November 28, 2014

Christmas Cookie Jar Gifts

Hi everyone, today I want to share a great and easy gift idea for the upcoming holiday season. I'm sure you have seen these everywhere, but they are such an easy gift! 

They are cookie gift jars. I know, I know, but just hear me out. Who doesn't love getting goodies? And around the holidays everyone is baking, so there is an overabundance of goodies everywhere. So this is a way to give baked goods, but allowing the recipient to choose when they will have the goodies. Pretty sweet deal.

I didn't take too many pictures of the steps, as they are simple enough to follow. I will share two recipes with you today, which I got from a book I purchased back in 2009. You can see how I made the recipe cards here.
Choco-Cherry Cookie Mix _______________________________________

2/3 cup flour                                              1/2 cup packed brown sugar
1 1/2 tsp baking powder                             1 cup dried cherries
1/2 tsp salt                                                1 cup white chocolate chips
1/2 unsweetened cocoa powder                   1 cup old-fashioned oats
1/2 cup sugar

1. Combine flour, baking powder and salt; stir well (or use a sifter if you have one). 

Pour into 1 quart jar using a funnel, or a piece of paper rolled into a funnel:

I don't know if you can see it or not, but I am actually using two silicone funnels. I found that was the easiest way, filling the smaller mouthed funnel and pouring it into the wider mouthed one. Next, pack down well:

I like to use the spice containers that open at the top, it makes a great handle while you are packing down. Don't get discouraged if you have a hard time packing down the flour mixture. Because flour is so light, it's hard to pack down. Just do your best, you can always pack the next layer really, really well.

Next add the cocoa, sugar and brown sugar to the jar. Pack down well after each layer. Add 1/2 cup the cherries, 1/2 cup the white chocolate chips and 1/2 cup of the oats; then the remaining cherries, white chocolate chips and oats. Pack down lightly after each layer. Seal the jar.

The instructions you will want to include with the gift are:

1 jar cookie mix                                         1 egg
1/3 cup butter, softened                             1 tsp vanilla
1/3 cup milk

1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Lightly grease cookie sheets. Pour contents of jar into large bowl. Mix well; set aside.

2. Beat butter in large bowl with electric mixer until smooth. Beat in milk, egg and vanilla (mixture may appear curdled). Stir in dry ingredients until well blended. Drop by heaping teaspoonfuls 2-inches apart on cookie sheets.

3. Bake 10-12min or until set. Cool 1min on cookie sheets; transfer to wire rack to cool.

Makes 4 dozen cookies

Cherry-Nut Raisin Bread Mix                                                                         

2 1/4 cups cake flour                                   1 cup chopped dried cherries
1 1/2 tsp baking powder                              1/2 cup toasted slivered almonds
1/4 tsp salt                                                 3/4 cup golden raisins
1 cup sugar                                                3/4 cup dark raisins
1 tbsp dried orange peel

1. Combine flour, baking powder and salt; stir well. Pour into 1 quart jar. Pack down well. Add sugar, orange peel, cherries, almonds and raisins. Pack down well after each layer. Seal jar.

The instructions you will want to include with the gift are:

1 jar cookie mix                                         3 tbsp vegetable oil
3/4 cup orange juice                                   1 egg

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Coat 9x5-inch loaf pan with nonstick cooking spray; set aside. Pour contents of jar into large bowl. Mix well, separating fruit if necessary; set aside.

2.Combine orange juice, oil and egg in small bowl. Add to dry ingredients; stir only until moistened, and fruits and nuts are evenly distributed. Spread batter evenly in prepared pan.

3. Bake 50-60min or until toothpick inserted into the centre comes out clean. Cool 10 min in pan; transfer to wire rack to cool. Store in airtight container.

Well, that's it! How easy was it to make two homemade gifts for someone special? These would be great teacher gifts, or to have as "ready-to-go" gifts to give to people who expectantly give you a gift (and you know it happens every year). Then, if you still have them at the end of the holidays, and easy treat for you to make for the family.

You can easily find recipes in holiday magazines, online and Pinterest. There are probably about a million different recipes out there.

I just love these cookie jar gifts, and I make them every year for my grandparents. They say they love them, so I'll keep making them! I think this is the fourth or fifth year I have made them now.

How about you guys? Anyone else have any great cookie jar recipes or experiences?


Linking to:
Classy Clutter - The Creative Collection Link Party #16
A Handful of Everything - Great Idea Thursdays #76 
Tatertots & Jello - Link Pary Palooza 11/28/14 
Six Sister's Stuff - Strut Your Stuff Saturday #175 
Someday Crafts - Whatever Goes Wednesday #250 
Someday Crafts - Christmas Categorically Crafting 

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