Do you exchange gifts with your neighbors at Christmas? Rather than a traditional cookie plate, try giving the gift of a yummy smelling house. A Christmas simmer pot kit is a simple to make, inexpensive, and useful gift that anyone can enjoy.
What do you give for neighbor gifts? Or do you give them at all? The ideas for simple, made-in-bulk gifts abound on Pinterest, and it seems like many families have a favorite to give. I know that every year I am going to get homemade marshmallows from one neighbor, and English toffee from another.
I love all the treats (seriously, do not stop bringing me toffee, Lacey), but there are A LOT of them this time of year, so I’ve done something a little different the past few years for our neighbors. I give the scent of Christmas.
More specifically, I give an orange, cranberries, cinnamon, and cloves all packaged up nicely with directions for how to make a Christmas simmer pot that makes your house smell so festive. My husband always reminds me that I can’t just give them to other people, I have to make one for us, too. And it does smell good.
Plus, if you add all the ingredients to apple juice instead of just water, you get some yummy cider. Smells and tastes good…even better!
So, today I’m sharing with you all my secrets for how to create an inexpensive, practical, and easy neighbor gift. I love that it’s simple enough that I can have Little Man help me assemble the bags (which he LOVED doing last year).
I’m also including a couple of cute free printable gift tags you are welcome to use. When I started making these gifts a few years ago, I designed a really cute round tag. However, I have since realized that it is a pain in the rear to cut out circles and try to make them perfect without one of those fancy (and way overpriced) circle punches. So, I redesigned the tags this year using some beautiful Scandinavian-inspired artwork…and the only cutting needed is straight lines. Hooray! You can download them at the bottom of the post. Enjoy!
Christmas Simmer Pot Neighbor Gift
What you need for each simmer pot kit:
- 1 small orange
- 1/2 cup fresh cranberries
- 1 tablespoon cloves
- 2-4 cinnamon sticks
- packaging (cellophane bag, ribbon, tag, etc.)
Tips on where to buy your ingredients:
I always wait to make my kits until the grocery stores start putting Christmas food items on sale. Usually, there is a week or two where I can get oranges as cheap at 3 lbs. for $1, and I can get a bag of cranberries for .99 cents. If you buy things at full price, you’re likely to pay closer to $1/lb. for oranges and $2.99 for cranberries.
Don’t buy cinnamon sticks at the normal grocery store. They are SO expensive. I buy mine at Costco. They are extra long sticks, so I break them in half and package two in each kit.
You can buy cloves (and allspice if you want to include it) in bulk at Sprouts and it’s much cheaper than buying the bottle at the grocery store.
You can decide if it’s worth going to three different stores to save money. If you’re only making a handful of kits, it’s not a big deal, but if you make 20+, you will save some money. I just pick the ingredients up when I’m doing my normal grocery shopping in the weeks leading up to Christmas, so it’s not a big deal for me. You can definitely opt to just get everything at one store to simplify.
If you want to use my printable gift tags on your gifts, feel free to download them below. Enjoy!