DIY Gift Idea: Yummy Stuff in Trendy Glass Jars

Forgive me frugalistas, but I’ve only recently discovered the retro trend that I call YSIJ – Yummy Stuff in Jars. A friend of ours recently provided homemade passionfruit butter in classic Ball glass jar, which was awesome. Another friend gave us this cookie mix from Williams-Sonoma, which they sell for $19.95:

Upon closer inspection, it’s a Weck jar, which you can buy for under $4 at Crate and Barrel. Aren’t they sexy?

So for a nice DIY gift for well under $10, simply find/create/steal an awesome cookie or brownie recipe and leave out the butter and eggs. Layer the remaining dry ingredients all pretty-like in the jar, stick a nice rustic-looking label on it, add a bow from extra fabric, and you’re done. You don’t even need wrapping paper. Make them in bulk.

You could also bake something that keeps for a while and put it inside – candied nuts, toffee, trail mix, etc. Or cook something like grandma’s marinara sauce. Or actually preserve something, which I have never tried beyond some easy pickles. After they ingest your gift of love via food, they’re still left with a cool reusable jar.

p.s. These glass bottles with stoppers look like great gift ideas too, even better if you can add a homemade drink to put inside.

(End Martha Stewart Hipster mode.)


  1. This a great idea for most people, Jonathan. Unfortunately for me, I’m hopeless at making yummy stuff, which is why I outsource all of my yummy-stuff-making to other people. XD

  2. (End Martha Stewart Hipster mode.) LOL!

  3. I love the jar trend:). Another place that has great jars for good prices are IKEA, Marshall’s/Ross/TJ Maxx.

    Also, we clean out our salsa/spaghetti/other food jars and reuse them! My husband’s pickle jars have a cute little cartoon on the top of a girl–it really adds to the gift.

  4. @Andrew – It’s not as hard as you think, baking is more like chemistry than cooking πŸ™‚ Sugar, carbs, chocolate, how can it not be yummy?

    @Christine – πŸ™‚

    @Amanda – Good tips, I also like the extra-large Classico spaghetti sauce jars from the bulk pack at Costco. How do you do the custom jar lids?

  5. What, no finished product from the author showing just how easily this can be done?

  6. That is actually what i am doing for christmas gifts for the office this year.
    I am not doing the layers since I can never get it to look great.

    I’m not sure if people actually use it since i saw the same jar i gave to a co-worker still sitting at her desk a year later!

  7. Nope, but here’s enough pictures and ideas to last a loooong time:

  8. My wife is doing all of our holiday gift giving from Pinterest, partially because it’s less expensive to hand craft and also because it’s cuter. I have no hand in this but it looks like I spent a lot of time making gifts. Works out well for both of us!

  9. This is a great idea! I will be doing it next year. Last year my girlfriend and I did Limoncello at home; it took over 60 days to make but it was well worth it!

    P.S. I sent you an email through your site and never heard back. Did you get it?

  10. One very similar idea that I’m doing this year – buying some smaller glass jars, some vodka and vanilla beans to make liquid vanilla as a gift.

    It’s even easier – no baking required!

  11. Mmm… limoncello and vanilla vodka. Makes me want to make adult eggnog.

    @Andres – No, I don’t think I got your e-mail.

  12. I did something like this for our holiday party this year. As parting gifts, we layered hot chocolate under marshmallows and put it in a Ball 12-oz jar. We then used ribbon I had around the house to tie on a mini bottle of Irish creme liquor and now you have a fun and easy parting gift! Walmart sold the Ball jars (not as cute as you could find elsewhere, but cheap) for $1.35 each. The cost came to be around $3.25 per jar. It was great! (totally took this idea from Pinterest!)

Speak Your Mind