As the weather turns cold and silver bells ring through the speakers in the stores, our calendars quickly fill with holiday parties, cookie exchanges and end-of-the-semester bake sales.
All of the baking that ensues can quickly become overwhelming if you are not properly prepared. Not to fret! This list contains all the essentials you’ll need in your kitchen to make sure you’re at your holliest and jolliest throughout the entire holiday season.
- Butter: Virtually every holiday recipe will call for butter. Make sure your fridge is always well stocked with unsalted butter.
- Flour: Flour is another essential that most recipes require. Occasional treats, like macarons, will require specialized flours. Make sure you know what your recipe calls for before you start baking.
- Sugars: Brown, granulated, and powdered sugars should always be on hand throughout the entire holiday season. Brown sugar and granulated sugars are used in most recipes. Powdered sugar is a core ingredient for homemade frosting.
- Cocoa Powder: Cocoa powder is an absolute must have, especially because chocolate and peppermint is such a sought after holiday duo.
- Baking Soda and Powder: Don’t lebt your baked goods fall flat. These leavening agents are essential to keeping your goodies fluffy and delicious.
- Extracts: Vanilla extract is also called for in most recipes. However, because holiday recipes are more specialized, it’s always a good idea to also keep almond and peppermint extracts readily available.
- Molasses: This thick, sticky syrup is what gives gingerbread it’s unique holiday flavor. If you plan on making gingerbread in any form—be it house, man or cookie—you will definitely need a jar or two of this in your pantry.
- Spices: Cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves and ginger will create a warm flavor in all of your goodies to help combat the cold chill of winter.
- Food Dye: The holiday season is full of joy, light and color. That shouldn’t stop at your baked goods! Red and green are obvious essentials, but it’s also important to keep all colors on hand in the event of a cookie decorating emergency.
- Sprinkles: It’s easy to sprinkle extra holiday spirit onto any of your goodies with this fun, decorative topping.
- Peppermint: Peppermint is a tide and true seasonal flavor. Candy canes and peppermint candies will give your sweet treats a little extra crunch and elevate them to the next level of holiday deliciousness.