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Handmade Christmas Kitchen: How Sweet It Is

November 23, 2010

Welcome back to the Handmade Christmas Kitchen – a very special segment of Handmade Christmas 2010.  Today, one of my all time FAVORITE food bloggers, Jessica,  shares a creative and fun gift to give to loved ones (and to indulge in yourself)!

When Heather asked me to participate in her Handmade Christmas project, I have to admit that I started to panic. Crafts really aren’t my thing. I have the patience of a 4-year old when it comes to homemade creations.

Except when it comes to food. Knowing that I can share (and eat!) a big plate of cookies or brownies makes being creative in the kitchen much easier. And tastier.

I wanted to show you a simple and fun gift that you can throw together on the fly. It’s economical and delicious. No one will be disappointed with chocolate!

Behold the homemade hot cocoa jars.


The best thing about these gifts is that the flavor combinations and possibilities are endless. I have a jar of peppermint hot cocoa and salted double chocolate hot cocoa to share, but other delicious ideas that come to mind include toffee, caramel, white chocolate, mocha and even raspberry.

They are super simple too, and include only 3 base ingredients:

  • Powdered milk
  • Cocoa powder
  • Sugar

Then you add in your “fun”  ingredients. In this case, I added lots of crushed candy canes (they melt into the cocoa) in one jar, and sea salt and chocolate morsels in the second jar.


Then you simply tie it up with a pretty ribbon and call it a day. You get to keep your wallet happy and keep your sanity, and snack on some chocolate in the meantime.


Hot Cocoa Jars
Serves approximately 8-10

3 cups powdered milk

1/3 cup sugar

½ cup cocoa powder

For peppermint hot cocoa, add in 1/3 cup crushed candy canes. For salted double chocolate cocoa add in ½ teaspoon sea salt and 1/3 cup chocolate morsels.

The recipe can easily be cut in half for smaller jars or doubled for larger jars.

Attach with directions: “Mix the ingredients in the jar together, then stir ¼ cup mix into 1 cup hot water or milk. Top with whipped cream.” 

Then you just hope that your friends invite you over for hot cocoa.


20 Comments leave one →
  1. November 23, 2010 7:17 am

    It’s amazing I don’t like whipped cream. (Never have. No clue why.) It looks SO amazing! That mug of warm cocoa just looks soooo comforting and cozy and inviting. Oh well. I love homemade Christmas gifts!! And yet I’ve never done it. Something new for this year?! My friend Tina made granola one year and stuck it in the cutest little sachets with people’s name on them. I loved receiving it! And I’m sure it cost a lot less than going out and buying the same number of gifts for people.

  2. November 23, 2010 7:30 am

    Thanks for having my non-crafty self. 🙂

    • November 23, 2010 8:28 am

      No no no – thank YOU dear 🙂

      Also – the handmade ornament I am sharing today is 100% in your honor 🙂

  3. Aimee S permalink
    November 23, 2010 8:05 am

    I love giving food as gifts. I make a homemade chocolate covered caramel corn every year. I stick it into a clear bag and then into those cute, cheap popcorn containers (you know, the red and white striped ones in the target dollar section). Tie with pretty ribbons, punch out some cute cards on cardstock, stick a striped candy cane in there and call it a gift!

    I love the cute little jars you used!

  4. Diana permalink
    November 23, 2010 8:41 am

    Oh my goodness that last shot looks delicious! These are such a cute idea…*mental note taken*.

  5. November 23, 2010 9:24 am


    Also, Jess: where did you get those jars?

  6. November 23, 2010 3:40 pm

    I would love to give AND get that as a gift. Really neat idea!

  7. November 23, 2010 4:00 pm

    What a wonderful recipe and gift idea!! I love homemade gifts like this 🙂

  8. November 23, 2010 4:05 pm

    I love this idea – the jars are SO cute! I think I may have to make a few as Christmas gifts. Thanks for this post! 🙂

  9. November 23, 2010 6:32 pm

    Yummmmmmy! I want to make this for myself….but I think I will add it to my list of homemade goodies I’m making to give to family & friends this year!! 🙂

  10. November 23, 2010 7:56 pm

    Adorable and delicious! Double win 🙂

  11. November 23, 2010 11:23 pm

    What and ingenious and attractive gift!

  12. November 25, 2010 4:18 pm

    I’ve been saving glass jars for months, for no reason other than I’m an art teacher and can’t throw anything away. Now I know exactly what I’ve been saving them for!

  13. November 26, 2010 6:58 pm

    What a perfect gift idea! I love it!

  14. November 26, 2010 8:23 pm

    I’m making these for Christmas presents this year. These will be perfect for the girls in cubes next to me at work!

  15. Grace permalink
    November 30, 2010 2:09 am

    how big are the jars in these pictures? I have 4oz jars what do you recomend?

    thanks so much this is great

    • December 1, 2010 5:47 pm

      Unfortunately these jars don’t have any labels on them anymore telling their size, but I’d say they are about 16-24oz.

  16. November 30, 2010 10:08 am

    And thanks to you two, my co-workers will now be getting Christmas gifts. 🙂

  17. Sydney permalink
    December 1, 2010 7:53 pm

    What type of coco do you suggest? Sweetened? Unsweetend


  1. Homemade Peppermint Hot Cocoa. | How Sweet It Is

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