Holiday Recipe Ideas

Now that the fundraising is over and your kitchen is stocked with fairly traded ingredients, it’s time to get cooking! Here are six recipes that will impress your holiday guests or shine at the party potluck!

Recipes the Whole Family will Love

Chocolate Sugar Cookies: A classic, delicious dessert. Make them festive by using holiday cookie cutters!

  • 1/3 cup Organic Baking Cocoa
  • 1/2 cup butter, softened
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1 1/2 cups unbleached white pastry flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • confectioners’ sugar for sprinkling

In a medium bowl, cream the butter and sugar together until smooth. Beat in the egg and vanilla until light. Sift together the flour, cocoa, baking powder, and salt. Stir the dry ingredients into the butter mixture and form into a thick dough. If the dough is soft, wrap it in plastic and chill for 1/2 hour. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees and butter a baking sheet. On a lightly floured surface, roll out the dough to about a 1/4 inch thickness and cut into shapes. Place the cookies on the prepared baking sheet, sprinkle with confectioners sugar, and bake for 15 to 20 minutes until the centers of the cookies are firm. With a spatula, transfer the cookies to a cooling rack.

These crisp chocolate wafers may be rolled out and cut into shapes suitable for any festivity. Store the cookies in a tin with a tight-fitting lid to keep them fresh. (Yields 18)

From the Moosewood Restaurant Low Fat Favorites, published by Clarkson N. Potter, Inc. 1996.


Classic Love Cocoa: Stay warm this holiday season with our delicious hot cocoa recipe.

  • Organic Baking Cocoa
  • Milk
  • Sugar

Fill your mug with your milk of choice – pour milk into a pot. Add 1 heaping Tbsp. of both high-quality sugar and Equal Exchange Organic Baking Cocoa (or to taste). Whisk together.

Place on stove on low heat, constantly stirring with whisk. Do not let boil or stick the bottom of pot. When it’s hot enough for your taste and all has been dissolved, pour into mug and enjoy!

Lilla Woodham, Equal Exchange Customer Service Representative and a professional baker, shares this traditional recipe

Holiday Recipe Ideas


Brownies: Always a favorite! Make your favorite brownie recipe even better with Equal Exchange chocolate.

  • 1/4 c. Organic Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • 1 bar Organic Milk Chocolate (or 12 Organic Milk Chocolate Minis)
  • 10 Organic Milk Chocolate Minis (or 1 bar Organic Milk Chocolate broken into small pieces)
  • 1/3 c. Organic Baking Cocoa
  • 1 stick (1/2 c.) butter
  • 1 c. packed light brown sugar
  • 1 Tbsp pure vanilla extract
  • 2 large eggs
  • 3/4 c. flour
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1/4 tsp. baking powder

Preheat oven to 350F. Butter a 9-inch baking pan.

Melt butter and the 1 large chocolate bar in a heavy saucepan over low heat. Stir constantly until smooth. Add olive oil. Remove from heat, cool to lukewarm. Stir in brown sugar and vanilla. Add eggs, beat well, until mixture is thoroughly mixed and glossy.

Stir remaining ingredients into the chocolaty mix.

Pour batter in pan and even out. Insert the minis into the batter at an angle in a spoke or other even pattern. Cover with a thin layer of batter. Bake for about 30 minutes, until a fork/knife/toothpick comes out with just a few crumbs.

Yields 9 generous servings.

Chocolate Chip Pancakes: Have family staying over for the holiday? Start the morning with festive cheer by whipping up our favorite pancakes.

  • ½ c. Organic Bittersweet or Organic Semisweet Chocolate Chips
  • 1 ½ c. flour
  • 1 Tbsp. sugar
  • 2 tsp. baking powder
  • ½ tsp. cinnamon
  • 1 ¼ c. milk
  • ½ c. Equal Exchange bananas, mashed (check your local food co-op!)
  • 1 egg, lightly beaten
  • 1 tsp. vanilla

Combine flour, sugar, baking powder and cinnamon in a large bowl. Mix milk, banana, egg and vanilla until well combined. Stir into the bowl of dry ingredients. Add in ¼ cup of the chocolate chips.

Spray your griddle with cooking oil and place over medium heat. Pour batter onto the griddle into the pancake size you desire.

Cook for about 2 minute, or until the tops begin to bubble. Then, flip the pancake and cook for another minute or until golden. Work your way through the batter, reapplying cooking spray as needed.

Top your pancakes with more chocolate chips and serve.

Adapted from

Holiday Recipe Ideas

Recipes your Friends and Colleagues will Love

Extra-Special Chili: In charge of bringing an appetizer to the party? Try out our chili recipe, created by one of our customer service representatives!

  • Organic Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • Organic ground coffee (not prepared): 3 – 6 tablespoons (depending on size of Sauce Pot!). The coffee goes especially well with chili that has meat in it.
  • Organic Spicy Hot Cocoa. The great thing about our Spicy Hot Cocoa is that it does NOT have milk in it, so the chili can be vegan but you can add ground turkey or beef, too. You should taste-test it several times as you are adding something with a nice, spicy kick!
  • Sugar

Use your regular recipe for the chili base. As you near the end of cooking your chili, add any of the products with either the suggested serving sizes, or be creative and adapt to how much chili you are making and what you like.

Amount to add:

10 – 12 people = about 1 to 2 heaping tablespoons

15 – 20 people = about 3 to 4 heaping tablespoons

25 – 30 people = about 5 or so heaping tablespoons, depending on your taste

Shared by Phil Berry, Equal Exchange Customer Service Representative.

Mint Chocolate Filled Cupcakes: A dessert that is both refreshing and sweet! Stand out from all of the other cupcakes at the dessert table.

For the batter:

  • 1/2 cup Organic Baking Cocoa
  • 3 cups flour
  • 2 cups white sugar
  • 2 tsp salt
  • 2 tsp baking soda
  • 2 cups water
  • 2/3 cup vegetable oil
  • 2 Tablespoons vinegar
  • 2 tsp vanilla

For the filling:

  • 1 bar Organic Mint Chocolate, chopped finely
  • 8 ounces cream cheese
  • 1 egg
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • pinch of salt

For the frosting:

  • 2 (8 ounce) packages cream cheese, softened
  • 1/2 cup butter, softened
  • 2 cups sifted confectioners’ sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract

For Batter: Mix dry ingredients (flour, sugar, cocoa, salt, baking soda) and then add water, oil, vinegar and vanilla. Mix well. Put cupcake papers in a muffin tin and fill 1/2 full with the batter.

For Filling: Cream together cream cheese, egg, sugar, and salt, and stir in chocolate. Put a spoonful of filling into center of each cup of batter.

Bake at 350F / 180C for about 25 minutes.

While cupcakes are baking, whip up the frosting. In a medium bowl, cream together the cream cheese and butter until creamy.Mix in the vanilla, then gradually stir in the confectioners’ sugar. Frost the cupcakes after they’ve had time to fully cool.

Makes about 32 cupcakes. Contributed by Katie Hanson, Davenport, IA from a 1960s church cookbook in North Dakota.

Holiday Recipe Ideas

Products in red are Equal Exchange products.

Adapted from 



About The Author

Emily Reers

Leave A Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *