How to make a DIY plastic-free Christmas cracker

Let’s be honest, does anyone really like Christmas crackers bought from the store? They never contain anything useful and the plastic toy usually ends up lost under the sofa or in the bin by the end of the day. But despite that, the bang of a cracker is the familiar sound of Christmas lunch. Along with happy memories of the family packed around the dinner table reading festive dad jokes.

If you want to have a plastic-free Christmas without giving up the fun traditional elements, it’s time to get creative. Making your own Christmas decorations is way more fun and makes Christmas that little bit more special. With our super easy step-by-step eco-friendly guide, you can transform your table setting in just five steps.

What you’ll need:

  • Wrapping paper (we love recycled Christmas wrapping paper or brown paper! This will be the pattern of your crackers so make sure you choose something you love).
  • Toilet roll tubes (1 per cracker)
  • Scissors
  • Sellotape
  • String
  • Paper hats (you can buy these online)
  • Jokes – you can type these up or add a handwritten note. Or, set your guests a secret challenge in each cracker like the Don’t Get Got game. The first person to complete their mission wins.
  • Cracker snaps
  • Eco-friendly gifts to put inside


How to make your eco-friendly Christmas crackers:

1. Place your tube on the wrapping paper and thread the cracker snap through the toilet roll tube until there is an equal amount of snap poking out of each end of the tube. Then sellotape it in place on the inside of the tube at both ends.

2. Add your two other tubes at both ends. Wrap them up in the paper and sellotape them together like you would a present.

3. Gently lift the tube at one end so there is a small gap. Take your string and tie a bow in its place to create your traditional cracker shape. You can remove the end roll once you have secured the shape.

4. Next, wrap your joke and paper hat together and pop them inside your cracker along with your eco-friendly gift. Repeat step three with the other end of the cracker. And that’s it!

5. Add any decoration if you like such as ribbons, dried oranges and foliage. If you’re going to use glitter, stick to biodegradable glitter otherwise you won’t be able to recycle them afterwards. And don’t forget to write the recipient’s name on the cracker.

Have you got the Christmas DIY bug? Learn how to make your own stockings to hang in your home or give as a gift.


Eco-friendly Christmas cracker presents ideas 

This is your opportunity to personalise your crackers and give each guest something they’ll love to receive that won’t end up in the bin or worse, landfill. There’s only one rule – no plastic!

  • Chocolate or sweets
  • A wooden toy such as a yoyo
  • A lottery ticket or scratch card
  • Accessories such as earrings or a bracelet
  • A pack of wildflower seeds
  • A keyring
  • A mini bottle of alcohol
  • A lipstick or nail polish
  • Miniature perfume or aftershave
  • Write a poem or personal note to your loved ones
  • Origami paper with instructions


How to be kind to the planet this Christmas

One of the greatest gifts you can give is sustainability. But we know this time of year can be stressful and expensive so we’ve put together tons of resources to help you stay eco-friendly this Christmas on a budget.

Want to add a festive touch to your front door? Discover how to make a DIY Christmas wreath. 


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *



Sign up to receive tips on reducing your energy & water bills, new product news & more.