5 Stress-Busting Holiday Gifts to Give This Season

Serenity now.

November 13, 2018
Photo by Rocky Luten

This holiday season, give your loved ones a present that will help them reset and recharge. At the top of our list: a gift box of stress-free, ready-to-bake cookies in fun flavors like Cacao Nib, Coconut Lemon, and Chocolate Chia from our partner Daily Harvest.

The holidays may be the most wonderful time of the year, but they can also be busy and hectic. Between hosting family dinner and throwing festive cocktail parties, there's always something going on, leaving few opportunities to take a breath and unwind.

So this season, instead of giving out the usual lineup of gift cards, electronics, or kitchen tools that will sit at that bottom of a drawer, give your loved ones the ultimate gift: a few precious moments of calm and relaxation. Of course, that can mean a lot of different things, depending on the type of person you're buying for. Some giftees might like to treat themselves to a sweet bite at the end of the day, while others would rather curl up in a comfy robe with a warming cup of freshly brewed tea.

No matter how your friends and family (and don't forget your boss!) prefer to unwind, here are a few of our favorite calming, soothing gifts to dole out over the holidays:

Sweet & Easy Treats

The holidays are chock-full of heavy desserts already. So instead of giving a treat (like the typical cookies) that needs to be consumed right away, opt for something that can be enjoyed now or later. I'm a fan of this frozen, ready-to-bake cookie dough from Daily Harvest for that very reason. Gluten-free and vegan, they come in three flavors and a sweet, festive gift box you can snag only during the holidays. (You might even want to grab an extra box for yourself.)

Pop these gluten-free cookies from Daily Harvest into the oven for a quick and easy sweet treat—or just eat the cookie dough straight from the box! Photo by Rocky Luten

Cozy Candles & Incense

Few things can instantly transform a room into a tranquil oasis like lighting up a good-smelling candle or incense. In the fall and winter, I tend to gravitate towards woodsy, warming scents like cedar or Palo Santo. Not sure what your giftee might prefer? Something food-related and seasonal is always a good bet, like citrus or clove.

Bathtime Luxuries

Who doesn't love a day at the spa? Instead of gifting an overpriced massage, opt for accessories that can turn any day lounging at home into a spa day. Think soft linen robes, handwoven towels, and bath and body products that are as pretty as they are useful, like a vintage-style wooden scrubber.

Something to Cuddle Up With

During the winter it doesn't just get chilly outside; the temperature can get nippy indoors, too. Treat your loved one to something soft and warm that they can curl up with, like a super-soft throw blanket or pair of cushy slippers.

Tea Necessities

Few things are more soothing on a super-cold day than a hot cup of tea. For someone who loves tea but doesn't have a ton of the essentials, consider gifting a quality tea pot or some signature tea blends to get their collection going. For a tea aficionado, a handmade mug perfect for sipping or a unique selection of matcha green tea is a sure-fire win.

What gifts are you giving this year? Tell us in the comments below!

In partnership with Daily Harvest, makers of nourishing, wholesome foods sent directly to your doorstep, we're sharing a few of the best cozy, calming gifts you can hand out this holiday season. If you're buying for someone with a sweet tooth, Daily Harvest's frozen, ready-to-bake cookies offer the biggest reward for the least amount of effort. Not only that, these cookies (available in unique flavors like Chocolate Chia, Coconut Lemon, and Cacao Nib) are entirely gluten-free and made with plant-based ingredients, meaning they can be enjoyed by anyone on your holiday list.

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Erin Alexander is the Brand Partnerships Editor at Food52, covering pop culture, travel, foods of the internet, and all things #sponsored. Formerly at Men’s Journal, Men’s Fitness, Us Weekly, and Hearst, she currently lives in New York City.


Emily S. March 18, 2019
Awwh, these are so great. Add one more thing to the list, relaxing spa gift basket. For me, they ultimately are the best gifts. The spa feeling that you get at home literally washes off all the tension. I order mine from Lovery all the time, I am gonna attach the link in case anyone is interested.

Lois November 13, 2018
I love their smoothies. I’d like to try these cookies!
April November 13, 2018
Wow so you can eat the cookies raw too?
Cory B. November 14, 2018
Yes, because they are vegan! (so no eggs)