Hot Cocoa, But Make It Charcuterie: How to Create a DIY Holiday Board at Home
Ditch the cheese and create a board that will leave guests with personalized mugs of hot chocolate, thanks to this step-by-step tutorial.
We are all familiar with the classic charcuterie boards that feature salami roses, triangle cuts of cheese, toasted nuts, and jams. However, there is more to the world of charcuterie than just savory delicacies perfect for topping crackers. Los Angeles-based charcuterie company Luxe Bites, for one, is offering more than just cheese trays this holiday season with its newest addition: a hot chocolate-themed board.
Everything you need comes in a box filled with hot chocolate mix, a small bowl of sugar for those interested in sweetening up their cocoa, and a variety of gourmet toppings like peppermint bark, white chocolate chips, and more. “We decided to create a hot cocoa board to bring everyone even more into the holiday spirit,” say owners Cherie Chua and Daniel Odesanya.
While you can order this artfully curated board from Luxe Bites, you can also challenge yourself to create your very own at home. The duo gave us step-by-step instructions for whenever the cocoa craving hits.
To start, you’ll want to stock up on the essential ingredients that make this board so special. “We love using cold brew-coated marshmallows, peppermint infused chocolate pieces, Oreos, peppermint bark, rainbow white chocolate, and—our all-time favorite—dark chocolate sea salt caramels,” Chua shares. For those looking for vegan decoration, Odesanya suggests subbing vegan marshmallows, crushed peppermint, peanut butter, mint chocolate chips, or graham crackers for the classic accouterments.
Once you have all of the fixings for your hot chocolate board, it’s time to assemble. “We recommend making the boards right before consuming. We pride ourselves in making every order just before delivery to preserve freshness,” says Odesanya. So, if you’re planning to serve a hot chocolate board at your holiday party or bringing one to a friend’s home, assemble everything on the same day as your event.
When it comes to putting together a charcuterie board at home, it may seem intimidating to fit everything elegantly into place. But never fear: “There is no perfect or set way to make your charcuterie spread,” the duo says. “It is about being creative and going with the flow. A little bit of every flavor goes a long way with charcuterie boards!”
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What You’ll Need for a DIY Board:
- Wood or marble board, or a disposable tray
- Small glass bowls or disposable bowls
- Ghirardelli hot chocolate mix
- Gourmet marshmallows
- Rolled wafer cookies
- Salted dark chocolate caramels
- Peppermint bark
Step 1: Assemble Your Mix-Ins
While Luxe Bites prepares its charcuterie in boxes that make for easy shipping and serving, the team suggests this wood and marble board from Amazon if you’re looking for an elevated serving option. To start your board, fill three small bowls (you can use glass bowls or disposable ones) with hot chocolate mix, sugar, and shaved white chocolate. Space them out at random across your board or box to create space for the remaining items.
Step 2: Make Room for Marshmallows
Next, you’ll want to start creating sections on the board where toppings and extra garnishes for your hot chocolate will go. Gourmet marshmallows are easy to find at specialty grocery stores these days or can be ordered online. You can make them yourself, too!
Step 3: Fill Empty Spaces with Sweets
Now is when you’ll want to add some unique toppings or items with which to dip and garnish your hot chocolate. The Luxe Bites team uses items like rolled wafer cookies, which you can find seasonally in flavors like chocolate peppermint, or year-round in dark chocolate and hazelnut. By placing them at the base of your box or board, you can stack other treats around and on top of them.
Step 4: Fill It Out
To fill out the rest of the space on your board, add salted caramel chocolates, peppermint bark, Stroopwafels, peppermints, Oreos, or whatever sweets grab your attention as you’re shopping. Tuck them into any open space until you’re left with a bountiful board. While these treats might not be mixed into hot chocolate, they make for a great dunking option or snacking opportunity alongside mugs of warm cocoa and add an abundant look.
Traditional cheese and meat boards will need to be refrigerated prior to serving, but almost all of the ingredients on this hot chocolate board are shelf-stable, meaning you can leave them on the counter or in a cool pantry until ready to serve. If all of this seems a bit like too much of a task, Luxe Bites offers nationwide delivery for its hot chocolate box.