Time to make Christmas goodies!

Most of the year I am quite happy leaving the baking to my daughters, but around this time of year I usually spend a few afternoons in the kitchen making goodies.  Here are some of the ones we tend to make year after year.  To be favorites at our house they have to come together quickly, because I just don’t have the patience for long involved recipes.
Jam Thumbprint Cookies mix up in five minutes flat and are very easy to do with little children.

Quick Christmas Goodies

 

Candied Almonds are another super-easy recipe.  I like to put these in pretty containers and given them to Sunday School teachers.
Candied Almonds

 

Mrs. Tigani’s Cookies have been a favorite at our house since our big kids were tiny.  I was surprised to find this video showing how to make them.

 

Peppermint Bark is another uber-easy recipe.  The only tricky part is finding a good way to break the (rather-hard) mints.  We tried the food processor, but it sounded like it was going to break apart, so we ended up putting the mints in a heavy zip-top bag and hitting the bag with a hammer.
Peppermint Bark

 

 

Almond Bark is another easy thing to do with almonds.  (I have a brother in law who is an almond farmer, so we get these babies a dab cheaper than at Winco.  :)
Almond Bark Haystacks

And here’s a treat from a friend that my daughter insists we NEED to make for ourselves very soon:  Monkey Mocha Smoothies

Monkey Mochas

And finally, here’s a link to a new treat I want to try this year:  Gumdrop Fudge.

gumdrop-fudge-2

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

What have you found that’s easy and fun to make with little children?  I’d love a link to a recipe in comments if you have one.

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{ 9 Comments }

  1. Ruth Hansen says:

    We have a fun one called “Stain Glass Windows”. Easy peasy. You just melt semi-sweet chocolate chips (one bag) in the microwave till smooth. Then add a bag of small colored marshmallows. Stir till they are coated with the chocolate. Then put on parchment paper or wax paper in a long log type roll, wrap it up and freeze it. Then slice off pieces for a really cool stained glass window treat.

    Then I love cream cheese mints. The kids love making them because it feels so much like play doh and you can mix it up with your hands. Super easy – ingredients are just 3 oz cream cheese (softened), 1/2 tsp peppermint extract, 3 cups powdered sugar, and a few drops of food coloring if you want them to be colored. After mixing all of this in a bowl you roll the “dough” in granulated sugar. At that point you can press the mints into molds for beautiful designs or just leave them in cute little balls (easy for little hands.)

    Enjoy making fun Christmas memories!

  2. Melanie E. says:

    I noticed pre-crushed peppermint candy at the store the other day, on one of the seasonal baking displays. I don’t remember how much the bag was, and I know it’s more expensive than just buying the cheap ones and doing it yourself, but if you don’t have a good processor to break the candies, or the ability to whack them yourself, it might be a good alternative.

    • I was going to make the same comment. :-) Walmart had them, and most of the add-ins on the rack were around $2.25 I think.

  3. I use crushed candy canes for my peppermint bark. And if I am feeling fancy we do 2 layers – milk or dark chocolate, then white on top, then crushed candy canes for the minty sparkle.
    I try and balance the treats we make. A couple are complicated, but most are easy. I want to try this this year –
    http://luluthebaker.blogspot.com/2013/12/recipe-redux-frozen-peppermint.html#more

    and this-
    http://luluthebaker.blogspot.com/2011/12/on-6th-day-of-christmas-peppermint-oreo.html
    but I think I will just push the stick in without taking it apart, and use peppermint oreos intead of sprinkling with candy cane. Maybe red sanding sugar instead? I think that will be pretty.

    This one looks like it takes longer, but is really easy. I think my kids will love them.

    http://www.pillsbury.com/recipes/striped-peppermint-sandwich-cookies/9058e347-e933-4798-8e85-bcbed53785f9

    Thanks for the ideas! I want to try that gumdrop fudge. So many fun things to make! I like having things my kids can make with me.

  4. I am missing peppermint bark this year. No white chocolate in Thailand, and the dark chocolate is way too waxy. I’m going to try the thumbprint cookies. I think I can get everything for them here.

    We like drinks, hot chocolate with candy cane stri sticks, spiced apple cider in the crock pot, just apple juice and whole cinnamon, cloves, cardamom, ginger, a slice of lemon, and let it simmer all day. It feels like a really big treat.

    I make ginger bread, but I don’t bother with cookie cutters, (I’m way too lazy) I just roll it out and cut it into diamond shapes with the pizza cutter, and let the kids make them pretty with frosting and colored sugar.

    We make caramel corn a lot to go with the warm drinks.

    The one thing I will do that is time intensive, is butter tarts. MY mom made them every year and I love them so. They are so fiddly with the pastry making and cutting and everything that I only make them once a year, so it makes them special.

  5. No email link just something we do:

    Using a styrofoam shaped tree, tape small candy canes and small candy bars on it— it is absolutely adorable and the kids love making their own. I buy the large size for ech of the kids and put a bowl of candy canes and candy bars in the center of the table for them to use.

    Also no-baked cookies are a huge favorite for the grandkids to make, messy but fun

    And let’s not forget the snow ice cream, they can make any kind they want.

  6. So far this year, colds have kept me from any Christmas baking (trying to avoid the sugar until we’re well!) . But I have a list! :-) I’m planning to do graham cracker ginger bread houses with the kids, and some kind of cut-out cookie (ginger bread or sugar, whichever they choose). Then I always make two different pastries at Christmas: Bohemian Nut Slices http://www.cooks.com/recipe/6t8hw4c4/bohemian-nut-slices.html and Kringler, (which is basically a butter crust topped with cream puff dough, baked, and then iced with an almond flavored glaze).