Snap, Crackle, Pop!

Party crackers are a fun addition to any celebration.  If you are not familiar with them, you grab each end of the cracker and pull away.  It makes a ‘pop’ and its insides spill out, which are usually trinkets, paper crowns that the guests put on, and slips of paper with jokes, or horoscopes that everyone usually reads aloud.  They are a festive and traditional group activity, usually at the dinner table with champagne. I use crackers often during the holiday season with family and friends.

Thomas Smith, (1823 – 1869) a British baker, invented the Christmas cracker in 1847 as a way to rekindle interest in his confections.  When a son took over the business, the idea of including gifts and paper hats took hold and they became what they are today.

Here are some sources for the best crackers I’ve found.

These are March of the Nutcrackers Celebration Christmas Crackers.  They each contain a foil paper crown, a joke, and a trinket.  Set of 6, $30.00.


Reindeer With Velvet Bows Crackers, set of 6 is $34.00.  They contain an entertaining picture game everyone can enjoy, a paper reindeer antler headband and a joke.


ASE reader Gregg wrote in to share her favorite party crackers.  They are made by Wentworth, the jigsaw puzzle company.  There are three designs to choose from.  For the Nutcracker soldier, each cracker has 32 puzzle pieces.  What a great idea!  Each cracker is $19.00.


ASE reader Lindsay wrote in to say that her favorite crackers are the ones that contain musical instruments. These contain a musical instrument and numbered badges, a conductor’s baton and a song sheet.  Sounds like fun!  A set of 8 crackers is $24.95.


These are Mixed Fun Crackers, They are wrapped in crepe paper, with embellishments added.  Each cracker contains a gift of fun erasers.  A set of 6 is $36.00.


Annika Celebration Crackers each contain a foil paper crown, a joke, and a trinket.  A set of six crackers is $30.00.


If you like chocolate, these Neuhaus Red Holiday Crackers will provide. Each cracker measures 2” x 2” x 4” and contains delicious Neuhaus chocolates.  A set of twelve crackers is $28.90.


6 assorted Christmas character designs include Elf, Santa, Reindeer, Penguin, Nutcracker & Snowman. Each party favor contains a party paper hat, a Christmas joke paper, and a random gift inside.   These crackers do not pop or snap.  A set of 12 for $31.99.


Racing Tuxedo Penguin Christmas crackers each contain a wind-up penguin toy that you race on an included racing track.  A set of six is $32.95.