Introduction: Sugar & Spice & Everything Nice
I wanted to come up with a treat that was all about Christmas flavors. What is more cozy than a cup of hot cocoa with a little warmth of cinnamon. But when you sit down with a hot cup of cocoa you want a cozy treat too. Gingerbread is the perfect combination with warm flavors, and easily brings back all your Christmas memories.
So I came up with these little personal ornaments. Make this special gift for your friends and family to enjoy Christmas eve, or decorate your tree with them and enjoy a hot cocoa every evening before Christmas. Perfect treat to help you get cozy and warm this Christmas.
What you need for 16 servings of Gingerbread Popcorn (1 cup serving):
4 packages of microwave popcorn or 16 cups popped popcorn
4 Tbsp butter
2/3 cup light corn syrup
1 package (3.4 oz) of butterscotch instant pudding mix
2 tsp Cinnamon
1 Tbsp Ginger
What you need for 16 servings of Red Hot Cocoa (makes approx. 8 ornaments):
1 3/4 cups nonfat dry milk powder
1 cup confectioners sugar
1/2 cup powdered nondairy creamer
1/2 cup baking cocoa
1 cup dehydrated miniature marshmallows (I found mine on amazon)
2 packages of theatre size red hots candy
8 Glass craft ornaments -purchased mine at hobby lobby and don't forget your 40 percent off coupon ;)
Pop your popcorn. I popped 4 packages of microwave popcorn.
Once a bag is done popping dump it into a larger bowl or pan and tilt it so the unpopped kernals roll to the bottom and you can easily pick them out. That way you don't have any breaking your teeth inside your treat!
Preheat your oven to 300 degrees
Next mix your dry ingredients together for your popcorn.
Mix cinnamon, pudding mix, and ginger in a cup.
Spray a large pan with cooking spray and place your popped popcorn inside to prep for coating with candy.
Melt the butter on low heat
Once the butter is melted add the corn syrup, and dump in your dry ingredients.
Pour the melted mixture over the popped popcorn and stir to cover all the popcorn.
Bake 8 minutes and then stir again.
Bake another 8 minutes.
Remove from oven and let cool.
Once cooled break into smaller pieces.
Making hot cocoa mix
You can add the mix to your ornament balls two ways. You can mix all your ingredients together and then add them that way, or you can add them seperatley if you would like a more layered and different color look. You decide. I will describe both ways.
Same color throughout
Mix all the ingredients together in one big bowl
Take a funnel and fill each ornament with 6 Tbsp of hot cocoa powder
1 Tbsp mini marshmallows
1 Tbsp Red Hots candy (my funnel was too narrow to add these, so I had to do it one by one)
I like the look of this better but when you add it to your warm milk for drinking is a little harder to mix into the milk.
Using the funnel poor each in separately, and remember to wipe out the funnel with a dry cloth before adding the next ingredients, to keep colors separate. Layer in according to your desired look.
3 Tbsp of dry milk powder
1 Tbsp baking cocoa
2 Tbsp confectioners sugar
1Tbsp powdered non dairy creamer
1/2 Tbsp mini marshmallows
1/2 Tbsp Red Hots candy
Don't forget to add instructions for them for their hot cocoa. I like adding mine to 1 1/2 cups hot milk. I wrote my instructions on back of the gift label. Next you can decorate the outside of your ornaments to your liking and style.
Time to put your gift together. I added a cup of popcorn to each bag, and placed it inside a nice Christmas hot cocoa mug for my friends. I think it would be fun to make or buy a mini Christmas tree and hang your ornaments from it for a gift as well. Enjoy and have a Merry Christmas!!!