Looking for a unique and inexpensive gift this season? I have a suggestion: a gift in a jar. Some of the most meaningful gifts to receive are the homemade ones. First, you will need to buy some jars. Mason jars are readily available at most grocery stores or pick some unique jars at a discount or dollar store. Purchase some festive holiday material and ribbon to decorate the lid.

There are several websites devoted to giving recipes and ideas for a gift in a jar. Check out all of the neat ideas on giftsfromyourkitchen.com and allfreecrafts.com. Find recipes for hot chocolate, cookies, candy, brownies, etc. You’ll also find recipes for bath salts, so be creative.

Many of the sites have the recipes and tags ready to download. Here on TheBAG.com, scroll down to see a recipe for hot chocolate from allfreecrafts.com.

For now, happy shopping!

Laurie Dixon, TheBAG Lady

Hot Chocolate Jar Mix Recipe

Ingredients:

1 1/2 cups skim milk powder 1/2 cups white sugar   3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa 3/4 cup nondairy creamer

To Make this Jar Gift: Place all ingredients in a large mixing bowl and stir well. For a finer mix, combine all ingredients in a blender or food processor and mix well. Store it in an air tight container. Decorate the jar lid with a circle of fabric or lace, tied on with ribbon or raffia.

Directions: Place 2 or 3 tablespoons in a mug and add boiling water. If desired, print the hot chocolate directions label shown at right. Attach the label to the jar with white glue, or tie on around the lid with ribbon and a couple of short cinnamon sticks.

For Mocha Hot Chocolate, place 2 or 3 tablespoons of hot chocolate mix in a mug and fill with hot coffee.

After processing all other ingredients in the blender or food processor, empty mix into a bowl and stir in 1 cup of mini marshmallows.

Replace the plain non-dairy creamer with a flavored creamer such as French Vanilla or Hazelnut.

For spiced hot chocolate, add 1 teaspoon of cinnamon to mix, or 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg and 1/2 teaspoon of cinnamon. Enjoy!