31 Gifts Food Lovers Will Devour Immediately

So basically, everyone.

August 30, 2023
Photo by Julia Gartland

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As I look back at the gifts I’ve been lucky to receive on various occasions, the ones that stand out most are all food-related. An exquisite box of shortbread cookies, a basket of peak-season sungold tomatoes, an epic care package from loved ones in Asia, artisanal salts, various pantry provisions, and big bags of homemade cereal, to name just a few.

Maybe it’s because I’ve just always been an eager eater, or maybe it’s a testament to how the memory of taste is so powerful that the treats have left such an impression on me years later. Whatever the case, I’m a staunch believer that the best gifts are the ones you can eat, drink, slurp, and munch up right away, and I’m pretty sure you'd agree.

Here are the 31 best gifts for the food lovers in your life—which is basically everyone.

Photo by Milk Bar

1. Red Velvet Cheesecake Cake, from $65

We’ll never say no to cake, and this newest limited drop leans into the season’s yummiest flavors. A rich red velvet cheesecake cake with layers of double chocolate red velvet cake and frosting, cheesecake filling, and red velvet crumbs will have you thinking you're in dessert heaven. Choose from a classic 6-inch cake or a larger 10-inch cake, if you're looking to bring it to a party or holiday dinner.

Photo by Goldbelly

2. Ina's Coconut Cake, $100

You could follow Ina’s recipe and make her coconut cake, or you could just grab one from the Barefoot Contessa herself on Goldbelly. The cake comes frozen so be sure to thaw it in the fridge before you cut into it.

Photo by Goldbelly

3. Martha's Favorite Pastry Assortment - 12 Pack, $80

For someone who prefers breakfast foods for all meals, a dozen of Martha’s fave pastries will be a surefire hit. They arrive frozen and unbaked, so pop them in the oven and get ready for freshly-baked goods.

Photo by Recess

4. Recess Sampler, $30

For a bit of bubbly, these cans of sparkling water are infused with calming hemp and adaptogens. The cans are as pretty as the drinks are tasty, and there's even a subscription so you're never low on your new favorite drink.

Photo by Spicewalla

5. Spicewalla Haute Chocolate Collection, $35 $28

With the weather getting chillier, there’s no better gift than being able to make a warm mug of hot chocolate and cuddling up in a giant burrito blanket (a real thing, I can confirm!)

Photo by Uncommon Goods

6. Runamok Glimmer of Hope Sparkle Maple Syrup, from $20

Grubbing on a stack of flapjacks drizzled with maple syrup is nothing short of a magical way to kick off your morning. But add a literal dash of glitter with Runamok’s small-batch maple syrup with food-grade mica powder, and you just might restore your belief in fairy tales.

Photo by James Ransom

7. Kosterina Italian Balsamic Vinegar Trio, $60

Cooking during the week can be a drag—even for the biggest food people in your life. Give them a head start with bottles of balsamic vinegar so aromatic and flavorful that they'll confidently safeguard against sad desk lunches.

Photo by Julia Gartland

8. José Gourmet Canned Portuguese Seafood, $24+

Another fin-tastic gift for eating enthusiasts is tinned fish. Portuguese canned seafood from José Gourmet works swimmingly (okay, we'll stop) for speedy lunches and festive dinners—that is, if it makes it that far.

Photo by Goldbelly

9. Jacques’ World Famous Chocolate Chip Cookies - 12 Pack, $75

After all these years, I’ve still yet to understand why Pitbull refers to himself as Mr. Worldwide. But it only takes one bite of this cookie to grasp why Jacques Torres holds the title of “Mr. Chocolate.” Big molten cocoa-y pockets encased in a thin soft-yet-chewy dough, they'll definitely want to eat three of Mr. Chocolate’s famous creations in one sitting.

Photo by Wildgood

10. Wildgood Plant-Based Ice Cream, $9+

Ice cream churned using extra-virgin olive oil is as tantalizing and silky smooth as it sounds. It just so happens to be dairy-free, too.

Photo by Immi

11. Immi New Variety Pack, $39+

Good news: better-for-you instant ramen exists. And guess what? It tastes great. Immi noodles are vegan, light in carbs, and highly flavored with familiar soup bases like black garlic “chicken” and tom yum “shrimp.”

Photo by Amazon

12. Il Colle Del Gusto Sicilian Pistachio Spread, $18

This is for anyone who has powered through all of Stanley Tucci’s Italian cooking content and is now experiencing serious wanderlust. No? Just me? No matter. A spoonful of deep, creamy pistachio spread is an excellent way to help a friend taste their way through Italy.

Photo by Jot

13. Jot Ultra Coffee, $20+

Being a full-time eater can be...exhausting. A strong glass of cold brew can help.

Photo by TokyoTreat

14. Tokyo Treat Subscription, $32.50+

A solid option for anyone who’s been wanting to wander the aisles of a Japanese 7-Eleven (hands down, the best), but hasn’t booked their ticket yet. Like a super-thoughtful, international pen pal, Tokyo Treat curates a big box of conbini (convenience store) snacks and other goodies each month based on themes like “Anime Marathon Munchies” and “Okinawa Snack-Out.”

Photo by Goldbelly

15. Olympia Provisions Pickled Vegetable Sampler (4-Pack), $75

Life is like a jar of pickles, so you have to relish in the sweet and the sour. That’s pretty easy to do with Olympia Provisions’ quad of perfectly pickled veggies at your disposal for hot dogs, salads, or straight from the jar.

Photo by Brooklyn Cured

16. Brooklyn Cured Gilbert & Bernard's Personal Favorite Collection, $79

On the topic of snack spreads, here’s another one with those salty, sweet, funky notes—only this time it’s in the form of cheese, nuts, jams, and cured meat. Oh, and did we mention the gift set comes with a nice block of pâté? And unlike others, this one’s ultra-meaty and soaked with red wine and citrus for tangy, fruity notes. See, all the good things do come in threes!

Photo by Luphia Sweets

17. Matcha Chocolate Almonds, $17

These roasted almonds dressed in white chocolate and premium matcha powder make for a simple, elegant, and delicious gift. The sleek tin is finished with a gorgeous green ribbon, so you can put down the gift wrap.

Photo by Rancho Gordo

18. Rancho Gordo Desert Island Sampler, $39

Few will ask for this, but many will happily unbox a beautiful bounty of dried heirloom beans when the opportunity strikes.

Photo by Ty Mecham

19. Saltverk Hand-Harvested Icelandic Sea Salt, $24+

Much akin to its powers in transforming a bland dish, the sheer variety that salt comes in is far from one note. This set of flavored salts is for people who know that salt in all its glory makes everything taste better.

Photo by Goldbelly

20. Famous Carrot Cake with Nuts & Raisins From Lloyd’s Carrot Cake, $80

What makes Lloyd’s stand out as a bakery is just how it excels in making the most tender and moist carrot cakes slathered in that quintessential tangy cream cheese frosting we all adore. The beloved NYC institution ships nationwide via Goldbelly, meaning carrot-cake-heads based in Kansas to California can indulge without voyaging all the way to the Big Apple.

Photo by Maazah

21. Maazah 3-Pack, $25

Here’s to the self-proclaimed condiment fanatics who have just about every hot sauce and mayo jam-packed in their fridge door. They’ll gladly make space for these small-batch chutneys from Maazah the moment they learn it’s based on a super-special family recipe.

Photo by Amazon

22. Stash Tea Bags Sampler Assortment Box, $43

However they take their tea, this box has got it all. They can grab an Irish Breakfast with milk and sugar in the morning and wind down in the evening with a Decaf Meyer Lemon.

Photo by NPR Wine Club

23. NPR Wine Club, from $85

All Grapes Considered, It’s Vin A Minute, a literal Pop Culture Happy Hour. What I’m listing off aren’t clever puns but actual names of wines sold through the National Public Radio’s wine club. You can gift a monthly subscription of 12 bottles for $84.99.

Photo by Julia Gartland

24. Grass-Fed Cultured Cream Butter Subscription, $246

The ultimate gift for your friend who's always ordering the basket of bread and butter at dinner? This collection of cultured butter. With this subscription, they'll get a bundle of delicious butters—from classic salted to herby basil and more—every three months for one year. In the subscription, one will always be a sea salt butter, one sweet butter, one roasted garlic, and the fourth will be seasonal.

Photo by Ty Mecham

25. Kolossos Organic Greek Wine Vinegar Trio, $45

If you're shopping for someone who can't get enough of 2023's kitchen It-girl (vinegar), then consider giving them this trio as a gift. This Greek vinegar trio includes white wine, red wine, and white balsamic-style varieties that are perfect for adding a punch to your standard salad dressing, braises, soups, and more

Photo by Julia Gartland

26. Le Bon Garçon French-Style Caramel, $20

Lean into your sweet tooth with these delicious caramels. Available in three flavors—Classic Sea Salt, Honey Lavender, and Tiramisu—each box of these delicate candies is crafted by the folks at Le Bon Garçon in the traditional French style and are made with organic ingredients.

Photo by MJ Kroeger

27. Black Garlic Molasses, $32

For anyone who loves a savory, rich addition to their meals, this Black Garlic Molasses is a must. Made by slow-roasting black garlic until the sugars caramelize, then blending it into a syrup, this specialty is from Aomori, Japan. It's thick and syrupy (just like molasses) and full of garlicky flavor, with a natural sweetness and a blend of savory, nutty, and dried fruit notes—not to mention fermented garlic undertones for that extra kick of umami. It can be used similarly to how you would balsamic and is bound to give any dish it meets an instant boost.

Photo by Rocky Luten

28. L.A. Burdick Hot Cocoa, $30+

A cold-weather staple, you always want to have hot cocoa on hand in your pantry. And who should you trust for delicious cocoa more than the chocolate extraordinaires at L.A. Burdick? Whether you’re in the mood for something dark, light, or nuanced—choose between Grenada, White, Milk, and Dark—this rich mix is ready to be stirred into a steaming mug of your favorite milk.

Photo by Ty Mecham

29. Jasper Hill Farm Cheese Tasting Box, $60+

Give the gift of cheese this holiday season with this robust tasting box from Jasper Hill Farm in Greensboro, Vt. Choose between the Starter Kit, a collection of Merrill's Top Picks, a Perfect Pantry Box, a Party Box, The Diversion, or The Full Spread, and they'll be set up for a year of delicious dairy.

Photo by Veronica Olsen

30. Stone Hollow Farmstead Premium Non-GMO Popcorn, $26

Popcorn is the perfect gift for the snacker in your life and this trio of kernels is as good as it gets. Straight from a family-owned farm in Alabama, they'll have classic yellow, Ladyfinger (which pops into extra-small pieces), and blue corn kernels to fill their bowls with and cover in their toppings of choice.

Photo by Ty Mecham

31. FarmSteady Italian Fresh Cheese Making Kit, $30

If the person you're gift-hunting for loves to try their hand at making things, this DIY cheese-making kit will be a fun challenge for them. It has all the must-have ingredients and equipment for them to make eight batches of the rich, creamy cheese—mozzarella, burrata, ricotta, or mascarpone—they won't want to put down.

More from Food52

This post (originally published in March 2022) has been updated in August 2023 with more delicious food gifts.

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Food writer, late-night baker, year-round iced coffee drinker.

1 Comment

[email protected] November 16, 2022
The photo at the top of the article looks so enticing! Is there a recipe on Food52 for it?