As soon as the temperature dips my kids start requesting hot cocoa. I have to admit it is hard to resist a warm chocolate drink on a cold day. So I decided to surprise the kids with an after school hot cocoa station yesterday! I had so much fun with this activity that I wanted to share it with you! This set up was easy to put together and everything I used I had at home. The kids were so surprised and thrilled with this treat.  I’ll give you all the details you need to have your very own after school hot cocoa station! Be sure to stick around to the end of the post as I will share my recipe to make these peppermint marshmallow stir sticks!

As I was setting up the station, it started to snow. It couldn’t have been a more perfect day for hot cocoa!

I decided to set things up outside on our porch so that the kids would notice on their walk home from the bus. My youngest was so excited to surprise them that he stood on lookout for me at the end of the driveway. Our two customers have arrived!

The kids loved being able to serve themselves. I held myself back from intervening and let them load up on all the whipped cream and goodies. After all, it was a special treat!

I had two very happy customers! Side note: My youngest does not like hot cocoa…can you imagine?!  I couldn’t resist a little hot cocoa for myself!

After School Hot Cocoa Station Must Haves

Hot Cocoa (of course)! Homemade hot cocoa is so easy to make, less expensive and healthier than the pre-made packets! I used this hot cocoa recipe and reduced the sugar by a little. It was SO YUMMY!

Whipped Cream


Candy Canes


Marshmallows (See my peppermint marshmallow recipe below)

Festive Straws

Big Mugs

Now, as promised, I want to share this easy way to make festive and yummy hot cocoa stir sticks. These peppermint coated marshmallows were the show stopper of the hot cocoa station!

You could easily customize these marshmallows by using different chocolates and different crumbled coatings!

[recipe title=”Peppermint Marshmallow Stir Sticks” servings=”6″ time=”10 mins” difficulty=”easy”]


  • 6 jumbo sized marshmallows
  • 12 candy canes
  • 4 oz white chocolate melts or white chocolate chips


  • Microwave safe bowl
  • Shallow bowl or plate
  • Additional plate covered with parchment paper


  1. Break off curved part of 6 candy canes and place inside resealable plastic bag. Additionally, place the 6 other whole candy canes in the plastic bag. Use a rolling pin to crush the candy cane into small (but not dust size) pieces. Empty the contents of the bag onto a plate or shallow bowl. Set aside.
  2. Place white chocolate in microwave proof bowl and cook on high setting in 30 second intervals. Stir every thirty seconds until the chocolate is a completely melted.
  3. Insert straight part of each candy cane in a marshmallow. Dip marshmallow into the melted chocolate. Use a spatula to spread the white chocolate all over marshmallow. Then immediately dip white chocolate covered marshmallow into the candy cane pieces.
  4. Put completed marshmallow on the plate with parchment paper. Let marshmallows set at room temperature for 1 hour.


Three simple ingredients are all you need to make this tasty treat!

Be sure to insert the peppermint sticks before you dip marshmallow into the white chocolate! I just scooped the chocolate right on the spatula and then rolled the marshmallow on the spatula.

This treat will take you ten minutes or less!


This activity will no doubt become a family tradition. The kids have already requested that I surprise them with another after school hot cocoa station!  It was SO much fun and a great way to bring a little joy into a gloomy, winter afternoon!

P.S. This hot cocoa station would also be perfect for the delivery and mail people that are working hard this season! How fun would it be for the kids to serve these people that come by the home!

How to create an outdoor hot cocoa station #hotchocolate #cocoastation #diy #kids #winteractvities



  1. Meredith on December 12, 2017 at 8:45 am

    I love this! I still remember the year my mom surprised my sister and me with a homemade last day of school cake. What a great way to give your little ones an extra treat!

  2. Michelle | The Secret Ingredient Is on December 12, 2017 at 11:58 am

    This is such a cute idea, I bet they loved it! Chars glasses are so cute ps.

    • Jaclyn on December 12, 2017 at 10:03 pm

      Thanks! She finally started wearing them after having for a year!

  3. Erin | Chasing Sweet and Simple on December 12, 2017 at 6:51 pm

    How cute! I LOVE this idea!!!!

  4. Sophie on December 12, 2017 at 7:32 pm

    Love the idea! So cool!

  5. Stephanie on December 12, 2017 at 7:46 pm

    This is adorable- I love making Hot Cocoa Bars for Holiday parties!

    • Jaclyn on December 12, 2017 at 10:02 pm

      Good idea to have a cocoa bar at a party!

  6. Courtney on December 13, 2017 at 8:39 am

    You are a super mom! I love this so much. Little ideas like this can really go a long way

  7. Carly on December 13, 2017 at 12:29 pm

    I love this idea! I love hot cocoa and these stir sticks look so good!

  8. Bee on December 13, 2017 at 6:20 pm

    These look incredible! Will definitely be trying these out for the holidays!

  9. Merichelle on December 14, 2017 at 9:56 pm

    This is SUCH a cute idea for after school! My son would go nuts for sure, he’s all about the hot chocolate! And love those peppermint stirrers, so creative!

  10. Shirley on December 15, 2017 at 8:17 am

    Adorable! Those candy cane stirrers are a must try! My kids would go crazy over this.

  11. Rachel on December 15, 2017 at 6:57 pm

    This is absolutely THE CUTEST idea! Is it bad that I want to just do this for myself!?

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