Make homemade hot chocolate bombs and bundle them into boozy hot chocolate bombs gift sets, complete with toppings and mini bottles of booze. They make great holiday gifts for chocoholics and cocktail lovers! Prepare printable gift instructions for recipients to make the perfect cup of hot cocoa.
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Boozy Hot Chocolate Bomb Gift Sets
Fellow foodies can appreciate a good food gift at the holidays. From cookie plates to truffles to homemade liqueurs, there are so many ways to make a sweet impression with homemade holiday gifts.
Hot chocolate bombs are one of the best homemade holiday gifts right now, and these boozy gift sets are a great way to make anyone feel special. Give them out as a party favor, hostess gift or and Christmas present for anyone who loves coziness, cocktails and hot cocoa.
What are hot chocolate bombs? These sphere-shaped chocolate confections are filled with hot chocolate mix, mini marshmallows and other toppings.
To enjoy them, all you have to do is drop a chocolate sphere into a mug and pour hot milk over top. Watch in awe as the chocolate shell melts away and the fillings bubble to the top. Stir it all together, and you have a warm mug of hot chocolate ready to drink.
They are relatively easy to make without a lot of experience in chocolate making, promise! Below I’ll show you how to make them to give as gifts.
Why you’ll love this recipe
Hot cocoa bombs are a fun holiday treat to make, gift and imbibe.
- These chocolate confections are easy to create with just a few ingredients.
- You can get creative with the presentation, flavors and fillings.
- Recipients will love stirring them into their own mug of hot chocolate.
- You can customize gift sets with different kinds of booze and different flavors that everyone will enjoy.
Making hot chocolate bombs is a fun activity to do with friends and family. Serve them at a holiday party or hot chocolate party and let guests enjoy mixing up their own cups of cocoa. Keep milk warm in a slow cooker for guests to ladle into their mugs.
Hot cocoa bombs make great Christmas gifts for friends, neighbors and teachers. You can make them for other holidays too, like Thanksgiving, Valentine’s Day and St. Patrick’s Day.
What are hot chocolate bombs?
Hot chocolate bombs are chocolate balls filled with hot cocoa mix, marshmallows and other fillings. When stirred with hot milk, the outer shell melts away and the fillings are released.
Marshmallows and sprinkles float to the top and the melted chocolate shell and hot chocolate mix inside can be stirred into the cup.
Hot cocoa vs. hot chocolate
Hot chocolate and hot cocoa are similar in flavor but the ingredients are different. Hot chocolate is made with real, melted chocolate. Hot cocoa is made with cocoa powder.
Since this recipe contains both chocolate and cocoa, you could call them hot chocolate bombs or hot cocoa bombs.
Whatever you want to call it and however you make it, it’s delicious!
To make hot chocolate bombs, you’ll need to pick up a few things.
Molds: First and foremost, you need silicone molds to make them in. These silicone dome molds are perfect because they easily release the chocolate.
Chocolate warmer: Though you can warm the chocolate in the microwave or in a double-boiler on the stove, it’s much easier to use a melting pot. Chocolate is very finicky when it meets heat, so a device like this keeps the chocolate warm without overcooking it. Bonus that you can use it to make chocolate-covered strawberries too!
Food-safe paintbrushes: For best results, use culinary paintbrushes for assembly. You can get by with a small spatula or spoon, but a small pastry paintbrush is more delicate and less messy. You can also use them for decorating the tops of the bombs.
Hot chocolate bombs don’t really need much more than melting chocolate, marshmallows and hot cocoa mix, but you can make them as fancy as you like.
You can find most of these ingredients at the grocery store, but if you want more options, try a craft supply store like Michael’s or JoAnn’s.
Melting chocolate wafers
Melting chocolate wafers are designed for melting and recreating into candies and confections. They are much better than chocolate chips for hot chocolate bombs.
This Ghirardelli variety pack comes with three flavors — milk chocolate, dark chocolate and white chocolate.
Hot cocoa mix & fillings
You’ll want to fill the bombs with your favorite hot cocoa mix. That is, the hot chocolate powder kind used for making hot cocoa, not cocoa powder for baking.
In addition to the hot chocolate, you’ll want to add some other mix-ins. Mini marshmallows are a classic. You could also add ground cinnamon, sprinkles, candies or chocolate chips.
When the bombs are made, you can decorate them. Toppings can help to mask the little seam where the two halves of the shells meet.
Drizzle melted chocolate or white chocolate over top, and then sprinkle on a few toppings, such as:
- festive sprinkles
- mini chocolate chips
- chocolate shavings
- chopped nuts
- edible glitter
- crushed candy canes
- toasted coconut
You’ll also need milk to make the hot chocolate bombs. I like to use whole milk for the richest, creamiest hot cocoa, but you can use 2% milk or your favorite.
Feel free to use flavored milk or your favorite dairy-free substitute, such as oat milk, soy milk, almond milk or coconut milk. (If vegan, be sure the shell and filling are also vegan. There also shouldn’t be any traditional marshmallows.)
How to make hot chocolate bombs
Making hot cocoa bombs is easier than it looks, but you’ll definitely want to set aside a space to work and a couple of hours since the chocolate will need time to set up. If you have multiple molds, you can work on one batch while another is in use.
Step 1: Melt the chocolate wafers. A chocolate warmer is ideal to keep you from having to warm it up constantly, risking burning the chocolate. If you do use the microwave, put the chocolate melts in a microwave-safe bowl and warm it in 20-second intervals, stirring in between until it is melted through.
You can also use a double boiler on the stove. Use a candy thermometer to keep tabs on the chocolate temperature. You want it to be around 90°F.
Step 2: Fill the molds. With a spoon or brush, paint the melted chocolate into the hot chocolate bomb molds. It doesn’t have to look pretty on the outside since no one will see the insides. Ensure the chocolate is in an even layer and there are no thin, weak spots.
Set aside until it firms up to room temperature. (Refrigerating can help to speed this up.)
Step 3: Remove from molds. Carefully remove the half spheres from the chocolate mold. Use the molds as a stand while you assemble the cocoa bombs. This helps to cut down on fingerprints!
Step 4: Add hot chocolate mix fillings. Into the open side, spoon in 3 tablespoons of the hot chocolate mixture, mini marshmallows and any other fillings like chocolate chips, ground cinnamon or sprinkles. Top with another half sphere to close it.
Step 5: Seal the spheres. The best way to seal the two halves is with a pastry brush, food-safe paintbrush or the back of a spoon. Paint melted chocolate around the edge of an empty half of the chocolate shell and, quickly, press it onto the filled shell. Fill in any gaps with more melted chocolate, being careful not to make the gaps bigger.
Place on a cookie sheet and set aside until firm. (Place in the fridge if you need them to firm up quickly.) Repeat as many times as you like or until you’ve used all the remaining chocolate.
Step 6: Decorate. Decorate as you please. Melted chocolate in a piping bag or ziptop bag is great for drizzling chocolate over top. Sprinkle with your desired toppings while the chocolate is still wet.
Step 7: Store, enjoy or give! Then remove the hot chocolate balls from the molds and place in an airtight container. Store them in a cool dry place. For gifting, place them in cellophane bags or put each one in a cupcake liner inside a gift box or cookie tin!
Hot chocolate bomb packaging ideas
There are lots of ways to package up these hot chocolate beauties to make a gorgeous and festive homemade gift that makes a lasting impression.
Be sure to add a card with detailed instructions on how to make a cup of hot cocoa with each hot chocolate bomb you give out.
Download this printable template — it has a few seasonal messages for you to choose from. Include it with your custom packaging of hot chocolate bombs.
Here are the best packaging ideas to try:
Single servings: I like to put a single delicious treat in a cellophane bag, along with lots of mini marshmallows and sprinkles, then tie them up with a twist-tie or a rubber band. Finish it off with a ribbon. These iridescent bags are so pretty and festive. You could also use crinkle paper to pad the bags and make them feel more full. There are also these elegant clear boxes that fit one ball each.
With booze: For your friends who drink, bag them up with a mini bottle of alcohol or a sweet liqueur like Irish cream or coffee liqueur. You could also add a swizzle stick, candy or a chocolate spoon.
Gift boxes: If you want to give a few away at a time, you can put them in cookie tins or bakery boxes. Place the bombs in mini-cupcake wrappers to keep them from touching and rolling around too much inside the hot chocolate bomb boxes.
Gift basket: Add a box or a few bags of these to a gift basket to make a bigger gift. Add boxes of hot chocolate, candies, wine or a liqueur and bar chocolate for the ultimate gift.
How to use a hot chocolate bomb
Ready to try a hot chocolate bomb? Yay! They are so fun. Here’s what to do:
First, warm some milk on the stove or in the microwave. Don’t boil it.
Place the hot chocolate bomb in a mug. (A clear glass mug is great for seeing the magic happen!) Then pour a cup of hot milk over top of the bomb.
Watch the chocolate melt into the milk and the marshmallows and other fillings are released. Marshmallows and sprinkles will float to the top.
Stir it all together to combine the hot cocoa powder with the milk.
Add some more If you like, you can add in a boozy boost! (A few ideas for you below.) Then you’re ready to enjoy your special mug of hot cocoa!
Tip: Be sure to add a card with detailed instructions on how to make a hot chocolate bomb! See my template.
Hot cocoa bomb flavors
Milk chocolate bombs are classic, but you can enjoy creating your own flavor combinations. Here are a few of my favorite hot chocolate bomb recipes:
- Peppermint: Use white chocolate candy melts or almond bark for the shell and add chopped candy canes to the interior and as a topping. Perfect for the holiday season!
- Salted caramel: Spring for caramel wafers for the shell and fill with toffee bits. Add a few flecks of flaky sea salt to the top.
- White chocolate: Use white chocolate wafers to make white chocolate shells and fill them with either regular or white hot chocolate mix.
- Dark chocolate: Use dark chocolate wafers for the shell and fill with dark hot chocolate mix.
- Colored chocolate: Pick up some dyed wafers to make different colors of hot chocolate. These are really fun for other holidays too.
If you plan to package them up with mini-bottles or gift them with a big bottle of alcohol, there are lots of different routes you can go. Here are a few suggestions:
- Bourbon whiskey
- Cinnamon whiskey (e.g. Fireball)
- Peppermint schnapps
- Caramel vodka
- Irish cream liqueur (e.g. Baileys)
- Coffee liqueur (e.g. Kahlua)
- Amaretto (e.g. Disaronno)
- Spiced rum
Tips & tricks
Here are some tips and tricks for making these holiday gift sets:
- They are great gifts for friends, neighbors, teachers, coworkers and family members who love hot chocolate and cocktails.
- Include instructions for how to make the hot chocolate bombs into hot chocolate. (See my easy printable template!)
- Consider the recipients’ favorite flavors and make them a combination they will love.
- Prepare some gift sets without alcohol for any non-drinkers on your gifting list.
You can place hot cocoa bombs in cellophane bags and tie them up with a ribbon. You can also add them to a cookie tin or bakery box. Use muffin liners to secure them so they don’t roll around.
Hot chocolate is delicious with a number of types of alcohol. Try it with plain bourbon or rum, or get creative with flavored spirits, like cinnamon whiskey, spiced rum and caramel vodka, and liqueurs like Baileys, Rumchata, Amaretto and Kahlua.
More hot chocolate recipes
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DIY Hot Chocolate Bomb Gift Sets
hot cocoa bombs
- 1 cup chocolate candy melts
- 2 ¼ cups hot chocolate mix
- 1 cup mini marshmallows
- ½ cup sprinkles
- ½ cup white chocolate candy melts
- 8 ounces warm milk
- 1 hot chocolate bomb
- 1.5 ounces liqueur
Hot cocoa bombs
- Melt the chocolate wafers according to package instructions.
- With a spoon or brush, paint the melted chocolate into clean molds. Make sure the chocolate is in an even layer and there are no thin, weak spots. Refrigerate until firm, about 15-20 minutes.
- Carefully remove the dome halves from the molds. Use the molds as a stand while you assemble the cocoa bombs.
- Into half of the domes, spoon in 3 tablespoons hot chocolate mix, mini marshmallows and any other fillings like ground cinnamon or sprinkles.
- With the brush, paint melted chocolate around the edge of one of the empty domes and, quickly, press it onto a filled half. Refrigerate until firm, about 15-20 minutes.
- Decorate with more melted chocolate, sprinkles, edible glitter or candies.
- Then remove from molds and place in cellophane bags or a gift box to give away or use!
Hot chocolate with hot cocoa bombs
- First, warm some milk on the stove or in the microwave. Don’t boil it.
- Place the hot chocolate bomb in a mug.
- Then pour the hot milk over top. The chocolate shell will melt into the milk. Marshmallows and other fillings will float to the top.
- Stir together then sip on your creation!
- Place hot chocolate bombs in cellophane bags or bakery boxes. Add extra marshmallows, sprinkles, mini bottles of alcohol.
TipsMake sure the molds are clean and dry. Chocolate can change color or crack when it meets water. When adding chocolate to the molds, remember it doesn’t have to look pretty — ideally, no one but you will see the insides! Wear rubber gloves to avoid making fingerprints as you decorate the bombs. For a party, keep warm milk in a slow cooker. Let guests ladle it into their mugs with their hot chocolate bombs.
As an Amazon Associate and member of other affiliate programs, I earn from qualifying purchases.