5 Tasty (and Tasteful) Kitchen Gifts

By: Co+op

‘Tis the season of giving. And nothing feels quite so jolly good as sharing a great gift with a loved one. Do you have someone on your list who loves food? Well, look no further. No matter the level of foodie passion—beginner cook or master home chef—everyone can appreciate a thoughtful gift that invigorates the senses and warms the heart. Here are some tasty, tasteful kitchen gift ideas to get you started:

1. Specialty chocolate

Add a little sweetness to your gift repertoire with chocolate. It can be as easy as a smooth, rich milk chocolate bar, or you can seek out an unexpected flavor combo with oomph like dark chocolate and chili peppers. You can find many varieties of fair trade chocolate bars at food co-ops, often in pretty packaging. Wrap them in cheesecloth and twine for a perfect stocking stuffer. Or if you're feeling more hands-on, you can make your own chocolate treats, like these delectable orange chocolate truffles, packaged up snugly in a candy box or cookie tin.

2. Gourmet coffee/tea

There may be no better way to greet a snowy morning than with a warm, earthy mug of fair trade coffee or tea. Coffee, like other agricultural crops, is harvested at different times of the year and in different areas of the globe. For the freshest varieties in this chilly season of the U.S., look for South American coffees from Peru or Bolivia, or on the other side of the globe, Papua New Guinea. As for tea, this time of year, it’s easy to find festive, seasonal flavors like herbal cranberry spice or peppermint. Or you can look to cold-weather classics like Irish breakfast, Masala chai, Yunnan black, jasmine, or a traditional Earl Grey. If you'd like a slightly DIY gift, stop by the bulk aisle of your local co-op and see what kind of teas are in stock. Try making your own tea sampler with a few cute jars and tea balls, secured with ribbons!

3. DIY mixes and treats

Nothing says happy holidays like a homemade gift—and there are lots of DIY eats you can whip up in the kitchen! If you’re looking for ways to narrow your options, making a mix that will last longer than a few days will help spread holiday cheer throughout the season. Try making your own spices, salts, jam or fruit preserves, or yummy herb spreads. Consider packaging them in a handsome glass bottle that can be reused. Or, try making a beloved holiday treat like brittle this year and gift your creations in a unique cookie jar.

4. Local products gift basket

Thoughtful gift baskets can be as fun to arrange as they are to receive—let your creativity shine. Check out our guide to crafting the perfect personalized gift basket, with tips on packaging categorized gift ideas.

5. Co-op gift card

Co-op Gift CardConsider including a gift card to your local food co-op as the perfect accompaniment to any holiday greeting card or basket. Beyond providing fresh, local, and nutritious groceries for any age, co-ops are home to endless ideas for adventurous, DIY creations. Does your loved one enjoy making innovative entrees or infusing their own oils, or are they looking to start trying? Give the gift of inspiration with this passport to culinary exploration.

A delicious, happy holiday season to you and yours!