Are Cookie Swaps still a thing?
Christmas Cookie Swaps have been around for over a hundred years and the whole idea of Christmas cookies came over with the Dutch in the 1600s. This year with all the challenges of varying Covid rules, the idea of a get-together just to share cookies might be a stretch. On the other hand, it could be just the thing we NEED!
In this quick little holiday post, we’ll chat about 5 creative ideas to help you carry off a Christmas cookie swap that your friends and family would like to take the time to attend. The end result of coming home with a variety of yummy Christmas delights is always appealing. It’s the prep, performance anxiety, and time crunch that dampens the overall attractiveness! Our Happy Hostess ideas on Quiet Hollow will attempt to diminish those roadblocks. (If you’re not familiar with the Happy Hostess concept; we approach entertaining from a biblical hospitality philosophy with the focus on blessing not impressing our guests! See related posts at the bottom of this article for more info.)
This FREE 6-page Cookie Swap Recipe Book was created for you to use as a wonderful hostess gift for each of the guests at your Christmas Cookie Swap. They can use it to record the recipes shared at the get-together. Click on the Book Cover to Download the Editable E-Recipe Book!
Cookie Swap Basics (The Rules)
How many guests? Unless you’re a glutton for punishment or you have help and it’s not at your house, I would suggest inviting 3-5 people. A small number also makes it easier for the guests when making and bringing the cookies. Since this will be an informal event, individual invitation texts would be totally appropriate. If you wanted to add some pizazz just pop in some color or a graphic, you could use Canva or PicMonkey or even Evites to help.
When? You know your friends, but an evening get-together is typical. Maybe a week night that would be less likely for other events. 1.5 to 2 hours should be plenty of time.
How many cookies? Typically figure to have enough from a half to a whole dozen for your guests to take home. If it’s just a cookie ‘eating’ party have each guest bring a dozen. Request in the invite that they let you know which type of cookie they’ll be bringing.
What else? Decide what snacks and drinks you want to have on hand. Something salty and/or savory is smart with all the sweetness involved. The easier and cheaper your food and drink and paper products the better! Cocoa, coffee, and some cold drinks would be perfect. But, if your crowd is hoping for some hot toddies or other Christmasy drinks those could be fun as well.
#1 The Store-Bought Cookie Swap
Okay, so how do we pull that off? Easy girlfriend. You make the rule that no one bakes! All the cookies need to be store-bought! No mixing or baking or ingredients of any kind. So, the Store-Bought Cookie Swap Party could be a blast. Gosh, it even sounds like a TV show on the Food Network or something.
#2 The Themed Christmas Cookie Swap
Your theme could be “All-Chocolate” or “No-Bake” or “Iced Cookies” or “Vintage Cookies”, whatever comes to mind! Ask your friends what they think and go with the most popular. You could broaden the theme to the rest of the get-together. Serve hot chocolate, or you could have your guests dress in vintage Christmas outfits!
#3 The No-Bake Cookie Swap
Have your guests find and bring anything that didn’t need to be baked in the oven. They could be no-bake cookies, or candy, or popcorn balls. The stovetop or microwave can be used, just not the oven. Have fun with it and you should have some tasty treats to share!
#4 The Cookie Decorating Party
This really isn’t a Christmas Cookie Swap. But, there are still cookies involved! Each guest should bring a dozen or two shaped sugar cookies (home-made or store-bought). You can provide colored frosting or a lot of white frosting with food coloring available. You could also have sprinkles and other special things to add.
Provide a container or plate and let your guests pick an assortment of fancy cookies to take home.
#5 Your Favorite Cookie Swap Party
What are your favorite Christmas Cookies? Build your party around those. Assign each to a guest and provide them with the recipe. They could be getting a new recipe and you’re getting your favorites. Win-Win! Here’s a post from last year all about Vintage Christmas Cookies from my past, lots of memories for me and great cookies for you!
Share this pin to your favorite holiday board!
Let’s Wrap This Up
A Christmas Cookie Swap is a great way to get friends and/or family together to celebrate this sacred season. In keeping with our Happy Hostess philosophy of keeping things low-stress and guest-focused. See How to Be a Stress-Free Happy Hostess to find out more.
We would LOVE to hear which Cookie Swap you chose to do with your friends! Or, which one you think would be the most fun.
Most of all, I wish you a blessed Christmas! May you find new and meaningful ways to celebrate Jesus’ birth. And, I encourage you to discover creative ways to incorporate the Christmas story in your Cookie Swap. ❤️
Finding a new purpose in living and joy in the day-to-day was the goal when author Kathy Rowland and her entire family (adult kids and grandkids) moved from the PNW to Texas several years ago. The focus of Quiet Hollow is to encourage ‘next chapter women’ – those who are retired, empty-nesters, or have found themselves without a spouse to jump back into life. And, she shares multiple tips, ideas, and possibilities toward that end. Kathy completed her almost 30 years as an elementary teacher and hopped into over a decade of volunteer work, side hustle-type businesses, and grandchild care before discovering her unique and fulfilling purpose for the next chapter of life. What you read on Quiet Hollow is a large part of that calling. Another part is the happy life she’s leading in Central Texas in the same neighborhood as the 3 big kids and her 5 grandkids. She and her college sweetheart husband made sure to add a pool to their new Texas home, so there are lots of noisy, splashy days in their little oasis of a backyard. Come join her on Quiet Hollow in a conversation about finding and living the life you were created to live in this later stage. The chats will be full of laughter, support, faith, and inspiration to create.