Food

Simple and impressive last-minute recipes for Christmas foodie gifts

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You promised yourself that this year would be different, that the New Year's resolution of 11 months ago would stay the course, that your personal organisation skills would have improved no end. Yet here you are, mere days from Christmas with the familiar panic of last-minute present shopping looming large.

Maybe you forgot someone. Maybe you kept putting off dealing with the awkward ones - the grandparents, the in-laws, the family friend you see once a year. Maybe you're just busy. Whatever the reason you haven't ticked off your gift list yet, it's fair to say that by now, online shopping is largely out of the window and a frantic dash through a packed high street to blow the budget on a panic buy does not sound appealing.

Help is at hand. These recipes for simple yet impressive edible gifts don't require much time or expertise, and involve ingredients you most likely already have in the cupboard or will find at your local corner shop. Even better, your loved ones can't fail to be pleased with the personal touch.

So if you've only got an evening spare, dig out some empty jam jars, gift boxes or biscuit tins and whip up one of these easy gems. Stick a bow on it - you're done.

 

 

  • Chocolate-Topped Toffee

    You essentially need butter, chocolate, sugar and a fridge for this recipe, and an added bonus is that breaking it into jagged, non-uniform pieces actually makes it look even better. What could be easier?

    Find the recipe here

    Source: Pinterest/deliciouslyyum.com

  • Cheat's Caramels

    These are completely cheating, but we're not here to judge. Buy chewy caramels from a shop, cover in melted chocolate and a sprinkling of sea salt (or nuts or festive edible glitter), and you have an impressive batch of sweet treats ready to go. We won't tell if you won't?

    Find a guide here

    Source: Pinterest/wearychef.com

  • Honey Roasted Nuts

    Honey-roasted nuts are so easy to make, and there are endless permutations with flavours and types. Try this chilli peanut version, or go for seasonal cinnamon almonds or maple pecans. The choice is yours.

    Find the recipe here

    Source: Pinterest/jasonandshawnda.com

  • DIY Kahlua

    If it's likely you have both coffee and vodka in your house, you should give this homemade kahlua a go. If you have any butterscotch liqueur hanging around, a couple of glugs will give it a nice twist. One for the caffeine addicts in the family.

    Find the recipe here

    Source: Pinterest/reasonstoskipthehousework.com

  • Parmesan Shortbread

    This recipe has only four ingredients and can be pulled off in around an hour, but tastes amazing and feels rather grown up. Hopefully, the lucky recipient will share them around after Christmas dinner.

    Find the recipe here

    Source: Pinterest/Nigella Lawson

  • Condensed Milk Fudge

    With only four ingredients, you could probably pull this off without a trip to the shops - who doesn't have a can of condensed milk in the back of the cupboard for just such an occasion? It's also easily jazzed up by mixing in chopped nuts and fruit, or topping with rainbow sprinkles or melted chocolate.

    Find the recipe here

    Source: Pinterest/carnation.co.uk

  • Peanut Butter Cookies

    Popped in a gift box lined with baking paper, these peanut butter cookies could have come direct from a posh farmer's market. While the recipe does call for baking powder, it uses only one egg and very little butter, so you should be able to knock them up on short supplies.

    Find the recipe here

    Source: Pinterest/juliasalbum.com

  • Granola Jar

    Granted, breakfast as a Christmas gift may sound odd, but putting homemade things in a jar with a pretty label still looks impressive and personal. While the recipe for this gingerbread version has several ingredients, the joy of homemade granola is that you can add as much or as little as you like to a simple base of oats, honey and sugar.

    Find granola recipes here

    Source: Pinterest/asouthernfairytale.com

  • Chocolate Lemon Truffles

    These white chocolate truffles are extremely simple and need only a couple of hours in the fridge before they're ready to go. While this calls for lemon extract, there's no harm checking out what you've got in the cupboard and trying something different - vanilla, rose or chopped pistachios could work well.

    Find the recipe here

    Source: Pinterest/omgchocolatedesserts.com

  • Quick Chutney

    This has to be one of the simplest chutney recipes around. It does need mustard seeds, but we can't imagine there'd be a problem simply adding a teaspoon of mustard instead if you don't have any to hand.

    Find the recipe here

    Source: Pinterest/erinsfoodfiles.com

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