Holiday lights are twinkling throughout McHenry County and thousands of people are out and exploring the beauty. But we all know that road trips require sweets. That is why we put together a list of all of the best places to get hot chocolate, ice cream, and chocolates to make your adventures complete. These independently owned small businesses need our help right now, so give them a call and order for curbside pickup to enjoy while you’re out! 


Hot Chocolate:

Morkes Chocolates (Huntley) We’ve all heard and seen hot cocoa bombs on social media. Morkes Chocolates of Huntley is making classic milk chocolate, white chocolate, vanilla cupcake, cookies n’ cream, peppermint, and chocolate mint. Call Morkes and pre-order your favorite flavors to be ready to go when you’re heading out on your holiday lights adventures. All you have to do is slowly pour 8oz of hot milk over the bomb and watch an explosion of marshmallows and chocolate! 

Ethereal Confections (Woodstock) – Looking for a vegan-friendly hot chocolate mix? What about gluten-free? Ethereal Confections makes hot cocoa’s in a variety of flavors like spicy Mayan, salted caramel, and Moroccan. Have you ever tried drinking chocolate? Ethereal also melts their single origin dark chocolate shavings to make a rich, creamy drink. 

Aroma Coffee & Wine (Crystal Lake) – Located directly across the street from Downtown Crystal Lake’s Peppermint Park you will find Aroma Coffee & Wine. You will find handmade drinking chocolate, signature lattes, loose leaf teas from Casting Whimsy as well as a variety of small plates, sandwiches, and charcuterie to snack on. 


Ice Cream: 

Julie Ann’s Frozen Custard (Crystal Lake) – Julie Ann’s knows what they’re doing when it comes to holiday flavors! Not only can you enjoy daily flavors like peppermint candy, eggnog, dark chocolate peppermint, creole coffee gingerbread, cinnamon, and holly jolly mint Oreo but you can grab a peppermint cheesecake cookie sundae, peppermint candy Julie bars, eggnog shakes and peppermint shakes. Julie Ann’s is also a favorite for the dairy-free community. Dairy-free flavors are not available every day but check their website for dairy-free favorites. 

Rusty Malts (Ringwood) – Rusty Malts is not your run of the mill ice cream shop. Have you seen the milkshakes floating around Instagram with every topping you can imagine? Well, this is where you find one for yourself. We suggest giving their holiday Peppermint Stick Perfection a try. This shake is topped with hot fudge, Oreos, brownie, Milano cookies, and a peppermint stick. 



Anderson’s Candy Shop (Richmond) Chocolates and Christmas lights are a match made in heaven. Anderson’s Candy Shop puts the merry in your Christmas with a variety of delicious, chocolate Santa’s and angels.  You can find almost anything in their shop in white chocolate, dark chocolate, and milk chocolate to make everyone happy! 

Mellie’s Chocolate & Co. (Crystal Lake) – Downtown Crystal Lake sparkles during the holidays, and while you’re exploring the beautiful lights and visiting Santa for any last-minute requests head on down to Mellie’s Chocolates for a sweet treat to end a perfect evening. You’ll find chocolate-covered everything like strawberries, pretzels, and marshmallows as well as fudge, caramel apples, and ice cream. 

Riverside Chocolate Factory (McHenry) - From peppermint bark to chocolate covered peanut butter rice krispie treats, to chocolate bacon and Oreos you’re sure to satisfy your sweet tooth at Riverside Chocolate Factory. Their iconic building located on Route 120 and Chapel Hill Road beckons visitors to visit to indulge in their chocolate-covered delights. 


Explore all of the homes participating in Light UP McHenry County HERE!