Press "Enter" to skip to content


Top 10 Homemade Gifts from the Heart: Holiday Baking for Friends and Family

Not quite sure what to give loved ones this year? Why not turn some of your favorite holiday baking recipes into delicious gifts that friends and family will adore? There’s nothing quite like opening a platter or basket filled with homemade treats. If you’re lucky, they’ll share with you.

Chocolate-covered cookies

For a quick and easy addition to a gift platter, roll out your favorite pre-packaged sugar cookie dough and bake it. Choose from any cut out shape or simply place dough onto a baking sheet. If you choose this second option, cut the cookies into small squares before baking. Once the cookies have cooled, dip them in melted chocolate and lay them on wax paper to harden. For an elegant look, dip half of the cookie in chocolate and coat it with crushed peppermint candies or sprinkles.


Dark chocolate walnut fudge

The holidays present the perfect opportunity to indulge in decadent baking recipes like this one for dark chocolate walnut fudge. If you’re gifting this fudge on its own, try presenting it in a cute box topped with a bow. Make sure that recipients do not have a nut allergy.



Fig crumb bars

There’s no time like the holidays to experiment with figs. This fruit, typically dried, adds a sweetness to baked goods that doesn’t feel overpowering. These fig crumb bars are made in two parts, the filling and the crust, and require mainly staples you likely already have on hand like flour, brown sugar and orange juice. Give them a try and wow your friends and family this year.



Mint brownie bites

Put a spin on traditional baked goods and prepare mint brownie bites this winter. With a hint of mint extract in the decadent chocolate ganache topping and some crushed peppermint candies for garnish, these treats bring these favorite bake sale goodies to another level.


Decorated sugar cookies

While traditional, there’s just something about a fresh sugar cookie that brightens anyone’s day. Use this basic recipe for dough and let your imagination run wild when it comes to shapes and themes. Gifting to a dog lover? Find pet-inspired cookie cutters and create cute treats just for them. Does your brother love football? Use a jersey-shaped cutter and decorate cookies in his team’s favorite colors. Sometimes, the basics allow you to create a truly original and thoughtful present.


Sugar twists

A variation on the traditional sugar cookie, this recipe requires you to prepare dough and then roll it into cords. Shape the cords into twists and brush them with a beaten egg. Top them with coarse sugar or colored sprinkles. When they’re finished, these beauties are a gorgeous addition to your holiday baking repertoire.


Jam-filled sandwich cookies

For something that will jazz up your cookie tray, make jam-filled sandwich cookies for loved ones this year. Once you’ve prepared the dough and let it chill for at least two hours, bake these round treats. Filling them with jam (try a variety of flavors to spice things up) and dusting them with confectioners’ sugar is all that’s left to do. You’ll be amazed at how simple these elegant homemade gifts look once they’re done.


Chocolate-peppermint Bundt cake

Who says that homemade edible gifts have to be cookies? Our chocolate peppermint Bundt cake is easy to prepare and makes an excellent stand-alone present for friends and family with a sweet tooth. It’s moist, rich and best of all, looks great delivered in a cake box with a see-through window.



Mocha Buche de Noel

For another amazing and mouthwatering gift option, choose the mocha Buche de Noel recipe. A classic around the world, this rolled cake is surprisingly easy to prepare but has a look of extreme complexity. It’s a wonderfully delicious way to show you care this holiday season.



Cranberry orange loaf

Quick breads are often overshadowed by cookies and pies during the holidays, but they certainly shouldn’t be forgotten. With a dash of butter or jam, these make the perfect breakfast or dessert. Try a cranberry orange loaf. Loaded with orange zest and chopped cranberries, it’s an excellent gift for those who like to eat a bit healthier or who aren’t huge fans of chocolate. These breads also ship very well, making this a fabulous choice for out-of-town friends and relatives.