Stuff Their Stockings with Good Taste

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A Christmas stocking is big enough for a themed gift but small enough to make filling it quick, easy and fun. Everyone loves the gift of delicious food and your neighborhood Hy-Vee has the perfect items for stuffing stockings. Help Santa out this year by taking your Hy-Vee dietitian’s suggestions and stuff their stockings with good taste and good health:

Breakfast in a Stocking: Holiday excitement can disrupt little ones’ meal schedules. When the excitement of long-awaited gifts is more interesting than coming to the table for a meal, why not stuff breakfast into their stockings?

Stop by your Hy-Vee HealthMarket and find the following: Horizon shelf-stable organic milk box, Erin Baker’s breakfast cookie or KIND nut and fruit bar, Just Fruit Munchies single-serve packs and fresh fruit, such as a Honeycrisp apple or an easy-to-peel clementine. Don’t forget a new toothbrush and toothpaste tied together with a bow.

Treat Your Teacher: Go to the head of the class with a stocking stuffed with unique items any teacher is sure to love, such as Stash brand teas paired with Madhava flavored agave nectar for sweetness, Burt’s Bees lotion and lip balm, Zum’s popular Frankincense and Myrrh-scented soap wrapped in a cellophane gift bag and, of course, a fresh apple.

Love Your Neighbor: Simply tie together a package of beautiful gourmet pasta, Hy-Vee Select classic olive oil and a jar of World Classics Tomato Basil pasta sauce as a way to remember your neighbor at the holiday season. Add an invitation to bring the items over to your house for dinner in the New Year - and this simple, thoughtful gift encourages both good health and friendship.

For the Gourmet Foodie:  A quality cheese slicer from your Hy-Vee delicatessen & gourmet cheese department allows you to slice perfectly thin slices of cheese for maximum flavor and extends the number of servings you can slice from a wedge of cheese. Pair with your choice of wine, a package of walnuts in their shells, a nutcracker and fresh fruit such as Holiday seedless grapes and fresh apples along with the following recipe on a card:

Apple, Cheddar & Walnut Toasts
Featuring Cabot 50% Reduced-fat Sharp Cheddar Cheese
Makes 12 toasts.

A great accompaniment to any festive occasion, this recipe highlights the sharp flavor and excellent melting qualities of Cabot 50% reduced-fat sharp cheddar cheese.

All you need:

  • 12 thin slices Hy-Vee Baking Stone bread demi-loaf
  • 2 apples, variety of your choice, cored and thinly sliced into approximately 24 pieces
  • 24 thin slices Cabot 50% reduced-fat sharp cheddar cheese
  • 1/2 cup walnut pieces

All you do:

  1. Preheat broiler. Arrange bread on baking sheet and toast lightly on both sides under broiler.
  2. Remove from broiler and place about two apple slices on each toast. Top with a thin slice of cheese. Sprinkle walnut pieces into cheese. Top with a second thin slice of cheese.
  3. Return to broiler until cheese melts and is lightly browned.

For a brunch or appetizer wine suggestion, pair with Sauvignon Blanc.

Source: adapted from

Encouragement and Inspiration for the Young Cook:

Right-sized, fun tools inspire young cooks to develop life-long cooking skills. A variety of clever, kid-sized kitchen tools can be found in the general merchandise section of your Hy-Vee store. Items such as their own measuring cups and spoons, Eco Smart prep cups & pinch bowls and a small whisk stimulate kitchen creativity and ownership of their creations. Start by preparing Santa’s Favorite Pancakes together and begin a new Christmas morning breakfast tradition:

Santa’s Favorite Pancakes
Makes about 6 pancakes.

Inspire creativity in the kitchen by giving kids right-sized kitchen tools as a stocking-stuffer then welcome them into the kitchen to help prepare these whole-grain pancakes. For a fun Christmas morning twist arrange the pancakes to look like one of Santa’s reindeer.

All you need:
For the pancakes:

  • 1 cup Hodgson Mill buckwheat pancake mix
  • 3/4 cup Hy-Vee skim milk
  • 1 Hy-Vee egg
  • 1 1/2 tbsp Hy-Vee cooking oil
  • Hy-Vee non-stick cooking spray

To assemble Santa’s Favorite pancakes, you’ll also need:

  • 2 slices cooked bacon per pancake
  • 2 chocolate chips per pancake
  • 1 fresh raspberry per pancake
  • Hy-Vee whipped cream

All you do:

  1. Prepare pancakes by placing pancake mix into mixing bowl; add milk and egg. Stir in vegetable oil. Mix until just blended. Let stand for 5 minutes.
  2. Preheat griddle or large skillet to 360 degrees. Grease lightly with Hy-Vee cooking spray. Griddle is ready when small drops of water sizzle and disappear almost immediately.
  3. Pour 1/4 cup batter for each pancake onto the hot griddle, adding 2 separate spoonfuls additional batter to form “reindeer ears.” Cook 1 to 1-1/2 minutes and flip when edges appear cooked and bubbles form throughout the pancake. Cook additional 1 to 1-1/2 minutes on opposite side.
  4. Pour 1/8 cup onto griddle to form smaller pancake for reindeer face. Repeat cooking instructions of step 3.
  5. To assemble “Santa’s Favorite” reindeer face-shaped pancake: Place 1 smaller pancake on top of larger pancake. Arrange bacon to look like antlers, raspberry for a red nose and two small dollops of whipped cream, each topped with a chocolate chip, for eyes.

Source: adapted from

The information is not intended as medical advice. Please consult a medical professional for individual advice.

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