homemade food gifts

Have you started shopping yet? Gifts for the family this year are a little tricky as we’ll be bringing them home on a plane, but I’m already almost done. (My secret is online shopping ;)) In the past, I’ve always given something homemade and I think I’ll have to make a few of the items below, even if they don’t make it back to the midwest with us.

Here are some of my favorite savory (and a few sweet) ideas for homemade food gifts to give to loved ones this year!

Curried Pecans – via me

Salted Maple Caramel Sauce – via me!

Pineapple-Infused Vodka – via me

Rosemary Olive Oil – via Whole Foods

Curried Lentil Soup – via Good Housekeeping 

Tuscan Spice Rub – Eating Well


Slow-Cooker Bacon Jam – via Martha Stewart (my friend Mary Beth gave this to us last year and we LOVED it!)

Hot Mango Chutney – via Tinned Tomatoes

Limoncello – via Hedonia 

Caramel-Almond Popcorn – via Martha Stewart


Olives with Fennel Seeds and Orange – via Martha Stewart

Do you give homemade food gifts? Or, if you are on the receiving end, do you eat them? I just read an article that said most food gifts go to waste – the horror! 

Don’t forget to donate to the Haiti Medical Mission of Wisconsin!  



    • Emily says

      Peppermint dark chocolate bars sound AMAZING! I just picked up dark chocolate + peppermint covered pretzels for my husbands stocking…but I totally cheated and bought them. :)

  1. says

    We are doing homemade gifts for our neighbors this year. I am getting together with my sister in laws and MIL in a couple of weeks, we will each bake some things and then swap so we have a variety plate to give out. I just might have to use a couple of your ideas!

  2. says

    That bacon jam sounds amazing! I have definitely given my share of homemade food gifts in the past- I hope they didn’t go to waste. :) I love giving things like specialty salts and sauces and then including a little recipe book or a recipe box with the recipes already printed inside.

  3. says

    If you wanted to mail me some infused vodka, I wouldn’t be opposed. :)

    I wonder if the thrown away gifts are those that are like fruitcakes and stale cookies and such. Actually, my mom is a retired teacher and she’d come home with ALL kinds of baked goods and treats on the last day of school before the break. We would have to throw some away because we (even as a hungry family of 5) couldn’t finish everything before it went bad. Lesson learned for me is to send food gifts to the teacher the week before school lets out.

    • Emily says

      Good lesson! My Mom has worked in the schools too and said the teachers pretty much know which food (kitchens/hygiene/etc) they can trust. :)

  4. says

    Homemade gifts are such a sweet way to let friends and family know you are thinking of them over the Holidays. Thanks for all the great ideas!

  5. jamie says

    thank you so much for this! i am planning on giving some homemade items this year to family and i’ve been wondering what to make! :)

  6. says

    I give small bags of homemade cookies to a few of my church choir friends who I know don’t bake, and they are all very appreciative — they look forward to my sampler every year! I take cookies in to work, too, and typically leave with an empty tray, so I guess people like them? :)

    For me, consuming food gifts is hit or miss — if I don’t like something, I’ll usually bring it in to work and put a post-it on it that says “free to a good home.” :) One year, I think I got four loaves of banana bread from students — good thing breads freeze well!

    • Emily says

      See, I definitely appreciate homemade gifts, but especially because I don’t really bake, I would love an assortment of holiday treats! Re-gifting is also a great way to pass them along if you aren’t a fan. :)

  7. says

    I am a huge fan of the homemade food gifts. Last year, I went totally overboard adn had a blast making candies, barks, and cookies. I gave them to everyone….event the mailman! I am excited to try the lentil soup mix. What a healthy and creative idea!

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