Ultimate Recipe Swap: Holiday Food Fest Edition – Holiday Desserts

GIVEAWAY NOW CLOSED – Congrats to mystrix@ !

Today’s edition of URS is also the final episode of the Holiday Food Fest that I’ve been participating in with some great bloggers. It’s been great to get a glimpse into other kitchens, particularly those that are sugar and/or gluten-free. Wow! There’s a whole world of eating out there yet to be explored. Last week’s giveaway winner of the Tropical Traditions Coconut Oil is Jessica Meyer. Jessica blogs at ATX Gluten Free.

I hope that you’ve got a great dessert recipe to share with us. I do. This is hands-down one of my kids’ most favorite holiday activity ever, ever, ever. They get giddy just over the idea of it. I wish that I could say I loved it as much. But, the mess-factor involved in cutting out cookies, frosting them, and spreading sprinkles all over my kitchen, does make it a little lower on my personal list of Favorite Holiday Activities. But, as far as family fun goes, it can’t be beat. I mean, look at the expressions on these faces:

Years ago my mom purchased us a nativity-themed set of cookie cutters. The ensemble includes Mary, Joseph, Jesus, a donkey, a sheep, a camel, wisemen and a star. Using these cutters is a delicious way for our family to keep Christ in Christmas.

In the past I’ve used my mom’s gingerbread recipe. But, quite honestly, I don’t really like the flavor of ginger cookies. So this year and the last year or so, I wisened up and I use this yummy Butter Cookie recipe from Susan Branch. They are super yummy as evidenced by my quality control officer.

And the sprinkles aren’t too bad, either.

What’s your favorite holiday dessert? Share it with us! Leave your permalink below or leave a comment in the comments section.

Everyone who participates today will be entered for a chance to win this PAISLEY STAR STRIPE apron from D-Lux 57. It’s a 2-pocket flounce mixed print, fully lined in a matching keepsake envelope apron.

(By the way, have you see these aprons?! Oh my! I want one! Pop over and check out the selection. Until January 15, you can get a 10% discount and free shipping when you use the code lifeasmom)

Contest will be open until Sunday night at 8 pm, PST. Winner will be chosen at random. Please make sure I have a way to contact you if you win.

In the meantime, I can’t wait to see what yummy desserts you create at your house!

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  1. The kids are adorable!! Gotta love projects they can help with. Thanks for hosting this week, Jessica!

  2. Hoosier Homemade says:

    No matter how old the kids get, they still like to decorate cookies. My oldest, 18, and I did a few tonite for him to take to school tomorrow.
    Thanks for hosting!

  3. cafeeclectic says:

    We found a new cookie recipe this year as our favorite – Maple Cookies! So yummy!

    I really enjoy your blog! Thanks for sharing your life and ideas with us!

  4. Lucy Marie says:

    I just LOVE that apron! Thanks for hosting.

  5. Lucy Marie says:

    I just LOVE that apron! Thanks for hosting.

  6. Gluten Free FOODS ROCK says:

    Cute pictures.

  7. Fudge is my favorite Christmastime treat.

    1 1/2 cups semi-sweet chocolate chips
    1 14-oz. can sweetened condensed milk
    dash salt
    1 1/2 tsp. peppermint extract

    In a heavy saucepan over low heat, melt chips with milk. When smooth & shiny remove from heat. Stir in salt & peppermint extract. Spread evenly into a wax paper-lined 8 inch square pan. Chill 2 to 3 hours or until firm. Turn fudge onto a cutting board, peel off wax paper, and cut into squares. Store loosely covered at room temperature.

  8. I love kid decorated cookies. They are just special.

    I can't tell you how much I would love to win that apron. I've been hoping to win one for the past year, but haven't yet. I love the style and colors of this one.

  9. I love peanut butter fudge for Christmas. Please enter me in your giveaway. I've been wanting an apron for a long time. THanks!

  10. Yummy (and pretty) dessert!

    Yule Log
    ½ t salt
    2 T cocoa
    4 egg whites
    1 t vanilla
    2 whole eggs
    3/4 C pancake (or biscuit) mix
    3/4 C sugar
    powdered sugar
    Grease sides of jelly roll pan (10"x15"x1") & line with parchment paper. Add salt to egg whites & eggs; beat until thick & lemon colored. Combine sugar & cocoa; add gradually to eggs, beating well after each addition. Stir in vanilla & pancake mix; beat until smooth – batter will be very thin. Spread batter evenly in pan. Bake at 400° for 12 minutes.
    Sprinkle dry tea towel generously with powdered sugar; turn cake out on towel; remove paper. Roll cake up in towel; let stand 20 minutes.
    Unroll & spread with frosting; re-roll. Cut off a thin slice from one end; unroll slice & halve; re-roll to resemble stumps. Frost whole log with frosting, marking with a fork or spatula to resemble bark. Place “stumps” on log.
    If desired, decorate with vine & leaves of white or green frosting and berries of frosting or red hots; sprinkle with coconut for snow drifts. Chill or freeze until ready to serve. Serves 12

    Chocolate Frosting
    3/4 C + 1 T butter
    3/8 C milk
    Pinch of salt
    1 T vanilla
    3/4 C + 1 T cocoa
    6+ C powdered sugar
    Cream margarine, salt, cocoa, & 1 C of sugar. Add milk & sugar alternately, until spreadable. Add vanilla.

  11. I love oreo balls. So good, so pretty, and so easy.

  12. I love so many different desserts at Christmastime but I think that Chocolate Crinkles are one my my most favorites. And that reminds me, I haven't made any yet this year! Better get cookin'!

  13. This is a side dish, not a dessert, but it's my great-grandmother's recipe as well as a tradition in our family. And it's a totally yummy variation on cranberry salad! You could almost eat it as a dessert.

    Raw Cranberry Salad

    1 lb fresh cranberries, rinsed
    2 oranges, peeled and sliced
    1 lg box of Jello (cherry or
    strawberry flavor-we like
    2 C hot (nearly boiling) water
    2 C sugar
    chopped nuts (of choice, but
    pecans work best) to taste

    Puree in blender the cranberries and the orange slices. Dissolve jello completely in hot water, then allow to sit for 1 minute. Mix together all ingredients, pour into 13×9 pan, and chill overnight. Should be firm—but my great-grandmother had a trick to making it sit up every time that I have not discovered yet (she left out her secret ingredients/tricks in all her recipes). The recipe sits up well for me about three-fourths of the time. Enjoy!

  14. The recipe that always says Christmas to me is Snowballs. Butter cookies, nuts and powdered sugar – you can't go wrong with that combination!

  15. What a Yummy post! My link is above in Mr. Linky.

  16. FloridaMom2Seven says:

    Oh, I like the Nativity cookie cutters, what a great idea! Your kids are cute too:)

  17. SavannahsSmiles says:

    I just posted my link:
    I love to bake especially during the holidays and I love aprons-obsessed is the better word :-).

  18. SavannahsSmiles says:

    I just posted my link:
    I love to bake especially during the holidays and I love aprons-obsessed is the better word :-).

  19. My grandkids love making sugar cookies and decorating them. We have such a great time!
    Thanks for the chance to win!
    proudyaya04 {at} yahoo {dot} com

  20. gfe--gluten free easily says:

    You're right … decorating cookies is always a favorite activity–happy faces indeed! I'm sharing my coconut meringues recipe, which is naturally gluten free, dairy free, as well as quick and easy. Thanks for hosting, Jessica! Congrats to Jessica Meyer! I'm a fan of old-fashioned style aprons, so the giveaway is too cute. 🙂


  21. Jessica Meyer says:

    wow! I am so excited I won! I had no idea… I have been on vacation and away from the computer so sorry I haven't gotten back to you. My e-mail is I am not sure what the process is… 🙂

    Jess at ATX Gluten Free

  22. My favorite are peppermint meltaways. yum!

  23. We make almond "king" cake every year at Christmas time. Basically a puff pastry with almond filling. So yummy!!

  24. I love sugar cookies. Looks like the kids had fun.

  25. My favorite is raspberry pie.

  26. Those butter cookies are soooo good! Thanks for the recipe! One of my favorite desserts to make is shortbread. Very easy and I love to add extra spices such as ginger and cinnamon or another fun combination is cocao and a dash of cayenne pepper!

  27. We love to bake at our house too. I've been dreaming of a new apron. This one looks fabulous!

    Here is one of my favorite "go-to" recipes. It's easy, quick, and always yummy!

    1 chocolate fudge dry cake mix
    1/2 c. oil
    1/2 c. water
    4 eggs
    8 oz. sour cream
    6 oz. chocolate chips

    Mix altogether and bake for about 40 mins at 350 degrees. I drizzle chocolate frosting on it, and you're ready to go!


  28. Briana Almengor says:

    Not sure it's a traditional holiday dessert, but I love these little pretzel candies my mom makes. So simple, but so yummy. Only bad thing is you can eat so many of them without knowing it. It's simply a mini pretzel with a round disc of melting chocolate on top (melted) with an m&m on top of that.

  29. Denise Klop says:

    My favorite is simple but so yummy – peppermint ice cream with hot fudge sauce!

  30. My favorite holiday dessert are these cookies my grandmother makes…german chocolate and carmel…oh so yummy

  31. MommyDevan says:

    My Fav holiday dessert would have to be sugar cookies with vanilla frosting and lots of sugar sprinkles…My daughter and I make these every holiday season and they are so yummy!

  32. Christy, the Notable Blogger says:

    We love all sorts of holiday goodies, but I think my personal favorite are the snowball cookies my daughter makes. They are basically pecan crescents or pecan fingers, but they're rolled into a ball and rolled in powdered sugar. YUM! I also love chow main noodles with cashews mixed into melted chocolate and dropped by clumps to dry. Delicious! I think I almost put myself into a coma eating a batch of those!

    By the way, the apron is gorgeous!

  33. Innocent Observer says:

    Kahlua trifle. Mmmmm!

  34. Laura Jenkins says:

    Love making sugar cookies…with frosting so they are even more de-lish.

  35. Southern Gal says:

    This is the first recipe I've shared by Linky. I really like that apron!

  36. My favorite dessert is making cookies with the kids (and eating the batter!). That apron is fabulous!

  37. Jen - Balancing Beauty and Bedlam says:

    So cute….and the apron is ADORABLE. I "baked" a Wilton Christmas tree…haha 🙂

  38. Love those nativity cookies – would you like to link them up to my Nativity Blog Carnival – have not had any edible ones yet!

    Merry Christmas from Northern Ireland

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