Desserts/Treats | The Grocery Game | Ultimate Grocery Shopping Guide

Top 5 Christmas Cookies For The Budget Baker

Budget Christmas Cookies

Christmas Cookies Without The High Costs Are Baked At Home

This time of year budget bakers are on the hunt for Christmas baking ideas that won’t cost them a fortune.

Just because you have a tight budget doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy home-baked Christmas cookies.

You don’t need to be a baker to make simple Christmas cookies that you can bring to a holiday cookie exchange or wrap up as gifts for friends and family.

I’m betting if we did a count of hands here that most of us would love to receive homemade Christmas cookies over a boring gift that doesn’t suit them.

Everyone loves Christmas cookies!

Related: Holiday Baking On A Budget

Some of the best Christmas cookies that I’ve ever had before came from our family kitchen and those of our relatives.

I must admit my wife’s family is quite amazing when it comes to baking and the holidays.

There is never a holiday that we don’t show up at the in-law’s house without our Christmas cookies.

My mother-in-law has a huge spread on the dining room table and her side table full of Christmas cookies, Christmas cakes, Panetone, Chocolates of all descriptions.

Turtles come to mind.

There are also plates of mixed nuts, raisins and other goodies that we all snack on for about a week.

Yes, we gain the Holiday pounds but it’s worth it. We just work it off later.

Holiday Baking And Planning

Each year we make a batch of the following budget baking Christmas cookies.

Some of the most expensive ingredients when it comes to baking include nuts, butter, chocolate, and cherries.

The key to keeping costs low when you are baking Christmas cookies is to budget for them in advance.

Related: Top 5 Christmas Baking Ingredients To Stock Up On Now

When you plan your Christmas cookies ahead of time you can stock up on ingredients when the prices are discounted.

A pound of butter at Food Basics is $2.88 and nuts and cherries you can get at the Bulk Barn using their $3 off coupon.

Peanut butter goes on sale throughout the year as does coconut so stock up your baking pantry!

There are many other recipes for Christmas cookies on my blog some of which were created by Nicola our CBB in-house mum baker.

Today, I don’t want to talk about our Christmas cookies though.

I wanted to ask the fans what they thought were some of the best Christmas cookies to make that were budget-friendly and so I went on the hunt.

There were 4 things I was looking for in each recipe for Christmas cookies:

  • Baking Tools
  • Ease of recipe
  • Costs
  • Presentation

Obviously what I could not do is taste these recipes however some of my fans have and have given them the thumbs up.

Once you have a few recipes for Christmas cookies under your baking belt you can use them every year or try to find new Christmas cookies to add to the line-up.

Top 5 Budget Christmas Cookies


Raspberry Almond Shortbread Cookies from Dear Crissy


White Chocolate Dipped Peppermint Sugar Cookies from Cooking Classy


Italian Biscotti Dipping Cookies from The Merchant Baker

These are our version of the Italian Anginetti Cookie

anginetti italian lemon cookies Pinterest



Chocolate Peppermint Biscotti from Back for Seconds


Ritz Cracker with Chocolate and Peanut Butter from Meg is Well

Bake with Love

Don’t let the costs of baking hold you back from creating Christmas cookies in your kitchen.

No matter what your budget is there are always ways to find cheap ingredients if you keep an eye out throughout the year.

Discussion Question:

What are some of your budget-friendly Christmas Cookies to bake?

November Grocery Game Challenge

Join in the 2016 Grocery Game Challenge (GGC) fun and post your grocery shop in the comment section of each GGC blog post.

Here are the rules to get you started and where you’ll also find a link for the updated 2016 GGC schedule.

Please feel free to download, save and even print the schedule so it’s handy.

New monthly prize: $10 President’s Choice Gift Card for Canadian residents only BUT If you want to play from outside of Canada and have PayPal and you win I will pay you $10 Canadian.

I use a random online generator to pick the winning ballot every month.

If you missed any grocery game posts for the month I will post the line-up each week below for you so you don’t have to go looking for past GGC posts for the month.

Alternatively, just click on the “Grocery Game Challenge” tab on the blog side-bar to see past posts.

November Grocery Game Posts

Free Money Saving Tools 2016

You WILL want to check this out!

I know I blast you every which way I can on this blog about my free money-saving tools and that’s because I want you to take advantage of them is FREE.

So many people pay for budgets and tools on the internet to help them save money and honestly, you don’t need to.

Even a paper and pen will do the trick.

Click, Save and Print. It’s that easy!

This is the budget that brought us to debt freedom back in 2013 and now I’m offering to all of you for FREE.

We still use this budget every month as it helps us to see our overall financial picture.

Don’t pay someone for these services, I’ve done the work for you along with some help from other amazing bloggers.

You can download the FREE Canadian Budget Binder Budget Spreadsheet in Excel…Grab it while you can.

It’s FREE!

We use it to budget and in large part a reason we could pay our mortgage off in 5 years, check it out!

Free Money Saving Downloads are awesome lists that were created to get us on track to work towards reaching our budgeting goals and now we are sharing them with you.

Get organized with a FREE freezer inventory, meal plan, shopping list, price comparison list and much more all for FREE.

CLICK HERE to download all the free lists and even our family budget spreadsheet. So many free resources at your fingertips.

Ultimate Grocery Shopping Guide 2016

Everything you want to know about grocery shopping in Canada is packed into this amazing FREE grocery shopping guide that has taken over 4 years to create.

The Ultimate Grocery Shopping guide is ongoing with new informative money-saving posts added every month.

Even if you don’t live in Canada some amazing budget-saving tips will help put you on the path to more savings at the supermarket.

Share this guide with your friends and tell them about Canadian Budget Binder especially if they are struggling with their grocery budget.

The time is NOW to get started saving money on groceries so please enjoy the many money-saving posts in The Ultimate Grocery Shopping Guide.

2016 Grocery Shop Results

Yearly grocery budget for two + 1 Toddler 2016: $2820

(The above total does not include the stockpile budget of $300/year or $25/month.

Points Overview (add any other sections you need to show us your savings)

  • Total Grocery Budget for this Month: $226.62
  • Total Grocery Budget with any carry-overs $194.07
  • Total Gift Cards used to date: $65
  • Total Rewards Points redeemed this week: $0
  • Total Rewards Points used to date: $0
  • PC Points Plus Earned to date: 365,000
  • Scanning Code of Practice (SCOP) to date $3.00
  • Shoppers Optimum: Just under 850,000 Optimum points  (I will update this twice a year)

Coupon Apps (add any other apps you use to save money)

  • Zweet to cash out : $18.25
  • Checkout51 to cash out : $22.00

Our Grocery Shop This Week


  • Large container Black Peppercorns $4.99
  • 2 x 2% Sealtest Milk $4.27
  • Small Ham $6.99
  • Bananas $1.85
  • 2 x Country Harvest Bread $2.99-50% each

Total Out-Of-Pocket $25.37

Food Basics

  • 1 x Black Diamond Cheese Bars $3.97
  • 1 x Astro Yogurt Coconut $2.99

Total Out-Of-Pocket $6.98

  • Total to spend this month : $235.00-$10.15 overage from October= $224.85
  • Stockpile budget 2016 : $25.00
  • Stockpile budget used this month: $24.03
  • Total coupons used this week: $0
  • Total coupons used to date: $15.36
  • Total in-store discounts this week:$0
  • Total in-store discounts to date: $507.24
  • Total spent this week: $32.35
  • Total spent so far this month: $227.30
  • Total over/Under spend this shop:
  • Total over/Under spend for the month: over
  • Total left to spend for the month: -$1.75
  • Total Spent To Date 2016: (does not include stockpile budget) Jan $252.95 + Feb $249.46 + March $211.11 + April $248.11 + May $279.07 + June $231.96 + July $244.40 + Aug $201.30+ Sept $238.12+ October $236.77+ November $227.30

Weekly Overview (your final thoughts)

In my mind, I was thinking this was a 5 week month but that was last month for us. I thought I messed up the GGC schedule again but thankfully I did not.

We’re over by a bit this month which we will make up next month as we go to our relatives for the last two weeks and eat their food, lol.

Thanks again to Mary C. for putting our yearly schedule together.

I always appreciate the support. 🙂 Our shop this week is small because I have Chinese food to eat and the wife has enough food for herself.

As for baking, we are hoping to find a sale on peanut butter soon.

We didn’t think our son would fancy it as much as he does so he’s eating through our stockpile.

One more month to go to GGC players! Soon, another year will be under our belts- or should I say Budgets!


Coupons and Coupon Apps 2016

Here are some great places you can find Canadian Coupons!

What are your thoughts? Are coupon apps taking over the paper coupons?

If you notice I’m missing a valuable link please message me and I’ll get it added to the savings list below.

Sign up for the Nielsen Canada Home Scan Program and you can earn rewards points fast to redeem for awesome products or gift cards.

I did this in the UK and loved it!!

Where can I find Canadian Coupons 2016?

Plus check out these other hidden areas online to get more coupons!!

Grocery Game Challenge 2016 FAQ’s

  • Grocery Game Challenge RULES: Read the rules first and if you have any questions email me or comment on this post with your question and someone will answer you as soon as possible.
  • The rules have been updated for the 2016 challenge year.
  • Do I have to be Canadian to post my Grocery Shop?: No, you don’t have to be Canadian to post your shops. We have fans who post their grocery shop who live all over the world.
  • What is the monthly prize and who can claim it?- The monthly prize is a $10 PC Loblaws Gift Card and for our out of country friends, it’s $10 CDN via Paypal if they win. As more people join I will add more money to the gift card or I will split it up and offer 2 prizes every month.
  • When does the Grocery Game close each month?: The Grocery Game Challenge closes at midnight of the last Sunday of the last post for the month but you will still get a ballot when you post your shops even if they are late but I encourage you to stay on schedule. If you choose to post monthly or bi-weekly you will only get 1 ballot for that shop. It’s a proven fact the minute we stop doing something that is scheduled that we end up forgetting to do it altogether. Don’t let that be you! You can post your shops all month-long.
  • Does your Grocery Budget include health and beauty and laundry products?: No, our Grocery Budget includes such items as shampoo, conditioner, laundry soap, fabric softener, dish soap, etc. As of 2014-2015 we no longer include such items in our grocery budget so we can see actual food numbers at the end of the year to plan accordingly our budget.
  • Do you stockpile food? We don’t mind stockpiling items that won’t be affected by expiry dates or have long expiry dates but not so much food any longer as we found we weren’t eating it fast enough. Stockpiling is still great and just one way to help cut your budget to save money if you do find items that you can buy in bulk at a sale price.
  • Canadian Coupons: Where can I find Canadian Coupons?: Here are your latest Checkout 51 offers that you can use to help you save money in the Grocery Game Challenge. There are many great Canadian Couponing websites online that share weekly coupon match-ups so you can plan your grocery list.
  • Best Coupon Apps: Coupons are slowly fading with mobile coupon apps being the big rave these days. Just recently the popular coupon site that mailed coupons to households has gotten involved with the addition of a new mobile app joining forces with the many other coupon apps available. If you find an app that I don’t talk about please let me know as they are always being added and I’d like to review them.
  • What is the Best Flyer App- We use Flipp on our Iphone so if you want to have all your flyers in one spot download Flipp from the Apple Store or get it on Google Play.
  • What is an FPC?: An FPC is a free product coupon which means you can get a free product as described on the coupon.
  • What is GGC?– The Grocery Game Challenge of course!
  • How Do I Know what stores accept coupons?:  If you are not sure it’s always best to call the store and ask.
  • How Do I Grocery Shop?: I can tell you about grocery shopping and what we do in terms of shopping to save money and how it works for us. There are no wrong or right answers, just smart choices.

Nobody is perfect, heck we struggle with this part of our budget as many people do.

This is why the grocery game challenge was created back in 2012 and is one of the most popular hangout spots for people who want to save money on groceries in Canada.

If you’ve just joined The Grocery Game Challenge 2016 get ready to look at your grocery budget by learning…

  • Where you are spending money?
  • How much money you are spending?
  • How much money you are saving every month?

If you want to learn everything I know about grocery shopping in Canada check out my Ultimate Grocery Shopping Guide! It’s FREE!

If you know a topic that should be discussed send me an email. If I use your topic I will put your name in a draw for a prize at the end of the year.

You’ve made a wise decision to take control of your grocery budget now show me your shops and let’s get saving!

Welcome to The Grocery Game Challenge 2016!

Please Note: Some of the links in the body of the blog post are affiliate links which means I may get paid if you buy something from Amazon.

The items I’ve chosen are the products we use at home or similar to.


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