Christmas Decor on a Budget, Plus DIY Potpourri & Chicken Taco Soup

I'm going to be sharing with you my Christmas decor on a budget. I also have a great DIY potpourri and a wonderful chicken taco soup recipe. Christmas decorating can work up an appetite, and this soup is perfect for a filling, budget meal.

Cleaning the house before decorating


The first thing I did before decorating for Christmas was to clean. I've packed away all my fall decorations and my kitchen items.

One suggestion is to get everything clean and decluttered, so you have a blank slate for your Christmas decorations. This is the time of year to deep clean so your decor stands out. So the kitchen, bathroom, living room, all that is just super clean. 

Sort through what you have

I will go ahead and pull out all of my decor, go through it and decorate. If you have Christmas dishes, clean them if they've been packed away.

I am just trying to simplify what I have. I have two tubs of Christmas decor, and I've cut back on what I have. 

How to decorate for Christmas on a budget

I have mats for the kitchen that I'll wash before putting them out.

Where to shop

I've decorated my Christmas table and did so much of this on a budget. You don't have to spend much money to decorate for Christmas. I highly encourage checking out your local thrift stores, Goodwill, or discount stores.

You can even do Christmas decoration exchange parties with friends. We did that through my work several years ago, and that is how I got my Christmas plates, bowls, and mugs.

My Christmas chargers, I got at a thrift store last year. I think it was like $12 or so for 15 of them. I have some beautiful little napkins I got at Goodwill. I have a small table of settings set out for right now. 

Christmas decorations on a budget

I got some of my Christmas decor from Buy Nothing Facebook. I just added in some cute little ornaments. I also have some cute pine cones and little balls. So it's just really simple and easy. I got my wreath at Value Village or Goodwill last year.

Christmas coffee bar

Coffee bar

I also prepare my coffee bar for Christmas. I recently went to Starbucks and got a peppermint mocha, which was $7. So I grabbed a few items from the dollar store and the grocery store to make my peppermint mochas. 

Christmas decorations on a budget

My friends are coming over tonight, and we're going to have hot cocoa, so I'll use my cocoa bar items. 

I got little jars at the dollar store and filled them with mini marshmallows, candy canes, and hot cocoa. I filled my tea box with some delicious Christmas teas.

How to do Christmas on a budget

Dining table decor

For my dining table, I put some string lights. Christmas decorations for the kitchen table can be done on a budget. Like I said, check out your local thrift stores. Grab a few items, and go through what you already have.

Go through your inventory and your decor. What do you love? What do you not love? Trade with friends and get a new look.

Living room

I have not put a ton of decor out. 

Manger scene

I have a cute little manger scene, but I have my main manger scene set up in my entryway. 

Nativity scene

I thought having a lovely manger scene was important as a reminder of Christmas's true meaning. 

It's not so much about the gifts, but it's truly the meaning of Christ's birth and what he has done in our lives, how much he loves us, and his grace and forgiveness. 

Kitchen area

Kitchen Christmas items

The kitchen area is simple; I didn't do a ton of decor. I like to keep it simple, so I have a couple of decor items.


I added a couple of decor items in the bathroom. I have some little candles and added a few items right by the bathroom sink. 

DIY potpourri 

I'm going to go ahead and start making the potpourri. 

How to make DIY Christmas potpourri

You'll want to get some fresh cranberries, an orange, and an apple. If you have vanilla and cinnamon, that would be great. 

I'm going to go ahead and put these all in the pot, and I'm going to let it simmer for a little while, and then I will go ahead and put that in a bowl. 

First, I chopped up the apple. Then I chopped up the orange. I put that in the pan. I added some water to the pan, cranberries, a little vanilla, and some cinnamon.

Cooking the potpourri

I'm just going to go ahead and stir all of this. I suggest keeping it on a low simmer and then just letting the smell fill your home.

Once it's done cooking and simmering, drain it and place it in a little bowl to dry. The supplies were less than $3. 

Chicken taco soup

Now I'm going to share the recipe for chicken taco soup.  

Making Instant Pot chicken taco soup

I've got some chicken broth that is low in sodium and gluten-free. I got some chicken tenderloin, and I'll chop these up as needed. I've got two cans of black beans. I've got some rice and some quinoa. 

I will put all of that in the Instant Pot with about two or three cups of water added along with the chicken broth. For toppings, I suggest using cheese, sour cream, avocado, salsa, and taco seasoning. I'll also serve it with tortilla chips.

This is an easy, fun meal to host and entertain just for a couple of friends. 

Christmas decor on a budget

Remember, you can do your Christmas decorating on a budget. Hit up those thrift stores and go through the things you already have. How do you decorate for Christmas on a budget? Share your plans in the comments below.

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