easy homemade gifts for kids to make

Cranberry Rosemary Vinegar

Cranberry-Rosemary Vinegar

This is a favorite food gift of mine. It is so festive and it tastes good, too.

I happen to love cranberries. I buy a lot of them this time of year. They are in season, so the price is good. I buy extra, and throw a few bags in the freezer to enjoy all year long

I also preserve some by using cranberries to flavor vinegar. By adding rosemary, the end result is a great tasting vinegar that is perfect for winter salads. It is also a lovely gift.

I love to give homemade gifts. Time isn’t always on my side, though. I doubt my niece will be getting that scarf I was going to crochet for her. But I can get several bottles of this vinegar made in no time.

All you need are bottles with corks or screw top lids. If using corks, be sure they are food grade. You’ll also need cranberries, bamboo skewers, fresh rosemary and vinegar- 5% acidity. I use red wine vinegar. Other vinegar will work, too. If you use white vinegar or cider vinegar they will pick up color from the cranberries and turn a pretty reddish shade. Not as red as with the wine vinegar, but still very pretty.

Since I bring my rosemary plants inside for the winter, I have access to fresh rosemary. Your local grocery store probably has some in the produce department. You can use other herbs, if you can’t find rosemary.

Make sure the skewers will fit in the bottles. Cut them down to fit, if needed. Skewer the berries on the skewers leaving a little room on the top of the skewer. If your cranberries are really big, test to make sure they will fit the neck of the bottle. The skewers keep the berries from floating around.

Place a few sprigs of rosemary in each bottle and then add the berry- filled skewers. Pour in the vinegar, leaving a little room for the cork. Sometimes you need to add a little more vinegar the next day as some will absorb into the cranberries and the skewers. I make decorative labels and give them as gifts. Ready to use in a week.

Sesame Salt

Sesame Salt

During the holidays, homemade gifts are always nice. Not every gift has to be a dessert or something sweet. This sesame salt is a lovely gift for almost anyone.

Once you taste sesame salt, I think you will love it as much as I do. I use it on all sorts of veggies, meats, pasta, potatoes and more. I love it on popcorn!!!

It is a nice alternative to regular table salt. Sesame salt adds great flavor to all sorts of foods. It is also is lower in sodium than plain salt.

You start by toasting sesame seeds. I just place the sesame seeds in a skillet and toast, on top of the stove, over medium heat, until golden brown. You can also toast them in the oven, but they burn easily. You do want to watch them carefully. As soon as they start to change color, turn down the heat or remove them from the heat.

Once the seeds are toasted, you add salt and a few other ingredients (onion, garlic, paprika, pepper). Use whatever salt you like. I use sea salt. Feel free to play around with flavors you add your sesame salt. I add a little smoked paprika, which gives the sesame salt a nice, smoky flavor.

I powder the mixture in a spice mill/coffee grinder. You can also use a blender to grind it up.

Sesame salt can be kept on the table in a shaker, just like salt. I use a shaker with slightly larger holes- I have one of those cheese shaker jars that works well. I often include a shaker when I give someone sesame salt.

Sesame Salt

1 c. sesame seeds

1/4 c. salt – I like sea salt- use the salt you like

1 t. each paprika and smoked paprika

1 t. onion powder

1/4 t. pepper

1/4 t. garlic powder

In a skillet, over medium heat, toast sesame seeds, stirring or tossing to cook evenly until seeds are light brown. Stir in salt and cook 5 minutes more. Cool mixture completely and add remaining ingredients. Process in blender or spice grinder until mixture in powdered. Makes 3/4 c. Excellent with vegetables, stir-fries, salad dressings etc.

Sesame salt in a cheese shaker

Homemade Hot Cocoa Mix

Hot Cocoa “Ice Cream Cone”

I am always looking for homemade gift ideas for the holidays. I really like gifts that both adults and kids can make. This one is just a simple way to package homemade hot cocoa mix to make it special. We made these in a holiday gift class the other night. People really enjoyed making them.

You start with hot cocoa mix- recipe follows. Then you get these cone shaped bags. I use a 12-inch size and a 17-inch size. I buy my online, but they are available in some craft and candy making stores. Just put about 1 cup of the hot cocoa mix in the smaller cone-shaped bag. Fold the top down and tape it shut. Now place the smaller bag inside the larger bag. Top with about a cup of mini marshmallows mixed with some chocolate chips. The chips are optional. Tie shut with a ribbon. It ends up looking (sort of) like an ice cream cone.  I add a label that says “Hot Cocoa for Two” with directions that say, “Divide hot cocoa mix between two large mugs. Fill with a cup of boiling water in each. Stir and top with the marshmallows”. You can make whatever label you like. A quick and simple gift. You could also include mugs with the gift. This is a great idea for kids to make for grandparents, teachers, etc.

Here is the recipe for the hot cocoa mix.

Hot Cocoa Mix

3 c. nonfat dry milk
1 c. cocoa
1 c. sugar
1/4 t. salt
1 c. mini marshmallows (optional)

In large bowl, mix all ingredients well. I like to sift the ingredients in because it powders the milk even finer than the way it comes. Store in an airtight jar and use within 6 months. To use add 5 tablespoonfuls to 8 ounces boiling water. Variation, flavor with cinnamon, instant coffee, cayenne pepper or even dried orange peel.

Hot Cocoa Ice Cream Cones

Hot Cocoa Ice Cream Cone

Hot Cocoa Ice Cream Cone

I am always looking for homemade gift ideas for the holidays. I really like gifts that both adults and kids can make. This one is just a simple way to package homemade hot cocoa mix to make it special. We made these in a holiday gift class the other night. People really enjoyed making them.

You start with hot cocoa mix- recipe follows. Then you get these cone shaped bags. I use a 12-inch size and a 17-inch size. I buy my online but they are available in some craft and candy making stores. Just put about 1 cup of the hot cocoa mix in the smaller cone shaped bag. Fold the top down and tape it shut. Now place the smaller bag inside the larger bag. Add about a cup of mini marshmallows mixed with some chocolate chips. The chips are optional. Tie shut with a ribbon. It ends up looking (sort of) like an ice cream cone.  I add a label that says “Hot Cocoa for Two” with directions that say, “Divide hot cocoa mix between two large mugs. Fill with a cup of boiling water in each. Stir and top with the marshmallows”. You can make whatever label you like. A quick and simple gift. You could also include mugs with the gift. This is a great idea for kids to make for grandparents, teachers, etc.

 

 

Here is the recipe for the hot cocoa mix.

Hot Cocoa Mix

3 c. nonfat dry milk
1 c. cocoa
1 c. sugar
1/4 t. salt
1 c. mini marshmallows (optional)

In large bowl, mix all ingredients well. I like to sift the ingredients in because it powders the milk even finer than the way it comes. Store in an airtight jar and use within 6 months. To use add 5 tablespoonfuls to 8 ounces boiling water. Variation, flavor with cinnamon, instant coffee, cayenne pepper or even dried orange peel.

 

Hot Cocoa Ice Cream Cone

Hot Cocoa Ice Cream Cone

Hot Cocoa Ice Cream Cone

I am always looking for homemade gift ideas for the holidays. I really like gifts that both adults and kids can make. This one is just a simple way to package homemade hot cocoa mix to make it special. You start with hot cocoa mix- recipe follows. Then you get these cone shaped bags. I use a 12-inch size and a 17-inch size. I buy my online but they are available in some craft and candy making stores. Just put about 1 cup of the hot cocoa mix in the smaller cone shaped bag. Fold the top down and tape it shut. Now place the smaller bag inside the larger bag. Add about a cup of mini marshmallows mixed with some chocolate chips. The chips are optional. Tie shut with a ribbon. It ends up looking (sort of) like an ice cream cone.  I add a label that says “Hot Cocoa for Two” with directions that say, “Divide hot cocoa mix between two large mugs. Fill with a cup of boiling water in each. Stir and top with the marshmallows”. You can make whatever label you like. A quick and simple gift. You could also include mugs with the gift. This is a great idea for kids to make for grandparents, teachers, etc.

 

 

Here is the recipe for the hot cocoa mix.

Hot Cocoa Mix

3 c. nonfat dry milk
1 c. cocoa
1 c. sugar
1/4 t. salt
1 c. mini marshmallows (optional)

In large bowl, mix all ingredients well. I like to sift the ingredients in because it powders the milk even finer than the way it comes. Store in an airtight jar and use within 6 months. To use add 5 tablespoonfuls to 8 ounces boiling water. Variation, flavor with cinnamon, instant coffee, cayenne pepper or even dried orange peel.

 

Subscriber to our Mailing List

Follow us on Social Media

Support This Site

Donate Now

New Release: