How to make your own creative crackers

Picnic
Article

Sure, they’re a staple of your Christmas table, but who says crackers can only take centre stage once a year? These clever crackers can totally double as dessert at your next picnic or party.

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Idea 1: Old-school cool

A homemade Christmas cracker is always a hit at your festive table, so who could blame you for wanting to work it into another setting? No judging here. These crackers couldn’t be easier to make and they’re a great way to portion individual treats.

You’ll need:

  • empty toilet rolls or paper towel tubes
  • several sheets of crêpe paper
  • scissors
  • sticky tape
  • string or ribbon (about 20cm per cracker)
  • fillings (see list below)

Start with an empty toilet roll or paper towel tube. Cut the tube into two halves (so that it separates easily when pulled from either end). Position the two ends of the cut tube together on a piece of crêpe paper slightly longer than the tube, and wrap the paper tightly around the tube. Make sure the paper isn’t too thick; a single layer will do. If the paper is too thick, it’ll be harder to tear the crackers apart. Seal with a strip of sticky tape on the underside. Tie off one end of the cracker with ribbon or string and stuff your treats in the tube from the other end (see our list of fillings below). Then tie closed the open end with another piece of ribbon or string. Fan out the paper on both ends for a real thrill. Correction, ‘frill’.

Idea 2: Fun with fabric

A clever way to use up old fabric you haven’t had the heart to get rid of.

You’ll need:

  • empty toilet roll or paper towel tubes
  • scraps of fabric
  • scissors
  • sticky tape
  • ribbon (about 20cm per cracker)
  • fillings (see list below)

The same steps apply when it comes to making this homemade cracker. An empty toilet roll or paper towel tube? Essential. Only this time, don’t cut the tube. This fabric-wrapped cracker doesn’t need to be tugged open; it can just be unwrapped to reveal its sweet surprise. Place the toilet roll or paper towel tube in the centre of a square scrap of fabric. (Don’t have a scrap? Buy one metre of inexpensive patterned cotton at your local fabric store.) Wrap the tube in fabric, secure with a little sticky tape if required, then tie off one end with a length of ribbon in a contrasting colour. Fill the cracker (find ideas for fillings in our list below) and tie off the open end to finish.

Don’t have fabric or crêpe paper? Download and print these fun cracker templates.

Fab fillings

Forget tiny dice and paper crowns; rather fill your homemade crackers with any (or all) of these:

  • A selection of individually wrapped sweets. Sparkles or Smoothies are perfect.
  • A handful of homemade tissue-paper confetti. It’s super easy to make. Layer a few sheets of different coloured tissue paper over each other. Cut a fringe from the bottom end of the stacked sheets (simple vertical snips with a sharp pair of scissors), then cut across the fringed ends from left to right to create tiny squares.
  • Inspirational or famous quotes, or your own heartfelt message, typed or written on a strip of paper. Roll it up and tie it with a piece of string to include in your cracker. Think ‘I love you more than chocolate’ or ‘Weird is a side effect of awesome’.
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