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~Submitted by Amy Beilman

Are you looking for ideas for your next holiday or get-together? The Front Desk staff here at Woodloch recently held a “cookie swap” for the first time, and we can’t wait to do it again! There are lots of variations on how to hold a cookie swap, but here’s how we did it:

We had 14 people sign up and decided that we would make a half dozen for each person. Each baker had to pre-package their cookies into half dozen servings. Some people used Ziploc baggies and others used inexpensive festive cookie bags that could be found at Wal-Mart or the dollar store. The day of the swap, we lined all the cookies up and “shopped” our way through, taking one baggie from each person. I have to say that I loved this idea; who wouldn’t?

Yes, it definitely requires time to bake the seven dozen cookies, but afterwards I went home with over 14 different varieties (six of each)!  It was awesome!  If I had tried to make 14 different types of cookies it would have taken days!  And let’s be honest, it probably wouldn’t have happened. Who has time to make 14 different types of cookies?!

I highly recommend giving this a try for your next family gathering or reunion.  During the holidays, it is a great alternative to a stressful (and expensive) gift exchange. It can be hard to think of cookie swap ideas so I’ll help you out, and give you a recipe that will make you the most popular baker at the swap!  Here’s the recipe for Heath Bar Cookies direct from the Woodloch Bakery:

Woodloch Bakery’s Heath Bar Cookies

¾ C packed brown sugar

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¾ C sugar

2 ¼ C cake Flour

½ C Crisco butter flavored shortening

2 Eggs

½ tsp Salt

1 tsp baking soda

2 tsp vanilla extract

1 C Heath bits crushed

3 tsp water


Preheat oven to 350. Lightly grease cookies sheet or use parchment paper. Sift together flour, baking soda, and salt in large bowl. Cream together shortening, sugar, brown sugar and vanilla. Add eggs and mix well. Gradually add flour mixture until well blended. In a Ziploc bag, crush Heath bits and add to mixture slowly. Scoop cookies onto cookie sheets with ice cream scoop and bake for 9-11 minutes.

Happy Baking!