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15 Creative Ways to Package Homemade Holiday Treats

You've made the perfect homemade treats. Now what? Here are some festive, clever, and easy ways to make them look as special as they are.

Christmas cookies in the white wooden tray on on the blue background. Top view. Copy space.Liudmyla Yaremenko/Shutterstock

It’s all about the packaging

Most people get excited when they get a gift, but a creatively packaged gift that doesn’t use traditional wrapping paper takes the cake. And when they open that package and find a delicious homemade gift in there, it can be even better because it shows that you took the time to do something special just for them. Whether it’s homemade cookies, cake, or candy, these are the cutest, most elegant, and festive ways to put the perfect final touch on those thoughtful holiday treats.

brown paper bag giftscourtesy Sheri Silver

Brown paper gift bag

Brown paper lunch bags are a versatile packaging medium. And this is probably the most simple and inexpensive way to package cookies (or other treats) in a seasonal way. Just fill the bag, and fold it over the top to close. Then, punch two holes in the flap, and thread a piece of ribbon or twine through. Add a sprig of evergreen and a note if you’d like. Blogger Sheri Silver demonstrates multiple ways to dress up basic brown paper lunch bags using various trimmings and tags.

brown paper bagcourtesy

Paper bag gingerbread house

Seriously, how cute are these? Even the least crafty person on the planet can make these adorable gingerbread houses in a matter of minutes—and there’s no baking required. Tikkido provides some simple directions to transform plain brown paper bags into fun, festive treat bags to hold cookies, candies, and other homemade goodies. If you want to make a real gingerbread house, try these 5 easy steps for creating the perfect homemade one.

sno-nutscourtesy Melissa Fallon,

“Sno-nut” treat box

If you’re not a baker but want to make an easy semi-homemade gift, you’re in luck! Melissa of Design Eat Repeat has a creative way to turn homemade or store-bought donuts into snowflakes! Grab her free Sno-nuts tutorial and printable to make a memorable holiday gift. Of course, food isn’t the only thing you can make for the holidays. Check out these 26 handmade gifts for everyone on your list.

Christmas Cookie Mix in a Jar, Layered Flour, Brown and Caster Sugar, Oats, Dried Cherries and Pistachios, sqaureTatiana Vorona/Shutterstock

Cookie mix in a jar

Canning jars can be used for so much, including making an awesome vessel for gift-giving. Layer the dry ingredients from your favorite cookie recipe in a jar, cover the lid with a scrap of festive fabric, and secure it with a piece of twine or ribbon. Finish it off with a tiny evergreen clipping and a gift tag. This gift is simple, economical, and makes a pretty presentation. So, what should you put in there? Here are 17 Christmas cookie recipes for you to choose from—and to make for yourself, too.

mini milk cartonscourtesy Emma Liston -

Pretty milk carton gift box

Can you believe these were once ordinary milk cartons? Emma of Gathering Beauty creates these gorgeous mini milk carton boxes using scrapbook paper and a scoring board. These cute little gift boxes are great for party favors or for wrapping small gifts. Still shopping for those perfect mini gifts? Try these 100 stocking stuffers under $10.

Christmas fruitcake decorated with icing and berries, tonedAnna Shepulova/Shutterstock

Cake with a ribbon

Forget spending hours in the kitchen, slaving over an intricate cake design. It can be a lot easier than you realize to make a beautiful cake for the holidays. A wide, plain ribbon adds the perfect finishing touch to a simple cake. People with special dietary needs will also appreciate when you take special care planning the perfect food gift, like with these yummy vegan holiday dessert recipes.

Basket of various Christmas treats, gingerbread man, gifts and decorations on the tableyingko/Shutterstock

Mini basket

Mini baskets are perfect for gifting a variety of items, and during the holidays, you can find them in many styles, colors, and sizes. To make yours Christmas-ready, all you have to do is tuck a handful of treats into a basket lined with tissue paper. For extra charm, tie a holiday ribbon to the handle. This could be a good idea for a colleague, along with these other thoughtful gifts for coworkers for $25 or less.

pringles can gift boxcourtesy Pringles Can Nutcracker Gift Box

Pringle can cookie sheath

Holly from A Baker’s House gets creative with an empty Pringles can for this low-cost holiday treat package! Her Pringles can cookie sheaths are decorated with wrapping paper, twine, and ribbon. Once they’re fully cleaned, they make the perfect vessels for holding freshly baked cookies.

cupcake coastercourtesy The Country Chic Cottage

Mason jar cupcake holder

Angie from the Country Chic Cottage uses wide-mouth pint mason jars to hold her delicious Strawberry Lemonade cupcakes. They’re definitely the prettiest and most delicious snow globes we’ve ever seen! And of course, you can try this packaging trick with the mini treat of your choice. On a tight budget this year? Here are some other holiday gifts that don’t cost a dime.

Handmade pound cakes in the package.Homemade baking.Jade Y/Shutterstock

Individually wrapped loaves

Cellophane bags are a perfect and economical way to gift homemade loaves of pound cake. For a finishing touch, tie on decorative twine or ribbon and add a gift tag. If you’re not a baker, we’ve got a yummy alternative for you: 28 holiday food gifts everyone will love.

Cake pops. Sweet food. ColorfulMr_Mrs_Marcha/Shutterstock

Wrapping paper cone

Use spare wrapping paper to create a simple cone to hold tasty treats. Cut a piece of wrapping paper into a large rectangle. Make the first fold on the diagonal, lining up the sides. Fold the bottom of the rectangle up over the open end of the first fold. Then turn the paper cone over, fold the tail over to form a spiral, and tape it down. Fill it with treats—and gift away! If you add something like cake pops, you’ll have the coolest and most unique bouquet imaginable. Don’t miss these other inventive uses for leftover wrapping paper.

cookie traycourtesy Melissa Fallon,

Festive cookie tray

Melissa of Design Eat Repeat makes it really easy to package a cookie tray. All you need are colorful plastic or paper plates, plastic wrap, and one of her adorable Christmas printables to stick on top. Packing homemade cookies doesn’t get much easier than this! Looking to up your cookie game this year? Here are 14 Christmas cookie baking hacks to help you win the holiday season.

creative dessert packaging mini-loaf, on white background.Pepitagold/Shutterstock

Parchment paper wrapping

Parchment paper makes a surprisingly elegant and inexpensive wrapper. It’s sturdy, easy to fold, and will keep your baked goods moist. Embellish the outside with ribbon, decorative paper, or twine for a finishing touch.

Homemade snowmen and reindeer cake pops on stick in red snowflake bowlTeri Virbickis/Shutterstock

Cake pops in a bowl

Buy colorful bowls in bulk or large mugs from the Dollar Store, and use puffy paint to make snowflakes or other festive designs on them. Place a piece of styrofoam in the bowl to hold the cake-pop stems. Then fill the bowl with marshmallows or small white pearl candies to cover your handiwork.

Christmas homemade gingerbread cookies. Gifts and holiday. Chritmas festive background. Food background.Top view. Christmas decoration. Kozuli. Happy New Year 2020. Set of cute gingerbread cookies.kozuli_ltd/Shutterstock

Evergreen garnish

Evergreen sprigs instantly spruce up the packaging of any gift and make it seasonal. The best part is that they’re free! Clip a sprig or two, and tie it to some twine or a ribbon to adorn a box of homemade gingerbread cookies. If you’re still having trouble coming up with gift ideas, check out this list of 101 Christmas gift ideas for those that are impossible to shop for.

Debbie Wolfe
Debbie Wolfe is an author and freelance writer specializing in home, garden, DIY, and lifestyle topics. She covers lifestyle, culture, and craft content for Reader's Digest and contributes regularly to HGTV, The Home Depot, Walmart, Family Handyman, Realtor, Bob Vila, and more. Her book, Do-It-Yourself Garden Projects and Crafts (Skyhorse Publishing), features a variety of practical DIY projects to beautify your garden and home. Debbie holds a degree in Creative Writing and Earth Science from Northland College.

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