Co-worker and Home & Garden Assistant Editor – Digital, Danielle Calkins, loves to bake in jars. She shares her expertise for this fun and delicious food project.
There’s something special about homemade gifts. As someone who has created homemade birthday cards for my family since I was a little girl (yes, markers, glitter, folded paper; the whole shebang), I never get tired of crafting that perfect present.
So when my friend asked if I wanted to make homemade holiday gifts with her this past winter, I agreed willingly. And so our search began, for designs, inspiration and that aha! moment when we’d find just the right idea. That’s when we discovered “cupcakes in a jar”.
Sure we’d seen it done before; in fact, we’d found bakers who sell their own baked goods in jars. But we wanted to prove we could make ours just as good (and not to mention, cheaper).
So without further ado, here’s how our first jars turned out. To make unwrapping more fun for everyone, I placed the finished jars on top of one another in this patterned container:
My family loved the cupcakes, so I went on my merry way, considering our gift-endeavor a success. Then, just a few weeks ago a co-worker was holding a fundraiser, so I offered to make another set of cupcakes for her to give away. It was simple, fun and they were a huge hit. Here’s how I did it.
What you’ll need:
- Box cake mix & ingredients (or homemade if you’d like)
- Cooking Spray
- Baking sheet
- Fabric, Ribbon, etc.
- Ball Mason jars (any size)
1. To start, wash and dry your Mason jars. Spray thoroughly with cooking spray. Set aside. In my case, I placed them on a large baking sheet to make moving them in and out of the oven easier. Preheat oven.
2. Prepare the cake mix. Sure, you can jazz up your mix however you’d like or make homemade, but if you’re pressed for time, box mix tastes yummy too.
3. Fill your jars. Make sure to only put a small amount into each jar, depending on jar size. As a general reference, keep the batter below the “Ball” logo on the jar. And remember- less really is more. Once your tray is full, put them into the oven. Carefully watch your jars as they cook to make sure they’re not overflowing.
4. When done baking, let the jars cool completely before decorating. Frosting your cakes is easiest with a pastry bag, or for a simple alternative, purchase frosting cans, with nozzles already in tact. (That’s what I did—and it was fantastic.)
5. Once frosted, decorate with sprinkles, chopped candy canes, chocolate chips, etc.
6. When closing up your jarred cupcakes, place fabric between the two Mason jar lid pieces, and screw on tightly. Use ribbon to decorate.
Since I’m all about presentation, I jazzed my jars up by placing them neatly in a wicker basket. And voila!
You Might Also Like