Finances, Lifestyle

9 Best Ideas for Gifts on a Budget

Again the holiday season is here, and what do you know? Again I am short on wiggle room in the budget.

It seems no matter how hard I try to save up a little holiday cash, it never turns out right and I always end up in the hole around Christmas time.

Luckily, I have turned into the queen of gift giving on a budget. After a few Christmas’ in a row of not being able to splurge, I am at least knowledgeable on how to save a little money without sacrificing quality.

So without further adu, here is my list of gift ideas on a budget.

On a side note, if you need some extra holiday cash then you may want to check out these simple ways to make some extra holiday spending money. 

*This post may contain affiliate links. If you click them and sign up I receive a small commission. This goes to supporting my family and I appreciate it.

#1: Make Jelly

I did this a few Christmas’ ago and it worked out well. I found a great recipe for homemade strawberry citrus jelly and bought some crackers and wa la. A simple gift that was appreciated by my family because it was homemade, delicious, and easy to make on a budget.

Here are some homemade jelly recipes:

Christmas Jam by A Family Feast

Orange-Lemon Marmalade by A Bakers House

Spiced Apple Jelly by Grow a Good Life

#2: Truffles

In most places, truffles are considered a delicacy. Rare and rich, a truffle looks and feels expensive so you don’t have to give a whole lot of them to feel like its a quality gift.

The last time I made truffles as a Christmas gift on a budget, I didn’t just make one kind. I actually made up a small box for each family member with an assortment of 5 different types of truffles.

They only take a few hours to make and put together. As well, the cost is minimal.

My personal favorite is these Peppermint White Chocolate truffles by SoberJulie.


Here are some other truffle recipes that I’m sure your family will enjoy.

Kahlua Chocolate Truffles by Baker by Nature

No Bake Sugar Cookie Truffles by Haley at If You Give A Blonde A Kitchen

Easy Lemon Truffles by Premeditated Leftovers

Gifts on a budget

#3: Homemade Soap

As you can probably see there is definitely a theme here. Homemade stuff is da bomb. This year I decided to switch up the homemade food recipes for a easy to make, homemade lotion soap.

I will probably find some cheap silicone molds on Amazon. The soap base is $15 and it is able to make up to 10 bars. That’s a no-brainer!

I would recommend these all natural melt and pour soap bases by Our Earth’s Secrets:

Check out these soap recipes for some inspiration:

Gingerbread Sugar Scrub Cubes by A Pumpkin and a Princess

Spiced Apple Goats Milk Soap by Confessions of a Plate Addict

Pumpkin Spice Soap Bars by Beauty Crafter

Orange Creamsicle Soap by Simply Stacie

I personally love to lather up in a lovely-smelling natural soap and I know that my family will too.

#4: Light Bulb Ornaments

This was the first homemade Christmas gift I think I have ever given. These  light bulb ornaments are cute, they lit up everyone’s day.

Things you will need: 

  • Pack of large light bulbs
  • Silver wire and ornament hooks
  • Scrapbooking decals and stickers
  • Googly eyes
  • Paint
  • Construction paper and scissors
  • Glue


1. Think about what characters you want to create, some suggestions: reindeer, snowman, Santa, animals, cute faces, elf

2. Design light bulb however you want. Use paint to paint the bulb, scrapbooking decals to make a winter scene, cotton balls, googly eyes. Glue onto light bulb. Make sure you hold the light bulb upside down and then glue on.

3. Wrap wire around the base of the light bulb and leave the top with a loop so you can attach the hook for the tree.

I told you, super easy!!

Another Christmas ornament idea are these amazing diy galaxy ornaments. Super easy and quick, they come out looking awesome!

Here’s some more super easy Christmas gifts on a budget that you can make this year.

#5: Pointalism DIY Coffee Mugs

These super cute coffee mugs are fun to make and make a cool gift on a budget. You can really use your own creativity to design a mug that you wuld love to give as a gift.

Easy diy Christmas gifts

Check out these pointalism Sharpie mugs for inspiration from Tasha at DesignerTrapped.

#6: DIY Tangle-Free Headphones

On the same note, any DIY everyday items are a win in my book. Take a page from Apartment Therapy with these DIY Tangle-free headphones. It brings me back to my friendship bracelet making days.

Diy Christmas gifts

Not only does it look cute, it will also protect your headphone cord from tangling and breaking.

#7: Homemade Gift Baskets

My hubby is hard to shop for and he literally says he doesn’t want anything from me every year. ::Blank stare:: Of course I am going to get him something for the holidays.

A homemade gift basket may the perfect solution. He likes a mix of things and this allows me to customize what he would like all in one easy to make gift basket.

A few ideas for gift baskets:

  • Movie lover
  • Spa Gift Basket
  • Kitchen/Cooking
  • Manicure/Pedicure
  • Coffee Lover
  • Lottery Gift Basket

#8: Etched Wooden Kitchen Ware

I found this idea in the DIY section – gifts under $10. It gives cutting boards your own personal touch and a nice message for the holidays.

It seems simple as all you need is a wood burning machine with multiple tips for different designs. I found these etched cutting boards and etched cooking spoons from Design Mom. Very cool and crafty idea!!

#9: Dip Mix Ornaments

I love this idea as it can be very versatile. You can make them with dip mix or you be creative and do the same thing with loose tea or herbs and spices.

Ornaments can be found for a few dollars and the dip mix is cheap as well. Your total out of pocket will will maybe be about $5 to make several gifts.

gifts on a budget


There you have it! 9 Christmas gifts on a budget that you can make yourself quickly and easily. Happy Holidays!!




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Rachel Alice is an online website designer and business owner, saleswoman, and super mom. She enjoys the sunny FL sun and fun with her daughter.

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