Spreading joy this year with a homemade gift can be easy to make and help your budget as well. From breads to beverage mixes to soups, you are sure to find some great gift ideas. Here are some ideas that are sure to make someone you care about very happy. These recipes come from North Dakota Extension. You can find other recipes by visiting their website at: ag.ndsu.edu/food/news/homemade-gifts-for-the-holiday-season.

Country Chili Mix

1-pound kidney beans

3 tablespoons chili powder

2 tablespoons dehydrated onions

1 tablespoon garlic salt

1 teaspoon oregano

¾ teaspoon salt

¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper (optional)

Pour the beans into a clean quart-sized jar. In a small bowl, mix the remaining ingredients. Pour mixture into a clear sandwich bag and place it on top of the beans. Cover the jar tightly with a lid, decorate and attach a copy of the recipe.

Country Child Mix Recipe Card - Attach to the jar these instructions

1 container Country Chili Mix

10 cups water for soaking beans

1 8-ounce can reduced-sodium tomato sauce

1 24 ounce can diced tomatoes

1-pound ground beef or turkey

Remove bag of seasoning from jar and rinse beans. In a stockpot, bring 10 cups of water to a boil. Add beans and return to a boil for two to three minutes. Cover and set aside at room temperature for one hour. Drain and rinse the beans. Fill a pot with 6 cups of water and add the beans. Cook beans until soft about one hour. Simmer gently with lid filled. Brown meat, drain and add to the beans with tomatoes and sauce. Add in seasonings, stir, and simmer, covered, for one hour. Add a little more water if needed to thin the broth.

Herb Quick Bread

Jar mix ingredients:

2 cups all-purpose white flour

1 cup whole-wheat flour

1 tablespoon baking powder

3 teaspoon caraway seeds

½ teaspoon salt

½ teaspoon nutmeg

½ teaspoon dried thyme

Layer ingredients in a clean quart-sized jar. Cover the jar tightly with a lid, decorate and attach a copy of the recipe instructions to make the bread:

1 jar Herb Quick Bread Mix

1 egg

1 cup fat-free milk

1/3 cup canola oil

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a mixing bowl bread ingredient. In a separate bowl, whisk egg, milk, and oil. Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and stir until moistened. Place mixture in a 9x5 inch loaf pan coated with nonstick cooking spray and bake for 40 to 50 minutes. Cool for 10 minutes in pan, remove from pan and place on a wire cooking rack.

Kathy Smith is a Texas A&M AgriLife extension agent in Parker County.

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