I had the idea to do a few posts on gift ideas in different categories. Naturally, cooking supplies was one of the first categories I thought up. I have some really awesome cooking gear, but it seems like there is always something in the kitchen department on my wish list.
I ought to give a little warning here (and with any gift ideas in future posts) that I am not a huge shopper and I don’t particularly like spending money. So these lists that I’ve come up with are not filled with the newest, latest, greatest stuff because, quite frankly, I don’t keep up with the times and have no clue what the newest, latest, greatest stuff is. Instead, my lists are full of things I either have and totally love or things that I hope to someday own. Hopefully you get some ideas on what to give…or what you want to get;)
Kitchen Holiday Gift Guide
Items Under $20
- Microplane Grater: I went through 2 different zesters before I tried using this specific brand at my sister-in-law’s house and it is, without a doubt, the BEST zester on the planet. I don’t use it all the time-but the times I do use, I praise the heavens that there is a tool so completely wonderful (and for not a bad price, either). You can use it for citrus fruit, chocolate, or cheese…and I’m sure other things I’ve never even thought of.
- Bamboo Cooking Utensils: I’ve wished several times that all my cooking/serving utensils could be bamboo. Obviously, that wouldn’t be very practical, but I have one bamboo cooking spoon that I’ve had to wash 3 or 4 times in one day because that’s THE utensil I want to use for whatever it is I’m cooking. It’s true love (and please get the ones that are varnished or oiled or whatever you call it because the unfinished ones gross me out).
- Cute kitchenware: Cute kitchenware is not hard to stumble upon at all. And when I see some cute plates or pots or what have you, I always think, “I don’t NEED that…but I need it…” -if you can relate at all. Which is why gifting it is the best because someone stingy like myself won’t by it but would LOVE to have it. There are about a billion places to buy cute kitchenware-be it mugs, plates, serving dishes or salt shakers. But I personally love World Market and can almost always find cute stuff at stores like TJMaxx and Marshalls. Also, ModCloth has some way quirky stuff that’s also really cute/awesome.
- Immersion Blender: I LOVE my immersion blender. Again, it’s not something I use every day, but the times I do use it, I can’t imagine not having it. If you look at these, you’ll see there’s like a huge range of prices-you can buy a super nice one with a bunch of attachments for a pretty penny and there are some for under $20. I’ve had this one for 5 years and it’s still running strong. If I were buying one today, I’d probably get this one because it’s a cute color (priorities). If you’re wondering, mine doesn’t have any of the additional attachments and I’ve honestly never wished it did.
- Kitchen Scale: This is something that I think would be used more for baking than cooking, but I’m sure it has its place in either area. I don’t have one of these currently but there have been several times where I wish I did. Someday… vbg
Can we all just agree that cookbooks are weird. There are lots of cookbooks that have intriguing titles or gorgeous photos, but it takes a handful of components for a cookbook to be something I’ll turn to again and again. If it doesn’t hit the requirements, it sits on my shelf without getting picked up for years. My favorite cookbooks might be older…but they are ones that get pulled off my shelf over and over again for old faves and to try out new ones. They don’t require weird or particularly expensive ingredients. If you have a cookbook in mind, but have never actually cracked it open, see if your library has it. Or search it on Amazon-lots of the times you can see the first few pages and determine whether it’s what you had in mind.
- Cravings by Chrissy Tiegen: I’ve talked about this one before but I cannot open this cookbook without finding something that I want to make. It has these simple yet unique recipes. And Chrissy is a model (I’m so behind the times I didn’t even know that until I cracked open the book ) so she says that when she chows down, she wants every bite to be totally delicious. And so those are the kind of recipes she’s giving you-fairly simple to make but packed full of flavor.
- Better Homes and Gardens: This cookbook is jam-packed with recipes, cooking tips, and general kitchen information. It’s an awesome resource, especially for anyone who’s relatively new to cooking. It’s not dumbed down or anything but it’s absolutely accessible regardless of skill level. It has about a billion tabs for every genre of food you can think of, so it’ll keep a cook busy for a long time.
- Food Blog Cookbooks: There are about a billion food blogs out there these days and chances are that if someone is a fan of a particular food blog, they’ll also be a fan of the blog’s cookbook. My personal favorite are the Our Best Bites cookbooks-I crack open mine super often because the recipes in there have become faves. Another great option are The Pioneer Woman cookbooks because, um, she’s THE Pioneer Woman (delicious recipes, great pictures AND she’s hilarious). Just find your favorite food blog and see if they’ve got a cookbook available!
- Unofficial Fan Cookbooks: Fan cookbooks are basically genius because whether or not the recipes are great, people will buy the book if they are obsessed with whatever the topic is. And seriously, just google “Unofficial Fan Cookbooks” and you’ll see that dozens of fan cookbooks are available from Harry Potter to Gilmore Girls to The Hunger Games (what, what?). Whoever you gift this to will love you forever because OMG, Sookie’s Risotto!!
- Mastering the Art of French Cooking by Julia Child: I’ve also talked about this book and it is an awesome gifting option for anyone aspiring to be a better cook than they already are. I don’t think everyone would love this book-it’s older (but still completely relevant) and it doesn’t have photos, but it has wonderful technical instructions as well as totally delicious recipes.
- KitchenAid Mixer: I never thought I needed a mixer but then Ben’s parents gave us one for our first Christmas as a married couple and it is seriously one of my favorite things ever. And whenever I see a new and awesome color, I have very impractical dreams of having a KitchenAid in every color.
- Deep Fryer: I don’t make fried food very often (which might be directly related to the fact that I don’t own a fryer). But my sister-in-law has one and it is so convenient and mess free, I always want one after we use hers. Sorrynotsorry, but some things are just better fried. I saw this cute little one in lots of black Friday ads. And I’ve always been curious about Air Fryers (have any of you guys used one??? What did you think?).
- Ice Cream Maker: We got a cute Sunbelt ice cream maker for our wedding and, while we don’t use it very often, I do love using it especially during the summer because homemade ice cream is really the best ice cream. Someday I hope to have the kind that doesn’t require ice because that is really the only thing stopping me from having homemade ice cream every night.
- Ninja Blender: This is another appliance that we received as a gift and I absolutely love it. Ours has all the attachments-blender, food processor, and 3 individual serving cups. It is super powerful and I shamelessly use it all. the. time.
- Fondue Pot : This is one that is currently on my wish list. It’s not exactly practical or even something I think I’d use very often. But it seems super fun, super kid friendly, and super delicious…so I don’t see what the problem is (oh yeah, it’s trying to store another appliance in tiny rental apartments…).