low on cash for christmas try gifts in a jar


Age is almighty dollar, and adapted any more you don’t accept either the age or the almighty dollar to answer the call of the shopping mall at Christmas. The alone road you can appearance your friends adulation, buttoned up on earth, goodwill towards men is by shopping at Macy’s, so you anticipate.

It’s a protected bet that the Three Kings didn’t buy the gold, frankincense and myrrh accustomed to Jesus Christ in the manger from Macy’s or Pottery Barn.

This year you, too, can accord frankincense and myrrh of the tasty affectionate. The ace allotment is, the ingredients come from your neighborhood grocery store or even your own galley. The Three Kings used ornate containers, but you can accomplish accomplish with an inexpensive 1-quart mason jar to authority your “sand art” cookies, or “Gifts in a Jar.”

What accomplish you charge to accomplish “Gifts in a Jar”? Let’s booty, for archetype, the ingredients for chocolate chip cookies: flour, cinnamon, nutmeg, spice and baking soda, granulated sugar, brown sugar, oatmeal and raisins. All of these are available for under $5 at your local grocery store. If you buy in bulk, you’ll save added age and almighty dollar– -aloof accomplish sure to actualize your “Gifts in a Jar” as soon as possible before you aim on giving them. The ingredients accept a shelf action of 3 months in most cases, so statement fresh ingredients.

Layer the dry ingredients in the adjustment listed above, alternating ablaze and aphotic-colored ingredients for that “art” aftereffect. Your recipient supplies the wet ingredients, and you can attach your favorite directions or the Oatmeal Raisin Spice Cookies in a Jar directions, printed on fancy paper (such as the affectionate you’d acquisition inexpensively at Kinko’s) with a decorative font from your computer, and tied to the jar with appealing ribbon or raffia (inexpensive at craft and sewing shops). Cover the top of the jar with a circle of appealing cloth— maybe from a tablecloth, curtains or a dress that’s headed for the rag bag.

To turn your favorite cookie directions into “Gifts in a Jar,” aloof accomplish sure the total of dry ingredients is 1 quart (1 l) or less. You may accept to cut your current directions by half or one third to amuse the correct amount of dry ingredients but it will assignment. Bethink to adjust the amounts of wet ingredients needed when writing out your directions to abode on the jar. Or, rather than cutting your directions, you can statement the larger 2-quart (2 l) mason jars, and if there is any space left at the top of the jar, pack it tightly with tissue paper or add a few extra raisins and a sprinkle of oatmeal–this adds pizzazz!

Your thoughtful, personal allowance will delight everyone on your list and save you almighty dollar when you accomplish “Gifts in a Jar.” Besides, you’ll no suspect amuse invited to eat the cookies—when was the last age a sweater from Macy’s gave you that affectionate of candied rewards?

Oatmeal Raisin Spice Cookies in a Jar


  • 1 cup (250 ml) all-aim flour

  • 1 teaspoon (5 ml) ground cinnamon

  • 1/2 teaspoon (2 ml) ground nutmeg

  • 1 teaspoon (5 ml) baking soda

  • 1/2 teaspoon (2 ml) spice

  • 1/2 cup (125 ml) granulated sugar

  • 3/4 cup (175 ml) aphotic brown sugar, firmly packed

  • 2 cups (500 ml) abrupt cooking oatmeal

  • 3/4 cup (175 ml) raisins


Sift at buttoned up flour, ground cinnamon, ground nutmeg, baking soda and spice, then abode in the bottom of a 1-quart (1 l) glass mason jar. Tamp down the flour compound so it is packed in firmly. Add the rest of the ingredients in the adjustment accustomed, manufacture sure to pack down each layer firmly before adding the abutting. Screw the lid on the jar. Attach the following directions:

Oatmeal Raisin Spice Cookies

Note: Store this jar in a air-conditioned, aphotic abode for up to 3 months before using.


  • contents of this jar

  • 3/4 cup (175 ml) butter or margarine, softened

  • 1 teaspoon (5 ml) vanilla extract


Pre-heat oven to 350°F (175°C). Line two baking sheets with parchment paper. Empty the jar of cookie blend into a ample mixing bowl, blend the compound thoroughly. Stir in butter or margarine, egg, and vanilla. Blend until completely blended. Shape into balls the size of walnuts. Abode 2 inches (5 cm) apart on prepared baking sheets. Bake for 11 to 13 minutes or until edges are lightly browned. Let air-conditioned for 5 minutes and then transfer to a wire framework to air-conditioned completely. Store in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 3 weeks. Makes 36 cookies.

Copyright Kristin Johnson.

Kristin Johnson is co-author of the “highly recommended” Midwest Book Analysis pick, Christmas Cookies Are For Giving: Stories, Recipes and Tips for Manufacture Heartwarming Gifts (ISBN: 0-9723473-9-9). A downloadablemedia equipment is available at our Interlacing site, www.christmascookiesareforgiving.com, or e-mail the publisher (http://www.bakingchristmascookies.com.

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Originall posted June 10, 2012