Gift Ideas for the Home Cook
Can y’all believe the holiday season is already here? That means holiday shopping is about to be in full swing—if it’s not already! If you’ve got a foodie, home cook or baker in your family or friend group, this guide will help you with some gift ideas.
(Recipe featured above: Christmas Chip Cookies)
Maybe it’s because I’m a food blogger and avid home cook and baker, but kitchen gifts have historically been some of my favorite gifts. Especially if it’s something I know I will use often. My husband gave me my KitchenAid stand mixer the second Christmas we were together (before we even got engaged) and it has more than paid for itself since!
Whether the recipient is a college student, recent grad living the apartment life, a seasoned homeowner or anything in between, kitchen gifts are always good choices. To me, the best kitchen gifts are meaningful and useful.
Here are some great gift ideas for the home cook in your life!
Will any of these be on your wish list or shopping list this year?
Instant Pot or slow cooker // After having both a crock pot and a rice cooker, we consolidated into a single appliance and got an Instant Pot. This is an awesome multi-use appliance that would be great for apartment life. It’s been great for soups so far this fall. Slow cookers of any kind are awesome gifts in general and great to have in your cooking arsenal.
Cast iron skillet // If you’re going to get someone a single pan for cooking, get them a nice cast iron skillet. With proper care, it’ll last forever. And you can make pretty much everything in a cast iron. Our 12-inch skillet is is our most used piece of cookware. Lodge is always a good choice for brand.
Dutch oven // This is probably our second most used piece of cookware, behind our skillet. From bread to chili to curries and of course my favorite mac and cheese, our Dutch ovens get lots of action. We have a smaller, 4-ish quart one, and a larger 8 quart pot. There are tons of brands to choose from: Le Creuset, Lodge, Staub, T-Fal just to name a few.
Air fryer // My husband and I got an air fryer earlier this year and honestly it’s been a game changer. You can find some air fryers that are small enough for college dorms. There’s so much you can make in an air fryer: breakfasts, snacks, easy dinners. We have the Ninja 13-in-1 countertop air fryer (which honestly is a little overkill for us but it has a ton of features).
Side note: the air fryer is now my favorite way to make crispy French fries at home. Recipe coming soon.
Stasher Bags // We have a whole collection of Stasher Bags and use them daily! These reusable silicone bags have helped us reduce our plastic bag use significantly. They’re great for storing leftovers, packing lunches, road trip snacks, and keeping dog treats in the freezer. Stasher has tons of sizes and colors. We recommend one of their bundles for first-time buyers!
Nice food storage or meal prep containers // These sound kind of basic, but honestly nice glass storage containers go a long way. I’ve had some Pyrex containers since college and they’re still holding up pretty well! For other storage containers, I recommend the OXO Pop containers.
Travel mugs and water bottles // Don’t underestimate the power of a nice travel mug or water bottle! I take my MiiR 32 oz bottle nearly everywhere with me, and travel mugs are so convenient for taking coffee to work or on the road.
Bartender set // If your person likes to make cocktails at home, a nice bartender set makes a great gift choice. Depending on how “into” mixology they are, you can get varying levels and sizes of kits. Most kits come with a shaker, stirring spoon, jigger, and a Hawthorne strainer at minimum. And that’s everything you need to make delicious cocktails, like my Blood Orange Margaritas!
Drink tumblers // These wine tumblers from Brumate have been a go-to gift of mine for several years. They’re so versatile and come in so many fun colors and designs. I have my own little collection of Brumates myself. Brumate has more than wine tumblers, too—rocks glasses, pints, travel mugs, champagne flutes, even coolers! Plus they come out with something new like every six months.
Nice bakeware // A good cake pan, casserole dish, muffin tin, or baking sheet goes a long way in the kitchen! If your recipient frequently bakes things that require specialty bakeware, or just regular bakeware, a good quality tin or pan is a great gift idea. I’m a big fan of Bundt cake pans myself; I own two.
Specialty ingredients // Okay this is probably more on the geeky side of cooking. But a high quality spice blend, sauce, flavored salt or sugar, olive oil, or other similar items can make a big impact in the home cook’s kitchen. We love Alchemy Spice Company at our house!
Cooking class // I’ve taken several classes at a local cooking/baking school and I’ve learned so much at each one. Cooking or baking classes are a really great gift idea for the home cook, no matter how experienced they are. They’re especially great for complicated baking recipes (I’ve taken them for croissants and apple pie). If there isn’t a local in-person option, some companies like King Arthur Baking and Williams Sonoma offer online classes.
For more gift ideas this holiday season, check out my list of Southern small businesses you can support this season and all year long. I hope this round-up helps with your holiday shopping this year!
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