I get so excited for the day after Thanksgiving when we forgo the nuttiness of the holiday shopping, opting instead for a trip to a local tree farm to cut down our Christmas tree. I’m often tempted to buy new ornaments to decorate the tree with, but last week began thinking about some fun ornaments that could be made at home.
Since I LOVE the smell of cinnamon during the holidays, I decided on some cinnamon applesauce ornaments. These leave a luscious fragrance, require no baking, and can be used for multiple purposes.
So I set out to make them… and the house instantly smelled like Christmas!
Cinnamon Applesauce Ornaments
- 1 cup applesauce (find applesauce here)
- 1 cup ground cinnamon (find cinnamon here)
- 1 tsp ground cloves (find ground cloves here)
- Combine ingredients in a medium-sized mixing bowl and stir carefully until well blended.
- Scoop dough onto a cookie sheet and flatten with your hands until dough is about ⅓ or ¼ inch thick. (Don’t flatten more than this or ornaments will be too thin and can break easily.)
- Use cookie cutters to cut shapes, removing excess dough as you work. Continue until all dough is used. Poke holes into the top of each ornament with a small straw or other tool.
- After shapes are cut out, leave ornaments alone for about 10 hours. Very carefully flip ornaments every 10-12 hours until completely dry. This will take about 2-3 days.
- Decorate ornaments or just leave plain and tie a ribbon or string through the top of each one.
You will want to work quickly because the dough gets very sticky the more you work with it. Try dusting your hands with cinnamon before working with the dough, or add a little more cinnamon or cloves if dough is too sticky. Choose simple cookie cutter shapes that will be easier to work with (the small stars I tried to cut out were tricky with this sticky dough).
When I dried the ornaments on a discolored cookie sheet a chemical reaction took place that transferred the discoloration of the pan onto one side of the ornaments. I had a (mostly) silver pan again, but blackened ornaments. So be sure to dry them on parchment paper-lined pans or newer cookie sheets to avoid discoloration.
If you don’t want to wait 2-3 days for the ornaments to dry, you can bake them in the oven at 150° for 1-2 hours.
You can also use a dehydrator to dry the ornaments. Just make sure you have a smooth rack that fits into your dehydrator so the ornaments don’t end up with indentations from the slotted racks.
Decorating and Using Your Applesauce Ornaments
Once my ornaments were dry, I pulled out a few craft supplies to decorate with. I chose glitter, jewels, acrylic paint, and some Elmer’s Glue to help things stick.
I’m a sucker for all things bejeweled… including Christmas ornaments.
Personalized ornaments can be used as gift tags. Using acrylic paint and a small brush worked much better than glue for this purpose.
These make a cute (and sweet smelling) addition to a pretty package!
This makes a great holiday craft for kids since the recipe is so simple. They will especially love decorating the ornaments with paint or other unique craft supplies. Add buttons, beads, ribbon, or anything else you can think of! (Just don’t cover the WHOLE thing with paint, or the cinnamon scent will be lost.)
In addition to decorating my tree with these and topping gifts with them, I’m considering adding them to Christmas wreaths, hanging one in my closet, and maybe even hiding one in my car so I can enjoy the cinnamon fragrance on the go!