Motivation/ Nutrition Tips/ Recipes

Friendship Bean Soup Mix in a Jar: An Awesome (Healthy) Gift for Teachers


I don’t know about you, but nothing fills me more with anxiety than trying to figure out an awesome Christmas gift for my daughters’ teachers. How can I possibly give them a healthy gift that truly reflects how thankful I am for the wonderful care they give my girls that’s also affordable? With three daughters’ who each have two teachers (they’re in French Immersion so they all have both an English teacher and a French teacher) plus their 6 before and after-school care providers, 12 teacher gifts can quickly become expensive!

Friendship Bean Soup in a Jar - a healthy gift for teachers via @fitcheerldr #jargift #masonjar #mealprep #teachergift


This is why this year I decided to make the teachers something special, affordable (and healthy) Friendship Bean Soup Mix:

Friendship Soup Mix in a Jar: An Awesome (Healthy) Gift for Teachers via @fitcheerldr #jargift #masonjar #mealprep #teachergift

The girls and I had an absolute blast making these!  We started off by using to design the recipe cards – the girls really like learning basic graphic design and photo editing skills, and were very helpful in choosing the layout for the cards:

Friendship Soup Mix in a Jar: An Awesome (Healthy) Gift for Teachers via @fitcheerldr #jargift #masonjar #mealprep #teachergiftWe then took a trip to the Bulk Barn to pick up all of the food ingredients. (That store is my new BFF!). Normally I hate cooking because I can never find the spices I need – but Bulk Barn has everything!  If you ask the staff nicely they’ll even lend you some measuring cups so that you can measure out the precise amount you need of each ingredient:

Friendship Soup Mix in a Jar: An Awesome (Healthy) Gift for Teachers via @fitcheerldr #jargift #masonjar #mealprep #teachergift

The price was right too. I was able to buy all the dry goods I needed to make 12 jars of the soup mix for $17.49.

Friendship Soup Mix in a Jar: An Awesome (Healthy) Gift for Teachers via @fitcheerldr #jargift #masonjar #mealprep #teachergift

We then headed to Target Canada to buy the 1 pint Mason Jars ($7.99), bows ($2.10), ribbon ($2.10), small sandwich baggies ($3.49) and gift bags ($9.00).  

READ:  Ragnar Trail Recap and #MotivateMe Monday

Grand total for all of our supplies = $45.38

Friendship Soup Mix in a Jar: An Awesome (Healthy) Gift for Teachers via @fitcheerldr #jargift #masonjar #mealprep #teachergift

I really like that this “craft” for lack of a better term, was well within daughters’ skill levels.  I once tried making the layered jar for chocolate chip cookies two years ago and that was a complete disaster – we had flour everywhere! (And Sierra wouldn’t stop eating the chocolate chips).

They all took their jobs very seriously! Though we still ended up with barley and lentils all over the floor *grin*.  All in all the girls greatly enjoyed their time with me, and are very proud to bring the gifts to school for their teachers!

Friendship Soup Mix in a Jar: An Awesome (Healthy) Gift for Teachers via @fitcheerldr #jargift #masonjar #mealprep #teachergift

Friendship Bean Soup Mix in a Jar
Friendship Bean Soup Mix in a Jar ~ Nothing says Mmmm Good like homemade soup! Make the Friendship Bean Soup mix ahead of time for a quick go-to dinner or give them out as gifts.
Author: Janice @ Salads4Lunch
Jar Ingredients
  • ¼ cup white navy beans
  • ¼ cup kidney beans
  • ¼ cup green split peas
  • ¼ cup pinto beans
  • 2 tbs. pearl barley
  • 2 tbs. parsley
  • 2 tbs. minced dry onion
  • 1-2 beef bouillon cubes
  • 1 tbs. dried bay leaves
  • 1/4 cup alphabet pasta we used insect pasta
  • 1 pint jar
  • Stretchy ribbon
  • Sandwich bags
  • Single hole punch
Soup Ingredients
  • 6 cups water
  • 1 can tomato soup
Mix Directions
  1. Wash and thoroughly dry a 1-pint canning jar.
  2. Place the macaroni in a plastic sandwich bag.
  3. Place the minced onion, parsley, basil leaves and beef bouillion in a plastic sandwich bag.
  4. Layer the ingredients as level as possible in this order: white navey beans, kidney beans, green split peas, pinto beans, pearl barley, bagged seasonings and bagged pasta.
  5. Secure the lid and decorate the jar as desired. Be sure to attach the recipe for making the soup!
Soup Directions
  1. Wash beans and allow to soak overnight. Drain.
  2. Add 6 cups of water to beans and allow to cook
  3. through.
  4. Add 1 can of tomato soup, pasta and seasonings.
  5. Let simmer another 20-30 min. Serve & enjoy!

Friendship Soup Mix in a Jar: An Awesome (Healthy) Gift for Teachers via @fitcheerldr #jargift #masonjar #mealprep #teachergift

And of course, we tried out the soup ourselves for our Sunday afternoon lunch – it turned out well and everyone asked for seconds!

READ:  Instant Pot BBQ Brown Sugar "Baked" Beans

Does buying teachers gifts fill you with anxiety too?


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Leave a Reply

  • Reply
    December 14, 2014 at 2:14 pm

    What a great idea!!! I like that this also looks pretty with the different colors!!!

  • Reply
    Abby @BackatSquare0
    December 16, 2014 at 8:37 pm

    Such a cute gift. I’d love getting something like this.

  • Reply
    Nancy T
    December 18, 2014 at 8:57 pm

    Hi Janice!
    The friendship bean soup sounds really healthy and delicious!
    Thats a great gift for anyone. Its affordable, yet so healthy! (Keep the teachers healthy) 🙂
    I loveeeee Bulk Barn too! I love it so much, that now my husband has to accompany me to BB, otherwise, I will spend the whole day there.

    • Reply
      December 18, 2014 at 10:49 pm

      Bulk Barn is amazing!!! I need to find some time to go there over the holidays WITHOUT the kids so that I don’t end up with a bonus bag of gummy worms when I leave the store 🙂

  • Reply
    Jen @ Pretty Little Grub
    January 22, 2015 at 12:54 pm

    I love this idea! Such a cute and unique gift idea.

  • Reply
    December 17, 2015 at 10:27 pm

    This is a great idea-healthy but pretty and easy to make AND to give. I love this. Pinned!

  • Reply
    December 19, 2015 at 4:31 pm

    This is such a sweet idea! I know I’d appreciate it if my friends gave me this!

  • Reply
    Abby @ BackAtSquareZero
    December 20, 2015 at 9:38 pm

    As a teacher I would love to get a cute gift like this.

  • Reply
    December 21, 2015 at 7:34 pm

    Is it basil, or bay leaves for the ingredient?

    • Reply
      December 21, 2015 at 7:45 pm

      Good catch, it’s bay leaves.

  • Reply
    Deborah @ Confessions of mother runner
    December 10, 2017 at 1:11 pm

    This is a very fun and festive idea!