Keeping Christmas Simple: Part 2 (Baking)

by Merissa on December 12, 2012

in Featured, Simple Living

Post image for Keeping Christmas Simple: Part 2 (Baking)

I know we all love to bake during the holiday season, or at least eat fresh baked goods! But add baking to the stress of planning, shopping, decorating, family, and everything else, and where do you find the time? Here are a couple of ideas to make holiday baking a little simpler.

Plan one big baking day.

If you have a lot you are planning on making you might want to plan a big baking day instead of just making one or two things each day. Make room in your freezer and freeze the things that you don't need right away to have for later. One big baking day and you are done!

Participate in a cookie exchange.

Just because you want to have 12 dozen different kinds of cookies doesn't mean you need to make them all! Gather several of your friends and make a dozen cookies per friend that is exchanging, make sure you are each making a different kind! Then get together and exchange your cookies so you all end up with several different kinds!

Just don't do it.

If you don't want goodies this Christmas or if you are perfectly happy with what the local bakery has to offer, just don't bake! You want your holiday to be simple and if baking is going to stress you out, then come up with an alternative.

Personally I will fit the baking day category this year. I really want those holiday treats, I just don't want to have to be baking all the time so I will make them ahead and put them in the freezer!

Here are some helpful make ahead treat recipes that you might find useful at this time of year!

Slice & Bake Sugar Cookies

Make Ahead Cookie Dough

And these are some of your tips from the LHL Facebook page:

  • I don't do it! - Frannie
  • Bake? Who bakes??? LOL Since the kids left home I don't holiday bake like I used to. Now I make only make a batch of cookies. I do still bake pies as my DH loves them. I'm considering adopting my mother's method of pie baking. When apples are in season she'll prepare enough pies (unbaked) to see them through the year. She freezes them, then all she has to do is pull one out, let it thaw a bit and pop into the oven. I've never been quite this organized...but I'm learning!! - Judith
  • I turn off the oven and go to Walmart. - Stephanie
  • I only make Chocolate Chip cookies, but then again, I do that all year round  I don't make varieties, I just enjoy the ones everyone else gives us. - Janice
  • I don't do baking, for the most part, because I live in a triad with a woman who adores baking and sees it as stress therapy.  So she does all the baking (well, most of it... I do some, like shortbread). - Allyson
  • I choose one thing and make large batches. - Laura
  • I start out with the first quick and easy cookies making sure I have enough, and freeze then move on to the next. - Claudia
  • I gift myself with one cookie from every batch that goes in the oven! I like my treats so I bake more! - C Misty
  • I joined a cookie swap this year. 8 dozen cookies should get us through! - Debbie
  • Preparation, organization, and reminders that I am doing it for fun! - Sherie
  • my girls help me! we make about 5-6 different varieties and we all just work together for a day or two and knock 'em all out! - Heidi
  • I do it over multiple days. Making sturdier items and gifts for others first, and getting them on out the house. Then move on to more delicate and items that spoil the.morning of when people are coming over. Yummmmy! - Alexandra
  • Cookie swaps are great! You only have to make one kind and then you come home with so many different yummy cookies. I have done this the past few years with my book club. - Julie
  • I make several batches of dough & freeze it into serving size balls so that I can pop them into the oven at a moments notice!! - Lori
  • I've cut back to only what I know is truly cherished as a family tradition .... the Christmas morning quiches and Ma-ma's date nut squares for gifts... And for cookies, only the reindeer with pretzel antlers that the grands love. - Marci
  •  I spread it out through the whole month instead of all in one week. Things that keep longer or can be frozen get done first. I don't do a lot of baking except for pies for Christmas Day or maybe a batch of sugar cookies for the kids to decorate. I mostly make candy that I give as gifts. - Laurie
  • I have my 18 and 15 year old daughters do it. They love it. Made cinnamon raisin bread yesterday. - Ann
  • I make a list of what all I am going to bake; including for gifts. Then locate all of the recipes into one pile;(some are on index cards or cut out of magazines). Grocery list for all of the ingredients at once. Then a day or so later I start baking. this system works well for me; It is fun but can make you very tired. - Jan
  • Have my daughter help---that's the first thing. We make our list and shop together. She usually does the mixing/baking and I do the cleanup. We're pretty much like a well-oiled machine in the kitchen. - Let This Mind Be In You
  • By choosing one or two treats to make and saying "Oh well" and relaxing with a cup of tea if there's a mishap or I run out of time. - Katherine
  • Bake with a friend - Tammie
  • I make Christmas cutout. I mix them, my husband bakes them and the entire family decorates. My hubby is a better baker than I am. - Cindy
  • Starting in late Nov/ early Dec I bake cookies and breads and freeze them. I usually make multiple batches of just one variety each day I bake so I'm not going back and forth with ingredients. I went gluten free this spring so I'm not as "enthusiastic" as I normally am, so haven't started yet! - Tammy
  • I let my husband do it! - Brenda
How do you handle your holiday baking?

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{ 4 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Amanda December 12, 2012 at 12:11 pm

I like to bake some things earlier in the month and then freeze them. One big bake day would not be stress relief for me, though, because I try to get my baking done during my toddler’s nap times. Spreading it out over the month in small batches helps me.

Reply

2 Tasiyagnunpa Livermont March 4, 2013 at 4:35 pm

This post keeps popping up when I drool over the sugar cookie slice and bake recipe…I would love to see a brownie recipe to go with that brownie picture. Is it here somewhere?

Reply

3 Tasiyagnunpa Livermont March 4, 2013 at 5:39 pm

Nevermind! Found it and have them in the oven right now. :)

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4 Merissa March 4, 2013 at 9:15 pm

Sorry, somehow I missed your comments! I’m glad you found it :)

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