Frugal and Festive Cooking with Beer

Forget the gourmet packages and make your own.

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Still struggling to figure out what to bring to your holiday hostess? Lucy Saunders over at The Best of American Beer & Food explains how to make your own beer-infused treats without resorting to laying down big bucks for gourmet packages. One suggestion: Barley Wine Marshmallows.

While pre-made packages typically retail for $6 and up, you can make these yourself largely with ingredients you already have in the kitchen. (Although you may have to run out for the key ingredient, Barley wine.) Saunders says she recently saw a package with a dozen marshmallows on sale for around $12 and that these ingredients cost around $9 per batch of 50.

Saunders' suggestions got me thinking about other homemade treats that make great -- and affordable -- hostess gifts. Barefoot Contessa's granola is my all-time favorite. What about yours? Please share tips -- there are still a few hours left before it's time to go to grandma's house!