Recipe Box, Snow Pea Tree and Christmas Candy

In case you need some help in your holiday kitchen, wow your guests with a Snow Pea Tree

Snow Pea Tree

or bake up some irresistible Christmas Candy Squares

Christmas cookies

You don’t have to go to a lot of trouble, sometimes all you need is a little red and green

ear drink and be merry

For the snow peas, you steam them briefly in the microwave


You can give them a rinse, put them back in the plastic produce bag they came in and put them in the microwave for 1-2 minutes.  Pat dry on paper towels


Then spread with a flavored soft white cheese spread, like Rondele or Alouette…it will look like snowy branches!

Christmas Tree appetizer

Lay them out in a Christmas tree shape on a holiday platter.  Cover with saran wrap and refrigerate overnight if you want to make this ahead of time

Snow Pea Tree

The cookies are just a version of 7 layer bars or Magic cookie bars.  I got the idea for these from Lynn over at Happier Than a Pig in Mud.  She made a sweet and salty version with a pretzel crust and peanuts that had me drooling.  You can see her Salty Sweet Magic Cookie Bars with Pretzel Crust here


My version uses Synder’s Salted Caramel pretzel pieces, dry roasted peanuts and peanut M&Ms


I used a food processor to convert the pretzels into crumbs for the crust and then chopped half the peanuts

PicMonkey Collage

After mixing melted butter with the pretzel crumbs and patting into a crust, add a layer of chocolate chips, a layer of chopped peanuts, then the rest of the whole peanuts.  Pour milk over all and bake at 350 for about 30 minutes

Christmas cookies

Remove from oven and immediately press M&Ms into hot cookie.  Lynn said this keeps them from cracking during the baking process for a prettier cookie.  I pretty much managed to screw this up because I didn’t really get them pressed down far enough and I cracked them when I cut them, BUT the cookies tasted so amazing that I didn’t care       ^^’

Christmas Candy Squares 1

This is what I made for my annual Goodie Swap group,  and I packed them in glitter sprayed  Ball jars


This group started when we were all young brides and we have laughed and cried together over the years

Christmas Candy Squares 2

Packaging is a big part of our goodies, and if you don’t have time to bake, it’s perfectly acceptable to buy~

cookie Collage

The “peppermint” bag is a white bag that Jennifer painted with simple red stripes!

peppermint bags

So cute! Such a fast and easy idea~ thanks Jennifer!


Talented Kit made the fun red nosed reindeer tag~ she makes a special tag every year and I hang them on my goodie swap tree


It stays decorated, stashed away in a storage closet off season


It is a “scrapbook” full of wonderful memories


Our grown children still ask when the Goodie Swap is~ 🙂


For the other recipes that were part of this years easy brunch see Green Chili Strata with Bacon Roses here and Bleu Cheese Tart with Cranberry Chutney here and Holiday Salad here

buffet Collage
Christmas Brunch

For dessert we had Baby Bites [iced mini cakes] from a local bakery, Pastry Art

baby bites

You might also want to check out Bloody Mary Buffet here for another very easy brunch

bloody mary brunch buffet

Thanks so much for stopping by, I hope I’ve given you some ideas for some easy holiday eats!

Snow Pea Tree

Prep Time 15 minutes
Course Appetizer
Cuisine American
Servings 10


  • 50-60 fresh snow peas
  • 1 cup soft white cheese spread like Rondele or Alouette


  • Rinse snow peas and place in a plastic bag, bowl or wrap in a paper towel and microwave on high for 1 1/2-2 minutes. Pat dry.
  • Spread half of snow peas with a layer of cheese spread and top with another snow pea.
  • Lay the filled peas in a tree shape on a platter if desired. Cover and refrigerate for up to 36 hours. Makes 24-30
Keyword holiday appetizer, snow pea tree, snow peas and dip, stuffed snow peas

Christmas Candy Squares

Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Servings 48 squares


  • 2 cups crushed Salted Caramel Pretzel Pieces [Synder’s] or any pretzels
  • 4 T butter
  • 1 large bag 12 oz., semi sweet chocolate chips
  • 2 cups dry roasted peanuts divided
  • 1 bag Christmas Peanut M & Ms
  • 1 can sweetened condensed milk


  • Melt butter in a 9 x 13″ baking dish.
  • Add pretzel pieces and using a fork or your fingers pat butter into crumbs forming a crust.
  • Top with chocolate chips.
  • Pulse 1 cup of peanuts in food processor to chop finely.
  • Put chopped peanuts on top of chocolate chips and then top all with the remaining whole peanuts.
  • Pour milk slowly and evenly over all.
  • Bake at 350 for 25-30 minutes, or until set in the middle.
  • Remove from oven and immediately top with M&Ms and press down into hot cookie.
  • Let cool. Refrigerate for several hours before cutting into small squares. Yield: 4 dozen
Keyword Christmas candy cookies, easy cookies, holiday cookie bars, M&M layer bars, red and green cookie bars


I will be joining the fabulous parties and blogs on my side bar and:

Betweeen Naps on the Porch

Mila’s Little Things

The Scoop

Posed Perfection

Memories by the Mile

The Style Sisters

The Freshman Cook

Melanie Makes

20 Responses to “Recipe Box, Snow Pea Tree and Christmas Candy”
  1. Lynn says:

    It sounds like you all have a blast Jenna! I love the gift tag this year, it really looks cool! Thanks for the shout-out… Time’s a ticking, hope you got your Ho-Ho-Ho on:@)

  2. This looks delicious, and such a fun thing to do with friends. I am printing the Christmas candy recipe. Thanks!

  3. Liz Mackie says:

    Thank you for all the nice recipes.

  4. All great ideas. I might give the snow pea tree a try for our annual Christmas Eve PJ party.

  5. Mary says:

    So fun Jenna! I love how you carry out a theme for your parties! You bars in the jars are so cute too and I love the idea of ‘goodie swap’ much more than the traditional cookie swap. 🙂

  6. Velva says:

    The snow pea tree really has my attention…Fun, and very clever. Love it. Your jars are adorable too. Thanks for the inspiration.

    Merry Christmas!

  7. Marigene says:

    The snow pea tree is awesome! I like the way you “play” with food, Jenna…
    Merry Christmas!

  8. Rita C. says:

    Love the snow pea tree, and my husband would love the Christmas crack in the jar! What fun to share with your girlfriends.

  9. lghiggins says:

    The snow pea tree is so cute. What are the little red balls? I can’t stand to look at the Christmas Candy Squares–I need a tissue for the drool before I ruin my computer.😂

    • haha! The little red balls are called Pepper Drops, they are small pickled Peruvian peppers shaped like a tear drop. I found them in a small plastic container in the produce section of my grocery store. They’re sweet and tangy. You could also use cherry tomatoes, chopped red pepper, or pimeintoes

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