gifts in a jar – oat bars

Consumable gifts are a great low waste options any time of the year. Who doesn’t like food?! Or a free jar? Over the years I have done baking mixes, soups, coffee, tea blends, and infused olive oils. Most ingredients can be sourced in bulk or even grown in your outdoor space. Gifts in jars are inexpensive, but do take time. I think that is why I like them so much – they are made with intention and given with love.

Some tips on giving gifts in a jar:

  • Use a wide mouth jar! Sometimes you need to get your fist or a pestle in there and smush stuff down to make it all fit. 
  • Check your math. Add up the dry ingredients in your recipe and choose your jar size accordingly.
  • Check your math again! Scale up the dry goods you need based on the number of jars you are making. Relive the middle school trauma of multiplying fractions. This way you don’t run out of sugar or end up with 5 extra pounds of oats.
  • Head to the bulk section. I like to get ingredients for this kind of project in jars because I can accurately gauge the amount.
  • Set up an assembly line, one ingredient at a time for all the jars. A jar funnel is your special helper!
  • Layer the ingredients for aesthetics *and* efficient packing. Put a fluffy ingredient (like flour) under an ingredient that can be packed down (like brown sugar or dried fruit).
  • You can jazz up the lid with scrap fabric, craft paper, leftover yarn, etc.
  • Attach a tag with baking/cooking instructions. (I typically never put who it’s from on the tag. It might not be the recipient’s jam, but they are free to regift it that way if they like.)

made with intention and given with love


Layer ingredients in a wide mouth 1qt mason jar in the following order:

  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 cup brown sugar, packed down
  • 1 cup large flake oats
  • 1 1/4 cups dried fruit, cut into small pieces where necessary
  • 1 cup large flake oats
  • 3/4 tsp cinnamon
  • 3/4 tsp baking soda
  • ½ tsp of salt

Attach a gift tag with the following baking instructions:

  • Preheat oven to 350°F
  • In a large bowl, cream 3/4 cup of butter, 1 egg, and 1 tsp of vanilla
  • Add the jar of mix and stir until blended
  • Spread batter into a greased 9×12 pan and bake for 25-30 minutes
  • Let cool and cut into squares or bars
  • Store in the fridge



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