Flimsy paper plates can spell disaster for your Christmas cookie deliveries—but not if you know how to turn them into these clever cookie baskets!
One of my favorite holiday traditions is the annual unofficial cookie exchange that takes place in my neighborhood and among the members of my church. I love seeing (and tasting) all the different types of cookies that come my way, from traditional recipes that have been in someone’s family for generations, to examples of the very latest baking trends!
But on the other hand, one of my least favorite things about the holiday season is when I make a big batch cookies (whether it’s my mom’s famous sour cream cookies or my son Kell’s favorite melt-in-your-mouth gluten free peanut butter cookies) to take to the neighbors, but they don’t even survive the journey across the street! To spend all day in the kitchen baking, only to have my culinary masterpieces marred by flimsy paper plates and uncooperative cling wrap? It’s enough to earn a hearty “bah, humbug!”
A Better Way To Package Cookies
But luckily for me, the solution to my cookie catastrophes fell right into my lap a few years ago! My friend Autumn (who happens to be the creative mastermind behind the blog It’s Always Autumn) showed me a simple and utterly brilliant method for packaging cookies that keeps them safe and intact during delivery.
Her technique transforms a simple paper plate into a cookie basket, which is not only cute, but functional too! You only need a cheap paper plate and a few basic office supplies to make one, and your neighbors will surely be wowed by your cookie offering—before they’ve even taken a bite! 😉
How To Make A Paper Plate Cookie Basket
Step 1 – Fold Parallel Lines
The first thing you’ll do is fold the left and right edges of the paper plate toward the center, forming two parallel lines. There should be around 3” of space between the folded lines.
These lines will form the “long sides” of the rectangular base of the finished cookie basket.
Step 2 – Cut And Fold Again
Next, grab a pair of scissors. With the plate laid flat, make a cut along both ends of each folded line to a point just beyond the flared edge of the plate. (These cuts should be about 1-2” long depending on the size of the plate.)
Imagine that the ends of these parallel cuts are two points on a straight line that runs across the plate, and runs perpendicular to the lines you folded in the previous step. Fold the plate long these two “imaginary” lines to form the “short sides” of the rectangular base.
Step 3 – Tape The Edges
Time for construction! With the plate lying flat, position one of the short sides of the rectangular base towards you. Fold the section between the two cuts so that it stands up, and repeat with the section on the opposite edge of the plate.
Once the short sides are standing up, you can fold up the long sides too. Wrap the pointy edges of the long sides around the short sides to form your cookie basket, and secure the ends with one or two pieces of scotch tape.
Note: I suggest starting with a “test basket,” so you can fold and re-fold it a few times to achieve the right basket size for your cookies!
Step 4 – Line, Fill, And Deliver!
Line the inside of your cookie basket with a piece of parchment paper or wax paper. (Not only does it look nice, but it also keeps crumbs contained and prevents oil spots from ruining the look of your packaged cookies!)
Finally, pack your lined paper plate basket with cookies, either in one long row or in two shorter rows arranged side by side.
Tie a length of festive ribbon around the basket to spruce it up a little if you want, and your cookies will be ready for a safe and sound delivery to their destination! 🙂
What’s your favorite way to gift holiday cookies?