What is everybody up to for Christmas this year? Whatever it is, I hope it’s wonderfully awesome and full of happy memories. Iain and I are off to Australia. I can’t even wait. After not going home for the first two years I lived in London, I’ve now been home twice this year. It’s Iain’s first time visiting Australia, so I’m nervously excited for him. I hope he loves it as much as I do.
So it’s two weeks until the big day today! Have you finished your Christmas shopping yet? I’m so stoked because I finished all my shopping last weekend. I mean it was practically still November and I was finished with all of my Christmas shopping. I have never been this organised before. I kind of had to be though, because we’re flying out next week so I don’t have the luxury of waiting until the last minute. Way too much life to live once we touch down in warm, hopefully sunny Oz.
On top of all the gifts for family, I also had to organise a gift for my Secret Santa at work. I wanted it to be something thoughtful rather than joke-y, so decided to put a personal touch on it and put together a brownie mix in a jar. I’m pretty sure when my Secret Santa opens their gift tomorrow, they’ll know it’s from me immediately, but I’m okay with that.
This brownie mix in a jar is so easy to put together, and is a great gift for the holidays. It’s a thoughtful gift that feels a bit more personal than many generic gift ideas. You can also tailor the mix to suit the recipient, making it a really versatile option. Feel like throwing some nuts in there? Go ahead. Not a big Baileys fan? Substitute it for another liqueur or milk. I do want to note that these are not super fudgy brownies. It’s not a cake mix, but it’s not as fudgy as some of the traditional brownie recipes out there. It’s still delicious, so don’t let that put you off!
I chose a brownie mix over a cookie mix, because I don’t know how much of a baker my Secret Santa is and what sort of baking equipment they have at home. Many cookie mixes in jars called for creaming butter with an electric mixer, which some people don’t have. This brownie mix is perfect for the non-baker. Aside from some sort of baking pan, it requires no special equipment. The recipient only needs to supply a small amount of butter and two eggs and they’re good to go.
Brownie Mix in a Jar
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cooking Time: 0 minutes
¾ cup plain flour
½ tsp baking powder
½ tsp salt
½ cup cocoa powder
¾ cup caster sugar
½ cup tightly packed brown sugar
1 cup chocolate chips, any variety (I used ½ cup of white chocolate chips and ½ cup of dark chocolate chips. You can also swap out ½ cup of chocolate chips for ¾ cup of chopped walnuts/pecans/macadamia nuts/etc.)
1 (50ml) bottle of Baileys Irish Cream liqueur (can be substituted with other liqueurs or milk)
NOTE: You will need one (750ml or 1L) clip-top jar or mason jar, plus ribbon or string to decorate it
- Wash and thoroughly dry jar. Layer ingredients in jar in order listed above, except for the Baileys.
- Decorate jar with ribbon or string and attach small bottle of Baileys to jar.
- Attach the following instructions to the jar using a printed recipe card template or gift tag:
Brownie Mix in a Jar
You will need: 115g butter and 2 eggs
Directions: Preheat oven to 180°C/350°F/Gas Mark 4. Grease and line a 23cm x 23cm square cake or brownie pan. Melt butter, then cool slightly and combine with eggs and Baileys in a large bowl. Mix well to combine. Pour Brownie Mix into butter mixture and stir until just combined. Spread into prepared pan and bake for 30-35 minutes, until dry around the edges and a skewer inserted into the centre comes out almost clean. Cool completely before cutting into squares.
NOTE: If you are not including the small bottle of Baileys or liqueur, the recipient will need to add 3 tbsp milk to the mix in place of the Baileys.
Recipe adapted from Betty Crocker.