Our friends at Martha Stewart have great tips on how to cut down on your holiday baking: Host a Cookie Swap! Sound daunting? Not so! Check out these easy steps to hosting a successful cookie swap. We guarantee that with lots of goodies and new recipes, the preparation is worth it.
What is a Cookie Swap? Invite your friends over and have each of them make one type of cookie for the party. At the party, everyone gets to sample the treats, swap cookies they want and package them in festive gift boxes. Guests leave with finished boxes and lots of new recipes.
Send Out Invitations Invite guests a few weeks in advance to give them ample notice. Around 8-10 guests is ideal for a good variety of cookies. Have each person bring along copies of their cookie recipe and if desired, packaging materials such as ribbons, boxes and tissue paper.
Pick Your Cookie Decide on what type of cookies you’re going to bake and ask each person to bring one dozen cookies for every person in attendance, plus an extra dozen for tasting. It may seem like a lot, but this way everyone will go home with plenty of cookies to keep or give as gifts. You can scale back if desired. Also, be sure to communicate your cookies ahead of time to avoid duplication.
Label the Cookies At the party, make sure guests know which cookies are which. Make cute folding labels or print out a template and write the name of each cookie and who they’re from.
Set Up a Packaging Station If desired, ask guests to bring packaging materials or have some on hand. Set everything out on large work tables for easy assembly. Some things that might work well are sturdy paper plates or boxes, ribbon, cardboard boxes, tissue paper, cellophane and other trimmings. You can also offer gift tags and pretty ribbon to make it easy for guests to give their cookies as gifts.
Prepare for the Swap On the day of the party, clear a few tables that will be used for swapping. Provide platters and cake stands and have guests put out cookies along with the recipe for tasting. Let everyone sample the spread, then set out the remaining cookies when it’s time to trade.
That’s it! Not too hard, huh? And if you’re looking for cookie swap recipes, here are a few of our favorites:
Pumpkin Whoopie Pies
Gingersnap Cookies with White Chocolate Drizzle
Almond Shortbread Thumbprint Cookies
White Chocolate Cherry Chews
Peppermint Crush Chocolate Chip Cookies
Bacon Sorghum Cornmeal Sandies
Apricot Tea Cookies
Hearty Breakfast Cookies
Pumpkin Hazelnut Bars