Homemade Food Gifts-Chocolate Butterscotch Bar Cookie Mix

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Homemade treats and gifts are so comforting during the holidays, and who wouldn’t love a gift that looks like this? I made a few of these, and everyone went nuts over them. I couldn’t make them fast enough. Not only is this the easiest gift in the world to make, but the finished product is beyond awesome (and when I say that, it’s good). You can find one-quart jars almost anywhere, but if you’re having trouble, check Walmart or your local grocery store. These recipes can be made ahead, and don’t forget to make a few extra batches to keep on hand for family munching, drop-in guests, or any time of the year.

 

Chocolate Butterscotch Bars

Prep: 5 minutes

YIeld: 3 dozen

Ingredients

11/2 cups graham cracker crumbs

1 cup (6 ounces) semisweet chocolate morsels

2 cups (12 ounces) butterscotch morsles

1 cup chopped pecans or walnuts

Preparation

1. Layer all ingredients in a 1-quart jar in order given; tightly seal. Makes 1 gift jar.

Chocolate Butterscotch Bar Cookies: Combine Chocolate Butterscotch Bar Mix and 1 (14-ounce) can sweetened condensed milk. Press into a greased aluminum foil-lined 9-inch square pan. Bake at 350F for 30 to 35 minutes. Cool completely and cut into squares.

Christmas Cookie Winner! Double Chocolate Chip Peppermint Cookies

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This recipe is so easy, and so fun to make. I saw a similar recipe in the Better Homes and Gardens Magazine, and my daughter, Leigh, begged me to make some. She made the orignal recipe all by herself, and we were all impressed. Since, as a Recipe Developer, I get paid to create recipes for a living, I decided I would try to rival her with this variation. Try them for yourself and let me know what you think. 

 

Super-Duper Chocolate Peppermint Kisses

Prep: 20 minutes

Bake: 8 minutes

Yield: 20 cookies

Ingredients

1 (161/2-ounce) package chocolate chip cookie dough

1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder

3/4 cup chocolate-flavored sprinkles

20 peppermint chocolate kisses, unwrapped (chocolate kisses may be substituted)

Preparation

1. Preheat oven to 375F. Lightly grease a cookie sheet; set aside. In a large resealable plastic bag, combine cookie dough and cocoa powder. Seal bag; knead with your hands until dough is well mixed. Remove dough from bag.

2. Place chocolate sprinkles in a shallow dish or small bowl. Place milk in a shallow dish or small bowl. Shape dough into 1-inch balls, Dip balls in milk to moisten, then roll balls in chcolate sprinkles to coat. Place balls 2-inches apart on prepared cookie sheet.

3. Bake in a preheated oven about 8 minutes or until edges are firm. Immediately press a peppermint kiss into the center of each cookie. Transfer cookies to a wire rack; let cool. 

To store: Place cookies between sheets of waxed paper in an airtight container; cover. Store at room temperature for up to 3 days or freeze for up to 3 months.

Easiest Christmas Cookies Ever-Gingerbread Cookies

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These are the easiest gingerbread cookies ever. My daugther, Leigh, and son, Zachary made these all on their own. We used the Pillsbury slice and bake gingerbread cookie dough (found in your refrigerator section of your local grocery store), and everyone thought they were made from scratch. Purchase colored sprinkles, icing or decorator crystals for your kids to decorate, and they will have a blast.

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Thanksgiving Pecan Pie Bars

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If you’re looking for a twist on pecan pie, try these simple Pecan Pie Bars. With ingredients that you probably already have in your pantry, you can prepare these with ease. I put my pecans in the food processor to speed up the prep time on this recipe. If you want to make them lighter, use skim milk instead of whipping cream. Just don’t forget to have a glass of milk on hand and an empty stomach (I’m stuffed as I am writing this).

 

Prep: 15 minutes

Cook: 45 minutes

Yield: Makes about 28 squares

Ingredients

2  cups  all-purpose flour

2/3  cup  powdered sugar

3/4  cup  butter, softened

1/2  cup  firmly packed brown sugar

1/2  cup  light corn syrup

2/3  cup  butter

3  tablespoons  whipping cream or milk (skim milk may be used)

3 1/2  cups  coarsely chopped pecans

Preparation

1. Sift together 2 cups flour and 2/3 cup powdered sugar. Cut in 3/4 cup softened butter using a pastry blender or fork just until mixture resembles coarse meal. Pat mixture on bottom and 1 1/2 inches up sides of a lightly greased 13- x 9-inch baking dish.

2. Bake at 350° for 20 minutes or until edges are lightly browned. Cool.

3. Bring brown sugar, corn syrup, 2/3 cup butter, and whipping cream (or milk) to a boil in a saucepan over low heat. Stir in pecans, and pour hot filling into prepared crust.

4. Bake at 350° for 25 to 30 minutes or until golden and bubbly. Cool completely before cutting into 2-inch squares.