I love simple, kid-friendly recipes that provide ample amount of learning opportunities. Christmas Pretzel Bites are just that.
Pretzels – I use the twist pretzels, but you may use round or square shapes as well.
Rolos or Hershey Kisses – Rolos add caramel to the deliciousness or use a variety of Hershey Kiss (except for almond-filled) for a less expensive option.
M&M – Expand the flavors by using different M&M types (e.g. plain, mint, peanut, peanut butter). *Allergy Warning
Oven and baking sheet
Give the child an M&M. Discuss how the “M” on the M&M can be an M, E, W, or 3 depending on how you look at the “M.”
Explain that the M&M tells us part of the Christmas story.
The M is for the manger where baby Jesus slept.
The E is for the direction of east, which is where the star shone for the wise men.
W reminds us to worship and praise to Jesus’ holy name.
The 3 is for the three wise man who proclaimed to others that Jesus was born.
To share the Christmas story explain that you and he/she are going to make Christmas Pretzel Bites to give to friends or neighbors.
Cooking and Fine Motor
On a cookie sheet, lay out several pretzels. Unwrap the Rolos or Hershey Kisses and place one in the center of each pretzel. Unwrapping candy is an excellent fine-motor activity for kids!
Adult: Carefully place the pan into a pre-heated 225 degree oven for four minutes or until the chocolates are soft enough to easily press down.
Pull the pan out of the oven and immediately press an M&M into the center of each kiss with the “M” showing on the top. Keep the child safe as the pan and chocolate will be hot.
Place the pan into the refrigerator for a few minutes allowing the chocolate to set.
Store in a tight container at room temperature. And move into a hard to reach place so that you are not tempted to sneak any of these yummy treats.
For another level of learning, package several Christmas Pretzel Bites into a small, air-tight container or gift bag. Print, cut out, and hole punch the M&M Christmas Poem. If appropriate, allow the child to use children’s safety scissors to cut out the poem. Add a Christmas ribbon or string to tie the printable to the gift.
When giving the receiver the bites, allow the child to explain the Christmas story provided by the M&M’s.
A simple activity that provides opportunities for cooking, fine motor, learning of the Christmas story, scissor use, gift giving, and explanation of learning.