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Gingerbread Men Cookie Decorating Kits make cute packages that anyone will be thrilled to receive!
As soon as Thanksgiving is over I am in gift giving mode. My favorite gifts to give are homemade edible gifts. In the past, I’ve shipped cookies, macarons, and peppermint bark. I think the recipients 1) enjoy receiving packages (who doesn’t?) and 2) appreciate the thought and effort that goes into a homemade gift. Not to mention the trips I save to crowded malls (hallelujah!)!
This year, I will be shipping out Gingerbread Men Cookie Decorating Kits. The kits will be filled with everything needed to begin the cookie decorating fun as soon as the package is opened! I will include homemade gingerbread men cookies, a bottle of royal icing, and a variety of decorative sprinkles.
I will be using Rubbermaid TakeAlongs, available in limited edition holiday colors, to package these Gingerbread Men Cookie Decorating Kits. I think the colors will add that festive holiday touch. Because I’m packaging these kits in reusable food storage containers, the gift is really two gifts in one! Once the gift recipients are finished decorating their cookies, they can keep the Rubbermaid TakeAlongs for use in the future!
The Rubbermaid TakeAlongs feature Quik Clik Seal™ that provides a great seal to keep food secure and prevent spills. They’re also microwaveable, top rack dishwasher safe, and freezer safe so it can be used again and again to transport holiday meals and treats to potlucks and parties. It’s like the gift that keeps on giving!
I’ve included the gingerbread cookie and royal icing recipes below so that you can make your own Gingerbread Men Cookie Decorating Kits to give as gifts this holiday season. Once those are done, the rest is a breeze. Package decorative sprinkles and candies in individual containers and place them, the cookies, and icing snugly in Rubbermaid TakeAlongs, using tissue paper, if needed, to fill in any gaps. To mail them, I usually use flat rate boxes from USPS and bubble wrap (bubble side facing outwards).
If you end up making an extra batch (like me) or have extra cookies, go ahead and have a little fun decorating some cookies yourself!
I hope I’ve given you some inspiration to make your own homemade gifts this season.
- 3 cups all-purpose flour
- 3/4 cup packed brown sugar
- 1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
- 1 tablespoon ground ginger
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
- 1/2 teaspoon table salt
- 3/4 teaspoon baking soda
- 12 tablespoons 1 1/2 sticks unsalted butter, cut into cubes and slightly softened*
- 3/4 cup unsulphured molasses
- 2 tablespoons milk
- 1 ½ cups confectioners’ sugar, sifted
- ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 teaspoon light corn syrup
- 1¾ - 2 ½ tablespoons room temperature water
In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, add the flour, brown sugar, cinnamon, ginger, cloves, salt, and baking soda. Mix on low speed until combined.
Stop the mixer and add the butter. Mix on medium-low speed until there is a mixture of pea-sized and cornmeal-sized pieces.
In a small bowl, add together the molasses and milk. Reduce the mixer speed to low and pour in the molasses mixture. Continue to mix until the dough is moistened, scraping down the sides as necessary.
Lay down a large piece of parchment paper. To the center of the paper, scrape out half of the dough from the mixer bowl. Using clean hands, bring any scraps together to form a ball. Top with another piece of parchment paper and roll the dough out until 1/4-inch thick. Set aside and repeat with the remaining half of dough.
Chill the dough, flat, in the freezer for 30 minutes or overnight in the refrigerator.
When ready to bake, adjust the oven rack to the center position, preheat the oven to 350°F, and line two baking sheets with parchment paper.
Remove one of the chilled dough sheets and place on the work surface. Gently peel off the top parchment paper and cut out shapes using 4.5-inch cutters. Transfer to the prepared baking sheets, spacing 2-inches apart. Bring together any remaining scraps, re-roll, and cut. Repeat with the second sheet of chilled dough.
Bake on the center rack for 9 to 11 minutes, rotating halfway through the baking time. The cookies are done when the edges are slightly crisped and the center lightly indents when gently pressed.
Allow to cool on the baking sheet for 15 minutes before transferring to a cooling rack to cool completely. Decorate with icing (recipe follows).
Whisk together the sugar, vanilla, and corn syrup. Add water a little at a time, stirring in between, until a pipeable consistency is reached.
Add to a piping bag fitted with a small round tip or a squirt bottle to decorate.
*This recipe will not work if the butter is too soft. The butter is ready when there is just a bit of resistance when pressing into the butter cubes.
Gingerbread Men Cookies and Royal Icing adapted from Gingerbread Cookies