How To Do Batch Baking For The Holiday Season

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Small batch baking is the process of making a lot of baked goods at one time and then storing or freezing them for a later time.

picture of Christmas cookies

You can do batch baking all in one day, or spread it out over several days. It depends on how many baked goods you need for your purpose and how much time you have to devote to the process.

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What Is Batch Baking?

Batch baking will save you a lot of time and effort during the holidays especially if you are giving gifts from your kitchen. Gifts from the kitchen have always been popular and for good reason. Nothing is better than homemade.

Batch baking means you make multiple batches of a recipe for the purpose of serving them at a later date. You will be using recipes that freeze well so you can thaw and bake or thaw and serve, depending on the recipe.

The reference, ‘making a batch of cookies means you are making generally one recipe at a time.

Holiday batch baking

My reference to Holiday Batch Baking means, we are going to divide up all of our holiday baking into one whole day or several days.

If you have a lot of baked goods to make for the holiday season you can make one or two recipes today, another tomorrow, and yet another the next day.

Batch baking for the holidays will help you be able to enjoy your holiday season by spending more time fellowshipping with friends and family and less time in the kitchen.

Table of Contents

Plan What To Bake

Plan exactly what you intend to bake for the entire holiday season. You can also bake in batches for your own family any time of the year and that is a smart thing to do as a time saver.

Plan your baking project. Begin by making a list of the different recipes you plan to make. Grab our free printable Baking Planner below. Most of your recipes are likely small-batch recipes that you use often for your own family.

  • Cookies
  • Cakes
  • Bread
  • Pie’s
  • Muffins
  • Brownies
  • Candynot really baked but it is part of our holiday cooking

We tend to bake some of the same things each year based on family requests of favorite recipes. If you want to try a new recipe, I recommend you do a trial ahead of time.

Schedule Your Baking Days

No one knows your schedule as you do. Take a few minutes to jot down which days you are available for lots of baking. If it’s three days, only choose three categories such as; cookies, candy, and bread.

You will be able to maximize your kitchen space by sticking to one type of dessert to bake in one day. Most of those recipes will use similar ingredients which will already be out. Grab the free printable calendar below.

Recipe book

Choose Your Recipes

Choose recipes that make more than one flavor if possible. For example, our Homemade Yeast Rolls recipe can be shaped as Crescent Rolls. These can be frozen and baked later. You can also use this same recipe to make Cinnamon Rolls with a few minor changes. I would love to receive a big pan of homemade cinnamon rolls as a gift from the kitchen.

Sugar cookies can be rolled and sliced in rounds then dusted with sugar or they can be rolled out flat and cut with fun cookie cutters and then decorated with icing. Cookie dough can also be frozen and used for up to three months.

After you have selected your recipes, you will want to do a pantry check and jot down a list of ingredients you will need.

Freezer Safe Recipes for Baking

Some baked goods can be frozen for between 3 and 6 months. What a huge time saver to make ahead when you have lots of baking to do. Choose recipes you can freeze and make later. See How To Freeze and Thaw Baked Goods for ideas.

Kitchen utensils

Prepare the Kitchen for Batch Baking

The day before you begin each batch baking session, clean the kitchen well.

Then set out the non-perishable pantry staples for baking and the supplies such as the measuring cups, large bowls, and mixer with attachments. You have just saved yourself some prep time on baking day.

I like to be sure the dishwasher is empty also which makes cleaning up easier afterward.

A batch of Yeast Rolls Rising

Organize The Kitchen In Stations

If you will be rolling out the dough for pies or bread, create a space on the counter where you can keep doing that task. One of my favorite kitchen tools for rolling out dough is these disposable counter covers. They make cleaning up much easier.

Use one space to line up all of your seasonings and extracts for quickly grabbing what you need. Set out measuring spoons and cups for quick reach.

Baked decorated Christmas Cookies
Set up a cookie decorating station with cooling racks you have placed foil or disposable papers underneath to catch the drips and crumbs for an easy cleanup

Clean As You Go

One of the first things I do when cooking, no matter if it’s batch baking or cooking dinner, is to run hot dishwater in the sink. I like to clean as I go so the task is nearly complete when the last thing is cooling for the day.

All Day Batch Baking

All-day batch baking is not for the faint of heart. You will want to strategically plan this day based on the steps in each recipe.

If you will be baking cookies, some cookie dough has to be refrigerated for hours. While baking bread, the dough has to rise for quite a while. Keep these times in mind while planning your baking day. You should plan to make a batch of something on your list while the bread dough is rising or the cookie dough is chilling.

If something takes a long time in the oven like our Sour Cream Pound Cake, plan to work on another recipe while that one is baking.

On cookie baking day, you can make the refrigerator cookies first and then make the drop cookies while the other dough is chilling.

Consider Oven Space and Temperature

Although it may be tempting, don’t put too many things in the oven at one time. This can cause the temperature not to bake evenly. Plus most ovens stay hot after prolonged use which means it can take less time for later batches to cook than the earlier batches.

My oven always cooks the later batches of cookies a minute or two quicker than the first couple of batches.

Another factor with the oven is that some things cook at higher temperatures which means, don’t bake those on the same day as those recipes which cook at a low temperature or plan to cook the lower temp items first before turning up the oven for later recipes.

A woman baking

Baking in batches is a great way to plan ahead for the holidays. Giving gifts from the kitchen is a great way to spread a little sweetness during the holiday season.

Create a plan

Choose your Recipes

Write down your baking schedule

Prepare and organize the kitchen

Bake and then enjoy resting afterward!

Grab your apron and cover your hair and let’s get baking!

More Baking Tips

How To Freeze & Thaw Baked Goods

How To Pick The Perfect Recipes For Your Holiday Baking

How To Make An Organized Holiday Grocery Shopping List

How to Plan Enough Time for Holiday Baking By Organizing Your Kitchen

Holiday dessert recipes:

My personal favorite and always disappearing fast are these Pecan Snowdrop Cookies my hubby has been making for many years.

Chocolate Chip Turtle Cookies are good any time of the year. These are not your regular chocolate chip cookies.

It wouldn’t be the Christmas season without cookies, the Grinch, or Hershey Kisses. I have married the three into Grinch Blossom Cookies for Christmas.

Old Fashioned Tea Cake Christmas Cookies are simply the best. These little sugar cookies are must-haves for the holiday season.

This recipe for Christmas Magic Cookie Bars is another one that stands the test of time.

A Christmas Cookie Exchange winning recipe, again and again, is my daughter’s recipe for Brown Sugar Cookies. Oh, how I love these!

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