Kid Activities
1000's of Ideas for Childcare Professionals & Teachers!

Valentine Party Food and Snacks!

January 9, 2011 20:52 by Barbara Shelby

 

Updated January~2013


STRAWBERRY MICE (Too cute not to put here!!!)

Ingredients: Fresh strawberries, Mini chocolate chips, Black decorators' icing, Almond slivers, Toothpick, Red lace licorice
Cheese (Your choice)

1. For each mouse, slice a small section from the side of a strawberry so it sits flat.
2. Press a mini chocolate chip into the tip for a nose, using a small dab of icing to secure it in place, if needed.
3. Add icing eyes and stick 2 almond slivers into the top of the berry for ears.
4. For a tail, use a toothpick to carve a small hole in the back of the berry and push the end of a piece of licorice lace into the hole.

These cute 'berry mice' are wonderful served alone  as a treat... or with an assortment of cheese, crackers and other fruit! ...(These were made for my 6 and 9 year old grandchildren and they loved them!) Image by KidActivities.net 

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'REALLY EASY' VALENTINE COOKIES

1. Preheat oven to 200 degrees.
2. Place vanilla wafer cookies 1-inch apart on an ungreased cookie sheet.
3. Set a Hershey's Chocolate Kiss (and/or Hugs) on the center of each cookie.
4. Bake at 200 degrees for 5 minutes. (Or until Chocolate Kiss is very soft) If you are also using 'Hugs candy--keep in oven a minute or two less. The Hugs melt much more quickly than the Chocolate Kiss.

Remove from oven and gently press an M&M candy or a candy heart into the center of the softened Hershey's Kiss or Hug.
Put cookies in refrigerator and allow them  to cool completely to let the chocolate harden again. (Image by KidActivities.net)

NOTE: In KidActivities experience, the hug was taken out a bit early-- however it continued to melt on the cookie as demonstrated in the image...it still tasted good!

These are much like the 'Hugs and Kisses' on pretzels that is featured lower on this page. Personally...I prefer the pretzel version; however, these are very quick and simple for children to make with assistance. Children also like the taste of vanilla wafer cookies.

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'HEART SHAPED' SANDWICHES

Ingredients:
Cream cheese, softened
Red food coloring
Bread
Heart cookie cutter
Jam - strawberry or raspberry

1. Add a few drops of red food coloring to the softened cream cheese and mix until the color is a light pink throughout.
2. Cut bread into heart shapes with the cookie cutter.
3. Spread cream cheese on the bread and top with the jam. (See image of pink toast at page bottom-the heart-shape with strawberry jam on it ...looks similar.)

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VALENTINE LOVE CHOW~ Reeeeeely good! (Recipe can be doubled--these directions show the amount in the image)

5 cups Chex® cereal
1/2 cup white vanilla baking chips plus 2 Tablespoons chips
1/3 cup peanut butter
2 1/2 tablespoons butter or margarine
1/3 cup powdered sugar plus 2 Tablespoons
1/2 cup red, white and pink candy-coated chocolate candies (M&Ms) Additional candy can be tossed in as desired.


Optional: 2 Tablespoons red or pink jimmies sprinkles...KidActivities did not use 'jimmies' but added some candy corn in the colors of red/white/pink

1. Place cereal in large bowl.
2. In small microwavable bowl, melt vanilla chips, peanut butter and butter uncovered on High 1 minute (or until melted and smooth) It's important to keep watching as not to overcook mixture.
3. Pour peanut butter/white chocolate/butter mixture over cereal, folding over gently until evenly coated. 
4. Add M&M candy--and optional red/white/pink candy corn.
5. If bowl is large enough, add powdered sugar and gently fold it into the cereal mixture.  If bowl is not large enough, place cereal in a paper bag with the powdered sugar and gently shake until cereal is covered.
6. Add optional sprinkles at this time. Place mixture on waxed paper or foil; cool and set about 15 minutes. Store in airtight container.

NOTE: When first made-- the mixture tasted very sweet. It was actually better the second and following days. (The cereal 'absorbs' the mixture as it sits.) Both children and adults said 'yumm' to this goodie! We’ll be making it again next year!

Additionally, the cereal seemed a bit dry when KA first added the white chocolate, peanut butter, and butter mixture to the cereal.... KA then mixed and micro-waved more ingredients to add to the cereal. (Hence the added Tablespoons to list) This made the "Love Version' more like the well known 'Chocolate Puppy Chow' we all love. (Image by KidActivities.net)

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VALENTINE RICE KRISPY SQUARES

Ingredients:
1/2 cup Butter
10 cups Crispy rice cereal
9 cups Miniature marshmallows
2 cups Candy Heart if desired (the tiny red spice type)
Candy Hearts (the ones with messages)
3/4 c Miniature chocolate chips
Red food coloring

1. Melt butter and marshmallows; stir until smooth.
2. In a large bowl, mix rice cereal, candy hearts(spiced tiny red ones) and miniature chips together.
3. To marshmallow mixture, blend in 2 drops red food coloring, adding more coloring if necessary to reach desired shade.
 
♥ Add marshmallow mixture to cereal mixture; stir quickly to combine. Spread on a large buttered pan; press with buttered hands.
♥ While warm, press on candy heart (with messages) spaced 1 to 1/2-2 inches apart.
♥ Refrigerate and cut into squares.

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 RICE KRISPY VALENTINE POPS

 

Make Rice Krispie Squares according to recipe. Once the Rice Krispies are made, cut them into hearts using a Valentine cookie cutter.  Place a popsicle or candy stick into each cut-out rice krispie. Place the Rice Krispies in refrigerator or freezer for five to ten minutes. The coolness of the rice krispies will help the chocolate (directions are below) to adhere quickly and easily to the treats.

Melt chocolate. (You can melt 2 large candy bars or your favorite chocolate.) When treats are sufficiently cool, dip each rice krispie heart.  Sprinkle (with sprinkles) each treat immediately after dipping in chocolate being careful to keep them upright while drying. No Fuss suggests placing the dipped choclate treats in a tall glass to dry instead of placing them on wax paper. Eat and enjoy or if giving for a gift--finish the Valentine treats by covering them with cellophane and a bow. Courtesy of No Fuss Fabulous

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FRIENDSHIP FRUIT SALAD... Nice idea  for school or child care programs... 

♥ Ask each child to bring in a piece of fresh fruit or a can of fruit. Have them chop the fruit with a plastic knife.
♥  Mix all together in a big bowl and serve. 
♥ Optional: top with miniature marshmallows or even add some dry vanilla pudding and shredded coconut to the fruit to make it special.

♥ The extra cans of fruit left over can be donated to the local food pantry.

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VALENTINE 'COOKIE GRAHAM'

Ingredients: a Graham cracker, pink frosting, (put red food coloring into white frosting) Alpha Bits cereal, small candy hearts

Directions:
♥ Frost Graham cracker with pink frosting.
♥ "Write" your message (I Love You or your name, etc.) using the Alpha Bits and placing them on the middle of the frosted cracker.
♥ Decorate the boarder with candy hearts.

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HAND-DIPPED CANDIES

Microwave high-quality chocolate in a bowl
Dip any of the following items to make chocolate candies:
Cookies, marshamallows (see dipped marshmallow image below), dried fruit, granola bars, pretzels, peanuts, caramels or cherries.

♥ To avoid messy hands, you may want to try dipping some of them with skewers or toothpicks.
♥ Place the chocolate candies on a cookie sheet that has been covered with wax paper and refrigerate or freeze until they harden.

You may also be interested in the EASY MAKING CANDY category... There are more tips on 'dipping' on the 'Candy Page'.

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DOUBLE CHOCOLATE MARSHMALLOW POPS
20 /sucker/lollipop sticks (found at cake decorating or craft stores)
20 large marshmallows
1 cup (6 oz.) Nestle Toll House Premier White Chips/Morsels
1 cup (6 oz.) Nestle Toll House Milk Chocolate Chips/Morsels
 

 

1. Line baking sheet with wax paper.
2. Push each sucker stick halfway through a large marshmallow; set aside.
3. Melt white morsels according to package directions. Immediately dip 10 marshmallow lollipops lightly in the melted morsels for a thin coating.
4. Set the stick side up on prepared baking sheet.
 
5. Melt milk chocolate morsels according to package directions. Repeat dipping process as above with remaining marshmallows.
6. Refrigerate marshmallow suckers for 10 minutes or until hardened. (TIP: KidActivities also added about a half teaspoon of shortening --such as Crisco--into each chocolate before micro-waved-- to make it more smooth when stirred.) Image by KidActivities.net
Makes 20.

Optional: Colored sprinkles/jimmies can either be sprinkled on top of the white chocolate layer-- or the bottom chocolate layer.

NOTE: Next time I'd use a Styrofoam block or glass in which to insert the sucker sticks.  Laying the 'double dipped' marshmallows on the wax paper (sticks up) creates a flat bottom.(Barb)

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EASY but YUMMY CHERRY TREATS

 Ingredients: 
1 Package Cupcake Paper Holders
1 Pound Cake or sponge cake (Sara Lee type in the States)
1 Can Cherry pie filling
1 Can or carton of whipped topping  

• Cut cake into small cubes.
Place cubes at the bottom of each cupcake holder. (Tip: double or triple the holders) 
Plop a spoonful of cherries on top of the cubed cake pieces.
Keep chilled.
When you are ready to serve dab the top with whipped topping and enjoy.

Using the cupcake holders is a great idea when making this with children. However, for a larger serving the cherry dessert can also be made in individual bowls.  A nice Valentine's Treat! (Images by KidActivities.net)

(There are also CHERRY RECIPES in the CHERRY THEME  near its page bottom....) 

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RED 'CREAM CHEESE' DIP
   ♥ Blend one tablespoon brown sugar into a container of strawberry cream cheese. 
   ♥ Dip strawberries, red apple slices and cherries into the spread.

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 VALENTINE ROLL-UPS

Have children spread strawbery cream cheese and strawberry jam onto a tortilla- then roll the tortilla up like a log. Have children use the plastic knives  they used to spread the cream cheese and jam-- to cut the rolled up tortilla into sections.  If children do not like either the cream cheese of the jam--omit it...

Optional: Place strawberies halves on top of rolls (Image by KidActivities.net)

 

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FOR OTHER Valentine Day Snacks consider...

 ♥ RED JELL-O jigglers with cool whip and sprinkles or have children use heart shaped cookie cutters to cut out hearts from the Jell-O.

♥ RED FRUIT (apples, strawberries, cherries, raspberries, etc.)

 ♥ Red/pink fruit JUICE

SANDWICHES:
Use a cookie cutter to cut a heart shape into one piece of bread. Make a peanut butter and jelly sandwich using the heart-shaped cutout slices as the top piece.

♥ Heart shaped KRISPIE TREATS: Make normal recipe of Rice Krispie treats, but add red food coloring to butter/marshmallow mixture...Cut out with heart cookie cutters. If you do not have heart cutters you can either use a knife to cut them out or cut out a square and shape with your hands.

♥ Valentine's PUNCH

1 liter of Raspberry sherbet, 1/4 cup of pineapple juice, 2 liter sprite.
Put the sherbet in the punch bowl; it works best if it is half melted. Next add  pineapple juice. Wisk them together making a smooth texture. Last, add the sprite slowly, mixing continuously until the punch bowl is full.
The punch tastes good and you can use different colors of sherbet for different occasions.

♥ Heart-shaped snack cakes or cookies

Valentine candy

Cheese slices pressed with heart shaped cookie cutters...

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SWEET TORTILLA SHAPES

 Using small fun shaped cookie cutters (in this case hearts for Valentine's Day) cut shapes out of a flour tortilla.
Place on non stick cookie sheet and lightly brush with a little melted butter.
Lightly sprinkle (you only need a little) with a mixture of 1 part cinnamon and 3 parts brown sugar.
Bake in a moderately hot oven for 10 minutes for a sweet and crispy treat.

NOTE: These are light and crispy and really good! The treats can be made any time of the year, with any shape.  Be sure your cookie cutters are sharp enough to easily cut through the tortillas. KA will definately be making versions of these again and again!!! (Image by KidActivities.net)

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EASY VALENTINE PRETZELS ~ HUGS & KISSES...

Hershey's Hugs chocolates
Hershey's chocolate kisses
3 (10 ounce) bags checkerboard windowpane or round shaped pretzels (or adjust the amount of pretzels to the number of treats you'd like) 
1 (large pound size) bag M&Ms plain chocolate candies.  Use Red and Pink for Valentine and other colors to match other holidays

Directions: Preheat oven to 170 degrees.  Place pretzels on a parchment or waxed paper-lined cookie sheets in a single layer. DO ONLY ONE TYPE OF CANDY PER SHEET because the Hugs melt faster than the kisses.

Unwrap Hugs or Kisses, place one on each pretzel, repeat for an entire cookie sheet.

Place cookie sheets in the preheated oven, bake 4 MINUTES FOR THE SHEET OF pretzels and HUGS, 5-6 minutes for the pretzels and KISSES. Remove from oven and immediately put a M&M on top of each pretzel/chocolate, pressing down gently. When pressing down you may need to wiggle the chocolate around a little to fill in any gaps between the chocolate and the pretzel. This will help the chocolate stick to the pretzel.

Place cookie sheet in freezer or refrigerator until the chocolate is reset.  If this is a gift...wrap either in cellophane bags, a tin or a candy box. (Image by KidActivities.net

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HEART SHAPED CAKE (14 inches wide and 12 inches long)

This cake can be made using ANY flavor mix and any frosting. KidActivities made a strawberry Jell-O poke cake with Cool Whip/pudding frosting. (Recipe is below)

 

Don't have a heart shaped cake pan?

...Simply use one sqare pan and one round pan. Follow baking directions on cake mix box. Place the cooled sqare cake at a 'diamond' angle--and cut the cooled round layer in half.

As in the first image...place each half of the round cake at the upper sides of the 'diamond angled' square cake.

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JELL-O POKE CAKE RECIPE
1 pkg. (2-layer size) white cake mix
1 cup boiling water
1 pkg. (3 oz.) JELL-O Strawberry or Raspberry Flavor Gelatin
1/2 cup cold water
(Even though the cake mix KidActivities used was white--I used three whole eggs and not just the whites)

1. Prepare cake batter and bake as directed on the package for 8"X8" size pans.
2. Cool cake in pan 15 min. Pierce cake with a straw or large fork at 1/2-inch intervals.
 
3. Make Jell-O
Add boiling water to gelatin mix; stir until completely dissolved.
Stir in cold water; pour into the holes if using straw method-- or over cake if using fork. The method of putting Jell-) over cake/into holes is your choice.
Refrigerate 2-3 hours.

4. FROST cake with the "below recipe", Cool Whip, or whipped cream.  After frosting-- leave as is or decorate with strawberries or raspberries. Refrigerate 2 hours.
The cake above was trimmed in strawberries that were cut in half... pink and white 'jimmies'  were sprinkled in the center. 

NOTE: This cake should be served cold and right out of the refrigerator! The cake slice shown above--was the first slice from the bottom point of the cake...

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BASIC RECIPE for  'COOL WHIP and INSTANT PUDDING' FROSTING

1 cup milk
1 (3 1/2ounce) package instant pudding mix, any flavor
1/4 cup powdered sugar
8 ounces Cool Whip

Pour milk into bowl add pudding mix and sugar.
Beat with wire whisk or mixer on low for 2 minutes. Cool in refrigerator until it is thickened.
Gently fold in whipped topping.

NOTE: KidActivities used a 6 1/2 oz. box of pudding mix with 2 cups of 2% milk. A couple drops of red food gel coloring and 1/4 cup powdered sugar was added.
The pudding mixture was refrigerated a couple hours and then about 8 oz. of cool whip was gently folded in.
As the above cake is very large (Almost 14 inches wide and about 12 inches long)-- more topping was needed than the basic recipe calls for.

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PINK 'PAINTED' TOAST (Art and snack in one) 
Mix milk with small amount of red food coloring. (You don't need much of either to do a few slices of bread) Have children paint the bread and then then toast it. Put out  strawberry jam to go with it!

NOTE: Be sure children do not soak the bread. Just paint lightly so the bread will toast nicely. The image shows three stages of the pink toast.

♥ The heart on the left is bread that is only painted.

  • ♥ The full slice of bread on the right has been toasted and has nothing else on it.
  •  
  • ♥ The bottom heart has been painted and then toasted. Strawberry jam has then been spread on the toasted bread-heart.

One 'heart shape toast' was spread with butter and then eaten before it made the 'shoot'. Yumm (Images by KidActivities.net)

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DECORATE VALENTINE CUPCAKES or COOKIES...

Set out either unfrosted heart shaped cookies or cupcakes. Add tubs of ready-made frosting, paper plates, plastic knives and whatever food decorations are available. Next let the kids have fun creating their own Valentine treats!

KidActivities put out strawberry cupcakes, white and pink frosting, chocolate chips, mini and regular size M&M's, pink and red candy corn and sprinkles...

The result is a variety of 'hugs and kisses' (O's and X's) hearts, and pink candy corn designs. Fun! (Image by KidActivities.net) 

Personal Note: Just like a child, I'd eat off all the candies first--and then enjoy the delicate cake! (Barb)

TIP: If you place 'a marble' behind  batter- filled cupcake liners (in a cupcake tin) the indentation will make a heart shaped cupcake. The bottoms are still rounded, but the top of the cupcake goes into a heart shape. The marbles are not affected in the oven!

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DIPPED PRETZELS FOR VALENTINES DAY or ANY Holiday/Season 

Using the below directions... dip pretzels and then sprinkle with 'jimmies' to match the season. I just made these--and they are ohhh-so good!

The white chocolated pretzels were dipped in Wilton's Vanilla with peppermint candy circles. The chocolate dipped pretzels were made using  Nestle semi-sweet chocolate chips. (Image by KidActivities.net)

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WHITE CHOCOLATE DIPPED PRETZELS

1 lg. bag large pretzels  (KidActivities likes Snyder Pretzels)
1 lbs. white chocolate
Melt chocolate in microwave as package shows. Dip pretzel in chocolate and place on wax paper; let cool. To change the color of the chocolate, add food coloring before dipping.

 

LARGE CHOCOLATE DIPPED PRETZELS
12 oz.) bag chocolate chips
Large pretzels--Not rods

Melt chocolate and dip pretzels in chocolate leaving about 1/2-inch space at top of pretzel to hold. Lay on wax paper and let set.

TIP: When melting chocolate for dipping- I add about a teaspoon to teaspoon and half of vegtable shortening such as 'Crisco' to the chocolate. (The amount of shortening depends on the amount of chocolate being melted.) Do not use liquid shortening. 

I also microwave in short intervals. If chocolate is heated too long it will become hard. I don't have half power on my microwave-so I use the 'defrost setting'---starting with one minute and adding 25 to 30 seconds as needed. Usually when ready, the chips will still have shape; however, when stirred they melt down. (Barb/KidActivites)

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 YOGURT KISSES

 This is a quick, healthy and refreshing snack!

Simply take yogurt--the sample used a small container of regular raspberry Activa but any brand or color that is pink will do. Drop it by small teaspoons onto a plate or cookie sheet covered with wax paper. Place in freezer and ta-daa...yummy and nice yogurt kisses!

When frozen keep in covered container or plastic baggie and return to freezer.

If you would like a perfect "button shape"--put yogurt in a baggie. Snip of a corner of the bag and squeeze out perfect round shapes. Be sure to keep small;  they are eaten with fingers and melt quickly. (Image by KidActivities.net)

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BEVERAGES

 

 

These recipes are from KidActivities Smoothies, Shakes and Coolers Category! Check out the page for some good 'Smoothe Making' tips and ideas...

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CUPID'S DELIGHT CHERRY FLOAT

Cherry 7-up, vanilla ice cream, whipped cream and a maraschino
cherry on top.

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CHERRY COKE SUPREME
Ingredients:
1 12 OZ Coke
1 T Cherry Grenadine
1 T Maraschino Cherry juice
1 Maraschino Cherry

Combine the first three ingredients by mixing slowly so as not to disturb the bubbles in the soda. Pour in tall glass over ice and top with Maraschino Cherry.

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CHERRY JELL-O SMOOTHIE
Small package of Cherry Jell-O
1/2 Cup milk
1 Cup cherry yogurt
1/2 cup fruit of choice (pitted cherries, banana, etc.)
1/2 cup ice cubes
Put all ingredients in blender and mix until smooth.

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CHERRY LIMEADE
1/2 cup lemon lime soda
Juice of 2 limes
1 tsp cherry juice
1 maraschino cherry

Squeeze lime juice into a tall glass.
Add soda and cherry juice and stir well.
Add a maraschino cherry on top!

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EASY FRESH BERRY SHAKE
1 cup milk
½ banana, sliced
¼ cup fresh berries
Combine all ingredients in a blender and mix well. Makes 4 to 6 small servings.
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LOTS OF BERRIES SMOOTHIE
1
/2 cup frozen strawberries
1/2 cup frozen blueberries
1/2 cup frozen raspberries
1/2 cup apple juice
1/2 teaspoon lemon juice
1/2 cup nonfat frozen yogurt
1/2 cup ice
Directions:
Combine all ingredients in blender; mix until smooth and frothy.
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TRIPLE RASBERRY SMOOTHIE
1 cup frozen concentrated raspberry juice
1 cup frozen raspberries
1 cup vanilla yogurt
1 cup cold water
1 teaspoon raspberry jam
3 ice cubes
Directions:
Combine ingredients in blender and blend until smooth. Pour into glasses and serve immediately with drinking straws.
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RASBERRY SMOOTHIE
1 cup orange juice
1 cup raspberry yogurt
1 cup vanilla frozen yogurt
1/2 frozen banana (chunks)
1 1/2 cup frozen raspberries
Place all ingredients into a blender in the order listed. Blend at a low setting for the first minute, then the high setting until smooth.
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COCONUT-STRAWBERRY FIZZ
This is cool and creamy, but light---with strawberries, coconut milk and a nice soda fizz.
Ingredients:
1/2 cup coconut milk
4 cups frozen strawberries
3 Tbsp sugar
1 cup club soda
Combine all ingredients in blender and process until smooth. Pour into two tall glasses.

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 I LOVE STRAWBERRIES MILKSHAKE
1 cup milk
6 scoops strawberry ice cream
2 tablespoons confectioners' sugar
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 tablespoon strawberry ice cream topping
1 tablespoon whipped cream, optional
Fresh strawberries, sliced, optional
Directions
Combine first 5 ingredients in blender and blend until smooth. Garnish with whipped topping and sliced strawberries.

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Click here for all Valentine pages linked together: Art/Crafts, Snacks, Games, Songs, Jokes

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Easy Candy Recipes

October 20, 2010 01:29 by Barbara Shelby

Easy Candy recipes to add to your 'Cooking with Kids' file- yummy for adults too! 

 Updated January 2013

FUDGE RECIPES...

MICROWAVE FUDGE 
1 pound powdered sugar
1/2 cup cocoa
1/4 cup milk
1/4 pound margarine (or butter)
1 Tbsp. vanilla
1/2 cup chopped nuts

1. Blend powdered sugar and cocoa in mixing bowl then add milk and butter, cook in Microwave Oven for 2 minutes. ( do not mix these ingredients, merely place in the bowl)
2. Remove bowl from microwave and stir  to mix ingredients.
3. Add vanilla and nuts and stir until blended.
4. Pour in greased container and place in freezer for 20 minutes or refrigerator for 1 hour.
5. Cut and serve. Yield: 60 pieces.

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MINUTE MICROWAVE FUDGE

From the kitchen of Erica Wilson on Mrs. Clauses' website
Ingredients:
1 pound of powdered sugar
1/2 cup cocoa
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup milk
1 Tablespoon vanilla extract
1/4 pound butter/margarine
1 cup chopped nuts

1. Mix all dry ingredients together.
2. Put in a 8"x8" inch microwave safe pan (important to use this size pan).
3. Add milk and vanilla extract.
4. Place chunk of butter/margarine in center ( leave butter as whole do not chop up). Microwave on high for 2 minutes until bottom of dish feels warm. Stir vigorously and blend in chopped nuts.
5. Put in mold or whatever and chill for 1 hour.
*Use real butter for best results.
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EASY MICROWAVE PEANUT BUTTER FUDGE

Ingredients
12 oz. semi-sweet chocolate chips
1 can sweetened condensed milk
2 heaping Tbs peanut butter 

Put chocolate chips and sweetened-condensed milk in microwave safe bowl.
Cook on high for 5 minutes.
Remove from microwave, stir in peanut butter.
Spread in pan.
Cool and cut. Enjoy!

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CHOCOLATE PEANUT BUTTER RAISIN FUDGE

Ingredients:
1 12 ounce package chocolate chips
1 cup chunky peanut butter
3 cups mini marshmallows
3/4 cups raisins
Melt chocolate chips and peanut butter over medium heat (or in microwave watching closely). Fold in marshmallows and raisins, stirring until marshmallows are melted. Pour into 7x11 pan and chill until firm. Cut into squares. Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator.

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MICROWAVE ROCKY ROAD FUDGE

Ingredients
2 cups (12-oz. pkg.) NESTLE'S TOLL HOUSE Semi-Sweet Chocolate Morsels
1 can (14 oz.) Sweetened Condensed Milk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
3 cups miniature marshmallows
1 1/2 cups coarsely chopped walnuts

1. LINE 13 x 9-inch baking pan with foil; grease lightly.
2. MICROWAVE morsels and sweetened condensed milk in large, uncovered, microwave-safe bowl on HIGH (100%) power for 1 minute; STIR.
3. Morsels may retain some of their original shape. If necessary, microwave at additional 10-to 15-second intervals, stirring just until morsels are melted.
4. Stir in vanilla extract. Fold in marshmallows and nuts.
5. PRESS mixture into prepared baking pan. Refrigerate until ready to serve.
6. Lift from pan; remove foil. Cut into pieces.

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MICROWAVE PEANUT BUTTER FUDGE

Ingredients
1 cup butter, plus more for greasing pan
1 cup peanut butter
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 pound powdered sugar

Directions:
1. Microwave butter and peanut butter for 2 minutes on high.
2. Stir and then microwave on high for 2 more minutes. Add vanilla and powdered sugar to peanut butter mixture and stir to combine with a wooden spoon.
3. Pour into a buttered 8 by 8-inch pan lined with waxed paper. Place a second piece of waxed paper on the surface of the fudge and refrigerate until cool.
Cut into 1-inch pieces and store in an airtight container for up to a week.

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CHOCOLATE PEANUT BUTTER CHIP FUDGE

Ingredients:
2 cups (12-oz. pkg.) HERSHEY'S SPECIAL DARK Chocolate Chips or HERSHEY'S Semi-Sweet Chocolate Chips
1 can (14 oz.) sweetened condensed milk (not evaporated milk)
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Dash salt
1 cup REESE'S Peanut Butter Chips

1. Line 8-inch square pan with foil.

2. Combine chocolate chips, sweetened condensed milk, vanilla and salt in heavy saucepan. Cook over low heat, stirring constantly, until chips are melted and mixture is smooth. Remove from heat. Add peanut butter chips; stir quickly just to distribute chips throughout mixture. Spread evenly in prepared pan.

3. Refrigerate 2 hours or until firm. Remove from pan; peel off foil. Cut into squares. Store tightly covered in refrigerator. NOTE: For best results, do not double this recipe.

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CHOCOLATE ORANGE FUDGE (Can be made in micro-wave)
Ingredients:
2 1/2 cups semisweet chocolate chips
1 (14-ounce) can sweetened condensed milk
1/2 cup toasted and chopped pecans
2 teaspoons grated orange peel
 
1. Line a 8 x 8 x 2-inch baking pan with lightly buttered waxed paper or aluminum foil. Set aside.
2. Melt chocolate chips with condensed milk in the top of a double boiler or in a bowl in the microwave. Stir until smooth.
3. Remove from heat and stir in pecans and grated orange peel.
4. Spread in prepared dish and chill until until firm.
5. Carefully remove fudge from pan using the edges of the foil. Cut into squares. Store covered in refrigerator.
Makes about 2 1/2 pounds candy.

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S’MORES FUDGE (Made on Stove Top OR Microwave

Ingredients
1 can sweetened condensed milk (Not evaporated milk)
12 oz. bag of milk chocolate or Semi-Sweet chips
1 cup mini marshmallows
3 graham crackers

1. Depending on melting method~ Place chocolate chips and Sweetened Condensed Milk in a pot or bowl.
2. Mix in broken cracker pieces into the heated and melted mixture. 
3. Mix in mini marshmallows.
4. Spread evenly in a greased 9×9 pan/dish.
5. Before cutting, cool in refrigerate for one hour. Keep remaining fudge in frig.

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VARIETY...

NO BAKE PEANUTTY CLUSTERS

A super-easy sweet treat!
Makes: About 3 dozen treats

1 bag (about 12 oz) semisweet chocolate, milk chocolate or butterscotch chips (2 cups)
2 cups chow mein noodles or any ready-to-eat cereal
1 cup peanuts
 
1. In large microwavable bowl, microwave chocolate chips uncovered on High 1 minute.
Stir after 30 seconds- until softened. Keep stirring until smooth.
If not completely softened, continue microwaving 15 seconds at a time, stirring after each microwave time, until smooth.
 
2. Stir noodles and peanuts into chocolate until well coated.

3.Drop by teaspoonfuls onto waxed paper. Refrigerate about 1 hour or until firm. Store covered in refrigerator.

Check out these super easy microwave PEANUT BUTTER FUDGE recipes! Both are yummy and easy to make with kids!

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RASBERRY FUDGE BALLS
Ingredients:
1 (8-ounce) package cream cheese, softened
1 cup (6-ounces) chocolate chips, melted
3/4 cup vanilla wafer crumbs
1/4 cup seedless raspberry preserves
1/3 cup almonds, finely chopped

Combine cream cheese and chocolate. Mix until well-blended. Stir in crumbs and preserves.
Shape into 1-inch balls and roll in chopped almonds. Chill several hours.

Makes 30 confections.

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'CANDY BAR' SNACK
4 cups toasted oat cereal
1 (6 1/2 ounce) can salted peanuts
1 cup golden raisins
1/4 cup butter or margarine
1 (6 ounce) package semisweet chocolate chips

1. Mix cereal, peanuts and raisins in bowl.
2. Melt butter in saucepan over low heat.
3. Pour the melted butter over cereal mixture, using a fork to toss lightly until coated thoroughly.
4. Sprinkle chocolate chips over the mixture and toss again.

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CONFETTI CLUSTERS
Ingredients:
1/2 cup HERSHEY'S Premier White Chips
1 teaspoon shortening(do not use butter, margarine, spread or oil)
2/3 cup lightly salted peanuts
1 cup (8-oz. pkg.) HERSHEY'S KISS Candies 
 
1. Line cookie sheet with wax paper.

2. Place white chips and shortening in medium microwave-safe bowl. Microwave at MEDIUM (50%) 30 seconds; stir. If necessary, microwave at MEDIUM an additional 15 seconds at a time, stirring after each heating, until chips are melted and mixture is smooth when stirred.

3. Set aside 2 tablespoons candies for garnish. Stir remaining candies and peanuts into white chip mixture.

4. Drop by rounded teaspoons onto prepared cookie sheet. (Mixture may also be dropped into small paper candy cups.) Garnish with remaining candies.* Cool until set. Store in cool, dry place. About 2 dozen clusters.
*If desired, all candies can be stirred in.

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PEPPERMINT PATTIES
An easy hands-on candy that kids can make...

Ingredients:
3/4 cup sweetened condensed milk
3 cups confectionary sugar
1 tsp peppermint flavor

Start with 1 cup of confectionary sugar, adding in condensed milk slowly. Keep adding the sugar until you have made a simple dough. Add in the peppermint flavoring.

Shaping mints: Using a scoop-scoop out a bit of dough, then roll it into a ball.
Press the ball into a flat circle. Place circles on wax paper to dry, turning after an hour

PEPPERMINT CANDY #2

1 cup (6 oz) semisweet chocolate chips
14 ounces sweetened condensed milk, divided
1 cup (6 oz) vanilla flavored baking chips
1 tablespoon peppermint extract
2 to 3 drops green food coloring

In a saucepan, melt chocolate chips and 3/4 cup condensed milk over low heat, stirring occasionally. Line an 8 inch square baking pan with waxed paper; butter the paper.

Spread half of melted chocolate mixture into pan; chill for 5-10 minutes (keep remaining melted chocolate at room temperature.

In another saucepan, melt vanilla chips. Stir in remaining condensed milk and mix well. Remove from the heat; add extract and food coloring. Chill. Spread over chilled chocolate layer; spread reserved melted chocolate on top of mint layer. Chill. Cut into 1 inch pieces.
Makes 5 dozen.

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ALMOND DROP CANDY
1 1/2 lb. almond bark
1 1/2 c. peanut butter
3 c. Rice Krispies
2 c. dry roasted peanuts
2 c. miniature marshmallows
   1.  Melt almond bark.
   2.  Add peanut butter, Rice Krispies, peanuts and marshmallows.
   3.  Drop by teaspoons on waxed paper.

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PUPPY CHOW...These are also known as 'Muddy Buddies' and 'Reindeer Chow' in the Winter...Kids (grown-ups too) love this one!

1 cup peanut butter
1/2 cup (1 stick) margarine
12 ounces chocolate chips
1 large box Crispix
2 1/2 cups confectioners sugar
 
1. Melt peanut butter, margarine and chocolate chips.
2. Pour mixture over large box Crispix; coat well.
3. In a paper bag put 2 1/2 cups confectioner sugar.
4. Add coated cereal.

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CHEX VANILLA CHUNKS
Snack mix with chocolate, peanuts, marshmallows and pretzels.
Start to Finish: 50 min.
Makes:16 cups snack
Ingredients:
1 cup semisweet chocolate chips (6 oz),
3 cups Corn Chex cereal
3 cups Rice Chex cereal
3 cups Wheat Chex cereal
2 cups salted dry-roasted peanuts
2 cups small pretzel twists, 2 cups miniature marshmallows
1 package (20 oz) vanilla-flavored candy coating (almond bark)

1. Place chocolate chips in freezer to chill. In large bowl, mix cereals, peanuts, pretzels and marshmallows; set aside.
 
2. In large microwavable bowl, microwave candy coating uncovered on High 1 minute 30 seconds; stir, breaking up large chunks. Microwave about 30 seconds longer or until coating can be stirred smooth.
 
3. Gently and quickly fold cereal mixture into coating with rubber spatula, stirring gently until evenly coated.

Stir in chilled chocolate chips. Spread on waxed paper; cool completely, about 30 minutes. Break into chunks. Store in airtight container in refrigerator. Betty Crocker Recipe

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CHOCOLATE CHOW MEIN CLUSTERS (Makes 8)
1/2 cup semisweet chocolate chips
1/2 cup butterscotch chips (Can use all chocolate chips if desired)
1/2 cup chow mein noodles
1/2 cup salted peanuts

In a microwave or heavy saucepan, melt the chocolate and butterscotch chips; stir until smooth.
Stir in chow mein noodles and peanuts until well coated.
Drop by rounded tablespoonfuls onto a waxed paper-lined baking sheet. Refrigerate for 2 hours or until set.

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CRUNCHY PEANUT BUTTER BALLS
    
Ingredients
1 cup peanut butter
1 jar (7 ounces) marshmallow creme
1-1/2 cups crisp rice cereal
1-1/2 cups (9 ounces) HERSHEY'S Semi-Sweet Chocolate Chips
4 teaspoons shortening

In a large bowl, combine the peanut butter and marshmallow creme; add cereal and stir until well coated.
In a microwave, melt chocolate chips and shortening; stir until smooth. Roll cereal mixture into 1-in. balls. Dip in chocolate; allow excess to drip off. Place on a waxed paper-lined pan. Refrigerate until set.
Makes 30 candies.Recipe from Taste of Home

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NO BAKE KIT-KAT BARS
Waverly Crackers
1 cup melted butter
1/3 cup sugar
1 cup brown sugar
2 cups graham cracker crumbs
1/2 cup milk
1/2 cup chocolate chips
1/2 cup butterscotch chips
2/3 cup peanut butter

  • Line a 9 x 13 pan with crackers.
    Combine butter, sugars, crumbs and milk in a saucepan. Bring to a boil, turn heat down and stir constantly for 5 minutes or until it starts to thicken.
  • Spread half of mixture over layer of crackers.
  • Add another layer of crackers. Spread other half of mixture over.
  • Put another layer of crackers over all.
  • Melt chips and peanut butter together. Stir until smooth. Spread over crackers.
  • Refrigerate for 1 hour and mark with a knife through the chocolate.
  • Return to refrigerator for several hours and cut through bars.

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ALMOST LIKE MOUNDS BARS
Ingredients:
1 1/2 cups graham cracker crumbs
1/3 cup sugar
1/3 cup butter, melted
2 cups coconut
1 14 oz. can sweetened condensed milk
1 cup chocolate chips
2T. Peanut butter (optional)

1. Crush graham crackers into fine crumbs.
2. Combine crumbs, sugar, and butter.
3. Press mixture into the bottom of a 10"x11" pan.
4. Stir together coconut and milk.
5. Spread over crumb crust. Bake @ 375 for 15 minutes.
6. Melt chocolate chips, stir in peanut butter and spread over warm baked mixture.

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TOFFEE CRUNCH

Ingredients: 12 whole graham crackers (about 5" x 2.5 "), 1.5 cups butter  (3 sticks) use only butter-no substitutes, 1 cup packaged brown sugar, 2 cups sliced almonds

Line a 13" x 1" baking pan with heavy-duty tin foil. Place graham crackers in the pan. (They fit perfectly!

 In a saucepan, combine butter and brown sugar. Bring to a boil--stirring constantly. Carefully pour mixture over the graham crackers.  Sprinkle on the sliced almonds.  Bake at 400 for 6 to 8 minutes. Cool in pan for 4 minutes. Cut each cracker into four sections; transfer to wire racks to cool completely. (Image of candy-cooling on the rack-by KidActivities.net)

This recipe seemed so easy that I had to try it! IT IS EASY...and now sitting all wrapped in my freezer and waiting for the Holidays! Don't let the brown sugar and butter mixture scare you as you stir it in the pot. It  comes together  wonderfully as it begins to boil. Barb (Image by KidActivities.net)

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CHOCOLATE -TOFFE COVERED CRACKERS  
Saltine crackers
1 stick butter
1/2 c. brown sugar
12 oz. chocolate chips

Line jelly roll pan with foil. Fill bottom with Saltine crackers; place as close together as you can. Melt 1 stick butter. Add 1/2 cup brown sugar. Pour this over the crackers. Spread with a knife. Bake 10 minutes at 350 degrees or until light brown and bubbly. Remove from oven. Sprinkle with 1 (12 ounce) bag chocolate chips. When they melt, spread evenly with a knife. Cool; break apart. Enjoy. (I also made these~good but we enjoyed the above Toffee Cruch more! Barb)

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CANDY WITH PRETZELS & OTHER GOODIES...


CARAMEL CHOCOLATE CLUSTERS WITH PRETZELS  
25 soft caramels
1 tbsp. water
1 c. coarsely chopped walnuts
1 c. M&M'S plain chocolate candies
1/2 c. broken thin pretzel sticks

1. In medium saucepan, stir caramels and water over low heat until smooth.
2. Remove from heat and gently stir in nuts, candies and pretzels.
3. Drop by heaping teaspoonfuls onto greased waxed paper lined cookie sheets. Let stand until firm. (Image by KidActivities.net)

NOTE: I made these following the above reciepe; however, I think these chewy delights would be excellant using chopped pecans or peanuts instead of the walnuts.

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PRETZEL CANDY DROPS
1 1/2cup Broken pretzel sticks
1 1/2 cup Nuts; chopped
1 pound White candy chocolate
Break pretzels into thirds, add nuts. Melt chocolate according to package directions. Pour chocolate over pretzels and nuts, stirring to cover all. Drop by spoonfuls onto wax paper on cookie sheet. Refrig about 10 minutes.

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ROLO CARAMEL CANDY ON SMALL TWISTED PRETZELS
Ingredients:
Small pretzels (twisted)
ROLO Chewy Caramels in Milk Chocolate
Pecan halves 

1. Heat oven to 350 F. Line cookie sheet with parchment paper or foil.

2. Place one pretzel for each pretzel treat desired on prepared sheet. Top each pretzel with one ROLO Chewy Caramel in Milk Chocolate.

3. Bake 3 to 5 minutes or until caramel piece begins to soften, but not melt. Remove from oven; top with either A pecan half or additional pretzel. Cool completely before storing in airtight container. (Image by KidActivities.net)

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CARAMEL POPPED CORN, PRETZELS AND CANDY  

16 c. popped popcorn
2 c. firmly packed brown sugar
1/2 c. dark corn syrup
1/2 tsp. baking soda
2 c. of M&M'S, raisins, chocolate mints
5 c. miniature pretzels
1 c. butter
1/2 tsp. salt
1 c. salted peanuts

1. Heat oven to 200 degrees. In large roasting pan combine popcorn and pretzels, set aside.

2. In 2 quart saucepan combine brown sugar, butter, corn syrup and salt. Cook over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until mixture comes to a full boil (12 to 14 minutes).

3. Continue cooking, stirring occasionally until small amount of mixture dropped in ice forms a soft ball or candy thermometer reaches 238 degrees.

4. Remove from heat, stir in baking soda.
 
5. Pour over popcorn and pretzels, sprinkle peanuts over caramel mixture. Stir until all popcorn is coated.
 
6. Bake for 20 minutes, stir. Continue baking for 25 minutes. Remove from oven.
 
7. Stir in candy.

8. Immediately place caramel corn on waxed paper, cool.Break into pieces and store in tightly covered container.

CLICK HERE for DIPPED PRETZELS RECIPES page...

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PEANUT BRITTLE (Not as 'Kid Friendly' in making--as other recipes))
Ingredients
1 cup white sugar
1/2 cup light corn syrup
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup water
1 cup peanuts
2 tablespoons softened butter
1 teaspoon baking soda
 
1. Grease a large cookie sheet. Set aside.
2. In a heavy 2 quart saucepan, over medium heat, bring to a boil sugar, corn syrup, salt, and water. Stir until sugar is dissolved. 3. Stir in peanuts. Set candy thermometer in place, and continue cooking. Stir frequently until temperature reaches 300 degrees F (150 degrees C), or until a small amount of mixture dropped into very cold water separates into hard and brittle threads.
4. Remove from heat; immediately stir in butter or margarine and baking soda; pour at once onto cookie sheet.
5. With 2 forks, lift and pull peanut mixture into rectangle about 14x12 inches; cool. Snap candy into pieces.

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APPLE LEATHER

Ingredients: 3-5 pounds apples, 1/4-1/2 cup sugar, if desired, 1/8 cup lemon juice, if desired, 1 teaspoon cinnamon, 1 teaspoon nutmeg

1. Peel, core and slice apples.
2. Cook uncovered in a heavy 3-quart saucepan over low heat. If apples are dry, add a little water to prevent scorching. Cook until the they have the appearance of applesauce. Continue cooking until apples are brown and look like apple butter.
3. Add sugar if apples aren't sweet enough and add lemon juice if the apples aren't tart enough.
4. Add the spices. Mix completely and let cook a little longer to allow the flavors to blend. When the apple mix clings to an upturned spoon, it is ready.
5. Cool in an uncovered pot.
6. Spread mix evenly and thinly on 2 waxed paper lined cookie sheets. Let dry in a warm oven (125 degrees) overnight or on the counter uncovered, for 2-3 days. Check the apple leather for dryness. When you can touch it with your finger and it is not sticky, it is dry enough. It should be flexible, not brittle.
7. Cut in 1/2 inch strips.
8. Wrap in waxed paper or plastic wrap. Eat like a fruit roll. Store in tightly sealed containers; it can also be frozen and will keep well for months.

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HAND-DIPPED CANDIES...

Microwave high-quality chocolate in a bowl.
Dip any of the following foods to make chocolate candies:
Cookies, dried fruit, citrus peel, granola bars, pretzels, peanuts,
caramels, and marshmallows.  Fruit such as cherries, strawberries, oranges, kiwi, bananas, orange segmants, sliced or whole apples, raspberries and melons also make wonderful dipped candies.

TIPS:

• When I melt chocolate for dipping- I add about a teaspoon to teaspoon and half of shortening such as 'Crisco' to the chocolate. (The amount of shortening depends on the amount of chocolate being melted.) Do not use liquid shortening.
I also microwave in short intervals. If chocolate is heated too long it will become hard. I don't have half power on my microwave-so I use the 'defrost setting'---starting with one minute and adding 25 to 30 seconds as needed. Usually when ready, the chips will still have shape; however, when stirred they melt down. (Barb/KidActivites)

  • Make sure fruit is rinsed and thoroughly patted dry.
  • Leave membrane on orange-sections.
  • When dipping rasberries, do not wash them and thread 3 to 4 on
skewers. Slice bananas in long pieces.
 
  • White chocolate is great to use for a black and white effect. Let
the first chocolate harden before dipping or drizzling with the other. 

  • To avoid messy hands, try dipping some of them with skewers or toothpicks. Place the chocolate candies on a cookie sheet that has been covered with wax paper and refrigerate or freeze until they harden.

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BASIC RECIPE FOR DIPPED FRUIT
Ingredients:

1 (6-ounce) box Nestle Toll House Premier White Baking Bars, or semi-sweet chocolate baking bars
1 tablespoon vegetable shortening
24 bite-size pieces fresh fruit (strawberries, orange, kiwi, banana
or melon), rinsed and patted dry
 
1. Line baking sheet with waxed paper.
2. Microwave morsels and shortening in medium, microwave-safe bowl
on MEDIUM-HIGH (70%) power for 1 minute; stir. Microwave at additional 10 to 20-second intervals, stirring until smooth; cool slightly.
3. Dip fruit about halfway into melted baking bars; shake off
excess.  Place on prepared baking sheet; refrigerate until set.
Makes 24 pieces.

FOR A FANCY DRIZZLE:
1. Microwave 1/2 cup NESTLE TOLL HOUSE Premier White or Semi-Sweet
Chocolate morsels or baking bars, broken into pieces in small, heavy-duty plastic bag on MEDIUM-HIGH (70%) power for 1 minute.
2. knead.
3. Microwave at additional 10 to 20-second intervals, kneading until
smooth. Cut tiny corner from bag; squeeze to drizzle over fruit. Refrigerate until set.

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EASY CHOCOLATE COVERED CHERRIES (These are ohhhh so good!)

2 (10-ounce) jars maraschino cherries, with stems
1 (12-ounce) package milk or semisweet chocolate chips (I also add about a teaspoon of solid vegtable shortening--see my above tips under 'Hand Dipped Candies' Barb/KidActivities)
Drain cherries; discard juice or use for another purpose.
Put cherries on paper towels to dry completely.
 
Put chocolate chips in a medium saucepan with a heavy bottom. Heat
over low heat, stirring constantly, until chocolate is melted.(The chocolate can also be melted in the microwave.) Remove from heat.
 
Dip cherries into chocolate; swirl to coat completely. Place on a
baking sheet lined with waxed paper. Refrigerate until set
Makes 5 dozen.

If desired, dip some of the cherries in melted white chocolate chips instead.  Start with 1 minute then continue at 30-second intervals, stirring after each, until completely melted.
Recipe from Cherry Marketing Institute.

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YUMMY DIPPED BANANA CHUNKS

 Peel bananas and slice them into several pieces.

  • Place 8 oz. chocolate chips in a microwave safe bowl and cook on high until melted  for about 1 minute, stirring every 30 seconds until smooth.
  • Dip the banana slices in the chocolate; roll them in other ingredients as desired:
    Colored sugars, cinnamon sugar, peanut butter, chopped nuts, coconut, ice cream sprinkles, crushed cookies...

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 DOUBLE CHOCOLATE

MARSHMALLOW POPS
20 /sucker/lollipop sticks (found at cake decorating or craft stores)
20 large marshmallows
1 cup (6 oz.) Nestle Toll House Premier White Chips/Morsels
1 cup (6 oz.) Nestle Toll House Milk Chocolate Chips/Morsels  

Line baking sheet with wax paper.
Push each sucker stick halfway through a large marshmallow; set aside.
Melt white morsels according to package directions. Immediately dip 10 marshmallow lollipops lightly in the melted morsels for a thin coating.
Set the stick side up on prepared baking sheet.
 
Melt milk chocolate morsels according to package directions. Repeat dipping process as above with remaining marshmallows.
Refrigerate marshmallow suckers for 10 minutes or until hardened. (TIP: KidActivities also added about a half teaspoon of shortening --such as Crisco--into each chocolate to make it more smooth as it melted.)
Makes 20.

Optional: Colored sprinkles/jimmies can either be sprinkled on top of the white chocolate layer or the bottom chocolate layer.

NOTE: Next time I'd use a Styrofoam block of some sort in which to insert the sucker sticks.  Laying the 'double dipped' marshmallows on the wax paper (sticks up) creates a flat bottom.(Barb)

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AUTUMN DAYS...

PUMPKIN FUDGE

1 teaspoon butter
2 cups granulated sugar
1/3 cup evaporated milk or cream
3 tablespoons pumpkin
1/4 teaspoon cornstarch
1/4 teaspoon (rounded) pumpkin pie spice
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/4 cup chopped nuts, optional
 
1. Line an 8 x 8 x 1 1/2-inch square pan with aluminum foil, allowing the foil to hang over the edges of the pan. Grease the pan with 1 teaspoon of butter.
2. Place sugar, milk, pumpkin, cornstarch and pumpkin pie spice in a saucepan and cook quickly, stirring them constantly until they boil.
3. Cover and cook 2 to 3 minutes.
4. Uncover, reduce heat and cook until the mixture reaches the soft-ball stage.  or when a small amount dropped into chilled water forms a ball and flattens when picked up)
5. Remove from heat and place in a mixing bowl. Cool slightly
6. Add vanilla and beat with mixer until smooth and creamy.
Add nuts, if desired.
7. Pour into prepared baking pan. When firm, remove fudge from pan, peel away foil and cut into squares.
Makes 1 1/2 pounds.

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WINTER DAYS...

 

MAKE SNOW PEOPLE! A  snack and craft in one...

Ingredients: Both Large and Mini Marshmallows, Pretzel Sticks, Raisins, Small Candies-- Mix confectionary/icing sugar and a little water to make a thick paste to put together...

Just put out goodies and allow children to create snow people and sculptures. Insert pretzel sticks into the marshmallows and build from there...Of course put out extras for the kids to munch on as they build!

 

FOR THE ABOVE PICTURED MARSHMALLOW SNOW PEOPLE... Get creative and try some other ways! As 'Tricia at Craft Addict' made with her children- take three mini marshmallows, dip in white chocolate and then decorate with assorted sprinkles. Her children also made the snowmen using three large marshmallows on sucker sticks and last--rolled miniature marshmallows in white chocolate and then shredded coconut. Yumm..the kids will love this one! (Photo is with permission  of Craft Addict)

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BARB'S WINTER HOLIDAY SPECIAL (Or anytime special)
This one is really good---a tradition in many holiday homes!  (I make this every year! Barb)

Ingredients:
1 2/3 cups (11-ounce package) Nestle TOLL HOUSE Butterscotch Morsels
1 1/2 cups (9 ounces) Nestle® TOLL HOUSE Semi-Sweet Morsels
1/2 cup creamy peanut butter
2 cups pretzel sticks
2 cups dry-roasted peanuts
1 1/3 cups Nestle RAISINETS Milk Chocolate-Covered Raisins

1. Butter 13 x 9-inch baking pan.

2. Microwave 1 1/3 cups butterscotch morsels, semi-sweet morsels and peanut butter in large, uncovered, microwave-safe bowl on HIGH (100%) power for 1 minute; STIR. The morsels may retain some of their original shape. If necessary, microwave at additional 10- to 15-second intervals, stirring just until morsels are melted.

3. ADD pretzels, peanuts and Raisinets; stir well to coat. Spread into prepared baking pan.

4. REFRIGERATE for 1 hour or until firm.

5. Break into bite-size pieces or chunks. Note: It can be very difficult to break apart. Last time I made this-- my husband used a chisel LOL! Yes-it was clean...Barb 

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CHOCOLATE DIPPED CANDY CANES (Great to stir Hot Cocoa!)
Ingredients:
Candy canes
Chocolate chips or favorite melting chocolate
Hot Chocolate Drink Mix

1. Melt chocolate in microwave. If using semi-sweet or milk chocolate chips-melt it in the microwave and check it each minute.
2. Dip the candy canes half-way into the chocolate.
3. Lay on wax paper to cool. You'll now have the yummiest stir sticks around!

These would also make nice gifts! Check out the "Suggestions for wrapping dipped pretzels" for ideas-page bottom of 'Wrapping Gifts Category!
Also check out Ideas & fun with Candy Cane ideas and all the wonderful Cocoa recipes!

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SNOWBALL MARSHMALLOWS

Ingredients:
Bag of Large Marshmallows, Corn Syrup, Sugar Crystals, Cake Sparkle Sprinkles

Gently brush each marshmallow with corn syrup.
Roll in sugar crystals and cake sparkles.
Set aside on parchment paper to dry.
Cover lightly with saran wrap to keep air off so marshmallows don't dry out.
Once set, enjoy or place into snack-sized zip loc bags for gifts or later!

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MAKE GARLAND FROM WRAPPED CANDY

To make a candy garland-- thread a needle with floss. Thread the candy and make a knot at the ends. You can hang the garlands on a tree, about the room or chandeliers. OR...

Use wrapped treats and an ordinary  stapler. Simply staple the ends of the wrappers together. (For loops and dips, make sure the garlands are at least double the length of the surface from which you will drape them.

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 M&M PURCHASE TIP

When the Christmas Holidays are over--buy all the red and green  M&M candies you can. Often they are on sale at 50-75% off and you can use the red for Valentine's Day and save the green for St. Patrick's Day!

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RICE KRISPIE VALENTINE POPS

 Make Rice Krispie Squares according to recipe. Once the Rice Krispies are made, cut them into hearts using a Valentine cookie cutter.  Place a popsicle or candy stick into each cut-out rice krispie. Place the Rice Krispies in refrigerator or freezer for five to ten minutes. The coolness of the rice krispies will help the chocolate adhere quickly and easily to the treats.

Melt chocolate. (You can melt 2 large candy bars or your favorite chocolate) When treats are sufficiently cool, dip each rice krispie heart.  Sprinkle (with sprinkles) each treat immediately after dipping in chocolate being careful to keep them upright while drying. No Fuss suggests placing the dipped choclate treats in a tall glass to dry instead of placing them on wax paper. Eat and enjoy or if giving for a gift--finish the Valentine treats by covering them with cellophane and a bow. Courtesy of No Fuss Fabulous

Other Rice Krispy type treats are in the 'NO BAKE' Category...

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EASY VALENTINE PRETZELS ~ HUGS & KISSES... (Or ANY TIME goodies--it all depends on the color of M&M's you use!)

Ingredients:

3 (10 ounce) bags checkerboard, windowpane or round shaped pretzels
1 (large pound size) bag M&Ms plain chocolate candies.  U
se Red and Pink for Valentine and other colors to match other holidays and seasons. ( Red and green for Christmas, Green for St. Patricks' Day, ANY color when you just want to indulge in something sweet and salty!)

Hershey's Hugs chocolates
Hershey's chocolate kisses

Directions: Preheat oven to 170 degreesPlace pretzels on a parchment or waxed paper-lined cookie sheets in a single layer. DO ONLY ONE TYPE OF CANDY PER SHEET because the Hugs melt faster than the kisses.

Unwrap Hugs or Kisses, place one on each pretzel, repeat for an entire cookie sheet.

Place cookie sheets in the preheated oven, bake 4 MINUTES FOR THE SHEET OF pretzels and HUGS----5-6 minutes for the pretzels and KISSES. Remove from oven and immediately put a M&M on top of each pretzel/chocolate, pressing down gently. When pressing down you may need to wiggle the

chocolate around a little to fill in any gaps between the chocolate and the pretzel. This will help the chocolate stick to the pretzel.

Place cookie sheet in freezer or refrigerator until the chocolate is reset.  If this is a gift...wrap either in cellophane bags, a tin or a candy box. (Image by KidActivities.net

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St. Patricks's Day Hugs! This image shows how the above recipe can be adapted to any season or holiday! (Image by KidActivities.net)

 

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You may also be interested in...

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Food Based Gifts Kids Can Make

July 24, 2010 19:28 by Barbara Shelby

GIFT SPOON IDEAS...USE FOR COFFEE, HOT CHOCOLATE OR TEA! Nice gifts but also a great winter time activity!!!

CHOCOLATE SPOONS
These are nice!
For 12 spoons need:
1 cup (6 oz) semi-sweet chocolate chips and 12 heavy-duty plastic spoons in winter colors ( OR....pick up mismatched spoons at a thrift store)

Melt the chocolate in the microwave. Start at about 2 minutes and then keep checking. You don't want to burn the chocolate. Dip the spoons into the chocolate...allow the spoons to cool slightly, then dip them in the chocolate again. Repeat until chocolate reaches your desired thickness on the spoon. If a gift---after the spoons are cool, wrap them in gift cellophane and tie with a ribbon or yarn. Wonderful for coffee and hot chocolate...

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 PEPPERMINT CANDY SPOONS

1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
1 candy cane or 5 peppermint candies, crushed
12 heavy-duty plastic spoons in Christmas colors

1.  Put candy in a baggie and crush with a rolling pin.
2.  Melt chocolate.
3.  Dip spoons into chocolate to fill.
4.  Sprinkle with crushed candy.
5.  Place on waxed paper covered cookie sheet to cool.
Wrap with cellophane and tie with ribbons for gifts.

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SWEET AND NICE TEA STIRERS

 34 pieces crushed, flavored hard candy; 2 Tbls. light corn syrup; heavyweight clear plastic spoons

  • Line a jellyroll pan with waxed paper and spray it with cooking spray. In a small, heavy saucepan- combine crushed candies and corn syrup over low heat. Continuously stir as the candy melts.
  • Spoon the melted candy into the bowl of each spoon.
  • Place the spoons on a prepared pan with a rim so the spoons are level. Let them stay until the candy again hardens.
  •  Store in airtight container or wrap in gift cellophane and ribbons for a gift.

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TWO TEA GIFT IDEAS

 
#1 TEA FOR TWO GIFT

  • Insert a small funnel into the top of a 3x4 resealable bag.
  • Measure and pour into the bag- 2 teaspoons unsweetened instant tea, ½ tsp. sugar-free cranberry gelatin, and 1/4 tsp. cinnamon powder.
  • Remove the funnel and seal the bag.
  • Repeat for as many as desired (each gift bag should have two).
  • Stack together two 10 ounce foam cups. Put the bags of tea mix into the top cup.
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    #2 RUSSIAN GIFT TEA
    Put in a jar, wrap prettily and give with instructions.
    Ingredients:
    2 cups Tang
    1/2 cup instant tea
    1 package lemonade mix-3 oz.
    1 1/2 tsp. cinnamon
    3/4 tsp. cloves (optional)
    1/2 cup sugar
  • Combine ingredients. Use 2 or 3 heaping teaspoons of mixture to each cup of water. Serve hot or cold.
  • Include the recipe and preparation directions:
    “Pour 8 ounces of boiling water into cup. Stir contents of one tea bag until dissolved. Add sugar to taste.”
  • Wrap the cups in colorful tissue paper. Add a ribbon or bow.

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CHECK OUT THE recipes and goodies with PRETZELS in the PRETZEL CATEGORY! So many it has its own category! Also has ideas to wrap gift wrap them...

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HERSHEY'S KISSES Flower Bouquet 

Materials: 6" lengths of 12 gauge floral wire
Silk flower leaves
Green floral tape
Clear cellophane
Glue
Scissors
ribbon
Hershey Kisses Milk Chocolates
To create Chocolate Roses:

  •  For each candy rose, spread glue on the bottom of one foil-wrapped chocolate. Firmly press the bottom of another chocolate to it.
  • Insert florist wire into one pointed end of the double chocolates, twisting cellophane, continuing down the full length of wire with tape.
  • Add 1 or 2 artificial leaves, if desired, securing leaves in place with florist tape.

You can also make them by taking two Hershey kisses...  first insert a pipe cleaner or wire into one. Next attach kisses together at flat end with tape or glue; wrap them with red saran wrap. Take 2 wire leaves and attach them to the pipe cleaner with florist tape.......

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RICE KRISPY HERSHEY KISS

For a Valentine's Day or _____ gift make -- a "Hershey Kiss" using rice krispie treats. 
1. Make a batch of the krispie treats
2. Spray a funnel using Pam and push some of the treat into the funnel making a kiss shape.
3. Put the kiss shape onto a piece of foil and wrap it up. Add a gift carad saying I love you or _________!

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CANDY CANE CAPPUCCINO  (Gift Jar)

1 cup powdered non-dairy creamer
1 1/3 cups granulated sugar
1 cup instant coffee
1 cup hot cocoa mix
8 regular sized candy canes, crushed

Blend all ingredients in a food processor or blender until it becomes a smooth powder. Place mixture in small jars and decorate with fabric and ribbon-- and attach the tag.

INSTRUCTIONS FOR TAG (attach to jar/bag)... Candy Cane Cappuccino:
Stir 1 tablespoon of cappuccino mix into 1 cup boiling water. For a richer cup of cappuccino, place 1 tablespoon of mix into 1 cup of hot milk.

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COCOA MIX GIFT #1  FOR A COLD DAY...

Materials:
Small glass jar (baby food size)
1 serving of hot cocoa mix
About 1/4 cup of small marshmallows
4-inch or larger fabric scrap (depending on the size of your jar)
18" length of ribbon
Glue
Hershey Kiss candy
Small wrapped candy cane
Card

Directions:
Clean the jar and dry it well. Measure a one-cup serving of the hot cocoa mix into the jar. Fill the jar to the top with small marshmallows. . Cut the fabric scrap into a circle. Center the fabric circle on top of the jar lid. Tie the ribbon around the edge. Glue the Hershey Kiss on top of the fabric cover. Glue the candy cane to the side of the jar. Write a personal note and draw a candy cane or other symbol on the card.

Include simple directions like the following:
"Here's a little gift to warm you up on a cold afternoon. Simply pour this jar of cocoa mix into a mug filled with 6 to 8 oz. of hot water. Top with marshmallows and drop in the Hershey Kiss. Stir with the candy cane and enjoy!"

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COCOA GIFT #2 (SNOWMAN SOUP) WITH POEMS

Place in a clear plastic bag...
1 individual pack hot chocolate mix
3 Hershey's chocolate kisses
10-15 mini-marshmallows
1 small candy cane
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Add one of the following poems...

COCOA POEM #1

When the weather outside is frightful,
Snowman Soup can be delightful.
May it warm your spirit and your soul.
Let it Snow, Let it Snow, Let it Snow!

When you feel a chill or 'burrrrrr',
Use the peppermint stick to stir.
Add hot water and sip it slow.
Let it Snow, Let it Snow, Let it Snow.
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POEM #2

When it's so cold that you holler and whoop,
It's time to bring out the Snowman Soup!

Pour the packet in a mug. Add marshmallows too.
And throw in these kisses
that are special just for you.

Now add some hot water and use the cane to stir it.
Sip slowly and soon you'll feel the warm winter spirit!
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COCOA POEM #3

A little cup of cocoa, I'm sending your way,
For you to sip and enjoy,
On some cold lonely day.

As you sip this cocoa, It's warmth will warm your heart...
Just like our friendship warmed mine, Right from the very start.

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GOURMET APPLES (Adapted from Mrs. Z. Rochester, Mi.)
Apples MUST be dry and room temp.

•Put caramels in a crock pot (You can also microwave the caramel dip sold in stores)
Place Popsicle sticks in  stems of large apples.

Adult- When caramel is melted, put the apple on a stick in crock pot; make sure it’s totally covered.

•Let it drip; place on wax paper on a paper plate.

•Next have semi-sweet choc melted and put in baggie; snip off the corner of baggie and drizzle over caramel. You can also do white chocolate...

•Decorate  with choice of colored sprinkles, nuts, m&m's, seasonal edible decorations, chocolate chips, peanut butter chips, Reese pieces etc. Mrs. Z gives children the choice of two decorations. (At home she does more)

•Lift off the paper plate and place on a doily.

These make a wonderful gift! For two other Apples on a Stick ideas, visit the Apple Foods category...

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SNOWBALL MARSHMALLOWS

Ingredients:
Bag of Large Marshmallows, Corn Syrup, Sugar Crystals, Cake Sparkle Sprinkles

• Gently brush each marshmallow with corn syrup.
Roll in sugar crystals and cake sparkles.
Set aside on parchment paper to dry.
Cover lightly with saran wrap to keep air off so marshmallows don't dry out.
Once set, place into snack-sized zip loc bags for gifts or later!

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COLORED SUGARS IN PRETTY CONTAINERS to give as gifts! To make: Combine 1/4 t. food coloring, 1/4 t. water, 1/2 t. vanilla extract and 1/4 c. granulated white sugar. Mix together and spread out in a thin layer to dry. Rub out the lumps between your fingers to make the powder uniform. Use more food coloring for darker colors, and less food coloring for lighter hues.

You can use clean baby food jars and cover the tops with fabric/felt and ribbon! These are to be used on cookies and desserts...

Recipe #2  Without the vanilla and water-Materials: Ziploc bags, Granulated sugar, Food coloring, Paper plates

Put some sugar into a bag and add a drop of food coloring. Close the bag and, with your hand on the outside of the bag, mix the color in. You may need to add slightly more food coloring or sugar until you get the right color and texture (you don’t want the sugar to be at all damp). Tip the sugar on to a paper plate to dry.
To use the sugar, tip it back into a clean bag, seal and break up any lumps which have formed. To give as a gift-layer in jars as directed above. They really do look like sand art!

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HOLIDAY GUMDROP/SPICE DROP  CANDY TREE

Materials:
Gumdrop (Spice Drop) Candy
Styrofoam tree - Any size desired; sample is 6"
Tin foil
Pointed Toothpicks

1. Cover the tree base with tin foil
2. Break toothpicks in half
3. Put a gumdrop on the broken side of the tooth pick...
3. Starting at the bottom of the tree, poke the pointed side of the tooth pick (with the gumdrop on it) into the tree.
4. Continue going around the tree until it's covered with the candy.

Use caution with young children ... it can be difficult removing the toothpicks. These should only be for decoration. 

I remember making these in the late 1960's! Seeing a photo of one on a website --brought back some nice memories--so guess what?! I made one and "Hubby" made the other...(Barb)

Click Here for directions for "Candy Cane Seeds" and "Snowman and Reindeer Poop" Gifts! 

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Other Craft Categories that are also great for Gifts are:

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