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Frugal Food – Gingerbread Men

December 10, 2011

I guess this is a combo post, part Frugal Food and part Christmas Tradition #1. I’m surrounded by the chaos of half unpacked Christmas decorations, half finished Christmas cards, a pile of gifts that need to be wrapped and I’m procrastinating. I made the dough for our annual Gingerbread Men baking session about an hour ago and I should tackle the kitchen or any of these tasks with a looming deadline but I’d rather write a blog post.

Just like last year I spent a good hour searching on the internet and through my recipe clippings. Why didn’t I just post it in my blog after I found it last year? I don’t know but now the search for the recipe is part of the tradition so I’m not going to post it here. Call me crazy.  I will give myself a hint for next year (C.L.R.B.).

This year I want to look at the cost of these treats.  Having a family tradition is priceless. I look forward to the time spent with my sister, Sandra, and Ainslie, just like I looked forward to making Sugar cookies with Granny when she came and spent Christmas with us or helping mom when she would let us!  I treasure those memories and I hope one day Ainslie will look back with fondness on these days spent with the women in her life.

It sure feels like the cost of EVERYTHING went up this year so I was curious to see what our actual ingredient costs were. I didn’t shop at the bulk store or buy the cheapest ingredients, and I will only use unsalted butter in my baking, so I wasn’t making shortcuts to make these appear less expensive.

Here’s the breakdown for one batch of dough:

Butter              2.42

Brown Sugar   .53

Eggs                .47

Molasses          2.22

Flour                1.98

Total:               7.09

I had ginger, cinnamon, cloves, baking soda, and salt in the cupboard so I couldn’t weigh them to get the exact cost but I think it would be fair to add .50 cents for the combined costs.

We’ll use two batches tomorrow for a total of $15.18 and we’ll get about 150 gingerbread men. (I promise I’ll count so I can update the cost per cookie!)

A batch of royal icing will cost .74 cents and we should only need one.

I splurged on the candy to decorate – holiday M&M’s – couldn’t find the minis and didn’t have time to shop around – they were a whopping $4.49! Yikes!

So for about $20 dollars we’ll make our gingerbread men as gifts for our family and friends.  The only direct comparison I can make is the bakery counter gingerbread men (not the factory produced ones) and they are about a dollar each. Or you could buy Walker’s shortbread starting at $3.99 a box but I’d like to think my friends and family would rather have home-made baking than store bought.  Wouldn’t you?

You can’t put a price on love but a home made gingerbread man will cost you about fourteen cents!

Happy Holidays!

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4 Comments leave one →
  1. Bill permalink
    December 10, 2011 11:13 pm

    Oh, I miss you. I love your voice. who you are, what you say and how you say it.

    i am having so much fun here but i can’t wait for my gingerbread man.

    xo

    • December 10, 2011 11:24 pm

      you are…getting gingerbread men! I’ll put some in the freezer for you. See you soon Bill! xo

  2. December 16, 2011 9:38 pm

    Just a quick update – we only managed to get 122 cookies this year so to be fair the actual cost per cookie was sixteen cents but still you can’t beat that with store bought!

  3. December 9, 2012 9:24 am

    It’s the morning of Dec 9th, 2012 and Gingerbread 2012 starts in 3 hours. We have two new team mates this year and matching t-shirts – wish us luck!

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