Recipe Exchange!

Two years ago, I hosted a recipe exchange that was a HUGE success.  Honestly, I still cook some of the recipes I got at that exchange.  It’s so fun because not only do you get fantastic recipes, you know whether or not you like them!

Anyway, this year’s theme was breakfast.  Who doesn’t LOVE breakfast food, right?  Some people make a fancy breakfast for Thanksgiving or Christmas morning, so I always try to have the recipe exchange the weekend before Thanksgiving.  Even though I love our annual Cookie Swap, this is super fun too, because a meal comes out of what everyone brings.

OK, so here’s how it works:

  1. Send the invitation several weeks before the event.  I feel like parties that people have to plan ahead for (decide what to make, make it, etc.) requires more notice.
  2. Ask guests to email their recipe ahead of time.
  3. Guests arrive with their prepared dish.
  4. Everyone samples EVERY dish.
  5. People vote on their favorite.

Winner gets a prize!

Look at all this awesome food.! I loved how, just by default, people brought a major variety.

Since it was breakfast-theme, I had Bloody Mary’s available.. Obviously…


The bread in the foreground was the 2nd place winner and a HUGE hit!  It’s Ms. Claus’ Christmas Bread..  I’ll add the recipe below.

I have a small space, but it totally worked.  I recently bought a drop-leaf table off Craig’s List and I am so glad I did.  Here it is with the leaves up, but it becomes very small when the leaves are down for a great space-saver.

Finally, I love sending guests come with little party favors, and making these was super simple and inexpensive!  I got those 99 cent mugs from IKEA, washed them and used DecoArt Glass Paint Marker, Black and DecoArt Glass Paint Marker, Orange to draw the snowman faces… Then you let it air dry for at least four hours and bake it in a non-preheated oven to set it.  Directions are on the markers.  I’ve done the Pinterest-favorite “Sharpie Mugs” before, but, unfortunately the Sharpie eventually washes off.  This supposedly is more permanent.  Anyway, after the mugs were done, I added IKEA dish cloths (75 cents each) and two little tea bags from Trader Joe’s.  Each little favor cost less than $2.50 and were a huge hit.

And I leave you with the first and second place winners of the recipe contest.  Yum yum


French Toast- Winner!

Submitted by: Christie Fleming

1 (1 pound) loaf French bread, cut diagonally in 1 inch slices

8 eggs

2 cups milk

1 1/2 cups half-and-half cream

2 teaspoons vanilla extract

1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon

3/4 cup butter

1 1/3 cups brown sugar

3 tablespoons light corn syrup

Add all ingredients to list


  1. Butter a 9×13 inch baking dish. Arrange the slices of bread in the bottom. In a large bowl, beat together eggs, milk, cream, vanilla and cinnamon. Pour over bread slices, cover, and refrigerate overnight.
  2. The next morning, preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). In a small saucepan, combine butter, brown sugar and corn syrup; heat until bubbling. Pour over bread and egg mixture.
  3. Bake in preheated oven, uncovered, for 40 minutes.


Mrs. Claus’s Cinnamon Bread- 2nd Place!

Submitted by: Demi Kinney

1 page of yellow/white box cake mix

1 8-oz sour cream

1 package of vanilla instant pudding

1/2 cup of vegetable oil

4 eggs

dash of vanilla

cinnamon sugar

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Beat ingredients together in a mixer for 8 minutes.  Grease loaf pan.  Pour mixture into pan and cost the top with cinnamon sugar.  Bake for 1 hour.

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