Everyone loves to receive a personalized, homemade gift. Right? You’d have to be made of stone to at least not appreciate the effort that goes into a gift that’s made just for you. Even if it has very clearly not turned out quite like the pictures promised.
The same goes for making a gift. While sometimes the project is a little bumpy and might even cost more time and money than you expected, there’s something so satisfying and rewarding about making a gift that comes from a place of love, even if it’s not Pinterest-perfect.
On that note — we love making our own custom chocolate bars. If you keep the recipe pretty simple (which we definitely like to do), you can make the final product extra special with the details.
We love this because you can really have fun with it. You can customize the chocolate add-ons and toppings to reflect the exact nature and personality of the person receiving the delicacy. Or you can customize the chocolate bars for your own special occasion — like if you are handing the chocolates out at an engagement or birthday party. And why stop there? Customize the home made packaging, too! Read on for lots of ideas, or share yours in the comments!
Here’s our super simple recipe for creating custom chocolate bars — feel free to take it and run with it, adding anything you want.
Bars or chips of high quality chocolate — white, dark, and milk
Toppings and fillings of your choice. (We list our favorites near the end.)
A double boiler, either a standard one or you can make one using a pot and a heat safe bowl
If you are pressed for time or perhaps working with little kids, a microwave will do the trick
A mold to pour the chocolate into
A couple of spoons and maybe a whisk (not necessary but extra fun to lick clean at the end)
How to: Create your own custom chocolate bars following these super simple steps
Simply heat up the water in the bottom half of your double boiler and add half of your chocolate to the upper bowl.
Stir, stir, stir.
Once it is very melty, remove from heat and add remaining bars or chips of chocolate. This will help cool it down and will improve the consistency of the finished product.
*Skip to the next step if you are using a microwave*
- Keep stirring with a spoon or whisk continuously so that the chocolate melts evenly.
- Add in any mix ins and stir very gently.
- While it is warm and gooey, carefully pour the chocolate into the molds.
- Tap against the counter to settle the chocolate and remove and air bubbles.
- Top with any extra fixings.
- Pop into the freezer for 5-15 minutes to set.
- Now is a good time to clean up and lick the spoons and bowls clean.
- Remove from the freezer and pop out of the mold.
- Package for your party or simply enjoy!
If you are making custom chocolates for a party, you can get creative with how to wrap them up, too. You can buy or create small boxes, wrap the chocolates in plain paper (or cut up brown paper lunch bags). To add an extra personal touch, stamp a message on the paper. Or use burlap to wrap the chocolates and tie with twine for a more rustic look. Again, the possibilities are endless!
- Like we said, the greatest thing about homemade custom chocolate bars is, well, that you get to customize the recipe to your heart’s desire. As promised, some of our favorite add-ins and toppings include:
- Rice puffs
- Cocoa nibs
- Crushed up coffee beans
- High quality rock salt
- Chilli flakes
- Bits of hardened caramel and toffee
- Pretzels and potato chips (salted or flavored)
- Flaked coconut
- Dried fruit: apricots, cherries, blueberries, goji berries, cranberries, strawberries
- Broken Oreos
- Nuts: almonds, macadamia, walnuts, pecans, cashews, etc. (For extra flavor, try toasting them first)
- Small hard candies and sprinkles
- Floral ingredients like lavender, rosehips or edible petals
Should we go on? Honestly — the list is almost endless and the point is to get creative and have fun. Let your imagination run wild! Try mixing a few of the above ingredients together to create a new recipe. Pretzels and flaked coconut just might be the flavor we’ve all been missing in our lives.
Still unsure about ideas, don’t worry — we are here to help.
Here are some events and the perfect custom chocolate bar pairings that can go with them.
Engagement party: white chocolate with edible rosehips and flower petals.
Baby shower: white chocolate with blue or pink sprinkles or swirls.
Birthday party: Dark chocolate with chilli flakes or rock salt (for something classy that shows you are aging gracefully).
A friend’s birthday: ask yourself, what do they like? Do they have a spicy or sweet personality? Would nuts be appropriate to describe them? Have fun, be cheeky, and be creative.
We know that sometimes it can seem impossible to carve out some time to make something, even for those we love most in our lives. It can feel easier to pop into a store and pick something up, have the clerk wrap it and stick a card that we sign our names on. And there’s nothing wrong with that either! But there is something extra special that happens when we create and customize something, even something as simple as a homemade chocolate bar.
Really, even if the finished product is a little lopsided or slightly messy, the fact that you went through the trouble to create something from scratch overrules any technical issue.
We hope you enjoyed this fun tutorial. Send us any ideas you have that we might have missed — any toppings that you enjoy that we haven’t covered. We love hearing from our readers and learning new ideas!