It’s as much fun to package Christmas cookies and treats, as it is to make them – wouldn’t you agree? All you have to do is search for holiday gift wrap ideas online and you’ll find tons of creative and original ideas. I also love getting inspiration from magazines, books, and stores this time of year.
Tip 1: Keep in mind that it’s the thought that counts!
If you’ve spent lots of time baking or picking out the perfect edible gift, and you’ve gifted yummy food in the past, then you know that the receiver is really going to appreciate the time and effort that went into the gift. As my daughter says, it’s a more thoughtful gift when it’s homemade. This is another way of saying that there’s lots of food this time of year and that it’s about the thought behind the gift, not the quantity.
Tip 2: Shop at home first, then hit the discount stores.
Before you go out shopping for boxes and bags, shop in your home. You probably have lots of boxes from last year that can be used, like tins that held other gifts in the past. You may have also stocked up on boxes from last year, on sale! If you need to buy containers, consider the dollar store or discount chains like Wal-Mart, Winners, TJ Maxx, and Bulk Barn. Every year, they come up with different patterns and types of containers.
Tip 3: Be inspired by the edible gift.
This means small boxes for small chocolates and bigger ones for cookies or bars or cupcakes. Choose boxes that show off what’s inside. For example, the cardboard boxes here have a see-through window, letting you see the Christmas cookies. And, these pistachio chocolate balls are bite-sized, just as compact as the box they come in. This year, I bought small loaf pans at the dollar store, baked zucchini bread in them, and packaged them in cello bags, the way they would be sold in a store. I’ve been gifted a dozen cookies on a ceramic Christmas dish that I still have, covered in saran wrap. I loved it: I just took the wrap off and we enjoyed the cookies on the spot.
Tip 4: Choose a theme around the edible gift. If you’re giving cookies and hot chocolate, consider gifting a mug as well. In the photo above, you’ll see a small gingerbread house called a ‘Mug Mate’, made by a local Toronto bakery, Mad Batter Bakers. You place the mate on the edge of a hot chocolate or coffee or milk mug and enjoy it with your drink – so cute! Not only do these items go together, but the recipient can use them all at once. It’s sort of like an ‘experience’ gift. Pair homemade shortbreads and store-bought jams. You can also do cookies and an apron and cookie cutters. How about a favorite recipe, the baked goods, and a plate to serve it on that the recipient keeps?
Tip 5: Package the treats in a usable year-round gift.
One of my favorite things to do is hit thrift stores and estate sales throughout the year. It’s the thrill of the find and the walk down memory lane that I enjoy. I’ve found so many beautiful items that you’ve seen on my Instagram feed and in blog posts. I’m looking for old china patterns and dishes for the most part.
Recently, I went to a neighborhood estate sale and got a few teacups and saucers. Look how pretty these teacups are, filled with Christmas cookies. Wrap in holiday colors and tags, but of course, the recipient can still use the teacup all year round. You can even include a package of assorted teas as part of this gift.
Tip 6: Use festive boxes, cupcake liners, and wrapping.
This sounds obvious, but Christmas is the only time you can find a ton of unique boxes and Christmas packaging, that match and can go with any theme you choose. For example, there are gingerbread boxes and tags that you can use to gift a batch of gingerbread men. There are spatulas and aprons that are holiday themed. There are lots of dishes and cups that are Christmas-based that make unique packaging ideas that can be kept for years to come. This is the time of year to go all out!
I’m sure you’ve seen many original ways to package edible treats. I’d love to hear about the most unique ones you’ve received or gifted!