The classic cookie swap 101
Here is an overview of your "classic" cookie swap! The key to success here is to make sure your guests bring a wide variety of cookies to sample and swap.
- Select your attendees (no more than 10 to keep things manageable and ensure the cookies are eaten while fresh).
- Send out invitations (here, email or Evite can be best so you can easily coordinate the other swap details).
- Ask each confirmed guest to make around 2 dozen of their cookie type (one to sample at the party, one to take home).
- Keep a running list of attendee names and the kind of cookies they are bringing so you ensure you have a good selection of cookies to swap.
- Plan out your display table—each cookie type should have its own dedicated space and a placard where the guest can write the name and description (if anyone who is attending has a food allergy, you may want to ask guests to bring their recipes for reference).
- Plan out your "take home" strategy—here, you will want to provide guests with a way to transport their dozen "swapped" cookies and any extras home again. Ziploc bags, markers and carry bags are always useful.
- Plan out your beverages. Clearly, there is no need to prepare any snacks! But your guests will likely enjoy a cup of hot coffee, tea, or cocoa—and water helps clear the palate. Have drinks, cups, drink condiments and napkins handy.
- If you want to do any contests ("guess this cookie's secret ingredient!" is always a favorite!) have small ribbons or prizes for the winners.
4 Other fun cookie swap party ideas
Here are a few other fun ideas for cookie swap parties!
1. Cookie recipe swap
If you and your circle love finding and trying new recipes, you can swap cookie recipes as well. Here, you want to bring at least a dozen cookies (made from the recipe to be swapped) but bring enough copies of the recipe for every guest.
2. Cookie coupon swap
Similar to the cookie recipe swap, chances are you regularly see cookie coupons offering fabulous savings, but for whatever reason you don't use them. You could organize a cookie coupon swap (or expand it to holiday baking coupons) and have everyone swap and trade coupons to save on holiday baking plans.
3. Cookie stockpile swap
If baking isn't your thing, why not host a store bought cookie swap with fellow savvy savers? Everyone can shop from their own stockpiles and bring extra cookies they scored at a discount. You can swap cookies-for-cookies until everyone has something different than what they came with.
4. Cookie swap fundraiser
- Set a date and time for the cookie swap fundraiser.
- Recruit volunteers to bring around 2 dozen cookies from their favorite recipe.
- Design flyers and postcards describing the cause and how to participate.
- For fundraising, you can ask for a free-will offering or a per-bag donation ($2, $5, $10 – whatever makes sense).
- Prepare as you would for a traditional cookie swap (minus the drinks—unless you want to sell drinks as part of the fundraiser). Have a cookie swap table, take-home bags, placards with cookie names and descriptions, recipes on hand for those with food allergies, and name tags for volunteers).
- Have attendees pay upon entry, take a bag, and fill it with cookies of their choice.
- When the event ends, donate the funds raised to a good cause!