How to Get a Head Start on Your Annual Holiday Baking

By Bricco
Posted on November 28th, 2016
holiday baking

Now that Thanksgiving is out of the way, we can officially launch into Christmas mode. Some Black Friday agendas include shopping, decorating and wrapping, but we’d rather get a head start on holiday baking — preferably while blasting Christmas tunes.

Here are a few of our favorite tips, tricks and recipes for making, storing and gifting tasty holiday treats in bulk for all of your family, friends and coworkers.

Gadgets Galore

We believe it’s worth investing in a good stand mixer and non-stick cookie sheets. Other must-have baking accessories include measuring cups for both dry and wet ingredients, spatulas, cooling racks and mixing bowls.

But we also love anything that makes baking easier or more fun, including this 3-D mini gingerbread house cookie cutter, a decorating pen or customized rolling pin.

Recipes Revisited

When you type “Best Holiday Cookie Recipes” into Google, 2.6 million results will pop up. It’s overwhelming to say the least. We love this roundup of 21 recipe ideas from Buzzfeed that covers all your bases — from bourbon balls to snicker doodles and everything in between.

A fun way to spice up traditional cookie recipes is by swapping in different ingredients. Think cranberries and rolled oats to chocolate chip cookies or cocoa powder to gingerbread. You can also impact the taste of a cookie by what you pair it with, such as moscato with Linzer tarts, pale ale with molasses cookies or dessert wine with peanut butter cookies.

Freezer-Friendly Options

The key to starting your holiday baking a month before Christmas is knowing how to freeze your treats. Whether you choose to just make the dough ahead of time or the cookies as well, the way you store will vary.

Kitchn has really thorough step-by-step instructions for both freezing dough and baked cookies. Experts caution against freezing cake-like cookies and any that have a runny batter. Most others can be thawed or reheated when you need them, though.

Pretty Packaging

Half the fun of gifting cookies is the packaging! We’re big fans of simple round white tins adorned with lots of Christmas ribbon.

But boxes, wide-mouth Mason jars and even empty Pringles containers are great options, too! Finish off your cookie container with a fun holiday label like this free chalkboard option or this instant download off Etsy.

If all else fails with your baking adventures, we’ve got you covered. Ciao! Bakery makes delicious petits fours, cookies and other small bites for your holiday gift-giving needs. Call 717-724-0236 or stop by the bakery at 304 Chestnut Street in Harrisburg between 6:30 a.m. and 4 p.m. weekdays to place your order!

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