Wednesday, December 21, 2011

DIY Christmas Gifts #5: Munchies

This one goes out to all you last-minute shoppers who wait until December 21 or later to buy gifts. The lines in the stores are going to be insane from now on, so running to the local big box retailer for a light-up reindeer Christmas sweater is not a viable option. What to do? What to do?

Here's a solution that is both easy and cheap: make baked goodies! Package them in cellophane bags (available at Hobby Lobby, my go-to store, in the party section), close them with metallic twist ties (in the cake decorating section of Hobby Lobby) and use curling ribbon to finish it off. Attach some homemade labels and you have a super cute, super simple, super cheap gift that you can make in mass batches for last-minute hostess gifts or stocking stuffers.

Here are a few of my favorites that I have made in the past for friends:

Source: Betty Crocker
Puppy Chow: always a hit. Perhaps it should be called Reindeer Chow in light of the holiday season...

Gingerbread that you can actually chew! These cookies were a big hit with my coworker who claims not to like gingerbread. That's because he's used to the thin, hard, crispy cookies that people normally make, and these are actually soft.

Source: Brown Eyed Baker
Hot chocolate mix. Customize with crushed candy canes or different kinds of chocolate. You can also add the same spices used in the gingerbread cookie recipe and substitute brown sugar for white sugar. 

Source: Bakerella
Red velvet cake balls. I once made 2 batches for a small get-together and left with empty serving platters!

Tiger butter. This is actually something my old high school friend would make every year. Watch out: it's addicting!

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