We hosted the Girl Scouts at our house last weekend for our annual Operation Christmas Child shoebox assembly party.
This is always so fun and I like to do a special treat for the little ladies after they finish decorating all the boxes and stuffing them. Last year we did a Crock Pot Caramel Apple bar which was so much fun. This year I really wanted to do a Hot Chocolate bar.
This is actually really easy, a very affordable way to entertain and so much fun!
I will definitely do this again- I already promised my girls we could have a hot chocolate bar for Family Movie Night in a few weeks when we plan to watch the Polar Express.
Essentially for the hot chocolate bar, you can get your hot chocolate ready (I used this Crock Pot Hot Chocolate recipe) if your Crock Pot is unattractive or too big for your table, you can also use a fondue pot to keep it warm. My hot chocolate cooked for 2 hours on high and it was steaming hot so I actually unplugged it to let it cool off a bit for the children. Then we just used a ladle to ladle it right out!
You can make any variety of toppings that you like- the sky is the limit. I actually just used stuff we had on hand.
Here is what I used as the toppings:
- Fresh Whipped Cream (recipe here)
- Candy Canes- I gently processed them in the food processor to get thick chunks. Candy canes whole as stirrers are great too!
- Mini Chocolate Chips (or chocolate shavings)
- White Chocolate Chips (or shavings)
- Cinnamon Red Hots
- Cinnamon to sprinkle on top (cheap shakers can be found at the Dollar Store)
And then I also had chocolate chip cookies or you might serve sugar cookies (this Chai Sugar Cookie recipe I love!) or for something to snack on- popcorn in a large bowl with little bags would be fantastic. Easy and cheap!
I nearly did popcorn and I think some of the shakers with different seasoning options would be really fun.
Other ideas for toppings:
- Ground Oreos
- Ground Graham Crackers
- Colorful or seasonal sprinkles
- Caramel sauce
- Torani Syrups (hazelnut etc..)
- Chopped Andes Mints
- Chopped Heath bars
- Mini M&Ms
- Flavored whipped cream or flavored marshmallows
I used this awesome black chalkboard paper that I found at Target and used chalk to just decorate a little and identify things that might not be completely clear to people.
I used my Silhouette machine to cut circles from one sheet of glitter gold and green scrapbook paper. (A circle punch will do the same thing.) You can do this with any color paper and in any shape… now I wish I had done little stars for the gold paper.
I tied a little twine and some jingle bells around the bottles and included a few straws since these are children. We used paper cups in festive colors and the adults got assorted mugs. If you cut a small piece of cling wrap or saran wrap you can create a “lid” for the cups for children and just poke the straws through the lid.
Oh and one other thing- I dug out some mini Christmas lights to add a little twinkle and also the pretty Jingle Bells garland that I made last year and grabbed some flowers off the dining room table.
And that was it!
Really not hard at all to do and the only thing I bought was the chalkboard wrapping paper for $5, the Jingle bells (about $2 at Michael’s) and Twine (Dollar Spot at Target) plus fresh whipping cream and marshmallows.
If you decide to give this a shot please come back and let me know how it went for you! I will say that if you decide to host 13 little 7 year olds, you might consider placing a bouncer at the table to limit overexcited eyes. I discovered my little girl decided to get creative and made a cookie to match her hot chocolate…. A little treat is the idea here not a sugar coma 😀
And if you like this post, you might also check out:
Melting Snowman Cookies– these are so adorable in person. Guaranteed hit!
DIY Tissue Poms– you can do these in any color and they are a great way to cheaply dress up a party table