Homemade Christmas food gifts

Chocolate Christmas tree cookies

Just like most people, I used to spend a small fortune and many hours buying Christmas presents for friends and family. A few years ago I decided that I’d had enough – it wasn’t just about the money but I found most presents impersonal, unimaginative and repetitive. If I wanted to get something truly individual, it cost even more and I had to spend a lot of my time thinking about, then trying to find, the right present for every single person. Well as you get older, particularly when you have kids –  you no longer have the luxury of the time to google and shop for ages. Also, most of my friends and family members had everything they needed.

So what could you get people who don’t really need anything? Food! Lovely home-made Christmassy food! I know you can get luxury chocolates, cookies, mince pies and so on from most stores and posh delis – but they are not unique, they are not lovingly home-made by someone you know. So a few years ago I started to make Homemade Christmas food gifts. First I started to make chutneys, followed by muffins, truffles & cookies. Later on I made mincemeat, chilli jam, mulled wine syrup, Christmas brownies and mince pies. Though I say it myself, my creations are always appreciated and loved. I’ve listed below some of the most successful ones:-

Chutney, jam, pickle and other preserves 

Mince pies

Even with the best ones you can buy at delis don’t compare with home-made mince pies. To my surprise they were actually quite easy to make. Even the pastry. But you don’t have to make your own pastry, the top quality ready-made ones from the supermarket are perfectly good. The real secret of a good mince pie is in the Mincemeat. That just has to be home-made! Here are links three of our most amazing mincemeat recipes – you can make these a few weeks before Christmas, and takes very little effort (and you can save lot’s of money!)

And here are the links to my favorite mince pie recipes – I actually prefer the puff pastry versions, which are super easy to bake and are perfect with mulled wine!

Home-made Christmas cookies

Christmas cookies always go down really well as gifts. They’re tasty, decorative and smell divine.  They are the ideal gift for teachers, neighbours and colleagues. You can make lots of them in a batch –  and you can involve the kids too! Here are links to my tried-and-tested and best loved Christmas Cookie recipes:

Home-made Christmas truffles

Home-made truffles are intense, delicious and  are sophisticated gifts! Yet most of them are so easy to make! Here are some examples:

Home-made Christmas cakes

When I go to a Christmas party I take a freshly baked Christmas-themed cake with me. I like the look of those gorgeous Chrismas cakes in magazines – but most of them take ages to make. So I normally bake a simple cake using Christmassy spices & ingredients such as cinnamon, ginger, orange, almond, chestnut and the result always makes people very, very cheerful! And that, as far as I’m concerned, is worth the hour or so of my time I spend on baking these treats! These particular cakes were a great success at Christmas:-

Home-made Christmas muffins and brownies

Brownies and muffins are really easy to bake – even kids can make them. These recipes are absolutely yummy, get their little fingers to help you!

How to wrap home-made gifts

  • Start collecting paper boxes & bags (white or brown) –  and decorate these with stencils, stickers or wrapping paper (you can pad them with festive tissue paper strips, if you like). Then wrap the food gifts in wax-paper, festive tissue paper or grease-proof sheets and put these into the box/sack.
  • Alternatively use tins or  large glass jars – decorate these with festive stencils or stickers, then  wrap them with a ribbon! Homemade Christmas food gifts in a jar>>
  • My favourite gift wrap is cellophane – it’s cheap, easy to use and looks fabulous tied with a festive ribbon.




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