Holiday Baking on a Student Budget

Posted by Lauren Dick on December 4, 2018

A YU Perspective | Get In The Know | York Community

The holiday season is a great time to get together with family and friends. Baking is a fantastic way to pass the time, and the #YUBlog is here with its tried-and-true holiday baking recipes to help you take a rest from the hustle and bustle of student life.

All of the recipes below have ingredients that you can find on campus at Shoppers Drug Mart or the Grocery Checkout, or you can venture off campus on the Real Canadian Superstore Grocery Shuttle Bus! If you want to know where else you can find the ingredients, or you’re curious about the shopping options in and around York University, check out the #YUBlog’s “On-Campus Shopping Options” and “Off-Campus Shopping Options.”

Chocolate Mug Cake

If you’re looking for an ooey-gooey chocolate delight, look no further than this decadent mug cake recipe!

Ingredients

1/4 cup all-purpose flour

2 tablespoon unsweetened cocoa powder

1/4 teaspoon baking powder

2 tablespoon granulated sugar (you can add 1 tbsp. more if you like it a bit sweeter)

1/8 teaspoon salt

1/4 cup + 1 tbsp. milk

2 tablespoon vegetable oil

1 tablespoon hazelnut chocolate spread or mini chocolate chips

*Recipe and instructions from Julie Wampler’s “The Moistest Chocolate Mug Cake.”

Instructions

  1. In a medium bowl, whisk together dry ingredients.
  2. Whisk in the milk and vegetable oil until all ingredients are combined and batter has no clumps.
  3. Pour batter into a microwave-safe mug. You want enough head space for the cake to rise without pouring over.
  4. Add hazelnut chocolate spread in the middle of the batter or mini chocolate chips. Just drop it in the middle, no need to push it down and sink it in the batter. It does that on its own when it cooks!
  5. Microwave mug cake for 60 seconds on high
  1. Carefully remove from microwave and enjoy!

Serving: 1-2 people

*Recipe and instructions from Julie Wampler’s “The Moistest Chocolate Mug Cake.”

 

Vanilla Mug Cake

This mouth-watering vanilla mug cake is the perfect way to wind down during the holiday season—enjoy it with some friends (or in a party of one) today!

Ingredients

1/4 cup + 2 tablespoon all-purpose flour

2 tablespoons granulated sugar

1/4 tsp baking powder

1/8 teaspoon salt

1/4 cup + 2 tbsp milk

1/2 tablespoon vanilla extract

2 tablespoons butter, melted

*Recipe and instructions from Julie Wampler’s “The Moistest Very Vanilla Mug Cake.”

Instructions

  1. In a medium bowl, whisk together dry ingredients.
  2. Add the milk, vanilla extract and melted butter.
  3. Whisk until no lumps remain and batter is smooth and well combined.
  4. Pour into a microwave-safe mug.
  5. Microwave on high for 60 seconds.
  6. Carefully remove and enjoy

Serving: 1-2 people

*Recipe and instructions from Julie Wampler’s “The Moistest Very Vanilla Mug Cake.”

 

Stovetop Hot Chocolate

This is not your run-of-the-mill, powder hot chocolate mix! Treat yourself with a nice warm cup of hot cocoa during the warm cozy winter months with this stovetop hot chocolate recipe!

Ingredients

2 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder

2 tablespoons sugar

Pinch of granulated salt

2 cups milk or any combination of milk, half-and-half, or cream

1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract

*Recipe and instructions modified from Epicurious’ “Simple Hot Cocoa for One.”

Instructions

  1. Whisk together the cocoa, sugar, salt, and about 1/2 cup of milk in a small saucepan over medium-low heat until cocoa and sugar are dissolved and no clumps are left.
  2. Whisk in the rest of the milk and heat it over medium heat, whisking occasionally, until it is hot.
  3. Stir in the vanilla.
  4. Pour the hot chocolate into the mug.

Serving: 2-3 glasses of hot chocolate

*Recipe and instructions modified from Epicurious’ “Simple Hot Cocoa for One.”

Caramel Hot Chocolate

Why not take your hot chocolate to the next level by adding a dash of caramel with this caramel hot chocolate recipe?

Ingredients

2 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder

2 tablespoons granulated sugar

Pinch of salt

2 cups milk or any combination of milk, half-and-half, or cream

1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract

Caramel sauce

*Recipe and instructions modified from Epicurious’ “Simple Hot Cocoa for One.”

Instructions

  1. Whisk together the cocoa, sugar, salt, and about 1/2 cup of milk in a small saucepan over medium-low heat until cocoa and sugar are dissolved and no clumps are left.
  2. Whisk in the rest of the milk and heat it over medium heat, whisking occasionally, until it is hot.
  3. Stir in the vanilla.
  4. Pour caramel sauce to cover the bottom of the mug.
  5. Pour the hot chocolate into the mug.
  6. Add a pinch of salt for a salted-caramel flavour.

Serving: 2-3 glasses of hot chocolate

*Recipe and instructions modified from Epicurious’ “Simple Hot Cocoa for One.”

 

Peppermint Bark

Is your holiday not complete without your customary peppermint bark? Why go to the store and buy some their peppermint bark when you can make your own with this delicious and easy-to-make recipe?

Ingredients

One packet of semi-sweet chocolate (approximately 2 cups)

One packet of white chocolate (approximately 2 cups)

1/2 tsp of peppermint extract (to taste)

One large candy cane

Any extra sprinkles or additions you want

*Recipe and instructions modified from Tidy Mom’s “Peppermint Bark” recipe.

Instructions

  1. Add 2 cups of water to pot and bring it to a simmer (check periodically to see if you need a refill)
  2. Place one packet of semi-sweet chocolate chips in a glass bowl and place them over the pot
  3. Let the chocolate chips melt for approximately 5-7 minutes (if still not melted, check on them again every minute)
  4. Stir the melted chocolate chips until they are a smooth consistency
  5. Spread an opaque but thin layer of the semi-sweet chocolate and freeze for 10 minutes
  6. Repeat steps 1 through 4 with white chocolate chips
  7. While the white chocolate is melting, crush the candy cane
  8. Once the white chocolate chips are stirred, add the peppermint extract.
  9. Spread an opaque but thin layer of the peppermint white chocolate on top of the hardened semi-sweet chocolate layer
  10. Decorate with crushed candy cane and any extra toppings you enjoy
  11. Freeze for 10 minutes
  12. Break apart and enjoy!

Serving: 2-3 people

*Recipe and instructions modified from Tidy Mom’s “Peppermint Bark” recipe.

 

Holiday Bark

Join the festivities and make your very own holiday bark—feel free to use any colour combination you want with your favourite toppings!

Ingredients

One packet of white chocolate (approximately 2 cups)

Green food colouring

Toppings you enjoy (sprinkles, etc.)

Instructions

  1. Add 2 cups of water to pot and bring it to a simmer (check periodically to see if you need a refill)
  2. Place one packet of white chocolate chips in a glass bowl and place them over the pot
  3. Let the chocolate chips melt for approximately 5-7 minutes (if still not melted, check on them again every minute)
  4. Stir the melted chocolate chips until they are a smooth consistency
  5. Spread an opaque but thin layer of half of the white chocolate
  6. For the other half of the melted white chocolate, add 3 drops of green food colouring and stir well
  7. Spread an opaque but thin layer of the remaining half of the green white chocolate
  8. Decorate with any toppings you enjoy
  9. Freeze for 10 minutes
  10. Break apart and enjoy!

Serving: 2-3 people

*Recipe and instructions modified from Delish’s “Unicorn Bark” recipe.

 

White Chocolate Cranberry Bark

White chocolate and dried cranberries? Say no more! This simple yet delightful recipe will help you satisfy your cranberry cravings in no time!

Ingredients

One packet of white chocolate (approximately 2 cups)

Dried cranberries

Toppings you enjoy (sprinkles, etc.)

*Recipe and instructions modified from Cupcake & Kale Chip’s “Cranberry Bliss White Chocolate Bark” recipe.

Instructions

  1. Add 2 cups of water to pot and bring it to a simmer (check periodically to see if you need a refill)
  2. Place one packet of white chocolate chips in a glass bowl and place them over the pot
  3. Let the chocolate chips melt for approximately 5-7 minutes (if still not melted, check on them again every minute)
  4. Stir the melted chocolate chips until they are a smooth consistency
  5. Spread an opaque but thin layer of the white chocolate on parchment paper
  6. Decorate with dried cranberries and any extra toppings you enjoy
  7. Freeze for 10 minutes
  8. Break apart and enjoy!

Serving: 2-3 people

*Recipe and instructions modified from Cupcake & Kale Chip’s “Cranberry Bliss White Chocolate Bark” recipe.

 

We hope that these recipes have inspired you to give your baking skills a go and make your holiday a little bit sweeter!

Leave a comment below or tweet us at @YorkUStudents with your favourite holiday baking recipe!

Lauren Dick
Lauren Dick

Lauren Dick is a fourth-year Professional Writing major who is also working towards a Professional Certificate in Marketing at York U. She loves to curl up with a good story and a warm cup of tea (only English Breakfast, mind you), and she hopes her blog posts encourage current and incoming students to learn more about York U and its community.

See other posts by Lauren Dick

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