hot cocoa bar has become their own little spot in the kitchen, and they come home from school every day and head straight for it!

I didn’t do anything complicated or fancy here, but it does make for a cute presentation and a conversation piece when guests come over.  I made space on a table that’s against my chalkboard wall {another fabulous focal point} and put out the basic accouterments….

hot cocoa chalkboard wallhot cocoa barhot cocoa spoonshot cocoa bar hot cocoa bar PicMonkey Collage

Set up your own Hot Cocoa Bar:

  • I used a large silver tray to hold all the items:  disposable cups, glass measuring cup to microwave the water in, large jar of hot cocoa mix {from Walmart}, mini marshmallows, chocolate chips, and chocolate & peppermint spoons {from TJMaxx/HomeGoods and Party City respectively}.
  • Use a large mason jar to hold marshmallows, and a large glass jar {Walmart $7} to hold the hot chocolate mix.  Add a scoop to the mix and make sure the children know how many scoops to use per 6 oz. of water.
  • The tray keeps everything neat and tidy.
  • The chalkboard wall makes an interesting background and a great place to write a bar sign.  You could also use a printable sign or chalkboard sign if you like.

I did have to lay down the law with my kids and let them know if they abuse this treat then it would go away.  Otherwise, they would stand and eat all the chocolate chips and marshmallows!

They’ve been wonderful with it and really enjoy it.  I’m hoping it will be one of those things they remember fondly as they grow up!

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About Chris

Chris Nease is a party stylist and home entertaining expert with over 15 years of experience. In addition to her work as founding editor of Celebrations At Home, Chris is an editorial stylist and has contributed to Homes.com, SheKnows, and countless other websites. Most recently she was featured in Celebrate magazine, and her work has been published in Woman's World, Ocala Style, Yum Food & Fun for Kids, and Cottages & Bungalows.


  1. Love this, Chris!! I just might have to do something like this!

  2. What a wonderful idea. My daughter married in December, and we had a hot chocolate bar set up in one of the rooms – so cute and such a hit!!

  3. Chris, this is very interesting. Somehow I missed this post, but I’m glad I see it now. I may reproduce this idea at home. Cheers!

  4. This is the perfect little nook to keep up all winter!

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