Holiday cookies are a favorite treat this time of year. Whether you’ve been asked to contribute cookies to an event or you’re thinking they’d make the perfect gift for teachers, friends and loved ones, keeping costs low can help you start the new year off on solid financial ground. But all cookie recipes aren’t created equal in terms of ingredients and expenses. To that end, we’ve rounded up a list of five budget-friendly cookie recipes guaranteed to please -- without breaking the bank -- this holiday season.
1. Vanilla Almond Snowball Cookies
There’s a reason why these are always the first to disappear during the cookie exchange! These winter-themed holiday cookies are as delicious as they are beautiful. They’re also easy to make and inexpensive, too, thanks to just five basic ingredients, including almonds (or the alternate nut of your choice), butter, powdered sugar, vanilla extract and all-purpose flour.
2. Double Chocolate Peppermint Cookies
These festive holiday favorites -- which also contain just five ingredients -- are packed with flavor thanks to the classic, palate-pleasing combination of chocolate and peppermint. They also contain a secret ingredient that not only makes them a breeze to make, but also adds up to a soft, chewy final product: boxed cake mix.
3. No-Roll Sugar Cookies
Rolling out sugar cookies can be frustrating and time-consuming. But what if we told you there was an easier way? There is with this six-ingredient recipe which uses Bisquick mix, powdered sugar, butter, almond extract, eggs and granulated sugar to make gorgeous, melt-in-your-mouth holiday treats.
4. Triple-Chocolate Cookie Balls
What’s not to love about a recipe with the words “triple-chocolate” in its title? Another five-ingredient go-to for bakers keeping an eye on their bottom lines, these chocolate-y confections are made with instant pudding mix, crushed OREOs and melted dipping chocolate. They’re also a great activity for the whole family as little ones will love shaping the balls...not to mention devouring them later.
5. Two-Ingredient No-Bake Frosting Fudge
Yes, you read that right. This mouthwatering fudge can be whipped up in mere minutes with just two simple ingredients: frosting and chocolate chips. The best part may be how easy it is to make. Just zap the chocolate chips in the microwave, stir in the frosting, press it into a lightly greased baking dish, cover, and refrigerate. Within 30 to 60 minutes your fudge will be ready to slice and go. If you’ve got extra cash to spare, you can get fancy by adding candy decorations.
Some other tips for keeping costs low while doing your holiday baking this season? Watch for sales on common ingredients like sugar and flour, use coupons, scout out the stores with the lowest prices, and stock up when you see great deals. Doubling up on recipes also saves time and money. (If you don’t have a use for the extra dough no, freeze it for later use.)