This post contains affiliate links; as an Amazon Associate we earn from qualifying purchases.
I'm writing this post one week before Christmas. It's time to fill in those last minute gifts for family, friends, and teachers. And I don't want to go anywhere near the stores this week for fear of lines and traffic. Besides, I want to give more personal gifts and homemade is kind of our mantra.
But who has time for anything complex with one week left till the big day???
Well, here's the good news. If you have a fairly well-stocked pantry and a stash of mason jars (or a hardware store that carries them), you're in luck.
Mason jar gifts can be practical and beautiful. They show that you've been thoughtful about the gift, but don't take hours to produce. And they often mean less waste from packaging, gift wrap, and presents that don't get used.
While there are a lot of "gift in jars" options out there, we have a few favorites that we're sharing here today. Each includes a set of directions that should be included along with your gift.
You can make a hand-crafted tag for your jars that you tie on with a ribbon or string (we love Canva as a free design tool for making tags) or you can use these directions to make homemade printed labels.
Five Easy Mason Jar Gifts
Hot Chocolate Mix - mix 2 cups confectioners' sugar , 1 cup unsweetened cocoa powder, 2 1/2 cups nonfat dry milk powder, 1 teaspoon fine-grain salt, and 2 teaspoons cornstarch in a medium sized mixing bowl. Divide into 2 quart-size mason jars. Add a baggie full of miniature marshmallows on top.
Directions: Mix 2 Tablespoons hot cocoa mix + 8 oz of hot milk or water. Stir & Enjoy!
Chocolate Chip Cookie Mix - combine 1 3/4 cups flour, 3/4 tsp baking soda and 3/4 salt in small bowl. Place flour mixture in the bottom of a 1-quart jar. Add 1 1/2 cups chocolate chips (I like bittersweet!), press down firmly. Add 3/4 cups packed brown sugar, press down firmly, then add 3/4 cups white sugar.
Directions: Preheat oven to 375° F. Beat 3/4 cup (1 1/2 sticks) softened butter, 1 large egg, and 3/4 teaspoon vanilla extract in large mixer until blended. Add cookie mix; mix well, breaking up any clumps. Drop one-tablespoon sized rounds onto ungreased baking sheets. Bake for 9 to 11 minutes or until golden brown.
Hearty Lentil Soup Mix - mix 1/2 tsp garlic powder, 1/2 tsp cinnamon, 1 tsp coriander, 1 tsp turmeric, 1/2 tsp cumin, 1 tsp dried parsley, 1/2 tsp ground pepper, and 1 tsp sea salt in a small bowl. Place one cup of red lentils in the bottom of your jar. Add your seasonings + 1/4 cup of dried onion flakes on top of the lentils. Add 3/4 cup more lentils on top of the spices. Top with a bay leaf.
Directions: Place soup mix in a large pot and top with 7 cups of water. Bring mixture to a boil then simmer with the top on for 20 mins. Remove lid and simmer for 15-20 more minutes.
Whole Grain Pancake Mix - mix 1 3/4 cups rolled oats, 2 cups white whole wheat flour, 1/2 cup all-purpose flour, 1 Tablespoon sugar, 1.5 Tablespoons baking powder, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and 1/2 teaspoon baking salt in a large bowl. Divide into 2 quart-sized mason jars.
Directions: combine 1 cup dry mix with 1/2 cup milk, 1/4 cup yogurt, and 1 egg. Stir until just combined. Allow batter to rest and thicken while heating up a griddle. Butter hot griddle then ladle about a 1/2 cup mix onto pan for each pancake. Flip when pancake begins to bubble (3-4 minutes) and cook for 2 minutes on the other side.
(Store this mix in the freezer for best results.)
Homemade Double Chocolate Brownie Mix - combine 2 cups granulated sugar, 1 cup cocoa, 1 cup flour, and 1/2 teaspoon salt in large mixing bowl. Add mix to quart-sized mason jar; add a baggie full of chocolate chips on top (1/2 cup).
Directions: Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line a 9x9 square pan with foil and spray with cooking spray. Combine brownie mix with 1/2 cup melted butter, 2 eggs, 1 teaspoon vanilla extract, and 1 tablespoon water. Add chocolate chips. Spread into baking pan. Bake at 350°F for about 20-24 minutes, until a toothpick comes out with only a few crumbs. Cool before cutting.
Share a picture of your gifts in jars with us @happyhivevt on Facebook or Instagram. We'd love to see how you dress up your jar!