The 2018 holiday gift giving season is here! If you're like me, you have a ton of food lovers and skilled cooks on your shopping list. Today, I'm sharing my favorite holiday gifts for the cooks in your life. Rest assured there are items to fit every budge...and I've personally tried out each item myself before recommending them to my readers! The items being feature this year are perfect for the cooks in you life, and they can be used in their kitchen all year long!
(1) Labell Cutting Board. A sturdy, well made cutting board is an essential item that every kitchen needs. Labell cutting boards are made in Canada from premium recovered/recycled hardwoods, using exceptionally high production standards. Labell uses raw materials that would otherwise be discarded to create their culinary works of art. Less waste is always a good thing in my book! I also love that many Labell cutting boards cost significantly less than other brand-name cutting boards. Prices range from $15 to $200+, depending on board size and type of wood used. Labell cutting boards can be ordered directly from their convenient online store, and they are available at select U.S. retailers.
(2) Le Creuset Heritage Rectangular Covered Casserole. I have been a fan of Le Creuset for years. Their enamel over cast iron and stoneware baking and cooking vessels provide consistently excellent results. My current favorite Le Creuset piece is their 4-quart Heritage Rectangular Casserole. This stoneware baker features a secure lid, making it ideal for transporting dishes to parties and potlucks year-round. Stoneware maintains even temperatures and prevents scorching -- and it's safe for the freezer, microwave, oven, broiler, and dishwasher. That means you can cook a dish ahead of time, freeze it, then cook and serve it -- all in the same casserole dish! The exterior enamel resists scratches and stains, and the nearly-nonstick glazed interior easily releases foods for quick cleanup. This Le Creuset Best Seller retails for $100, and is available in 15 colors -- so you're sure to find a color to coordinate with any kitchen décor! To purchase, simply visit the Le Creuset online store -- they're offering FREE SHIPPING on any order through November 30th!!
(3) Hamilton Beach FlexBrew® Coffee Maker Single Serve. This year, I became a coffee convert -- starting nearly every morning with a flavored iced latte. For making single servings of coffee, I've been loving Hamilton Beach's FlexBrew® single serve coffee maker. This convenient unit brews a single cup of coffee using either K-Cup® Pods* OR your favorite brand of gourmet ground coffee. Talk about flexible! Select from regular or strong brew...and 8-, 10-, or 14-ounce servings. Then press start...and you have a steamy mug of coffee in about a minute. I love that I can control what goes into my morning latte -- and it's much more economical than hitting the corner coffee shop! This model of Hamilton Beach FlexBrew® (49975) retails for $79.99. It can be purchased via Amazon, including FREE SHIPPING! As an added bonus, The Weekend Gourmet readers can use the code 10FLEXBREW at Amazon to SAVE 10% off when purchasing a FlexBrew® unit!
* K-Cup® pod is a registered trademark of Keurig Green Mountain, Inc. Use of the K-Cup® trademark does not imply any Hamilton Beach affiliation with or endorsement by Keurig Green Mountain, Inc.
(4) Le Creuset Stoneware Cake Stand. Le Creuset is known for its bakeware and cookware...but did you know they also feature stoneware serving pieces too? One of my favorites is the simply elegant Stoneware Cake Stand. Any baker's homemade cakes are display-worthy with this beautiful cake stand! At nearly 12 inches in diameter, it easily fits all cakes baked in standard size pans -- including bundts. As an added bonus, the sturdy exterior enamel glaze won't be damaged by metal utensils or knives. Further, the cake stand's nearly-nonstick glazed interior easily releases foods for quick cleanup, and it's dishwasher-safe. The Le Creuset Stoneware Cake Stand comes in seven colors, but the red-tone Cerise is absolutely perfect for holiday gift giving. Wouldn't it be fun to bake a festive holiday cake and gift the cake and cake stand together? The cake can be enjoyed immediately...and the cake stand can be used for a lifetime! The Stoneware Cake Stand retails for $50 and can be purchased direct from Le Creuset. As an added bonus, shipping is FREE on all orders through November 30th.
(5) State Dish Towel. Do you have a cook on your list who's bursting with pride for their beloved home state? Then the embroidered State Dish Towel is uniquely personal gift that they will love displaying! Uncommon Goods offers colorful embroidered graphic dish towels for all 5o states -- so everyone on your gift list can display their home state pride for all to see! It's a fun and thoughtful gift for friends and family who are a lifelong resident of a state -- or those who live far from home and want to show their long-distance pride! The Texas towel is colorful and shows the state's major cities and landmarks. The State Dish Towel retails for $20 and can be ordered from Uncommon Goods.
(6) Avocado Hugger. Ask any avocado lover, and they'll tell you their biggest avocado dilemma is how to prevent browning when you use only half of an avocado. The Avocado Hugger is the perfect solution. This handy kitchen device is form-fitting silicone cup that slips over the unused avocado half to form an airtight seal in the refrigerator. No pit in your avocado half? No problem! The pit pocket can be pushed into the well where a pit would be. Avocado Huggers are convenient, easy to use, and economical. Each set of two Avocado Huggers is just $7.95 and can be ordered from Uncommon Goods! That makes it a perfect gift option for small shopping budgets...or as a fun stocking stuffer.
(7) Press and Measure Herb Infuser. Herb-infused olive oils are a simple way to add an extra dimension of flavor to cooked dishes. Buying these gourmet flavored olive oils can be costly -- but they're easily made at home using the handy Press and Measure Herb Infuser! This 10-ounce capacity glass bottle infuses essences from fresh herbs into simple olive oil. When the fresh flavors are blended, simply press a button on top of the bottle to easily measure the desired amount of flavored oil...down to the teaspoon. This handy kitchen gadget has a wide range of kitchen uses, and it can be purchased for $13 at Uncommon Goods.
(8) Cookbooks. One of the most personal gifts you can give the cook in your life is a cookbook they can use all year long...after the holidays are over. The hard part is selecting the perfect cookbook for each cook in your life. I have a couple of great cookbooks to recommend. For the bakers on your shopping list, The Cheesecake Bible ($24.95 MSRP) is a perfect choice! Author George Geary's definitive soft-cover book on cheesecakes features 200 cheesecake recipes. Recipes range from sweet to savory...both baked and no-bake! There's also a chapter devoted to sauces and toppings to pair with the cheesecake creations. For cooks who enjoy learning the history and origins of foods...and making authentic traditional cuisines...The Rancho de Chimayo 50th Anniversary Cookbook ($21) is an indispensable resource! Rancho de Chimayo restaurant is located 30 miles north of Santa Fe, New Mexico. Open for five decades, the restaurant serves delicious traditional New Mexican food. This excellent cookbook shares the history of the restaurant -- and the dishes it serves. Many of the recipes in the book come directly from the Jaramillo family, who own the restaurant. We loved dining at Rancho de Chimayo in October...and I loved sharing the cookbook's recipe for their delicious Tortilla Soup to my family over this long holiday weekend!
There you have it! I hope these gift suggestions have helped you find a fabulous gift for the cooks on your shopping list! Be to come back later this week for the second part of this year's Holiday Gift Guide. I'll be featuring the best mail order food items for the food aficionados in your life! Sweet and savory...I'm featuring my picks for gifting to food lovers.
Disclosure: The manufacturers of the items featured in this year's Holiday Gift Guide provided me with sample items to try in my kitchen. I only recommend items that I have personally tried and enjoyed using.