Winter Birthday Food

peppermint marshmallow straws edit

I am a dork when it comes to… well, most things… but especially planning theme parties.  When I decided on a Winter/Snowman theme for my son’s party, I started scouring the web for meal ideas.  There were more than enough dessert ideas, but not a lot in the way of actual dinner food.

winter party menu

I wanted the meal to be easy to prepare but still carry out the Winter theme, so I created a “Build Your Own Snowman” meal.  I took the easy way out and bought frozen meatballs and mashed potatoes from Gordon Food Service.  I was shocked at how good the potatoes were!  The small ears of corn were the frozen, steam-in-the-bag kind and the carrots were the pre-washed, bagged baby carrots.  Modern conveniences are great.

drink station edit

I set up an easy beverage bar with 2-liters of pop decorated in dollar store Christmas socks.  I heated up a pot of hot water in the coffee maker so that guests could stir up a cup of hot chocolate, with caramel flavor and whipped cream if they liked! 
I made some marshmallow straws by stabbing Dollar Tree hard plastic straws into large marshmallows and dipping them in Wilton candy melts and crushed candy canes.  They were very tasty, but kind of messy since the marshmallows kept trying to float to the top of the cups!

table edit

Each bowl of food got a cute sign made from dollar store cards and gift tags.  For more on the table decorations, you can read my Winter Party Decorations post.

christmas crack with pretzels edit

I made my notorious Christmas crack for the party, but substituted crushed pretzels for the club crackers.  So.  Good.
cookies edit
I totally Sandra Dee’d the cookies for the party.  Both types of cookies were made from Pillsbury refrigerated cookie dough, Peppermint Sugar and Gingerbread.  
I dipped the peppermint cookies in Wilton candy melts and crushed candy canes.  I cut the gingerbread cookies out using cutters from DT and then used red and white striped Wilton frosting in a tube to decorate them.

signage edit

My family has a thing about Little Debbie’s Christmas Tree Cakes… in that we LOVE them!  Two of my cousins and I have a standing contest that whoever is the first to find them in the grocery store, and sends a photo message to the other two, wins.  My cousin Mollie ALWAYS finds them first.  I think she found them in October this year!

ice cream cake edit

My husband’s family has a tradition of buying ice cream cakes for birthdays, so I tried my hand at making one for the party.  Now I know why they cost so much to buy at the store.  They are messy and time-consuming!
I used this DQ knock-off recipe using peppermint and chocolate ice cream. It tasted fantastic, but I won’t be rushing to make another one soon.  Oh, and since I can’t get through a birthday party without a cake frosting incident, the first layer of whipped cream frosting was so wonky I had to re-cover the whole thing in spray whipped cream.  It ended up looking kind of ruffled and pretty, but again… messy.

martha stewart treat boxes edit

A few weeks back, I found a box on my doorstep from the good folks at Martha Stewart Crafts.  Martha must have been reading my mind because in with the other fun goodies were these red and white, snowflake-themed treat boxes.  The package included 6 matchbox-style boxes, snowflake tissue paper, ribbon, and tag stickers.  All in impeccable Martha quality, of course.

treat boxes edit

The boxes were the perfect favor to send home with guests (and to get rid of some of the mountain of sugar treats we had leftover!).

To learn more about the party decor, read my Winter Party Decorations post!

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Thanks,  Jessica Hill
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