Frugal and fabulous DIY Christmas treats

Here are two yummy DIY Christmas treats that will wow your guests: Cupcake Rudolfs and Rice Kristmastreesicles. You can make them yourself at home with almost no effort and almost no cost.

So you want to really Wow your guests at Christmas this year, but a chocolate fountain and a dozen French maid server girls can’t be squeezed into your budget? No problem. Here are two tried and tested (by Mrs. Happy Guy and our girls) do-it-yourself Christmas treats.

What these two treats have in common:

  • They are each incredibly simple to make.
  • They look adorable…and pretty fancy.
  • They taste great.
  • Among several dozen items at the dance school bake sale, these were both among the first to sell out.

High-in-demand reindeer cupckaes!

Cupcake Rudolfs

Cupcakes!You start with a cupcake. You can bake these yourself, as Mrs. Happy Guy did in Christmas-themed cupcake paper (here are some cupcake recipes), or you can buy them from the store. Any flavour will do; pick a flavour that your guests will like, or make several flavours to lend an air of surprise.  Chocolate, vanilla, red velvet – any will do.

Frosting!Ice them in brown frosting. Reindeer are not dark-furred, so mixing chocolate and vanilla icing might be best, or you can do what Mrs. Happy Guy did and just add brown food coloring to white frosting.

Snout and Nose!For the snout, add miniature cookie. We used ginger snaps. I say “we” because I very helpfully taste-tested several of them (for quality control purposes).

For the nose, any red candy will do – Skittles, M&Ms, gum drops. Just use a touch of brown frosting for “glue”.

Candy eyes!For the eyes, we bought them read-made at the bulk food store. Tip: put the eyes close together, or they start to look uncannily like brown bears.

For the antlers, just add mini pretzels, tucking them gently into the frosting deep enough that they stay.

That’s it. Ta-da!

Rudolf the red-nosed cupcake!

Rice Kristmastree Squares.

You start with a large tray or two of regular Rice Krispy Squares about an inch deep. Here is the recipe.

Then you cut them into triangles, shaped like Christmas trees. If you want them to look like they came off an assembly line, measure them carefully to make sure they are all the same size and shape. If you want them to look home-made and like real trees – various sizes and shapes – go wild and cut with abandon.

Candy-coated!To turn them green, we coated one surface generously with melted green “chocolate” melting wafers. Melt them slowly, stirring occasionally over low heat. Feel free to use a knife to ensure that they form a smooth surface for the trees.

Now stash them in your covered porch to cool. If you aren’t blessed with an unheated covered porch, a fridge will do.

Once the green coating is hard, you can decorate. How you decorate is up to you. We used piping icing for the garlands. We used Skittles (my younger daughter’s favourite) for the ornaments. Use some green piping icing for the “glue”.

Fondant stars!And we used fondant for the stars. We added a yellowish coloring, but it turned out more orangish. But that’s OK, because stars are actually balls of flaming gas, and orange is good for that, right? Besides, it didn’t stop people from grabbing them up.

For an added dash of festivity, carefully stick a popsicle stick through the bottom, and Presto! – your Rice Kristmastree Squares become Rice Kristmastreesicles.

Rice Kristmastree Squares!

With that, you are all ready to receive your guests and make their eyes pop and their mouths salivate. And you didn’t even have to hire 12 drummers drumming.