two children baking (easy holiday treat recipes for moms)Every year around mid-December, I feel overwhelmed. There are essays to grade, gifts to buy, meals to prep, and parties to plan and attend. With two school-aged children, after-school activities, work obligations, and friends to see, I try to keep things simple where I can. So I wrote up a list of easy holiday treats to make when I attend or host a party — yummy desserts that are simple to put together and even easier to devour. Here are my top five go-to recipes for the holiday season!

Christmas crack

I learned about “Christmas crack” a few years ago, and I’m not sure how I ever lived without it. The recipe is simple, featuring saltine crackers, brown sugar, butter, chocolate, and nuts/sprinkles — it’s a surefire way to win the hearts of anyone with a sweet tooth. Adapt the recipe with appropriately colored sprinkles for Thanksgiving, Hanukkah, Christmas, or New Year’s, or leave it simple with walnuts or pecans on top.  

Pecan pie balls

A delicious alternative to the pie, these pecan pie truffles are decadent. This year, I enlisted the help of my children to roll the balls before I dipped them in chocolate. I received more compliments about these than any pie I’ve ever made, and it took me around 30 minutes of work! (The truffles do need to set up in the refrigerator/freezer after shaping and dipping.) Try this recipe if you love pecan pie — you will not be disappointed!

Pumpkin pie truffles

If you’re looking for easy, look no further. This mama bought a pre-made pumpkin pie at Target, smushed it up, rolled it in balls, and dipped them in white chocolate. These pumpkin pie truffles are ridiculously easy to make, but they taste like they’re from an upscale bakery. Sprinkles make them look extra special, and the taste is out of this world!

Rolo pretzels

This holiday classic is so easy I often task my girls with assembling the tasty bites. A simple pretzel with a Rolo on top is a yummy bite-sized treat for all to enjoy, and when you add red and green M&Ms to the top, it’s a Christmas delight! Or, add a pecan on top for homemade turtles. Any way you top it, this treat is always a quick and easy winner when it’s time for a holiday party!

Cookie butter cheesecake dip

This cookie butter dip combines six ingredients to create one amazing dessert. All you need is a bowl and a mixer to turn cookie butter, cream cheese, sugar, milk, and bits of heaven into the most delicious dessert dip. Grab some chocolate graham crackers, Nilla wafers, or Biscoff cookies, and you are ready to dip and party.

Listen, mamas, none of these treats are healthy. But they are all delicious and totally worthy of the 15-30 minutes it will take you to put them together. Your hosts will thank you, your guests will thank you, your kids will thank you, and your schedule will not be compromised. When time is precious, and making treats for the holidays can be quick and delicious, it’s a win/win celebration!

Sarah Casimiro
Sarah grew up in Rhode Island and now lives in West Bridgewater, making brief stops in Quincy, Fall River, and East Bridgewater, along the way. She made the leap from Rhode Island to Massachusetts way back in 1999 when she decided to pursue a teaching degree at Boston University. She chose her career in 1987 and is currently teaching high school English to 10th and 12th graders, fulfilling a 6-year-old’s dream at the age of 22, a proclamation that often brings forth snickers from her students. She became a mother for the first time in 2016 to her daughter Cecilia, then doubled down in late 2018 with the birth of her second daughter, Adelaide. She currently lives with her husband, Jason, their dog, Nanook, their cat, Moxie, and five chickens. They share a home with her parents, who live above them and also provide the most amazing childcare for Ceci and Addie. Sarah couldn’t live without her family, her insulin pump (shout out to other T1D mamas), and Starbucks iced chai lattes. She could live without angry people, essay grading, and diaper changing.

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