Edible Holiday Gift Ideas For You and Your Family From UTBF


To celebrate the holidays, we've added even more recipes to this blog!  Come back often to check for new ideas, or send us yours!


This is a collection of both sweet and savory recipes to share with you so that you can share them with family, friends and guests.  All of these recipes have been tried and tested and are easy and delicious solutions to feeding your out of town guests or to bring to a neighborhood holiday gathering/pot luck.  


If you are looking for recipes we posted in prior years, scroll down, they are still here!



Oreo Truffles from Food Network 

These are so easy and so delicious - great for gifting or to have on your holiday dessert table.


One 16-ounce package chocolate sandwich cookies, such as Oreo (about 30 cookies)

6 ounces cream cheese 

2 cups semisweet chocolate chips 

2 tablespoons vegetable shortening or refined coconut oil 

2 cups white chocolate chips 


Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Pulse the cookies in a food processor to fine crumbs. Remove 2 tablespoons crumbs to a small bowl and reserve. Add the cream cheese and pulse until it just comes together. Transfer to a large bowl and knead a few times until completely combined.

Roll into 24 balls, each about 2 heaping tablespoons. Transfer to the prepared baking sheet and refrigerate until chilled through, about 45 minutes. 

Put the semisweet chocolate in a medium heatproof bowl with 1 tablespoon oil. Put the white chocolate chips in another medium heatproof bowl with the remaining tablespoon oil. Melt the chocolate mixtures one at a time, stirring occasionally, over a double boiler until smooth.

Drop one truffle at a time into the semisweet chocolate mixture, using two forks to evenly coat. Tap any excess chocolate off, then return to the baking sheet. Drizzle with the white chocolate mixture, then quickly sprinkle with the reserved cookie crumbs. Continue until all the truffles are coated and decorated. Return to the refrigerator to set, about 5 minutes. Serve chilled.


Peanut Butter Fudge (Another great recipe from the Food Network Kitchen)


Non-stick cooking spray

14 ounce can sweetened condensed milk

2.5 cups peanut butter chips

4 tbsp unsalted butter

1/4 tsp kosher salt

3 tbsp crunchy peanut butter

3 tbsp white chocolate chips

2 tbsp chopped roasted salted peanuts


Line an 8-inch square baking dish with foil, leaving a 2-inch overhang on two sides. Lightly coat with cooking spray.

Combine the sweetened condensed milk, peanut butter chips butter and salt in a medium saucepan. Place over medium-low heat and stir frequently with a rubber spatula, making sure to scrape the bottom, until the peanut butter chips are completely melted, about 5 minutes.  

When the peanut butter chip mixture is mostly melted, combine the crunchy peanut butter and white chocolate chips in a small microwave-safe bowl. Microwave in 15-second intervals, stirring, until melted, about 1 minute.  

Spread the melted peanut butter chip mixture into the prepared baking dish. Immediately drizzle the white chocolate mixture on top. Drag a butter knife through the white chocolate to make a marbled pattern on top. Sprinkle with the chopped peanuts. Let cool completely, then cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate until firm, at least 2 hours or overnight.  

Using the foil, lift the fudge out of the baking dish and cut into 16 small squares. Best serve chilled.


Brussels Sprout Slaw (Brussels Sprouts recipes Inspired by Everyday Food Magazine)

1 Tbsp mustard (we like Country Dijon)

3 Tbsp white-wine vinegar

2 tsp honey

2 tbsp olive oil

Salt and pepper

1 pound of brussels sprouts, trimmed and shredded

1 small head radicchio, cored and thinly sliced

½ cup chopped fresh chives

¼ cup toasted sunflower seeds

Whisk together mustard, vinegar, honey, and oil.  Add brussels sprouts, radicchio, chives and sunflower seeds and toss to combine.  Salt and Pepper to taste.



Brussels Sprouts With Dill Butter

1 pound brussels sprouts, trimmed and halved

3 tbsp unsalted butter

¼ cup fresh dill, roughly chopped

Salt and Pepper, Lemon wedges to taste

Boil and salt a pot of water, cook brussels sprouts until tender (about 5 to 6 minutes).  Drain thoroughly, toss with butter and dill and season with salt and pepper to taste.  Serve with lemon wedges on the side.


Healthy Breakfast Ideas for the morning after a big holiday dinner (inspired by Farm to Table Magazine)

Pear and Mango Smoothie (if you’d like, add other fruits to suit your taste - try raspberries or blueberries)

1 pear

2 cups frozen mango chunks

1 cup pear juice

1 banana

2 tbsp yogurt or kefir

1 tsp chia seeds

1 tsp wheat grass (totally optional)   (recipe continued on next page)

Whipped cream to garnish

½ tsp ground cardamom (also optional)

Peel pear, chop into chunks, then put in blender with frozen mango, pear juice, banana, yogurt and chia seeds (plus any other fruits you venture to add).  Blend for about 2 minutes until ingredients are fully blended, and look smooth and creamy.  Add the wheatgrass now if you’d like.  Pour into glasses and top with whipped cream and a bit of cardamom. Serve with a smile!


Farmer's Frittata

4 small red potatoes, scrubbed and quartered                                   1 medium onion, diced (yields one cup)             

1 small head of broccoli, separated into small florets                       ½  red bell pepper, diced (about ½ cup)

½ lb of ground pork sausage, fresh                                                        1 small Portobello mushroom, diced

1 tsp fresh sage, minced                                                                                   2 cloves garlic, minced

½ tsp of fresh thyme, minced                                                                  6 eggs, lightly beaten

1 tsp smoked paprika                                                                                 salt and pepper to taste

¼ tsp of fine sea salt (sub in regular salt or leave out if desired)    1 cup cheddar (or your favorite) cheese

Pinch of red pepper flakes                                                                       1 tbsp chopped fresh herbs, parsley,

1 tbsp olive oil (optional)                                                                          basil, thyme, tarragon

Steam the potatoes until tender, about 10 minutes, set aside.  Steam broccoli for about 5 minutes remove and set aside. 

Mix sausage with herbs, salt and pepper and red pepper flakes thoroughly.  Cover, refrigerate for 30 minutes (this can be done the night before if you prefer).

Preheat broiler to high.  Use a heavy 9 inch skillet and cook the sausage (breaking it into small pieces as it cooks.  Transfer to a bowl.

Use same pan keeping the sausage fat (or use olive oil if you prefer) and saute the onion, bell pepper, mushroom and garlic until softened and starting to brown.  Add to the cooked sausage.

Add potatoes and broccoli to the bowl.  Gently mix everything and return to the skillet.

Pour the eggs evenly over the top, cover and cook over medium heat until puffed and set for 6 to 8 minutes.  Remove the cover.  Sprinkle cheese over the top and broil for about 5 minutes, until cheese starts to brown.  Let it rest for about 10 minutes before cutting.  Sprinkle with herbs and serve warm or at room temperature.



The quickest and most delicious apple tart you can possibly make (by Ree Drummond, click on picture to go to the Food Network article) ....


1 whole sheet puffed pastry, cut in half
Nonstick cooking spray
1 cup brown sugar   

1/4 teaspoon salt
Juice of 1/2 a lemon
3 whole apples, cored, halved and sliced, but not peeled
Store-bought (or your favorite homemade recipe) caramel sauce, for serving
1/4 cup chopped pecans



Place the puffed pastry rectangles onto a baking pan that's been sprayed with nonstick spray or lined with parchment paper. Add the sugar, salt and lemon juice to the apples. Stir to combine. Allow to sit for a few minutes.

Arrange the apple slices on the pastry rectangles in a straight line, overlapping as you go. Bake until the pastry is puffed and golden brown, about 20 minutes.

Remove from the pan immediately and place on a serving platter. Serve with caramel sauce and chopped pecans.


Here's a interesting recipe baked up by the Food Network Kitchen that substitutes peanut butter for the butter and oil in this delicious twist on traditional banana bread! Click on picture for more banana bread recipes to try.



Cooking spray
1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon fine salt
1 cup smooth peanut butter
1/2 cup packed light brown sugar
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1 large egg
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
3 very ripe bananas, mashed


Glaze and topping:
1/3 cup smooth peanut butter
3 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 tablespoon confectioners' sugar, sifted
3 tablespoons honey-roasted peanuts, chopped



For the bread: Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Spray a 9- by 5-inch loaf pan with cooking spray.
Whisk together the flour, baking soda, cinnamon and salt in a medium bowl.
Beat together the peanut butter, brown sugar and granulated sugar with an electric mixer on medium-high speed in a large bowl until smooth. Beat in the egg and vanilla, then fold in the mashed banana. Add the flour mixture, and beat on medium-low until just combined (it's OK if there are some lumps).
Transfer the batter to the prepared loaf pan, and bake until the bread is golden brown and has split at the top and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean, 1 hour 10 minutes to 1 hour 20 minutes. Run a knife around the edges, and let cool completely in the pan on a rack. (You can tent the bread with foil if it begins to brown too quickly.)
For the glaze: When the bread has cooled, combine the peanut butter, butter and confectioners' sugar in a medium microwave-safe bowl, and microwave in 30-second increments, stirring after each, until smooth. Let the glaze sit until it has stiffened up a bit but is still spreadable. Spread over the top of the bread, and sprinkle the peanuts on top. Let sit for 10 minutes to set up before slicing. The bread can be stored at room temperature in an airtight container for up to 3 days.


What's better than a snickerdoodle cookie?  A snickerdoodle cake. That's right.  The Food Network Kitchen created a cake that tastes just like the cookie, but it's cake, so it's even better!


12 tablespoons (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature, plus more for greasing the pans
2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon fine salt
6 large egg whites
1 cup whole milk, at room temperature
1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
1 1/2 cups sugar
3/4 cup plus 1 tablespoon sugar
Pinch cream of tartar
Pinch fine salt
6 large egg whites
4 sticks (16 ounces) unsalted butter, cut into 1 1/2-inch chunks, at room temperature
1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract


Make the cake: Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Grease two 9-inch round cake pans and line the bottom of each with parchment.
Whisk together the flour, baking powder, cinnamon and salt in a medium bowl. Whisk the egg white, milk and vanilla together in another medium bowl. Beat the butter and sugar in a large bowl with an electric mixer on medium-high until light and fluffy. Add about a third of the flour mixture and beat on medium-low until incorporated. Now add a third of the egg-milk mixture and continue to beat on medium-low until incorporated, scraping down the side of the bowl as needed. Repeat with the remaining flour and egg-milk mixtures, finishing with the flour.


Divide the cake batter evenly between the prepared cake pans and bake until the cake bounces back when pressed and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean, 25 to 30 minutes. Let cool completely in the cake pans on a rack.

Make the buttercream: Bring a few inches of water to a boil in a saucepan that can hold a heatproof stand mixer's bowl above the water.
Add the 3/4 cup sugar, cream of tartar, salt and egg whites, to the mixing bowl and whisk together by hand. Set the bowl above the boiling water and whisk until the mixture is warm to the touch and the sugar completely dissolves. Transfer to the stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment and beat at medium-high speed until cool and the whites hold stiff peaks, 10 to 15 minutes.

Toss in a couple of chunks of butter at a time, making sure the pieces are incorporated before adding more. After all the butter is added, continue whisking on medium-high speed. The mixture will deflate and appear curdled. Continue whisking until the buttercream comes back together to form a smooth and spreadable consistency. Beat in 1 teaspoon cinnamon and vanilla.

Combine the remaining 1 tablespoon sugar and 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon together in a small bowl.

To assemble: Slice each cake in half horizontally for a total of 4 cake rounds (set aside one of the bottom pieces for the top layer). Put 1 round on a cake stand or serving platter, and spread about 1 cup of the buttercream on top, all the way to the edge. Sprinkle with some of the cinnamon-sugar. Repeat with 2 more layers of cake, buttercream and cinnamon-sugar. Place the reserved cake round on top (browned-side up). Frost with the remaining buttercream and sprinkle with the remaining cinnamon-sugar. Let sit for at least 1 hour before slicing and serving.



Need to feed a crowd over the holidays?  This stew from Food Network is the answer during the cold winter days to come!


A "How-To" video is available by clicking the picture below.





Vegetable oil, for searing
2 1/2 pounds beef chuck, cut into 2-inch cubes
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
2 medium onions, cut into 6ths
5 cloves garlic, crushed
1 tablespoon tomato paste
1/3 cup all-purpose flour, or to cover
10 cups cold water, or chicken or beef broth, homemade or low-sodium canned
6 sprigs parsley
6 sprigs fresh thyme
2 bay leaves
1 1/4 pounds medium red potatoes, quartered
4 medium carrots, cut into 2-inch pieces
2 celery stalks, cut into 2-inch pieces
7 canned whole, peeled tomatoes, lightly crushed
2 to 3 teaspoons red wine vinegar, or to taste




Heat a large Dutch oven with a tight-fitting lid over medium-high heat. Pour in enough oil to fill the pan about 1/4-inch deep. Season the beef generously with salt and pepper, and add to the pan. Saute half the meat, uncovered, stirring only occasionally, until well-browned, about 8 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, transfer the beef to a plate. Repeat with the remaining beef. Discard the oil and wipe out the pan.

Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F. Return the pot to the stove and melt the butter over medium high heat. Add the onion and cook, stirring, until lightly browned, about 5 minutes. Add the garlic and cook, stirring, until fragrant, about 1 minute. Add the tomato paste and cook, stirring, until lightly browned, about 1 minute more. Add the reserved beef and scatter the flour over the vegetable and beef mixture (enough to lightly coat) and cook stirring until lightly toasted. Add the water or broth, and bring to a simmer. Tie the parsley, thyme, and bay leaves together with a piece of kitchen twine and add the bundle to the pot. Season with 2 teaspoons salt, or to taste. Cover and transfer to the oven. Cook the meat until just tender, about 1 1/2 hours. (This can also be done on the stove at a low simmer.)


Remove pot from the oven. Skim the fat from the cooking liquid with a spoon or ladle. Add the potatoes, carrots, celery, and the tomatoes, and bring to a simmer on top of the stove. Cook, uncovered, stirring occasionally, until the liquid thickens and the vegetables are tender, about 1 hour. Remove and discard the herb bundle. Stir in the vinegar and season with salt and pepper, to taste. Divide among bowls and serve immediately.


From breakfast treats to desserts, our holidays are much "sweeter" when you have a little chocolate something to go with that cup of coffee or tea.  Click on the picture for Ina Garten's recipe for "Fleur de Sel Caramels".    



Here is a simple "but looks like you spent hours in the kitchen" apple dumpling recipe shared by Trisha Yearwood, who in addition to being a fabulous country singer, she's got a cooking show and is married to Garth Brooks!  Click on the picture to get the recipe.



Anne Burrell is seen on many Food Network cooking shows, and this Apple Spice Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting stands out as a great cake to serve during the holidays, great as a breakfast or dessert, or to give as a gift!



For a sweet treat that is definitely dessert, try this White Chocolate Peppermint Bark!  We found this recipe on the Sweet Dreams cooking show hosted by Gail Gand.  It's super easy to make, you only need three ingredients - Really!





Here are some easy brunch dishes for entertaining or feeding hungry house guests!


This Mushroom-Spinach Baked Eggs Casserole from the Food Network Kitchen will make you feel like you are eating breakfast in Europe!  The gruyere cheese makes this dish seem really gourmet and one that you will be proud to serve to your guests!



The Food Network Kitchen has come up with another winner in it's Pancake Breakfast Casserole.  You can save time by making this dish ahead of time and freezing it, or by using ready-made frozen pancakes.  The creamy custard baked in with the pancakes combined with blueberries (or mixed berries of your choice) makes this a perfect holiday breakfast.


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Here is a different take on the old "ham and cheese casserole" try this Breakfast Cornbread Casserole, another great one from the Food Network Kitchen.



Here is another great brunch casserole by Food Network Kitchen, Corned Beef Hash Brown Casserole - it's gluten free and a hearty breakfast meal!




Our final brunch recipe is a Spinach, Mushroom & Cheese Breakfast Casserole from Food Network Kitchen.  We hope you enjoy this meatless brunch entree - it's one of our favorites. This dish is especially great as you can use up your leftover bread as the top crust and it becomes the star attraction.



We hope you find one or more of these recipes perfect to make over the holidays!  


Best Wishes for a Happy and Healthy New Year!




David M. Frees, III
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Join The Conversation
Helen Raser 12/18/2015 07:46 PM
They all sound great, cannot wait to try them.. HAPPY HOLIDAYS TO EVERYONE AT THE OFFICE!!
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nick & theresa difabio 12/29/2015 09:20 AM
Thanks for the recipes.They were great. Happy New Year
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