Last Minute Gift Idea – Cranberry Winter Cookie MixBy
It’s here, the crunch time before Christmas when you’re checking your list for the 2nd time (or the 20th!), only to find a few people that have been overlooked. Your shopping budget has already been exceeded and you are out of ideas. Don’t panic! Here is an easy, delicious and beautiful gift idea that is sure to please your recipients and your wallet.
My siblings and I have opted to not exchange gifts anymore, but instead do something small and thoughtful like make cookies or something else crafty and homemade. With our holiday travel plans, it didn’t make sense to make cookies ahead only to have them start to go stale before I would see everyone several days later. I also didn’t want to make a mess in my mother’s kitchen. My solution? Homemade cookie mix in a jar! I liked this idea because it gives them the opportunity to make the cookies when they want.
I turned to pinterest for some inspiration and decided on Cranberry Winter Cookies. The blogger that shared this was amazing, even giving you designed labels that were ready for printing. Here is the original link which includes some other cookie ideas as well: http://www.culdesaccool.com/2012/11/14/5-diy-holiday-baked-gifts-in-a-jar-with-free-printable-recipe-tags/
What you’ll need for the jar:
- 1 Quart size Mason Jar
- 1 cup plus 2 tablespoons all purpose flour
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 cup rolled oats
- 1/3 cup packed brown sugar
- 1/3 cup white sugar
- 1/2 cup dried cranberries
- 1/2 cup white chocolate chips
- 1/2 cup chopped pecans (nut free option: 1/2 cup rolled oats, rice crisp cereal or granola)
Mix the flour, baking soda and salt together. Carefully pour into jar. For ease, roll a piece of wax paper for a simple funnel. Lightly pack this down at the bottom with something flat that fits in the jar. (We used the flat end of our turkey thermometer of all things!)
- Layer all the remaining ingredients in the jar in the order they are listed above. You can pack these between layers also. As you get to the chunkier layers towards the top, you can just smooth out each layer instead of packing. Once all packed, it will look like this —>
- Print the Free Printable PDF file on card stock and cut out. The original instructions showed how you can stick the labels to the jar with glue dots, but I modified the label to print front and back and tied it on with twine over some scrap fabric.
- Don’t forget to Enjoy! I made a batch to try and they are amazing. The instructions for the recipient to make the cookies is on the tag, but here you go – sooo good and sooo easy!
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease a cookie sheet or line with parchment paper.
- In a medium bowl, beat together 1/2 cup softened butter, 1 egg and 1 teaspoon vanilla extract until fluffy.
- Add the entire jar of cookie mix, stirring until blended.
- Drop by heaping spoonfuls onto the prepared baking sheet. Bake for 8-10 minutes or until edges start to brown.
- Cool on baking sheets or remove to cool on wire racks. Makes approximately 18 cookies.
When all was said and done, my husband (Ryan) and I spent less than 2 hours putting together 12 of these. Plus, all the ingredients divided up left the cost of each complete jar around $6 or $7! So as far as homemade gifts go, this is very easy and inexpensive.
I hope this gives you inspiration that warms your heart and kitchen for the holidays! What solutions do you have for gift challenges?
Mary Sherwood Lake Living – Working with you to create your lifestyle at Lake Gaston and beyond!