For the Foodie- 2018 Holiday Gift Guide
Welcome to the first part in the 2018 Holiday Gift Guide Series! This is for all my fellow foodies out there! Those who love to cook, or those who are just learning, and for those who just love all things food. This year I created a three part gift guide for the holiday season to ensure you get lots of inspiration for everyone on your shopping list this year!! Oh, and of course give you some inspo for things you’d like to add to your wishlist :) For more details on how the 2018 Holiday Gift Guide is structured please read that post here! After this don’t miss part two (For the Beauty Guru) and part three (For the Fashionista)! Don’t forget to subscribe to get your FREE e-book version of the entire 2018 Holiday Gift Guide. Let’s dive in to…
I knew I had to make Part 1 of my 2018 Holiday Gift Guide for all my fellow foodies out there! As someone who is a big nutrition nerd, enjoys cooking and baking, and finding more sustainable ways to pack and store food, I wanted to share some of my favorites with you! These gifts are great for anyone who is just beginning to dabble in kitchen, or for those who are experienced in the kitchen looking to try new things. There are four categories in this part of the gift guide to help you navigate to topics of interest. As always, these are recommendations coming from products that I have used and love. For convenience, all items are linked, but feel free to shop around for the best deal :)
Forks Over Knives Cookbook, Flavor!: This is the newest cookbook released by Forks over Knives, and it is geared towards international cuisine. They have a few other cookbooks, so if you aren’t super adventurous check out some of their other cookbooks—you won’t be disappointed!
America’s Test Kitchen, Vegan for Everybody Cookbook: Hands-down my all-time favorite cookbook! I have given this as a gift, recommended to many friends, and have enjoyed every single recipe I have made from this cookbook! Bonus for other nerds who like to read and learn about the science behind why these ‘veganized’ recipes work.
Thug Kitchen Cookbook: This is one of the Thug Kitchen cookbooks, and I love all of the beautiful pictures (let’s be honest, if there’s no picture how likely are you going to make it?), and these recipes are so yummy!
VegNews Magazine Subscription: I have been getting this magazine for a few years now, and I always look forward to it! There’s something about getting a nice surprise in the mail (that isn’t a bill)! The subscription is $20 for a year (6 issues). This makes a great gift because your one-time purchase will put a smile on their face throughout the year to come :)
Nicole Miller Lunch Bags: I have two of these lunch bags and I love them! I was on the hunt for a lunch bag that had a wide enough bottom to fit larger Tupperware for big salads, leftovers, burrito bowls etc. that I often pack for lunch. It’s surprising how hard it is to find one that is wide enough at the bottom, while not being big enough to be a small cooler (I don’t want to look totally ridiculous). Bonus: these lunch bags are also very cute! I found both of mine (shown in the video) at TJ MAXX over the summer, so I was unable to find the exact ones, but I did link to similar ones by this brand I was able to find online.
Hydroflask Water Bottle: With sooo many refillable water bottle options out there today, there really is no excuse to be using regular bottled water (so much waste)! You can find any color or pattern or size imaginable. I like this brand because they have lots of color and size options (I like this size so it still fits in my backpack or car cupholder), they are insulated so it stays cold (or hot) while no condensation accumulates on the outside to keep your hands dry!
Glass Tupperware: There are lots of different options out there for these too. Anytime we can replace plastic with glass or stainless steel or other materials the better! I also prefer storing and packing my food in glass, so that I can reheat my food without risking the harmful chemicals in plastic Tupperware leaching to my food when microwaved. They have a variety of sizes to meet your needs, and sets available to purchase. The snap-on lids are awesome, and I’ve had no leaking issues!
Metal Straws: Unless you live under a rock, you probably heard the uproar about single-use disposal plastic straws this year, and places like Starbucks doing away with them. Small tweaks to our habits can go a long way. If you or someone you know frequent drive-thu’s or restaurants when these are practically always given, consider buying a pack of these reusable straws. I keep a few in my car, and a few in my bag/purse so I’m prepared.
Metal Smoothie Straws: I’m a big smoothie person, and for a long time have been using the reusable plastic smoothie straws by Tervis, which is a great way to cut down on unnecessary waste. But those too will eventually need to be thrown away, so finding these metal smoothie straws are an even better alternative! They are wide enough to drink thicker drinks like smoothies and shakes!
Reusable Baggies: For those who pack their lunches, or save leftovers, these reusable baggies are perfect! I like these ones specifically because they are durable material, pretty easy to clean, and have a bottom that allows them to stand upright.
Mason Jar Reusable Storage Bags: These are a cute variation of reusable baggies. They are printed to look like mason jars, but in fact are just reusable ziplock bags. They come in all different sizes, and also can stand upright, and are much lighter to carry around than mason jars. Although my favorite way to pack or store soup is in mason jars, get some here.
Reusable Wraps: These are a favorite of mine for packing sandwiches or cut up veggies. It unfolds and catches all your crumbs, then can be folded back up flat to bring home. These are very easy to clean, and are a more sustainable alternative to ziplock baggies. I had previously tired paper fold-over baggies for sandwiches, but found my bread dried out quite a bit by the time lunch rolled around.
Stainless Steel Containers: These are another great alternative, and I pack a lot of my snacks or food for lunch in these that don’t need to be microwaved. Perfect for fruit, veggies, nuts, salads etc. I also especially like that these are nesting containers, making storage much easier!
Crockpot: This is a staple for any kitchen. A crockpot makes cooking up healthful meals a breeze. Toss everything in and let it sit and work its magic! Not only can you make delicious soups, stews, and chilis, but you can also roast veggies, bake oatmeal, and more! The possibilities are endless, and is a perfect gift for anyone.
Mandoline: This makes that tedious chopping and slicing go by in a flash! Save time making your favorite recipes that require a fair amount of prep work cutting and chopping up all the ingredients—while also protecting your fingers!
Microplane: You may have seen me use this in some of my recipes already, but this is perfect for grating things without a big bulky grater. Grate fresh nutmeg, or shred (vegan) cheese from a block to top off your entree. I find these way easier to clean and store than the traditional box grater!
Nutribullet: This multipurpose gadget has been a life-saver. I have used a Nutribullet for years for purees, smoothies, soups, and doubled as a food processor, and the milling blade comes in handy to mill down oats to oat flour, or grinding whole chia or flax seeds to use in various recipes. I love the compact size that stores easily and doesn’t hog the entire kitchen counter!
Food Scale: If you’re a big baker, this will elevate your baking game. There is great variability in using cups/tablespoons with baking ingredients, which is why many recipes give you the metric weight amounts so that it is much more precise (which is especially important in baking). Additionally, I find this helpful when recipes call for “2 pounds of squash” for example. This allows me to measure out produce they typically doesn’t come prepackaged with a weight amount.
Ninja IQ System: This guy has been an upgrade from my tried-and-true Nutribullet. The motor is much more powerful, and has the Smart IQ sensing system that times how long the food should be blended. It comes with a giant pitcher attachment, smoothie cups, and a large food processor attachment. There are different levels that come with various additional attachments as well. I love this one so much, and highly recommend if you are using a blender/food processor often.
Grocery Store/ Restaurant Gift Cards: All true foodies would love and appreciate a gift card to their favorite grocery store. This can allow them to explore and try new food items, or splurge on some of the more expensive brands. This would gift would pair well with one of the cookbooks mentioned above, so they can try out some of the new recipes! Additionally, restaurant gift cards are also nice, and are special because you’re gifting them an experience to catch up with friends or loved ones over a delicious meal at a restaurant that they enjoy! Search Amazon for gift cards to places of your choice here, or some of these popular places: Whole Foods, Kroger, Meijer, Aldi, Walmart, Panera, Chipotle, Starbucks, Brio/Bravo, Olive Garden, and of course their favorite places, or local non-chain restaurants. Some of my favorites near Ann Arbor include: Lunchroom/ Detroit Street Filling Station, Seva, Blue Nile, & Salads UP.
Cooking Classes: These are awesome gifts because again, you are gifting an experience they definitely won’t forget! Try looking up cooking classes near you to get ideas. If you’re in the Ann Arbor area, I know Sur la Table and Zingerman’s offer classes. If you want it to be a surprise you could get a gift card that covers the cost of the class and give them directions to sign up, otherwise you’ll have to ask about their schedule ahead of booking the class.