i should be mopping the floor: How to Host a Holiday Cookie Swap

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

How to Host a Holiday Cookie Swap

Here's my guide to planning, preparing for and hosting your own cookie swap. 
Lots of great ideas, tips and tricks for a fabulous evening of YUM! 

A really thorough guide to planning, preparing for and hosting your own cookie swap. Lots of great ideas, tips and tricks for a fabulous evening of YUM! Includes a link to the winning recipe from this cookie swap!
We had a fun cookie swap over here with my craft group, The Hot Glue Hotties
There's lots and lots of ways to do a cookie swap...this is our version.

To begin, each participant was asked to bring THREE dozen cookies of one variety to the evening {we were all thrilled that Pinterest recently added the "secret boards" feature...this came in handy since we all follow each other on Pinterest and didn't want everyone seeing our cookie ideas}. One dozen of the cookies was for tasting, the other two were for "taking".  We had about a dozen participants, so this meant everyone would go home with two dozen cookies...two of each variety. 

A previous cookie swap I participated in involved bringing TWELVE dozen cookies...which was a bit of an undertaking. We did, however, take home a HUGE pile of cookies that I used for Christmas gifts that year. But, I truly spent two lonnnnng days in the kitchen preparing for that one...and I wasn't even the hostess that time!

To see all of the cookie recipes from our fun night {along with printable recipe cards}, click here.

A really thorough guide to planning, preparing for and hosting your own cookie swap. Lots of great ideas, tips and tricks for a fabulous evening of YUM! Includes a link to the winning recipe from this cookie swap!
This was our "taking" table, where everyone laid out the two dozen cookies that others would be pulling cookies out of to package up and take home with them. 

A really thorough guide to planning, preparing for and hosting your own cookie swap. Lots of great ideas, tips and tricks for a fabulous evening of YUM! Includes a link to the winning recipe from this cookie swap!
I purchased some holiday goodie buckets for each cookie baker. I laid out a bunch of wax paper sheets, too...to divide cookie layers {that's what's in the silver basket}. The markers were available to label our buckets with our names.

A really thorough guide to planning, preparing for and hosting your own cookie swap. Lots of great ideas, tips and tricks for a fabulous evening of YUM! Includes a link to the winning recipe from this cookie swap!
This was our tasting table. One thing I may have done differently here would have been to precut cookies in half...nobody could actually sit down and eat twelve entire cookies in one sitting {okay, maybe I could on a really bad day when I have my fat & fluffy jeans on...but certainly not at a party in front of other people. Our little secret, k?}.

We basically just took a little nibble of each cookie in order to judge it for our competition. After tasting all of the cookies, we wrote down our top three favorites and then tallied the votes...to name our cookie queen {her majesty is featured later in this post}.

I also served a tried & true Coffee Punch recipe that you see up there. The perfect dunking drink.


A really thorough guide to planning, preparing for and hosting your own cookie swap. Lots of great ideas, tips and tricks for a fabulous evening of YUM! Includes a link to the winning recipe from this cookie swap!
One major plateful of cookies to taste. Cutting them in half {or thirds or fourths} next year.
We have a member of our group who owns her own cupcake business, so she joked and said no way could a cupcake baker show up with a cookie! They were YUMMY, too!

A really thorough guide to planning, preparing for and hosting your own cookie swap. Lots of great ideas, tips and tricks for a fabulous evening of YUM! Includes a link to the winning recipe from this cookie swap!
I did separate the tasting and taking cookies for logistical reasons. It was easier to allow for plenty of room around the tables as gals wanted to fill their buckets or maybe go back for another taste test.

 We had a great time chatting and catching up.

Such a fun group!

Getting out of order a bit...
we did do our usual appetizer spread for a little savory meal before our cookie tasting.

We had a delicious homemade broccoli soup and this fabulous cream cheese dip...both of which I still need to track down the recipes for. {Coming soon}.

My very good friend, Danielle, always dazzles us with her yummy creations.
She brought these delicious Cranberry Feta Pinwheels.
The recipe can be found here.

I made what I commonly refer to as, the Weight-Watcher-diet-buster-fiasco-of-2009,
 {it was all downhill from there}...it's the best sandwich, ever, y'all.
You can find the recipe for these here. 

We also enjoyed this delightful Holiday Apple Drink,
{a glorified version of Martinelli's, if you ask me}.

A really thorough guide to planning, preparing for and hosting your own cookie swap. Lots of great ideas, tips and tricks for a fabulous evening of YUM! Includes a link to the winning recipe from this cookie swap!
One of my favorite aspects of our cookie swap was "crowning" the cookie winner with a bag chock-full of cookie cutters. Each cookie participant brought a new cutter and we all piled them into a bag.
Our winner, Suzanne, took home this bag of cookie-making loot!

And the winning cookie was....
Chocolate & Peanut Butter Chip Pretzel Cookies.
To see this recipe, along with a printable recipe card, click here. 

Again, to see all of the cookie recipes {along with printable recipe cards}, click here.

{i linky-party here}

1 comment:

  1. Looks like so much fun! And the cookies look great!

    ReplyDelete