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Simply Nutritious, Quick and Delicious

Jenna Smith, Extension Educator brings you helpful tips to make meals easy, healthy and tasty!
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Mailing Food Gifts

We're just 2 ½ weeks away until Christmas! Some of you may be scurrying to the store to pick out the perfect Christmas present for your friends or family, while others may have no clue as what to even buy! You may want to consider giving food as a gift. Check out From My Kitchen to Yours: Healthy Holiday Gifts for food gift ideas that are not only healthy and easy to prepare but also easy on the budget!

If you have loved ones that live out of town you can still mail them a food gift. But don't wait too long if you're shipping overseas; the U.S Postal Service reports that December 17th is the last day to mail gifts to the military for Christmas arrival and December 20th is the last day for most international shipping. For restrictions and shipping instructions go to the Postal Services website:

Consider the following if you are planning to mail food items:

  • It's best to ship foods that won't spoil. Cheesecake and similar perishable foods require refrigeration so it's safest to send non-perishable foods.
  • If mailing cookies, choose a firm chewy-type of cookie to avoid crumbling, place them back-to-back and wrap together with plastic wrap.
  • Bar cookies are usually good choices to send, as the quality tends to hold during shipping. Avoid using cream cheese filling though, for safe food handling.
  • Fudge, brownies, pound cake or the "infamous" fruitcake usually ship well.
  • Pack foods together in a smaller box or tin, and then place the container in a shipping box. Use packing materials between the food box and the shipping box to help cushion the food.

Oatmeal Raisin Cookies (Printable PDF)

1¼ cups rolled oats

¾ cup all-purpose flour

½ teaspoon cinnamon

½ teaspoon ginger

¼ teaspoon salt (optional)

½ teaspoon baking powder

½ cup reduced-fat margarine

1/3 cup brown sugar, packed

½ cup granular sucralose (Splenda)

1 egg

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1/3 cup dark or golden raisins

Cooking spray

  1. Preheat oven to 350°F.
  2. Stir together oats, flour, cinnamon, ginger, salt and baking powder.
  3. In another bowl, cream the margarine, brown sugar and Splenda with electric mixer. Beat in egg and vanilla.
  4. Stir in dry ingredients, then raisins.
  5. Drop by heaping teaspoonful onto baking sheets sprayed with cooking spray.
  6. Bake 8-10 minutes. Cool on wire rack.

Yield: 2 ½ dozen cookies

Nutritional analysis per cookie: 55 Calories, 2 g total fat, 7 mg cholesterol, 50 mg sodium, 8 g carbohydrate, 1 g dietary fiber, 1 g protein

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