The holidays are right around the corner. That means finding the best gifts for your friends and family. I don’t know about you, but I love getting food-related gifts. They are practical because everyone loves food, and they can also pull people out of their comfort zone. Giving someone a new kitchen gadget or funky hot sauce creates an opportunity for them to find a way to use it. They may end up loving it. They may end up hating it, but they will have a new food experience.
Scouring the internet or a local kitchenware store for the perfect gift can be daunting. It’s hard to know where to start and what will really put a smile on someone’s face. There are four main categories in gifting someone the joy of food: subscription boxes, kitchenware, kitchen gadgets and food. If you can narrow down the search to one of these categories finding a showstopping gift will be a breeze. This guide is a list of all of the products I wish I could get my hands on and some of my all-time favorites.
Price: $29.99 or $39.99 per month plus shipping
Who it’s perfect for: Your loved one who is equally obsessed with Instagram and candy. Each Tiffany blue box is packaged for ultimate cuteness and comes with six different types of candies. The Fun Box is filled with six-ounce candy cups while the Party Box has 13-ounce candy cups.
Price: $129 a month
Who it’s perfect for: Anyone who loves cooking quality meats. ButcherBox delivers only 100% grass-fed beef, free-range, organic chicken, heritage breed pork and wild-caught Alaskan salmon to your doorstep. A first purchase comes with two pounds each of ground beef and bacon making it an even better gift for this Christmas.
Price: $220 for three months, $415 for six months & $800 for 12 months
Who it’s perfect for: The cheesemonger in your life who loves to try any and all kinds of cheese. Each month’s box is filled with three-to-five cheeses and sometimes a pairing like preserves or honey.
Price: $58 for a four-pint pack or $78 for a six-pint pack
Who it’s perfect for: Everyone. After working at this Kennebunkport sweet shop, I can honestly say it is the most unique and tastiest ice cream ever to be created. It is so smooth and packed with flavor. You cannot go wrong buying this pint club subscription no matter who it’s for.
Who it’s perfect for: The one friend whose taste buds you haven’t totally nailed down yet. Goldbelly offers 12 different types of themed subscription boxes filled with acclaimed food from around the country. Choose from a Best of Goldbelly subscription or a box focused on one food item including pizza, bacon, cookies, BBQ, cake and more.
Who it’s perfect for: Aspiring sommeliers and dinner party aficionados. California wine club ships a variety of wines each month sourced from small, local vineyards. They offer five different types of subscriptions to fit all of your friends’ needs.
Who it’s perfect for: Your friend looking to start adulting or spice up their charcuterie spreads. This board is so cute I just might buy one for myself. The tiny golden bees and honeycomb pattern over marble is sure to win over whoever receives this gift.
Who it’s perfect for: People who have no space left in their kitchen. The only thing better than a regular rice cooker is a mini rice cooker. This pot by Dash makes two cups of rice. It’s a great size for singles and those looking to meal prep throughout the week.
Who it’s perfect for: Worldly couples who just got back from their trip to Switzerland. There’s no better way to celebrate different cultures than through food. Plus, who doesn’t love fondue. This set is made for company, so be sure to gift it someone where you’ll benefit from its use.
Who it’s perfect for: Friends who dabble as mixologists on the side. Get ready for some killer cocktails when you gift this set to someone. The copper color will add a modern touch to any kitchen countertop.
Who it’s perfect for: Daring foodies looking to spice up their life. This smoking gun adds a new dimension of flavor to meats, vegetables and more. Your friend will be busy experimenting with new ways to cook their favorite dishes once they receive this gift.
Who it’s perfect for: Fancy friends that already have everything they need in the kitchen. Only the most luxury of counters include an espresso maker. This is truly a lifesaver for coffee folks trying to take their mornings to the next level or espresso martini lovers.
Price: Starting at $49
Who it’s perfect for: Festive ice cream lovers. Jeni’s Ice Cream turns all of your favorite holiday flavors into ice cream. Send your friends boozy eggnog, cognac with gingerbread, white chocolate peppermint and more, or opt for classic pints like Boston Cream Pie and Salted Peanut Butter with Chocolate Flecks.
Who it’s perfect for: Umami seekers. Straight from the Momofuku Culinary Lab comes three seasoned salts designed to add flavor to all of your savory dishes. They are available for pre-order now.
Who it’s perfect for: New York Foodies. Give the gift of New York with Breads Bakery iconic chocolate babka. I sent this to Liv once, and she said it was one of the best babkas she’s ever had. With three loaves in a pack, this purchase is a no-brainer.
Who it’s perfect for: Pretzel connoisseurs. Eastern Standard’s Pretzels made Oprah’s gift guide this holiday season, and the company is also based in Maine. Liv’s mom heated up a couple of these frozen pretzels for us one morning, and it was love at first bite.
Who it’s perfect for: Spice fans looking to branch out from buffalo. I read an article about Shaquanda’s hot sauce while recovering from my tonsillectomy. I don’t remember ordering it, but when it came I was thrilled to have it. The hints of habanero and horseradish add a depth that most hot sauces don’t have.
Price: $69.95 for a 12 pack
Who it’s perfect for: Literally anyone and everyone. The price is steep for 12 cookies, but it will be worth it to hear your friends rave about their favorite gift of the season. These are also on the list of things I sent to Liv once, and they are overwhelmingly approved by her and her friends.
Who it’s perfect for: People who are afraid of fruit pits. If you think that last sentence is ridiculous, I used to be very scared of fruit pits. The Cherry Chomper saved my life on multiple occasions and could save your friends’ too.
Who it’s perfect for: Your friend with no attention span. Dishes that require consistent stirring can be a challenge. That’s why this gadget does it for you. Set specific timing and speeds for your dish to come out perfect without any work from you.
Who it’s perfect for: Anyone who still uses a selfie stick. Bring your family and friends selfies to life when you gift them a toaster that imprints their face on slices of bread. I’ll admit it’s a novelty product, but also useful if your friend needs a toaster.
Who it’s perfect for: Friends looking to show off. This is one of my favorite items on this list. How fun would it be to show up to a party with a raclette maker? It’s such a crowd-pleasing gadget and highly interactive.
Who it’s perfect for: Friends trying to relive their college days. There’s nothing that brings more frat party nostalgia than a mini ice luge. Like the Partyclette, this is highly interactive and sure to be a crowd-pleaser (if it’s that kind of group).
Who it’s perfect for: Home cooks and budding chefs. This charming gyoza maker can turn anyone into a potsticker pro. Your friend can concoct their own fun fillings for their dumplings then with the turn of a crank have handmade gyoza.