Steps to a Peaceful Holiday Archives - Hoosier Homemade

Baking for the Holidays

By | Baking, Holidays, Holidays | No Comments

Every week, Tiffany from Eat at Home and I are sharing tips for Prep & Planning: Steps to a Peaceful Holiday. Today, it’s all about baking…my favorite!

With everything you need to get done during the Holidays, wouldn’t be nice to have some of the baking done ahead? Join us tomorrow {Wed} for a Virtual Baking Party on Facebook, as we share recipes and ideas to help us prepare for the Holidays.

And don’t forget to print out your FREE Holiday Planner over at Eat at Home!

Here are some recipes to get you started…

Quick Breads:



Like I have mentioned before, I’m not the best rolled, cut out cookie baker. I’m hoping it’s because I don’t make them very much. But if you are looking for Decorated Cookie ideas, then Sweet Sugar Belle is the place you want to go. And she just shared her tips on Baking the Perfect Sugar Cookie!  Amazing!! See what I mean…


Although you may not think of preparing your cupcakes ahead, they actually freeze really well. You can freeze the batter as well as the cupcakes after you bake them.

Freezing Cupcakes:

  • Place cake batter in a resealable container and plastic resealable bag and seal tightly
  • Place cupcake liners in pan, fill with batter, wrap in plastic and flash freeze {2-3 hours} remove from freezer and place cupcakes in a resealable bag. Place back in freezer
  • Place cake batter in disposable cupcake pans to freeze. Remove from freezer, let thaw and bake in pan.
  • Batter can be frozen up to 3 months if wrapped tightly
  • For more information on Freezing Cupcakes, visit The Kitchn

For over 150 cupcake recipes and ideas, visit Cupcake Heaven!

Join Tiffany and I every week as we share Prep & Planning: Steps to a Peaceful Holiday

Week #1: Homemade Holiday Gifts

Week #2: Freezing Party Foods

And don’t forget…the Virtual Baking Party is tomorrow, starting around 9 a.m.!

Come share what you have been baking lately in the Coffee Talk Community!

Linking to…Transformation Thursday

Planning for the Holidays: Cheese Ball Recipe

By | Appetizers, Cooking, Holidays | 10 Comments

Last week, Tiffany and I kicked off our series, Prep & Planning: Steps to a Peaceful Holiday, with Homemade Holiday Gifts. I shared Hot Cocoa and Tea Jars with fun printables and Tiffany shared yummy Snack Mixes and a printable for Hollywood Mix.

This week our focus is, preparing party food ahead, freezing it and having it ready when you have a party to attend or a last minute call from the neighbors to drop by for a little get together. Visit Tiffany from Eat at Home tomorrow for more great ideas on preparing party food ahead.

I’ve been making this Cheese Ball for many, many years. It’s always a favorite in our house and anytime I take it to a party or potluck. With only 5 ingredients {plus nuts if you like them}, the Cheese Ball goes together in a flash and also makes a great gift!

To prepare them ahead for the freezer, follow the recipe below and simply wrap them in plastic or use your FoodSaver System to vacuum seal them. The day of the party, just take them out of the freezer in the morning or the night before and place them in the fridge. Serve with your favorite crackers for a super easy treat.


Cheese Ball Recipe

Delicious Cheese Ball for the Holidays. Recipe from HoosierHomemade.com

  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Total Time: 10 minutes
  • Yield: 1 large Cheese Ball or 2 smaller


  • 2 packages (8 oz. each) Cream Cheese, softened
  • 2 packages of thinly sliced meat, pastrami or beef works best (I buy them at Aldi’s or Walmart, for less than .60 cents)
  • 2 teaspoons Worcestershire Sauce
  • 2 teaspoons Accent Salt (or regular salt) Accent has MSG in it, so if you don’t want to use that, regular salt is okay, but use a little less
  • 3-4 green onions, chopped finely


  1. Place cream cheese in a large bowl and gently stir with a wooden spoon or spatula until slightly creamy
  2. Cut meat and green onion into small pieces
  3. Add to cream cheese
  4. Add salt and Worcestershire Sauce
  5. Mix well
  6. Place plastic wrap on counter
  7. Add cheese ball mixture and form one large ball or divide in half for two smaller cheese balls
  8. You can also roll in chopped nuts if you want
  9. Wrap tightly and either place in a resealable freezer bag, wrap in another piece of plastic wrap or seal with FoodSaver System
  10. To serve, remove from freezer the morning or the night before you want to serve, place in fridge
  11. Serve with crackers of your choice

Join Tiffany and I every week as we share Prep & Planning: Steps to a Peaceful Holiday

Week #1: Homemade Holiday Gifts

Mark your calendars!! November 12th is the Virtual Freezer Cooking Party with Tiffany and November 16th. is the Virtual Baking Party!

Linking to..Mouthwatering Mondays, Saturday Night Special, Show & Tell Friday

Easy Homemade Holiday Gift Ideas

By | Baking, Christmas, Holidays, Tasty Holiday Gifts | 21 Comments

The holidays are right around the corner and will be here before we know it. Do you enjoy making gifts for friends and family? I do, but often with everything else going on, my time is limited.

I’m super excited to be starting a new series today with Tiffany from Eat at Home, Prep & Planning: Steps to a Peaceful Holiday. Now through the first week of December we will be sharing with you party food, make-ahead meals for the freezer, baking tips and a special Virtual Baking Day on Facebook on Wednesday, November 16th. You can bake along in your own kitchen, share recipes, tips and secrets with other bakers. Sounds fun!!

Tiffany and I will wrap it all up with a Cookie Swap that you are invited to also! We will be putting the whole series in a nice little eBook for you to print out and have on hand throughout the holidays.

Since it’s never too early to start thinking about gift giving, we are kicking off the series with Easy Holiday Gift Giving, specifically…Gifts in a Jar.

When I spotted these adorable printables on Positively Splendid last week, I knew right away what I wanted to share for a Gift Giving idea. Kiki Creates designed the gift tag printables…aren’t they just the cutest? Kiki also has an Etsy Shop full of fun and colorful printables. With just a few simple ingredients, you can make these special jars for friends, neighbors, teachers, hair dresser and more, the ideas are endless.

Cocoa Jar Supplies:

  • Glass mason jar {available in the housewares department at Walmart}
  • Hot Cocoa Mix {recipe below}
  • Mini Marshmallows
  • Crushed peppermint candy
  • Chocolate dipped spoon {Chocolate Almond Bark and sprinkles}
  • Gift tags, ribbon, twine


  1. Spoon hot cocoa mix into jar
  2. In a resealable bag, crush peppermint candy {I used candy canes}
  3. In a cellophane treat bag, place a handful of mini marshmallows and add the crushed peppermint candy. Shake to coat. If the peppermint won’t stick to the marshmallows, VERY lightly dampen the marshmallows with a little water, then add the candy and shake.
  4. Cut off excess on the bag, place the end in the jar and add the top and ring, seal it tightly.
  5. Melt almond bark, dip spoon and add sprinkles. Let dry for about 5 minutes. Then tie onto jar with twine
  6. Add the ribbon and gift tag.

The Tea Jar is absolutely no fuss, but perfect for your favorite tea drinker.

Tea Jar Supplies:

  • Glass mason jar {available in the housewares department at Walmart}
  • Tea bags
  • Fabric
  • Gift tags, ribbon, twine


  1. Place tea bag in jar
  2. Cut a circle from fabric, add to the lid and seal
  3. Add ribbon, and tags

I was inspired by the way Kiki added the wire for the steam, so I added some to my tea cup. Simply bend a piece of wire and then tape it to the back of the cup, then tie on the snowflakes and hearts with twine.

Tiffany shared some brilliant ideas for Snack Mixes in a Jar. LOVE this Hollywood Mix with a printable tag, pair it with a DVD or maybe some movie tickets and you have a great gift for any age!


Hot Cocoa Mix Recipe

Enjoy a mug of cocoa by the fire

  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Total Time: 10 minutes


  • 4 C instant dry milk powder
  • 1 1/2 C to 2 sugar
  • 1 C powdered non dairy creamer
  • 2/3 C cocoa, unsweetened
  • 1 small box instant instant chocolate or vanilla pudding (optional)


  1. Whisk all ingredients together until well combined
  2. Store in an airtight container

To Serve

  1. Add 1/3 Mix to a mug and fill with boiling water

A very special Thank You to Kiki for the adorable gift tags!

Mark your calendars!! November 12th is the Virtual Freezer Cooking Party with Tiffany and November 16th. is the Virtual Baking Party!

And join us each week as we share our tips to a Peaceful Holiday!!

Linking to…Show & Tell Friday, Weekend Wrap Up Party, Saturday Night Special, Made by You Monday, Transformation Thursday, Frugal Friday, Sundae Scoop

Quick Recipes

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