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Create a Fun Hot Cocoa Bar on a Kitchen Island

Recently a client and I were brainstorming ways to dress up her large island. The challenge with decorating a kitchen island and putting something on them that doesn’t take up too much space, or that has to be constantly moved to use the island top. We decided a fun hot cocoa bar on a kitchen island in the middle would be a great way to fill the area with something cute and functional. I mean, who doesn’t love jars full of chocolate and marshmallows? And who doesn’t love a up of hot cocoa on a cold winter day?

Fun bot cocoa bar on a kitchen island for the holidays

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We started with a shopping trip to pick up various jars and containers. We found the super cute Santa plates at Homegoods. To make everything look like it belonged there, we placed the bulk of it on a tray to tie it together, and built around that. It could also easily ne removed then if they need more kitchen island space.

Canister jar full of hot cocoa and mini mashmallows

Building out a hot chocolate station

We started by filling a jar with a lid full of hot cocoa covered in mini marshmallows, we found that these cute wooden measuring cups we perfect to use as scoopers. There are so many other fun toppings and add ins you can add to a hot cocoa bar to really make it fun such as:

  • Chocolate Chips
  • Chocolate Syrup
  • Toffee Bits
  • Candy Canes
  • Chocolate Bars
  • Hot Chocolate Bombs
  • Sprinkles
  • Peppermint Sticks
  • Terry’s Chocolate Oranges
  • Flavored Hershey’s Kisses
  • Chocolate Shavings
  • Cocoa Powder for Dusting
  • Caramel Sauce


Ingredients for a hot cocoa bar

We added some pre-packaged sprinkles in a cute mug, and a bottle of peppermint crunch to sprinkle on top of whipped cream. They added so much holiday cheer.

Marshmallows in a jar for hot cocoa

We also picked up a few bags of these cute pink and white marshmallows. I almost hate to eat them because they are so cute, but sacrifices must be made sometimes. I used these cute snowman marshmallows a few years ago on the kid’s hot chocolate at they were a big hit! Next to a few packets of hot cocoa mix, they just invite someone to make a mug or two!

Cute mugs and DIY hot cooca bar

The red Christmas tree farm mugs were the perfect look for what we were going for. We put them on a stool to give the entire display some height and visual interest, and to make them easier to grab in the DIY hot chocolate bar.

Cansiters and jars full of chocolates

Of course anytime you fill a jar full of chocolate it draws attention! I know her kids were waiting until I left to dive in, and I don’t blame them at all! This is such an easy thing to do visually, and of course, everyone loves to sneak a piece or two. We bought extra bags so refilling was easy. These could also be filled with wafer cookies, pirouette cookies (my family’s favorite!), or even shortbread cookies for dunking.

Pretty and fun hot cocoa bar on a kitchen island for family and friends

The cake stand in back has a few pretty, pink meringue cookies, and a few faux pine greenery and a fun wooden house on the kitchen island add to the charm of the display. It was fun to play with something ordinary and make it a little extra- ordinary. Everyone loves a visual treat along with an edible one! Make it easy by leaving a container of clean spoons for stirring near by, packers of hot chocolate mixes of different flavors, and lots of ingredients for your guests to add in to customize each mug. You can even add  fun printables with hot cocoa recipes with instructions with fun names for people to try! it’s a fun and festive way to celebrate winter and makes useful holiday decor!

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Easy kitchen island hot cocoa bar