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Dairy-Free & Delicious Holiday Entertaining

Ava Amurri Martino shares tips on how to prepare a delicious, dairy-free hot cocoa bar!

*Many thanks to Blue Diamond Almond Breeze for sponsoring this post! As always, the thoughts and opinions expressed below are entirely my own.

The holidays are easily the yummiest time of the year (besides being the most wonderful!), but for people like me with a dairy allergy it can also be super complicated. I love sweet treats as much as the next person, but ever since I was a baby I’ve had an allergic reaction to cow’s milk. And yes that includes butter, cream, and cheese. UGH. Over the years I’ve found a great alternative that helps me enjoy the holiday season to the fullest: Almond Breeze Almond milk! I love almond milk, and Almond Breeze is so fab.

Ava Amurri Martino shares tips on how to prepare a delicious, dairy-free hot cocoa bar!

Ava Amurri Martino shares tips on how to prepare a delicious, dairy-free hot cocoa bar!

Ava Amurri Martino shares tips on how to prepare a delicious, dairy-free hot cocoa bar!

I also love that I can buy multiple cartons of it at a time and keep it in my pantry until I open it, which means I can have some on hand at a moment’s notice. The Almond Breeze Almond milk also has so much calcium—more than 50% more than traditional dairy! I make smoothies with it, add it to coffee and baked goods, and even utilize their awesome flavors for fun party ideas! This Holiday season, I decided to host a fun and festive Dairy-Free Cocoa Bar. The kids loved it!

Ava Amurri Martino shares tips on how to prepare a delicious, dairy-free hot cocoa bar!

Ava Amurri Martino shares tips on how to prepare a delicious, dairy-free hot cocoa bar!

Ava Amurri Martino shares tips on how to prepare a delicious, dairy-free hot cocoa bar!

Almond Breeze is really convenient for dairy-free lifestyles because you can simply substitute cup for cup in recipes! To make my hot cocoa, I heated up chocolate flavored Almond Breeze (instead of cow’s milk and now comes in a refrigerated version, delish!) and added Hot Cocoa powder. I loved the extra chocolatey-ness it gave the cocoa. By the way, my kids think the small individual containers of Almond Breeze Chocolate Almondmilk are a HUGE treat…meanwhile it’s packed with calcium and has no dairy. Shhhh… nobody tell them. LOL.

Ava Amurri Martino shares tips on how to prepare a delicious, dairy-free hot cocoa bar!

Ava Amurri Martino shares tips on how to prepare a delicious, dairy-free hot cocoa bar!

Ava Amurri Martino shares tips on how to prepare a delicious, dairy-free hot cocoa bar!

I set up my bar cart with a bunch of toppings, and added a mug with each guest’s initial that they could take home as a party favor! Everyone can load up their own toppings: chocolate chips, dairy free whipped cream, peppermint flakes, and mini marshmallows! My kids like to have some mini marshmallows in their hot cocoa and some in their hands. I guess you can never have too many mini marshmallows! Then we topped it off with spoons made out of peppermint candy.

Ava Amurri Martino shares tips on how to prepare a delicious, dairy-free hot cocoa bar!

Ava Amurri Martino shares tips on how to prepare a delicious, dairy-free hot cocoa bar!

Ava Amurri Martino shares tips on how to prepare a delicious, dairy-free hot cocoa bar!

Ava Amurri Martino shares tips on how to prepare a delicious, dairy-free hot cocoa bar!

Ava Amurri Martino shares tips on how to prepare a delicious, dairy-free hot cocoa bar!

Ava Amurri Martino shares tips on how to prepare a delicious, dairy-free hot cocoa bar!

Ava Amurri Martino shares tips on how to prepare a delicious, dairy-free hot cocoa bar!

Ava Amurri Martino shares tips on how to prepare a delicious, dairy-free hot cocoa bar!

When I spent time at the Blue Diamond Holiday House this fall (the makers of Almond Breeze) I saw them substituting Almond Breeze for traditional milk in all the holiday recipes! I was so inspired that I decided to do the same and make a yummy pumpkin pie for my party! I couldn’t believe how delicious it turned out and nobody missed the milk at all.

Ava Amurri Martino shares tips on how to prepare a delicious, dairy-free hot cocoa bar!

Ava Amurri Martino shares tips on how to prepare a delicious, dairy-free hot cocoa bar!

Marlowe loved it so much that she briefly turned in to a dog and tried to swallow the pie whole right from the plate with no hands! (Where is my eye roll emoji…) I also love that the almond milk gave the pie a little calcium boost. I always try to increase my kids’ calcium intake wherever I can! Almond Breeze also has tons of dairy free Holiday recipes available on their website!

Ava Amurri Martino shares tips on how to prepare a delicious, dairy-free hot cocoa bar!

Ava Amurri Martino shares tips on how to prepare a delicious, dairy-free hot cocoa bar!

Ava Amurri Martino shares tips on how to prepare a delicious, dairy-free hot cocoa bar!

Ava Amurri Martino shares tips on how to prepare a delicious, dairy-free hot cocoa bar!

Ava Amurri Martino shares tips on how to prepare a delicious, dairy-free hot cocoa bar!

Ava Amurri Martino shares tips on how to prepare a delicious, dairy-free hot cocoa bar!

This Dairy Free Cocoa Bar is definitely a tradition we are going to keep for future Holidays! Do you love Almond Breeze? I’d love to hear your favorite way to use it during the holidays in the comments below!

 

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Photographs by Julia Dags.

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4 Comments

  1. Lauren says:

    I love this! I’m also dairy-free and love hot cocoa, but I’ve never put in the effort to try to make it dairy-free (sad, I know), so thank you for this fun and easy idea! We love Almond Breeze – in fact I just made a chocolate pie for Thanksgiving using their chocolate milk – so we’ll be trying this for our holiday parties! Thanks again!

    11.21.18Reply
  2. Tara says:

    Love this! I use almond milk alllll the time as I’m dairy free too! My kids love the chocolate too… and I have bamboozled then into thinking the ‘no sugar added’ chocolate milk from almond breeze is also a treat 😂. I would say my favorite thing to make is any recipe at all! Like you said, so easy to sUb! I’m going to have make hot cocoa with the chocolate, like you suggested! Double chocolate is never a bad thing!

    11.22.18Reply
  3. Alison says:

    What type of hot cocoa mix do you use? I feel like all of the ones I have seen have dairy in them. I would love to have some dairy free cocoa for me and my daughter who can’t do dairy either!

    11.22.18Reply
  4. Julianne says:

    Can’t tell you how much i love this post and how much it means to me. My son, who is exactly one month younger than your Major has a terrible dairy intolerance, you’re posts about dairy free items always spark my interest and give me great ideas so that he can always join in.

    11.23.18Reply