The holiday season is here, it’s time to unleash the cute Christmas outfits and cozy up to your favorite treats. But if you have little ones running around the house, it takes much more than cozying up to make the holidays fun and memorable.
You'll need activities to entertain the kids and treats to keep them fed at all times. So, here's where we offer fun ideas to help you prepare yummy holiday treats for kids. What’s more, we’ll include straightforward recipes that include your little ones in the baking process.
1. Gingerbread Cookies
The gingerbread house is a classic holiday tradition in many houses. However, the house takes time and can be challenging for smaller kids.
So, we'll prepare gingerbread cookies as the best option for quick and easy holiday treats for kids. These are straightforward and require less planning.
- 3 cups of all-purpose flour
- 1 tbsp. baking powder
- ½ - ¾ cups of brown sugar
- Molasses for the classic flavor
- 1 – 1 ½ sticks of softened butter
- 1 ½ tsp. pure vanilla extract
- 1 egg
- ½ tbsp. ground ginger
- ½ tsp. of finely ground cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves, and black pepper
- ½ tsp. regular or kosher salt
- Maple syrup or honey
- Orange zest (optional)
- Cookie icing, raisins, chocolate chips, or sprinkles for decorating
- Parchment paper
- Add the butter, sugar, and molasses in a bowl, and beat them for approximately 2 minutes. After 2 minutes, add the egg, vanilla extract, and milk and continue mixing until the ingredients combine.
- Mix the all-purpose flour, baking powder, salt, cinnamon, black pepper, and other spices in a separate bowl. You should also add the orange zest at this stage (if you’re using it).
- Next, mix the wet and dry ingredients until you form the perfect dough.
- Divide the dough in half, wrap it in plastic wrap, and chill for 2-3 hours. This process ensures the dough is firm.
- Preheat the oven to 350°C and cover your baking sheet with parchment paper.
- Roll out the dough and use a cookie cutter to achieve your desired shapes.
- Bake for 10-15 minutes, and let it cool for 5 minutes.
- After baking, decorate your cookies with icing, raisins, or sprinkles.
2. Santa Hat Cupcakes
The Santa hat cupcakes are one of the best easy holiday treats for kids because you don't have a long list of ingredients. In addition, the pre-mixed cake mix box reduces your bake time to approximately 1hr 30 minutes.
- 1 box of your preferred cake mix
- Vegetable oil
- Vanilla icing
- Red food coloring
- Pour the cake mix into a bowl and add eggs, oil, and water.
- Preheat the oven to 160-180°C and insert the cupcake cases into the muffin tray.
- Pour the mix into each space, diving it equally to avoid overflowing.
- Bake for 18-25 minutes until the mixture rises. It should also be firm to the touch.
- Leave the cupcakes to cool for at least 30 minutes before decorating.
- Place the cupcakes on a different surface to ice. Reserve and set aside about 1/4 of the icing and add a few drops of the red food coloring to the rest. Use a piping bag to swirl a large hat on top of the cupcake. Add smaller piping around the side and top.
- Alternatively, you can use fairy-shaped paper cases to design the Santa hat.
Tips for Safe Holiday Baking with Kids
- Planning is crucial when baking holiday treats with kids because you'll have order and maintain your sanity. Therefore, purchase all the ingredients in advance, and ensure everything is in place before your kids enter the kitchen.
- Children will definitely make a mess, so don't have high expectations for a clean kitchen. However, you can buy aprons and child-friendly cleaning detergents for a lesson on responsibility. Then, teach the kids to clean up after themselves as you bake.
- Let the kids select their activities. For example, if your kid enjoys cutting out the shapes or handling the decoration, allow them to explore their creativity. If you force your child to do things they don’t like, the kitchen will quickly turn into an uncomfortable environment.
- Lastly, prioritize your kid’s safety and keep them away from fires and harmful kitchen equipment. Alternatively, buy baking gloves for kids who want to engage in hands-on baking.
Baking holiday treats with your kids is a fun way to keep them busy and fed during the winter break. What's more, you'll create enduring holiday memories that last a lifetime. So, remember to snap a few pictures and take videos of your babies designing their gingerbread cookies. Have fun!