A Winter Wedding Idea We Love: Hot Cocoa

Updated 11/15/17

Photo by White Rabbit Studios

Let's be real: what is a party in wintertime without hot cocoa? This seasonal drink is a must at any event this time of year and your winter wedding should be no exception. Well, lucky for you and all of your guests, this menu addition won't blow your food and beverage budget as it's an easy add or replacement for standard coffee service (trust us: your guests will be happy with the switch).

But no matter when you serve everyone this seasonal treat—we love the idea of doing it before the ceremony to warm everyone up, at cocktail hour if it's spiked, or even around a bonfire late-night as dessert—there are a few things you can do to upgrade your standard cut of hot cocoa.

For starters, forget a white ceramic mug and put the goods in something pretty (we're feeling the look of a copper mug right now as a warm-toned color palette is especially trendy this season). From there, it's all about adding "extras" to the drink, like marshmallows in fun shapes and drink stirrers in the form of rock candy. And obvi, if you're doing a self-serve drink station, you need to make it statement-worthy. Easy additions include a calligraphed sign, a rack for the mugs, and even dishes that show off all those toppings (think peppermints and chocolates) you're going to need, as well.

Now enough of all that talk: here are some of our favorite ways to incorporate hot cocoa into your wedding celebration. Your warm, happy guests can thank us later!

Shaped Marshmallows

<p>Shaped Marshmellows</p><br><br>
Photo by Ruth Eileen Photography

No cup of hot cocoa is complete without marshmallows. And while we'll always love the packets of little ones that come with the grocery store variety, these shaped confections seem more appropriate for a wedding. You can personalize them in any shape you like—but we especially like the idea of a heart for your love story.

Mini Doughnut Holes

<p>Doughnuts on a Stick</p><br><br>
Photo by Love & Light Photographs

For a sweet surprise, add a sugared doughnut to a stir stick and pass the warm drinks out at the end of the night. Hey, if the event goes late enough, you could even think of this as breakfast! Tip: feel free to personalize these plain drink sleeves with your initials, wedding date, or a catchy phrase like, "Baby, it's cold outside."

A Toppings Bar

<p>Hot Cocoa with S'mores</p><br><br>
Photo by Dawn Charles

Set up a self-serve hot chocolate station with lots of fun toppings. Seriously, your guests will feel like kids at a candy shop if you set up a display of drink additions like peppermint stir sticks, white chocolate chips, mini marshmallows, cinnamon sticks, whipped cream, and caramel sauce. We also love the look of these s'mores on a stick!

One Statement Sign

Hot Chocolate Station
Photo by Dawn Charles

Again, up your self-serve station by decorating it with themed decor. We're especially into this catchy sign, which is sure to catch your guests' attention (as if they need a push to visit this sweet display).

Serving Sticks

<p>Hot Cocoa on Stick</p><br><br>
Photo by Sugar & Charm

Take traditional hot cocoa to the next level by serving it on a stick. You can buy these modern takes on hot cocoa packets from sites like Anthropologie, Etsy, and World Market—and, of course, there's always the option to take it on as a DIY project.

An Upgraded Mug

<p>Hot Cocoa in Copper Mug</p><br><br>
Photo by B.Matthews Photo

Forget a ceramic rental! Your warm beverage will look so much trendier when served in a copper mug—not to mention, how much prettier your table will look, as well. Source these from a rental company or buy them in bulk so you can send guests home with one at the end of the night (see more on that packaging, below).

Multiple Flavors

<p>Different Flavors</p><br><br>
Photo by Lili Durkin Photographer

Everyone loves options—so give them to your guests! These dark chocolate, salted caramel, and mint chocolate chip options definitely sound like winners to us.

Take-Home Favors

Photo by Amilia Photography

Before guests depart, give them something sweet. We like the idea of creating a mini package that includes a mug, a packet of cocoa, and a note to thank everyone for coming. Talk about a favor everyone will actually use again!

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