It’s time to take this TikTok sensation to the next level with salted caramel hot chocolate bombs: a comforting blend of chocolate, caramel, and flaky sea salt.
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Table of Contents
- About Salted Caramel Hot Chocolate Bombs
- What are hot chocolate bombs?
- What do you need to make hot chocolate bombs?
- What type of chocolate should you use?
- What goes inside salted caramel cocoa bombs?
- How do you decorate the outside of a hot cocoa bomb?
- How long do hot cocoa bombs last?
- Can you freeze cocoa bombs?
- More delicious chocolate recipes
- More hot chocolate bomb recipes
- How to make salted caramel hot chocolate bombs
- Recipe Details
About Salted Caramel Hot Chocolate Bombs
One of the best things about fun and trendy treats like hot chocolate bombs is the different ways you can customize them.
Because really, why would you settle for a mere hot chocolate bomb when you could have a caramel hot chocolate bomb? Or, better yet, how about a salted caramel hot chocolate bomb?
I know which one I would pick!
So, without further ado, I think it’s time to take this TikTok trend to the next level with fun, decorative hot cocoa bombs that can be whipped up into delicious salted caramel hot chocolate.
What are hot chocolate bombs?
Long Story Short: Think of hot chocolate bombs as a marriage between giftable hot chocolate mix and those mesmerizing melting chocolate ball desserts. It’s a fun new way to enjoy (and gift) hot chocolate.
A Longer Explanation: Hot chocolate bombs (or hot cocoa bombs, if you prefer) started as a TikTok sensation and have since gone viral, leading to an endless variety of new and fun ways to enjoy classic hot chocolate.
Hot chocolate bombs are created by making a hallow, chocolate candy sphere and filling it with hot cocoa mix, marshmallows, and any other fun flavors of your choice. You then drop the cocoa bomb in a mug and pour hot milk (or water) on top. The liquid will melt the candy sphere, revealing the cocoa mix inside, so you only need to grab a spoon to mix your way to hot chocolate glory.
What do you need to make hot chocolate bombs?
Before you start whipping up festive cocoa bombs, there are a few tools you’ll need (plus some optional ones) that you might not already have in your kitchen, such as:
- Sphere silicone mold – Typically used for large truffles (or even bath bombs) this is the type and size of mold you’ll need to create bombs that are large enough to hold all of the hot cocoa ingredients.
- Spoon, pastry brush (any clean brush), and a butter knife – To coat the chocolate along the edges of the sphere mold, you’ll use a spoon or bush to get an even layer. Use whichever you feel more comfortable handling. I personally liked the accuracy of a brush. The butter knife is for doing minor touch-ups with the melted chocolate.
- Small or medium bowls, spatula, etc – Standard for baking, having a few of these on hand will be helpful for heating and mixing.
- Large baking sheet – Any flat, portable surface will do here. This is just to make transferring the molds to and from the refrigerator easier on you.
- Microwave-safe plate – You’ll use this for assembling the bombs. I know it sounds odd, but trust me, it works! I go over it in the tutorial below.
- Food safety gloves (nitrile gloves) – This is an optional item to have on hand, but if you want your cocoa bombs to look their best, then these gloves will help prevent you from leaving fingerprints on the chocolate surface. You can use other types of gloves, but be sure the ones you get are made for food safety (power-free, not too thick or thin, etc – most have Nitrile in the name).
- Cupcake liners – Another optional item, but great for storage once prepared. This will keep the hot chocolate bombs from rolling around and sticking to one another. Plus, you can get decorative liners for an extra festive touch.
What type of chocolate should you use?
“Cooking chocolate” is a staple in baking – you can find it in the baking supply area, and it typically looks like a large candy bar – and while there are multiple brands to choose from, I do think there are significant differences in the quality of the chocolate for each brand.
Baker’s is by far the most common brand, but I’ve found their chocolate to have a dry texture and the flavor to be a little “off.” It’s not a bad choice by any means, especially if Baker’s is all you can find, but I’ve been happier with my baked goods and candy if I can get my hands on another brand.
And because of this, I highly recommend using Ghirardelli Premium Baking Bars (and for this recipe, the milk chocolate baking bar.) Ghirardelli is a little more expensive, but trust me, you’ll appreciate the flavor and consistency you’ll get from a premium brand.
Plus, these hot chocolate bombs are not only delicate, but they also create a very popular drink (being hot chocolate) that many people will feel like they already know what it “should” taste like. So, if you want the best chances of enjoying both the look and the taste of these bombs, I highly recommend being picky about the chocolate you use, particularly one that has cocoa butter as one of the main ingredients. If there was ever a time to splurge on higher-quality chocolate for your candy adventures, this is it.
What goes inside salted caramel cocoa bombs?
This can vary depending on the look you’re going for, but overall, you’ll be adding:
- Salted Caramel Hot Cocoa Mix – A key to getting salted caramel is salted caramel flavor, right? Land o Lakes makes a packet of flavored hot chocolate mix that you can buy on Amazon, and target’s store brand, Good & Gather, also makes a version of sea salt caramel hot cocoa mix. Either of these brands will do.
- Mini marshmallows – You can either use classic mini marshmallows (that are just smaller versions of the original) or dehydrated marshmallows (which are similar to the marshmallows you find in cereal).
How do you decorate the outside of a hot cocoa bomb?
Since these hot chocolate bombs are salted caramel, decorating the outside is another opportunity to kick up the flavor.
To do this, I’d recommend picking up:
- Salted caramel candy melts – For creating a decorative drizzle across the top. Also makes it easy to add sprinkles or sea salt, since they’ll stick to the drizzle.
- Flaky sea salt – Totally optional, but looks pretty and is another way to control the flavor balance. Add more or less salt, to your tastes.
How long do hot cocoa bombs last?
Once prepared, I highly recommend using hot chocolate bombs within 24 hours.
However, if you do end up with extra bombs that you don’t want to waste, you can store chocolate bombs in a sealed container (ideally with each one in a cupcake liner for its own protection) on the counter for up to one month. If you’re concerned about the cocoa bombs melting, they can be stored in the refrigerator (still in the container, in cupcake liners) for one month.
Can you freeze cocoa bombs?
Because of the delicate chocolate shell, I’m hesitant to recommend freezing hot chocolate bombs. But, if you’re a pro at freezing and feel like you can keep them safe, give it a go. To freeze, wrap each bomb individually in plastic wrap (ideally two layers) and store them in a sealed container in the freezer for up to three months.
If you’ve frozen the hot chocolate bombs, the next challenge would be thawing. The chocolate may crack when brought to room temperature, defeating the purpose of the bomb. So, if they’re frozen, I would recommend one of the following:
- Allow them to thaw in a cup, then pour on hot milk. This way if they crack from the temperature change, the contents are already in your cup.
- Use them directly from the freezer, immediately adding hot milk, but keeping in mind that this may lead to slightly cooler hot cocoa.
More delicious chocolate recipes
More hot chocolate bomb recipes
How to make salted caramel hot chocolate bombs
This next part is only a photo tutorial of the recipe steps. If you’re looking for the full recipe measurements and instructions, scroll down to Recipe Details.
Step 1 – First things first, start by melting the milk chocolate in a microwave-safe bowl until smooth.
Step 2 – Spoon up some of the melted milk chocolate into the sphere silicone molds, using the back of a spoon or pastry brush to coat the sides. You should only use about half of the chocolate in this step; the molds will be coated twice. This is just the first layer.
Step 3 – Transfer the molds to the fridge for a few minutes to let them set.
Step 4 – Bring the molds out and coat them with another layer of chocolate, taking care to focus on the rims.
Step 5 – Let the molds set in the freezer for 10 minutes.
Step 6 – When ready to assemble, gently remove the candy shells from the molds, then divide the molds into two groups – six “bottoms” and six “tops.”
Step 7 – Grab some food safety gloves, heat a plate in the microwave, then grab one of the “bottom” shells. Place the shell on the hot plate, edge side down, and gently move in a circular motion, melting and evening out the edges of the shell. Place the shell in a cupcake liner, edge side up. Fill the prepared bottom shell with hot cocoa mix and marshmallows. Repeat this step for the remaining five “bottom” shells.
Step 8 – Clean off the plate and heat it again. Repeat the step of melting the edges of the six “top” shells, then place them on the bottom shells, gently pressing down to form a seal.
Step 9 – Let the finished bombs set for a few minutes. If desired, decorate with drizzled candy melts and flaky sea salt.
Step 10 – Serve hot chocolate bombs immediately in mugs with steaming hot milk or water.
Salted Caramel Hot Chocolate Bombs
- In a microwave-safe bowl, add milk chocolate and heat for 30 seconds on 50% power, then stir. Continue to heat for 15 second intervals, mixing in between, until chocolate has completely melted.
- Spoon 1 tablespoon of milk chocolate into each cavity of the 2 molds (12 total). Use a spoon or a brush to coat chocolate along the sides, going all the way up to the rim and not leaving any exposed areas. NOTE: You should only use about 1/2 of the chocolate in this step. The molds will be coated twice. This is just the first coat.
- Transfer the baking sheet with both coated molds to the refrigerator and chill for 5 minutes.
- Remove tray with molds from the refrigerator and bring back to your work area. Check your remaining chocolate; if it’s too firm, microwave for another 15 seconds, then stir well.
- Working on one cavity at a time, add another 1 tablespoon of chocolate into each mold, then coat the sides as you did before. If possible, focus on giving the rim of each cavity a thick layer of chocolate (for easy assembly later). Repeat this step until all mold cavities have two coats.
- Transfer baking sheet with both coated molds to the freezer and freeze for 10 minutes.
- When ready to assemble, bring baking sheet with coated molds back to your work area. Put on food safety gloves and gently remove shells from molds. Divide shells two groups, so that 6 shells will be "bottoms" and 6 shells will be "tops."
- Microwave a microwave-safe plate for 90 seconds. Place one of the bottom shells on the hot plate, edge side down. Gently move shell in a circular pattern, lightly melting and evening out the edges. Place the bottom shell edge side up in a decorative cupcake liner, if desired. Repeat this step until all 6 of the bottom shells have edges that are slightly melted. Wipe excess chocolate off plate.
- Fill each bottom shell with 1 pkg of salted caramel hot chocolate mix and top with marshmallows of your choice.
- Reheat the microwave-safe plate for 90 seconds, then place a top shell on the hot plate, edge side down. Like before, move it in a circular pattern to melt the edges, then place the top shell on a bottom shell, gently pressing them together so that the melted chocolate forms a seal. If needed, you can use a butter knife to smooth out the melted chocolate. Repeat this step until all hot chocolate bombs have been assembled.
- Let hot chocolate bombs set for at least 5 minutes. If desired, melt the salted caramel candy melts per package instructions and drizzle decorative designs across the tops of bombs, then dust with flaky sea salt (if decorating, allow an additional 10 minutes for everything to set).
- Enjoy salted caramel hot chocolate bombs by placing them in mugs and pouring 8 ounces of steaming hot whole milk or water on top.
I do my best to provide nutrition information, but please keep in mind that I’m not a certified nutritionist. Any nutritional information discussed or disclosed in this post should only be seen as my best amateur estimates of the correct values.