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I grew up in a lower middle class family and worked my way through college. So I couldn’t afford to travel internationally much until I was in my thirties.
For me, eating exotic food from around the world served as my first introduction to the culture of India, Morocco, the Middle East, Latin America, the Caribbean, etc.
As I fell in love with traditional dishes from around the world, I became more interested in the music, art, and history of these places.
That ever-expanding interest in cultural exploration is what ultimately led me to become a travel writer, which gave me a chance to try all sorts of wonderful and weird food around the world.
Over 20+ years, I got to break bread in local communities, interview local and internationally known chefs (including Anthony Bourdain) and explore traditional cultures on a much deeper level.
Check out our ultimate gourmet’s guide to the Best Food Gifts From Around the World, from monthly food subscription boxes and foodie gift baskets to holiday food gifts and more!
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BEST FOOD GIFTS FROM AROUND THE WORLD GUIDE
- Baked Goods Gift Baskets
- Chocolate Gift Boxes
- Coffee & Tea Gift Sets
- International Food Gift Boxes & Baskets
- American Food Gift Boxes & Baskets
- Home Chef Food Gifts
Baked Goods Gift Baskets
1. Maya’s Cookies Fireside Collection & 2. Candy Cane Land
Maya’s Cookies is a black-owned, vegan-friendly cookie company based in San Diego that we discovered a few years ago. They consistently offer great food gifts that touch your heart by reminding you of a different time.
One bite of her fresh-baked delights always takes me back to my childhood. One of the highlights of spending Christmas in Georgia always included the holiday tradition of making cookies with my mom.
READ MORE: Lebkuchen Recipe for Homemade German Christmas Cookies
3. Porto’s Bakery & Cafe
Cuba is a country we’ve wanted to visit for years. And as anyone who’s read our stories on Buena Vista Social Club or the Afro-Cuban All-Stars can attest, we are HUGE fans of Cuban culture.
So when we got a chance to sample some of the scrumptious Cuban culinary delights from Porto’s Bakery & Cafe, we literally popped them into the oven almost immediately upon arrival.
Manzanillo-born chef Rosa Porto (who passed away in 2019) founded her LA-based brand back in the ’70s. You can taste generations of Cuban tradition in every bite of her Pastel de Carne (meat pies) and picadillo-stuffed Potato Balls.
All were better than most dishes we’ve had in our favorite Cuban restaurants in Atlanta. But her Refugiados– a light and tangy guava and cheese strudel– are addictive, making it easy to understand why Porto has become a Southern Cali legend.
READ MORE: 25 Fun Christmas Eve Traditions Around the World
4. Tate’s Bake Shop
Mary spent the first 14 years of her life in New York City, which has always been one of my favorite places to spend Christmas in the USA.
So a gift basket from Tate’s Bake Shop is like giving (or receiving) a taste of the Big Apple.
The Long Island shop was founded by Kathleen King in 1980, when she was just 21. Now, 40+ years later, this Hamptons staple has been hailed by The NY Times as “worth putting miles on the odometer.”
Their Southampton Treats Tray is a great foodie gift basket for families, offering a sampling of Tate’s best baked goods as well as 3 bags of their signature cookies.
All of the baked goods are moist and exquisitely flavorful, but their Pumpkin Pound Cake, Pecan Pie Bars, and Crumb Cake were our favorites.
READ MORE: NYC Christmas Window Displays (A Free DIY Walking Tour)
5. Cream Bakery
One of our favorite “new to us” discoveries, Cream Bakery is a family-owned business based in New Jersey that focuses on the kind of fresh-baked goods your grandma used to make.
They no preservatives, no artificial flavors of any kind. And yet their individually wrapped desserts remain fresh for up to 4 weeks because their pure ingredients (such as butter rather than margarine) are more shelf stable.
Cream offers four different flavor combinations, each of which is available in boxes of 8 (for $29) or 16 bars ($56).
Mary especially loved their Chocolate Lover’s Gift Set, which included 2 Fudge Brownies, 2 Chocolate Chip Blondies, 2 S’mores Cookies Bars (topped with toasted marshmallows), and 2 Nutella Swirl Bars.
The latter was our favorite, with a delicious chocolate hazelnut ribbon. But all of them were moist, rich, full of flavor, and perfectly sized for post-dinner indulgence.
READ MORE: 90 Christmas Traditions Around the World (With Fun Christmas Facts)
Chocolate Gift Boxes
6. MarieBelle Chocolate Advent Calendar & 7. Venchi Advent Calendar
Advent Calendars make great Christmas gifts if you’re willing to send them a bit before the holiday, but they also make a delightful treat for yourself!
NYC-based brand MarieBelle has an upscale shop in Soho that specializes in artisan bean-to-bar chocolates made with the finest quality cacao beans, with lots of great luxury food gifts for chocolate connoisseurs.
Their limited-edition Chocolate Advent Calendar makes a fantastic Christmas gift, with a gorgeous design that captures the whimsical allure of their holiday storefront.
Inside each compartment you’ll find divinely upscale sweets, ranging from petit chocolate pearls and caramels a chocolate tree, peppermint bark, and much more.
Venchi is an Italian chocolate company founded in Turin by Silviano Venchi back in 1878. They made their name with Nougatine, which blended dark chocolate with chopped, caramelized Piedmont Hazelnuts.
Their Prestige Advent Calendar is exquisitely designed and contains 31 scrumptious chocolates ranging from Chocoviar and Cremini to terrific Truffles with chocolate mousse, caramel, and hazelnuts inside.
Much like the MarieBelle calendar, it’s a great gift you’ll want to reuse year after year!
8. Goodnow Farms Chocolate Gold Winners Collection & 9. Sugar Plum Chocolate Bars
If you’ve got a gourmet chocoholic on your Christmas gift list, chocolate bars are always a great stocking stuffer. But not all chocolate brands are cut from the same cloth, and some are so swanky they deserve ribbons and bows.
Take the MA-based Goodnow Farms Chocolate. Their ethically sourced, single origin bars have earned more awards than any other North American chocolate maker, and “Best Chocolate in America” honors from Food & Wine.
The Gold Winners Collection includes 6 of their most award-winning bars, including 70% dark chocolate bars from Ucayali, Peru and Esmeraldas, Ecuador, and a 77% dark chocolate bar from El Carmen, Nicaragua.
We especially love the “Special Reserve” flavored bars, which include Las Palomas Coffee, Lawley’s Rum, and Putnam Rye Whiskey.
If you’re looking for a more budget-friendly brand, Sugar Plum Chocolates offers a choose-your-own Nostalgic Chocolate Bars 5-Pack at about 1/3 the price of the decidedly upscale Goodnow Farms gift set.
Available flavor options include Peanut Butter & Jelly, Fruity Flakes (with crushed Fruity Pebbles inside), Pancakes & Syrup, and Milk & Cookies (Santa’s favorite).
READ MORE: 25 Other Names for Santa Claus Around the World
10. André’s Confiserie Suisse Best Seller Gift Box
Founded in Kansas City MO in 1955 by Master Konditor-Confiseur André Bollier, Andre’s Confiserie Suisse has always been dedicated to classic Swiss chocolate techniques and classic recipes.
Today the company is run by André’s grandson, Pastry Chef /Chocolatier René Bollier, who apprenticed under his grandfather and father and trained in Switzerland.
With four different size options ranging in price from $45 to $150, their Best Seller Gift Boxes make a wonderful introduction to the Andre’s Confiserie Suisse line.
We sampled the $125 Gift Box, which weighs nearly 4 pounds and includes 10 types of chocolate. There are various chocolate-covered almonds, chocolate-covered sea salt caramels, Signature Hot Chocolate, and other standards.
But our favorites were the Chocolate Hazelnut Butter, KC Whiskey Caramel Bar, Chocolate Orange Peels, and Chocolate Mint Leaves (which taste like a gourmet version of Andes Crème de Menthe).
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Coffee & Tea Gift Sets
11. Redemption Road Coffee Gift Basket
Founded in 2015 by Aaron and Jessica Harsch, Redemption Road Coffee’s tagline– “Coffee for the Soul”– reflects the couple’s roots in ministry.
So it’s no surprise that their specialty grade coffee comes from farms that give back to local communities. Whether it’s providing medical care to folks in Malawi or educating kids in Honduras, this is truly a purpose-driven brand.
Their Large Gift Basket is arguably our favorite coffee gift of 2022. It includes 2 bags of whole bean coffee (one medium roast, one dark), two handcrafted leather mugs, and an African coffee scoop, all packed into a hand-sewn basket made from burlap coffee bags.
Aside from the aesthetic beauty of the coffee gift set, the coffees themselves are exceptional. The single origin Honduras coffee is perfect for chilly winter mornings, with rich notes of nutty chocolate and brown sugar.
But their single origin Malawi coffee is one of the best coffees we’ve tasted this year, with a rich roast that really brings out the smooth flavor of dark chocolate. It’s a great gift gourmets will savor to the last drop!
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12. Volcanica Coffee Company Gift Box
Giving a gift box of the most popular varietals from Volcanica Coffee (which imports 150+ exotic coffees from volcanic regions) offers your favorite coffee lover a chance to try flavors from all around the world.
The box of Estate Coffees we tried included three 16-oz bags– Brazil Yellow Bourbon, Costa Rica Original Tarrazu, and Ethiopian Yirgacheffe.
The Brazil Yellow Bourbon is grown on the Fazenda Recreio Farm in São Sebastiõ da Grama, with a mild, mellow flavor that has sweet notes of cocoa and praline.
The Costa Rica Original is grown on small farms in the mountains around San Marcos de Tarrazu, boasting rich flavors that include hints of tangy citrus and tropical fruits.
But their Ethiopian Yirgacheffe was our personal favorite. Grown in southern Ethiopia’s Yirgacheffe region (where wild Arabica originated), this medium-bodied brew is known for its uniquely floral flavors, with acidic notes of blueberry, blackberry, and lemon.
READ MORE: The Best Coffee in the World (A Gourmet’s Guide to 30 Types of Coffee)
13. Pure Origin Coffee Bundle 6-Pack
The Nevada-based Pure Origin Coffee is focused on empowering coffee farmers around the world by sharing their individual stories of sustainability and community impact.
Their 6-pack Bundle makes an excellent gift for coffee lovers, allowing them to explore varietals from Africa, Asia, Central America, and South America while using AR technology to learn more about the growers.
Available in ground or whole bean 10 oz bags, the coffees run the gamut from light to dark roasts, with all purchases benefiting clean water initiatives, improving access to medical care, women’s education, and more.
All of the Pure Origin Coffees we’ve tried have been impressive, but the dark citrusy notes of the Organic Congo, the smooth caramel flavor of the Honduras, and the rich chocolate of their organic Fair Trade coffee from Sumatra, Indonesia have been our fav0rites.
Other varietals included in the coffee gift set include offerings from Colombia, Kenya, and Peru.
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14. Kahwa Coffee- Holiday Coffee 3-Pack
Founded in 2006 by Sarah and Raphael Perrier, the St Petersburg-based Kahwa Coffee has gradually grown into the largest independent coffee roaster in the state of Florida.
The brand really took off in 2008, after world-renowned chef Paul Bocuse selected them for his Epcot restaurant, Chefs de France. Now they have 14 retail locations and more than 800 wholesale customers.
Tasting the gourmet coffees included in their Holiday Coffee 3-Pack, it’s easy to understand why Kahwa has proven so successful. With high quality beans and an artisanal approach to roasting, every cup is packed with bold flavor!
The gift set includes 12 oz bags of their ever-popular Cubano Espresso Blend (if you like dark roasts, you’ll love it) and Sirocco House Blend (a smooth coffee with notes of cherry and honey).
But our favorite was their new Winter Wonderland Seasonal Blend. Mixing Central American and Ethiopian beans to create a cozy cup of sweet mocha with a hint of orange, it’s perfect for cold winter mornings.
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15. Stephen James Curated Coffee Collection Coffee Lover’s Gift Set
Launched by self-proclaimed “coffee geek” Stephen Letourneau in 2022, this Columbus, Ohio-based brand was designed to provide an educational lens for coffee, travel, and wellness experiences.
Letourneau sources responsibly farmed, small batch coffee beans from all around the world, with a focus on single-origin, specialty coffees.
The Stephen James Curated Coffee Collection is offering a special Coffee Lover’s Gift Set that allows the recipient to taste all 4 of their bold varietals in 3 oz or 12 oz sizes.
Their delicious Light Roast is a sweet, smooth Arabica from the Kateshi Farm in Zambia, with notes of cranberry and semi-sweet chocolate.
Though we usually prefer darker roasts, we liked it just as much their Medium Roast from the Daterra Farm in Brazil, which features a floral aroma of almond and chocolate.
We also enjoyed their earthy, rich Dark Roast from Papua New Guinea, which has a strange green color but a wonderfully full-bodied flavor.
READ MORE: 40 Ways to Celebrate New Year Traditions Around the World
16. Biscayne Coffee
If you’ve read this far, it should be obvious that we love eco-friendly brands with a philanthropic mission of some sort, and the Miami-based Biscayne Coffee is no exception.
Not only is their Fair Trade coffee certified CCOF organic, but 10% of all sales are donated to the Biscayne Bay Foundation, whose mission is to increase awareness of the health and sustainability of Biscayne Bay.
Although they do not offer any sort of pre-packaged gift set for Christmas, they do offer 3 different locally-roasted gourmet coffees, as well as coffee mugs, tumblers, and other branded merchandise.
Their medium roast Biscayne Single Origin Colombia Coffee was our favorite. Grown on small farms in the San Agustin province of Colombia, it offers rich flavors of caramel, chocolate, and orange.
We also enjoyed their Biscayne Blend Light Roast, which has notes ranging from apple and citrus to hazelnut, and their Biscayne Blend Dark Roast, with bold notes of caramel, dark chocolate, and raspberry.
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17. TEALEAVES Holiday Gift Set & 18. the Pantone Collection Gift Box
I’ve been a diehard coffee lover since I was a teenager, but in recent years I’ve really come to enjoy making my own unique herbal tea blends as a hobby.
TEALEAVES is a luxury tea brand that has been blending tea for 5-star hotels, chefs, and exclusive brands such as BVLGARI, Cooper Hewitt, and The Ritz Carlton for more than 25 years now.
Their best-selling Pantone Collection Gift Box and new Holiday Gift Set are fantastic food gift ideas, giving the recipient a chance to taste an array of the company’s best upscale teas.
The gorgeously colorful Pantone Collection features 30 organic tea bags (each of which brews 2 cups), with 10 flavors that range from herbal Chamomile Blossoms, Peppermint, and Vanilla Rooibos to traditional classics like English Breakfast, Earl Grey with Lavender, and Monsoon Chai.
We also enjoyed the seasonal flavors of the Holiday Gift Set, which includes elegant 40g packages of their Nutcracker (Black tea with notes of hazelnut and vanilla), Sugar Plum Fairy (a sweet Rooibos tea with plum, strawberry, and vanilla flavors), and Chocolate Peppermint Truffle teas.
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International Food Gift Boxes & Baskets
19. Ciao Food & Wine Truffle Box
Italy has had a special place in my heart ever since I did a 3-week tour of Italy with the Atlanta Boy Choir, where we sang for Pope John Paul II in the Vatican a few days after I turned 12.
Longtime GGT fans may also know of our fondness for mushrooms. We go foraging for Chanterelles, Oysters, and American Caesars in summer, and started growing mushrooms at home (Shiitakes and Wine Caps) last year.
So the Truffle Box from Ciao Food and Wine taps into two of our passions and makes an excellent gift for anyone who loves Italy in general and/or truffles in particular.
Washington-based chef/owner Mark Laska has curated tasty gifts for food lovers including Tiberino Italian One-Pot Risotto with Porcini & White Truffle Oil, Morelli Tagliolini Pasta with Summer Truffle, an exceptional Sottocenere al Tartufo Cheese, Acacia Tartufo Honey, and Marella Classic Tarallini with Olive Oil.
It all pairs perfectly with a bottle of Vietti Nebbiolo wine from the Barolo area of Italy, and comes with a large canvas tote bag and wine corkscrew.
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20. Taste of Haiti Box- The Premier Box
For unique food gifts, consider a subscription service from Taste of Haiti which offers one-month, 6-month, and 12-month subscriptions, with each box packed with hand-selected, artisanal Haitian flavors.
Although we’ve been close to the island nation on our trips to the Dominican Republic, we’ve never spent any time in Haiti. So we were curious how its food would differ from the dishes we sampled in Cabarete, Puerto Plata, and Punta Cana.
Their Premier Box offers a solid introduction to Haitian food that includes a strangely spicy peanut butter, a delightfully tangy grapefruit jam, a small bag of Haitian coffee, a Haitian chocolate bar from Askanya, a bottle of hot sauce, lemongrass tea, cintronnelle tea, and more.
The only element we didn’t enjoy was the Sweet Coconut Cassava Bread, which tasted a little stale by the time we opened it. But everything else was great, and it comes in a beautifully designed box that is a lovely gift in itself.
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21. iGourmet Taste of France Collection
This family-owned food gift service was launched in 1997, inspired by a grandfather who imported his favorite European cheeses below the waterline on passenger steamships.
They’ve since grown into one of the largest online specialty food retailers in the US, specializing in gift baskets (including an exclusive line with Martha Stewart) and Food of the Month Clubs sourced from small to mid-sized artisan food producers.
iGourmet’s Taste of France Collection offers an excellent assortment of French foodie fare that makes it a great gift for the holidays.
It includes two types of charcuterie (air-dried Saucisson Sec Aux Herbes de Provence and dry cured Jambon Sec), cheese (6-month aged Mimolette and Agour Ossau-Iraty AOP, and sharp Buche de Chevre), plus olives, purple fig jam, crispy French waffle crackers, Edmond Fallot Original Dijon Mustard, and several other items.
READ MORE: 5 Weird Foods the French Consider Delicacies
22. Tropical Fruit Box- Create Your Own Exotic Fruit Box
Know someone who loves trying weird foods from all around the world?
The Cuban-American-owned Tropical Fruit Box is a fantastic way to explore flavors you’ve never tasted before, with different options for curated variety boxes or “Create Your Own” boxes of fruits from around the world.
Last year their Taste the Exotics Fruit Box introduced us to the green Cherimoya from Chile. Known as the “ice cream fruit” for its sweet, creamy flavor, it was a decadent delight we’d never had a chance to sample during our travels in the country.
This year our 19-pound Create Your Own Exotic Fruit Box also included Tropical Avocado, two kinds of Dragon Fruit (from Florida and Ecuador), Persimmon, and Soursop (which, to us, tastes like a mix of Cheromiya, Banana, and Pineapple).
It also included the new pink Rosé Pineapple, a beautiful, extra-sweet fruit grown in Costa Rica that took more than 12 years to develop. It’s genetically modified by adding lycopene, which gives tomatoes their natural ruby-red color.
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23. Fix & Fogg Build Your Own Selection Box
If I’m being honest, the idea of getting a box of nut butters didn’t seem all that exciting to me at first. But that was before I tasted the award-winning all-natural nut butters from the New Zealand-based Fix & Fogg.
The company just recently began expanding into the U.S. market, offering an impressive array of flavors that are all gluten-free, vegan-friendly, and contain no hydrogenated oils, added sugars, or palm oil (which is in many “natural” nut butters).
Fix & Fogg’s Build Your Own Selection Box offers 13 different flavors to choose from, with 4 jars in a standard box.
My personal favorites were the Chocolate Hazelnut Butter (which offers all the flavor of Nutella, but with less sugar and ZERO palm oil) and Peanut Coffee & Maple Butter (3 flavors I love, but would never think to combine in a delicious spread).
Mary loved their Dark Chocolate Peanut Butter, which was less sweet and more flavorful than you might imagine.
Other intriguing offerings include Smoke & Fire Peanut Butter (with green chile, natural Manuka smoke, and Spanish smoked paprika) and Everything Butter (with hemp, chia, sesame, sunflower, flaxseeds and pumpkin seeds).
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American Food Gift Boxes & Baskets
24. CharcutNuvo Holiday Sausage Sampler Gift Set
Speaking of meat, charcuterie- the craft of smoking, curing, salting, or drying of various meats, is one of our favorite foods. It always takes us back to our time in Spain, and picnics on the beach just a few blocks from our hotel.
CharcutNuvo is a family-owned company based in Denver, Colorado that specializes in gourmet sausage, all of which is perfect for Paleo- and Keto-friendly diets.
Their Holiday Gift Set is one of many great Variety Packs they offer, giving you (or your gift recipient) a chance to sample 10 items spanning their Natural, Organic, and Wild Game Sausages.
The set starts with familiar flavors, such as their Organic Breakfast Links, Organic Chicken Apple Sausage, Organic Paleo Beef Andouille, grass-fed Organic Beef Franks, and German Smoked Brats.
Then it adds gets a little wild, with Bison Wieners, Wild Boar Sausage, Pork Apple Gouda Sausage, and Pork Jalapeño Cheddar Sausage with just the right amount of heat.
And beer-lovers will enjoy Dale’s Pale Ale Sausage, which is made with craft beer from Oskar Blues in Brevard NC.
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25. Sunnyland Farms Premium Gift Basket & 26. Damn, Man Nuts and Exotic Meats Box
Based in Albany GA, Sunnyland Farms is a 1,760-acre Georgia pecan farm that has been business since 1948. Now run by Larry & Beverly Willson, the family-owned farm still does most things by hand, as they have for generations.
Their Premium Collection Gift Set is a delightful treat for gourmet nut-lovers.
It includes nearly 2 pounds of salted/toasted Heavenly Mix, 10 Milk Chocolate Pecan Caramel Clusters, and 12 oz each of their Cinnamon Sugar Pecans and Original Orange Frosted Pecans. It sounds like a lot, but you’ll wish there was more!
Damn, Man is less about the family and more about the fellas, offering up hearty collections of salty protein snacks designed for unabashed carnivores.
Their Nuts & Exotic Meats Box is a walk on the wild side, with Wild Boar Summer Sausage, a Pork & Antelope Stick, a Pork & Alligator Stick, and 2 Mild Beef Sticks offering unconventional game flavors.
Add to that 4 oz portions of kettle-cooked Memphis BBQ Almonds and Texas BBQ Peanuts, and it’s a great food gift for guys who love meat!
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27. Manly Man Co. Best Jerky Tactical X-Mas Stocking
Beef jerky has come a long way since the days when the best you could do at your average neighborhood grocery store was to “snap into a Slim Jim.”
The hilariously named Manly Man Co. is a Veteran-owned small business that specializes in quirky foodie gifts for him, and this meat-stuffed Christmas stocking is a perfect example.
It’s an impressive package (“that’s what she said!”) filled with a broad variety of their most popular jerky options.
Though the flavors rotate, each gift set include 7 packs, including cool selections such as South African Peri Peri Grass-fed Biltong, Whiskey Straight Beef Jerky, Sweet & Spicy Jalapeño Bacon Jerky, Citrus IPA Beer Beef Jerky, etc.
The collection also includes a Man Card Beer Bottle Opener, Manly Man Co. Coaster, and personalized leather patch, and it all comes stuffed inside a tactical Christmas stocking (green or tan) that can be personalized for the fella you’re giving it to.
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28. Hungry Planet Foods
With Impossible Burgers now available at Burger King and Beyond Chicken Nuggets at KFC, the plant-based food revolution is clearly in full swing.
And you don’t have to be a strict vegetarian or vegan (we’re not) to incorporate a little of these healthier, planet-friendly foods into your diet.
The folks at Hungry Planet Foods are doing their fair share to think outside the box when it comes to plant-based fare, with master chef Ron DeSantis leading the charge with his unique recipes.
Their expansive range includes an array of flavorful options foodies will love, from plant-based Italian Sausage Meatballs and Crispy Fried Chicken to Pork Gyoza Dumplings and Crabcakess.
Not only are these meat-free alternatives better for the planet, but they’re healthier, with more fiber and protein and less calories and fat than other plant-based and animal meat options. They taste so good, you’ll never miss what you’re missing!
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29. Branon Family Maple Orchards’ Maple Specialty Box
The Branon Family Maple Orchards is a 7th generation family business that specializes in producing certified organic Vermont Maple.
Members of the Vermont Land Trust since 1997, they’ve conserved the land on their family farm in Fairfield VT as well as over 2000 acres in Bakersfield VT.
And in 2016 they were certified as a “Bird Friendly Sugar Bush” by the Vermont Audubon Society for maintaining a healthy forest ecosystem.
Their Maple Specialty Box offers a great introduction to the broad range of products the family farm produces, and offers fantastic gift ideas for foodies.
It includes a bottle of Organic Vermont Maple Syrup, Maple Buffalo Sauce, Maple Bourbon Vinegar, Maple BBQ & Grilling Sauce, Maple Vinegar, Maple Chipotle Rub, and Maple Sweet Pepper, all packaged in an attractive gift box.
So it’s a little sweet, a little spicy, and all tasty… not to mention surprising in its diverse usage of a simple syrup.
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30. Johnson’s Popcorn Goin’ Nutty Gift Basket
In my family, giving ginormous tubs of popcorn is a sacred Christmas tradition that dates back to my early childhood.
But for the Ocean City, New Jersey-based Johnson’s Popcorn, the tradition of tossing hot caramel over giant kernels of popcorn dates back to the 1940s, and has been enjoyed by millions of visitors to the area’s boardwalk in the last 70 years.
Today, Johnson’s offers 7 different popcorn flavors to choose from, including savory selections such as Butter and Cheddar as well as sweet treats like Peanut Crunch and Chocolate Drizzle (or Salt-n-Sandy for those who want it all).
The Goin’ Nutty Gift Basket features a 10-oz tub of their classic Peanut Crunch Popcorn, along with containers of their Mixed Nuts, Candied Peanuts, and Honey Roasted Peanuts.
It’s all packaged in their trademark red Johnson’s Popcorn Bowl, making it an attractive gift for any snackers on your holiday shopping list.
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Gifts For Home Chefs
31. Fab Slab Antibacterial Cutting Boards
Cutting boards are one of those great kitchen items that serve a simple purpose– protecting your counter from slicing and chopping– but can also be a work of art.
In our house, where almost every piece of decor is made of wood, glass, or other natural materials, the beautiful Antibacterial Cutting Boards from Fab Slab fit in perfectly.
They’re made in Australia from Camphor Laurel trees, which are renewable and naturally anti-bacterial. They’re all hand-crafted from a single slab of kiln-dried wood, so each one has a uniquely gorgeous wooded grain.
They come in an array of shapes and sizes, from cutting boards and paddles to lovely grazing palettes. And though they’re a bit more expensive than your average cutting boards, their quality, durability, and artfulness is worth paying for.
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32. CampChef 4-Piece Carving Set
As I write this review, we’re already preparing to brine the turkey, peel the sweet potatoes, and do all the other prep work that will lead us into the big meal on Thanksgiving Day.
We have lots of fun Thanksgiving traditions, from watching the Macy’s Parade and the National Dog Show to having dinner with our extended family. But this will be the first time in years where we’re hosting the Turkey Day meal at our house.
This CampChef 4-Piece Carving Set will definitely come in handy as I prepare to carve the bird myself for the first time in many years.
Made with stainless steel and Pakkawood handles, the chic set includes a 10-inch chef knife, 7-inch santoku knife, a pair of grill tongs, and a handy carving fork, all rolled up in an attractive waxed canvas knife case.
It’s a sleek, portable gift for home chefs or grill masters.
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33. GSI Outdoors Rakau Knife Set
We’ve been reviewing myriad GSI Outdoors products for years. But we typically associate the brand with hiking essentials and cool camping gear.
While this gorgeous Rakau Knife Set seems like a bit of a departure for GSI, it’s a lovely detour. The wood used in the knife handles is sustainably sourced, as is the compact bamboo cutting board (which has a gutter for draining juices).
The durable stainless steel set includes 3 knives– a 6″ Santoku blade Chef knife with Granton scallops for thin slicing, a 6″ serrated bread knife, and a 3.5″ paring knife– as well as a knife sharpener, recycled microfiber towel, and a soap bottle.
The set also comes with sheaths to protect the blades, and a convenient recycled PET cloth case for carrying the kit wherever your adventures may take you.
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34. Nature Bee Wraps’ Bee Lovers Bundle
We’re always trying to find new ways to reduce waste, lower our carbon footprint, and live more sustainably.
But it wasn’t until a few years ago that we learned about the advantages of using beeswax wraps to protect leftover foods rather than plastic wrap or foil.
The Bee Lovers Bundle from Nature Bee Wraps makes a fantastic present for eco-friendly friends and family members.
In addition to a Beeswax Wrap Variety Set and a set of 4 Small Wraps, the stylish gift set also includes a Swedish Dishcloth, reusable Tote Bag, Fire Starter, reusable Produce Bag, a Solid Dishblock soap (lavender and lemongrass), and a No-Tox life scrub brush.
With a collective value of $100+, the gift set is a steal at $65!
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35. African Dream Foods Gift Sets
When most people think of gourmet foods around the world, Africa may not be the first region that springs to mind.
But anyone who’s ever had a South African braai (Afrikaans for barbecue) or a delicious East African stew knows that the continent has a knack for spices, sauces, and meats.
If you’ve never had the pleasure of traveling to Africa, these gifts for foodies and cooks from African Dream Foods will certainly make you want to go. If you’ve been there multiple times, as we have, they’ll bring back some great travel memories!
Available on Amazon, their Mildest Hot Sauce Gift Pack features four fantastic sauces, including Southern Braai BBQ Sauce, Sweet Dream Chili Sauce, Jalanasco Fermented Jalapeno Sauce, and a lovely Lemon & Garlic Peri-Peri Sauce.
Folks who like it hot will love their Spicy Salts & Seasonings with Grinder Variety 4-Pack Gift Box, with intense flavors including Safari Smoke (with mild paprika), Ghost Pepper, Habanero Chili Salt, and Smoked Chipotle Salt.
READ MORE: The 20 Safest Countries in Africa to Visit
36. Skordo Mediterranean Adventures
I first fell in love with Mediterranean food as a child, during my tour of Italy with the Atlanta Boy Choir, and the fondness grew deeper when I worked my way through college at various Italian restaurants.
But it wasn’t until our food-focused trips to Greece and Spain in 2014 and 2015 that my interest in Mediterranean cuisine became more like an obsession.
The Greek family behind SKORDO have dedicated their brand to “Empowering the Home Cook,” and their Mediterranean Adventures Spice Set makes it easier than ever to prepare delicious Mediterranean meals at home.
The set includes 1/4-cup jars of authentic spices such as Baharat (a Middle Eastern staple), Cyprus Flaked Salt, Greek Seasoning, Harissa (Morroco), Herbs de Provence, Israeli and Syrian Za’atar, Italian Seasoning, and Tuscan Oil Blend.
From hummus and baba ghanoush to Greek salads and Tuscan bread, it makes making tasty Mediterranean meals a breeze.
READ MORE: The Best Places to Visit in Greece in 40 Fantastic Photos
37. The Spice Lab Gourmet Sea Salt Sampler & 38. Fiesta of Flavors
There aren’t many food-related companies from which I’m willing to try just about any product they decide to bring to market. But Spice Lab is the rare exception.
We first discovered the Fort Lauderdale-based brand back in 2014, and were immediately taken with their innovative design (see: a wooden rack of test tube beakers filled with gourmet spices) and cool sea salt collections.
Now they’re available in big stores like Costco, but the quality hasn’t declined a smidge. For proof, check out their Gourmet Sea Salt Sampler, which comes in 7- or 11-tube collections that home chefs will adore.
Ours included Cyprus Citron Lemon Salt, Herbs de Provence, Port Wine Salt, Hudson Valley Salt, Tropical Hibiscus Salt, Himalayan Pink Salt, and Smoked Ghost Pepper Salt.
They also have a sensational Fiesta of Flavors Seasoning Collection for making mouth-watering Mexican food at home. It includes a feisty Fajita Seasoning, a yummy Guacamole Seasoning, a super Street Corn Seasoning, and a tasty Taco Seasoning that also goes great with steak. –by Bret Love