6 Tasty Homemade Food Gifts in Jars | Midwest Living
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6 Tasty Homemade Food Gifts in Jars

Need fresh, personal ideas for this year's gifts? Try filling jars with eye-catching creations.

Gift in a jar: Chocolate-Nut Cookies

Layers of flour, brown sugar, coconut, chocolate pieces and peanuts appeal to the baker who receives this gift in a jar. Include a cookie scoop for an added touch. Vary the color of candy with the season: red and green for Christmas, red and white for Valentine's Day, and orange and black for Halloween.

Click ahead to see what these cookies look like when they're baked -- and to see five more recipes for tasty gifts in a jar. For each recipe, we show you both stages: the gift and the cooked food. You can also download a PDF of recipe labels and directions.

Gift in a Jar: Chocolate-Nut Cookies

Click here to see our how-to video on layering food gifts in jars

Download a PDF of recipe labels and directions

Cook it: Chocolate-Nut Cookies

Coconut adds to the slightly chewy texture of these chocolate chip cookies. Honey-roasted peanuts impart nutty flavor and crunch.

Gift in a Jar: Chocolate-Nut Cookies

Video: How to create food gifts in jars

See how to layer eye-catching, tasty food gifts in jars.

Assemble it: Spicy Three-Bean Soup

Here's dinner in a jar, the perfect gift for busy people. Give along with a bag of corn chips or tortilla chips.

Gift in a Jar: Spicy Three-Bean Soup

Cook it: Spicy Three-Bean Soup

Dehydrated veggies rehydrate when cooked with beans and seasoning. This hearty soup makes a good slow cooker dish.

Gift in a Jar: Spicy Three-Bean Soup

Assemble it: Cranberry-Bran Muffins

This gift in a jar has stripes of flour, whole bran cereal, apple pie spice, almonds, brown sugar and cranberries. Seal the streusel topping in a small sturdy plastic bag and enclose at the top of the jar. The jars/gifts keep at room temperature for up to a month.

Gift in a Jar: Cranberry-Bran Muffins

Cook it: Cranberry-Bran Muffins

Tangy dried cranberries keep this muffin recipe from being too sweet.

Gift in a Jar: Cranberry-Bran Muffins

Assemble it: Blueberry-Ginger Hotcakes

Add a bottle of real maple syrup when you give this layered pancake mix in a jar. The hotcakes are more flavor-packed than traditional pancakes.

Gift in a Jar: Blueberry-Ginger Hotcakes

Cook it: Blueberry-Ginger Hotcakes

The cornmeal in the recipe adds a slightly grainy texture that you'll love. Using two kinds of ginger boosts flavor.

Gift in a Jar: Blueberry-Ginger Hotcakes

Assemble it: Fudgy Snack Cake

This easy cake-in-a-jar is both quick to assemble and easy to bake.

Gift in a Jar: Fudgy Snack Cake

Cook it: Fudgy Snack Cake

Candy pieces and chopped nuts add a tasty topping to this moist, easy cake -- no frosting necessary!

Gift in a Jar: Fudgy Snack Cake

Assemble it: Fruit and Nuts Oatmeal

Toasting the oatmeal before layering is worth the effort for added nutty flavor. Give with a small jar of honey.

Gift in a Jar: Fruit and Nuts Oatmeal

Cook it: Fruit and Nuts Oatmeal

Nuts, dried fruit, spices and wheat germ all add to the flavor of this robust oatmeal. Be sure to microwave in a large bowl because the mixture boils up as it cooks.

Gift in a Jar: Fruit and Nuts Oatmeal

Assembling your gift

Once you've selected a recipe, you can make several jar gifts at a time.
The right jar Our dry mixes fit in a 1-quart glass jar or a 32-ounce food canister or container with a tight-fitting lid. Use new or antique canning jars.
Layering tips Form a funnel with waxed paper to ease pouring dry ingredients into the jar. Tap jar gently on the counter to settle each layer before adding the next. It's OK if layers don't fill the jar to the top. Just avoid shaking container and mixing up the layers.
Mini bags Some of our food gifts have a separate bag holding a portion of the recipe. Use a small plastic bag, or a square of plastic wrap closed with a twist tie.
Cooking directions Print directions for how to use the mix, and attach them to the jar. They include other ingredients needed. Use ribbons and labels to decorate the jar.
Storage If you like, add a "best by" date to the jar. These all keep at room temperature for up to 1 month.

Download a PDF of recipe labels and directions

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