There’s always that person you don’t know what to give as a gift. Or maybe there’s an unexpected gift you need to give – someone you weren’t expecting to give you a gift gives you one and you want to give them something in return. Baked gifts are the perfect frugal holiday gift. It’s something you can have on hand and throw together to give to someone. And who doesn’t love a good homemade cookie?
Here are some simple and festive frugal ideas for gifting home-baked goods this year:
Fudge. Who doesn’t love fudge? It’s easy to make too and easy to package in a little box and make festive. Just melt 3 cups of semisweet chocolate chips with a can of sweetened condensed milk. Add a teaspoon of vanilla and a pinch of salt. Spread in a 9×9 pan lined with parchment paper and refrigerate until firm. Cut into 1-inch squares and place in a small festive box for that quick holiday treat.
Fruitcake. Okay, okay hear us out on this. If you make your own fruitcake with the fruits your recipient loves, then it won’t be the proverbial fruit cake re-gifted time and time again.
Popcorn. You know those tins of popcorn you can buy in the stores during the holidays? Well, you can make your own. Get your own tin, pop some popcorn, and toss with a caramel sauce or some other sweet sauce. Then place it in the tin and adorn with a bow.
Peppermint bark. This is a great holiday treat that showcases one of the hallmark tastes of the holidays. You can’t go wrong with peppermint, and it’s so easy to make. Just three simple ingredients – white chocolate, puffed rice cereal, and peppermint candies.
Place crushed peppermints on a wax paper lined cookie sheet. Melt the white chocolate in a double boiler (stir frequently so it doesn’t burn) and stir in the puffed rice. Pour the chocolate mixture over the prepared cookie sheet and spread it all over the pan. Sprinkle with some more peppermint pieces. Chill until firm and then break into pieces and package in a tin or pieces of cellophane.
Cookies in a jar. This is something you can make ahead and keep in your pantry for that just-in-case gift at the ready. Put dry ingredients in a canning jar. Make it as pretty to look at as you can by layering ingredients. Flour mixed with baking soda and salt, brown sugar, white sugar, and top the jar with colorful candy pieces. Close the jar and put a piece of fabric on the top. Attach a card with instructions that say what they need to add (butter/oil and eggs) and how to bake (temperature and time). Then when the receiver makes their cookies they will think of you.
Cake pops. Something on a stick to make a pretty bouquet of a special treat.
Chocolate truffles. These are a quick and easy candy to make and you can top them with so many different things, from sprinkles to nuts to make for a beautiful gift. With some sweetened condensed milk, unsweetened cocoa, and butter you can make a yummy truffle. Then roll them in your toppings – nuts, coconut, sprinkles, or any other small decorative candy of your choice. Place them in a box and decorate or add a bow.
As you can see, giving out baked goodies to friends and families for the holidays really doesn’t have to be difficult. It’s a great way to show you care and it can be inexpensive for you to boot.