Shop-bought crackers are overrated, overpriced and crammed full of plastic waste and jokes that your three-year-old nephew could have written.
We’ll show you how to make your own eco Christmas crackers that’ll wow your family, friends and guests. These homemade crackers could also save money and give your wheelie bin time off on Boxing Day.
How to Make Eco Christmas Crackers
You may already have most of the things you need for your homemade Christmas crackers. To make your crackers explode and crack, you’ll need cracker snaps (aka Bon Bon Snaps), preferably not wrapped in plastic. Ecosnap make suitable cracker snaps if you can’t source yours locally.
What You’ll Need
- • Brown recyclable wrapping paper or whatever’s leftover
- • Used toilet roll tubes
- • Scissors
- • Glue
- • Tape
- • Some string, twine or ribbon to tie your crackers
- • Some cracker snaps
- • Paper and pen for the jokes
- • Sustainable treats and toys (we recommend old-school boiled sweets).
How to Make Them
1. Line up three toilet roll tubes over your wrapping paper to form one big tube. Cut your wrapping paper to slightly over the length of the three tubes and just wide enough to stretch around the tubes with a slight overlap.
2. Roll the paper around the three tubes and glue it in place along the overlap. Then slide a cracker snap strip through the centre of the three tubes.
3. Find where the toilet rolls meet (at one end of the cracker) and gently crease between the two rolls. Then twist the outside roll and tie the twisted paper in place with your string, twine or ribbon.
4. Remove the outer toilet roll tube from the twisted end and stick the cracker snap strip to the paper to hold it in place.
5. Take your treats and any dodgy jokes you’ve written down and pour them into the open end of the cracker (that’s not been twisted yet).
6. Repeat Step 3 at the other end to complete your eco-friendly Christmas cracker and seal the treats in.
Top Tip: You can reuse the two toilet roll tubes you pulled out of each end again, with another tube, to create your next cracker.
How Can I Fill Homemade Crackers?
You can improvise as much as you like with homemade crackers. But please don’t add anything scary, like live spiders or fake chopped-off fingers – it’s not big, and it’s not clever! On the other hand, jokes are always a winner. Or you could get creative and add puzzles or funny memories for people to read out. Plus, sweets are always popular with the kids, as are luxury chocolates and spirit and liquor miniatures for the adults.
How Can I Decorate Homemade Crackers?
You can let your imagination run wild when decorating your crackers. And you may find inspiration at your local craft shop, which will be full of festive ribbons, stencils, trinkets, etc., at Christmas. Plus, the kids may enjoy decorating plain wrapping paper with Christmas-themed potato prints – think snowmen, Christmas trees, Santa, reindeer etc.
The Met Museum of Art have some great resources for making potato prints, if you need guidance.
Bad Jokes for Your Homemade Crackers
No cracker is complete without a dodgy joke that needs explaining. Feel free to create your own gags (they can’t be any worse) or copy the ones we’ve found online.
What do angry mice send to each other at Christmas?
Cross Mouse Cards
What do they sing at a snowman’s birthday party?
Freeze a jolly good fellow
Why does Santa have three gardens?
So he can ‘ho ho ho’
What does Miley Cyrus have at Christmas?
Knock, knock Who’s there?
Arthur any mince pies left?
What do vampires sing on New Year’s Eve?
Auld Fang Syne
Why did Santa’s helper see the doctor?
Because he had low elf esteem
What happened to the man who stole an Advent Calendar?
He got 25 days
What kind of motorbike does Santa ride?
A Holly Davidson
What do you get if you cross Santa with a duck?
A Christmas quacker