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40 Yummy Gift Ideas Your Friends Will Love

When it comes to giving holiday gifts to friends, neighbors, or coworkers, you can’t go wrong with a delicious homemade treat – especially when you pair them with cute & clever packaging ideas! It’s a great way to show someone you care without the hassle and cost of finding a store-bought gift.

I love making and receiving homemade food gifts! It is generally MUCH more affordable, so you won’t have to cross anyone off your list due to budget constraints. And depending on what recipe you’re using, you may be able to make treats for everyone on your list in just a few hours!

Since Christmas is just around the corner, I thought I’d help you finish your gift list by sharing some great ideas for homemade treats…both sweet and savory. All you need to do is choose one to make, stock up on ingredients, and have one marathon treat-making session! These delicious edible delights are sure to spread plenty of Christmas cheer!

Looking for a way to label your homemade treats? Check out WorldLabel.com!

Fresh Tomato Sauce  –  James Beard

Homemade tomato sauce is a fantastic gift for anyone who likes to eat. It can be used in so many ways. Look for unusual bottles and jars to store the sauce. These can be gifts in and of themselves. Just make sure to thoroughly clean all containers with soap and hot water before filling with your homemade tomato sauce.

Best Edible Gifts

Homemade Ketchup  –  Savory Simple

Ketchup is something we use without thinking about and never really notice the flavor of. The great thing about homemade ketchup is it’s not hard to make it better than almost any store-bought ketchup, and you can spice it up in any direction you like. Bring on the sweet potato fries!

Homemade Pesto  –  Taste of Home

Pesto is quite the versatile food. You can make sandwiches with it, use it in pasta and smother it on eggs. This recipe for homemade pesto sauce is easy and quick to make in a food processor or blender. Just a few ingredients and five simple steps add up to perfect pesto.

Best Edible Gifts

Homemade Barbecue Sauce  –  Martha Stewart

This tangy, sweet and a little bit spicy homemade BBQ sauce is sure to make any grilled meal special. It’s a gift your friends and family will love to use year-round.

Homemade Soup Mixes  –  Tried and Tasty

Homemade soup mixes are the perfect frugal holiday gift! Nothing warms the heart like a warm cup of soup. Give out mixes for different varieties, like Italian Barley and Five Bean, to your loved ones. Include instructions on the gift tag.

Spice Rub  –  Martha Stewart

If you don’t want to give sweets for holiday gifts, homemade spice blends are a wonderful idea. Quick to pull together & cheap to make, homemade spice mixes are the perfect last minute gift for the foodie in your life.

Homemade Herb Butter  –  A Zesty Bite

Flavoring butter is surprisingly easy, and it’s a great way to dress up grilled veggies or steak (or mix into pasta!) Homemade compound butters are the perfect no-bake holiday gift. Add a homemade loaf of bread tied in a tea towel and you have one amazing gift!

Packaging idea:  Your Homebased Mom

Chocolate Chip Pancakes  –  The DIY Lighthouse

Easy, make-ahead pancake and waffle mixes come in handy on busy mornings. All you have to do is add water, eggs, and/or milk, and you’ve got breakfast! Label containers with the name and date to ensure freshness.

Homemade Jam  –  I Heart Naptime

Everyone loves homemade jam! It makes a perfect gift on its’ own or in a gift basket. Simply bottle and accompany with the recipe, storing instructions, and some helpful serving ideas.

Packaging ideas:  Good Housekeeping | BHG.com | Martha Stewart

Fresh Cookie Dough  –  No. 2 Pencil

Cookie dough makes a delicious and thoughtful gift, especially around the holidays. Deliver homemade frozen cookie dough in one of these cute packaging ideas and your friends and neighbors will love you.

Packaging ideas:  I Heart Naptime | Our Best Bites

Bread and ButterOne Good Thing By Jillee

The combination of my homemade Honey Butter Ambrosia on this oh-so-simple-to-make English Muffin Bread is a great treat for anyone on your list!

Herb Infused Honey  –  A Spicy Perspective

You can use herbed-honey for baking, dressings, sauces, beverages, or simply drizzled over warm bread. Herb Infused Honey makes a wonderful edible gift to give to friends around the holidays!

Homemade Vanilla Extract  –  Don’t Waste The Crumbs

Give the bakers in your life this homemade extract. All you need is vodka and vanilla beans.

Microwave Caramels  –  I Heart Naptime

These sticky, rich candies are the simplest caramels you’ll ever make. Add sprinkles of sea salt for extra depth of flavor sure to please family and friends.

Cookie Butter Puppy Chow (aka Sandy Buddies)  –  Shared Appetite

No, you can’t feed this to your dog. But you can feed it to your friends, family, coworkers, neighbors, etc and they will be very happy! And if you want to go down as a legend this Christmas season, start bringing it to holiday parties.

Gourmet Marshmallows  –  Sugar and Soul

Marshmallows are a wonderful homemade gift. Give them along with your favorite hot chocolate mix for an added surprise. I love how they look in clear plastic bags tied with some pretty ribbon.

Packaging idea: White Gunpowder

Popcorn, Popcorn, Popcorn!

Snowstorm Marshmallow Popcorn  –  One Good Thing By Jillee

I made this one year while stuck at home during a snowstorm and will forever associate it with that memory. I will forever be obsessed with how GOOD it is! Finger-lickin’ good!

Snowstorm Popcorn

Cheddar Caramel Popcorn –  The Kitchn

If you love the mixed tins of caramel and cheddar popcorn, known as the classic Windy City blend, give this mix a try at home — and even give it as a homemade edible gift.

White Chocolate Popcorn  –  A Side of Sweet

This white chocolate confetti popcorn is decadent and easy! Coated with sprinkles, it’s the perfect food for a party or a gift!

Cinnamon Roll Caramel Corn  –  Damn Delicious

Caramel corn that tastes like a cinnamon roll? Count me in! The perfect last minute edible gift idea for the holidays that’s budget friendly and so easy to whip-up!

Peppermint Bark Popcorn  –  Our Best Bites

This peppermint bark popcorn is a quick and easy holiday treat, is absolutely delicious, inexpensive to make, and makes a huge batch! Perfect for holiday parties and neighbor gifts!

Packaging idea: I Heart Naptime

Homemade Slow Cooker Granola  –  Barefeet In The Kitchen

Everyone loves homemade granola! Besides being a much healthier option than commercial breakfast cereals, homemade granola is the perfect topping for creamy treats like yogurt, oatmeal and ice cream. The popularity of homemade granola makes it a favorite go-to holiday gift. Keep some extra granola-filled jars on hand, so you’ll always have a delicious gift ready for those unexpected gift “situations.”

Packaging ideas:  Makr | Simply Recipes

Slow Cooker Dulce de Leche  –  Betty Crocker

Dulce de Leche is a thick caramel made with condensed milk. Try it on pancakes, waffles, fruit or ice cream, or spread on warm breads or toast for a delightful treat.

Coffee Syrups  –  Heather Bullard

These recipes could not be easier. Even if you’re not skilled in the kitchen, you will have success with these simple and fast syrups. And there’s something so fun about making (and giving) your own homemade varieties!

Homemade Soda Syrups  –  Nellie Bellie

Homemade Soda Syrups are perfect for the mixologist enthusiast in your life! Simply add a bit of carbonated water to your homemade soda syrups and have your own chemical-free and gourmet sodas. Makes a fun inexpensive gift.

Hot Chocolate Mix  –  Kleinworth & Co.

Hot Chocolate mix is one of the easiest things to make, but still a surefire way to please everyone. Don’t forget the mini marshmallows.

Scones In A Jar  –  Simple Seasonal

So scrumptious it’s hard to eat just one! After you’re done packing jars for your loved ones, be sure to bake a batch for yourself and snuggle up with a hot cup of tea or cocoa on a chilly winter day!

White Chocolate Haystacks  –  Betty Crocker

This festive spin on a classic no-bake treat is a special addition to your holidays. Chow mein noodles and salted peanuts are tossed with melted white chocolate chips, marshmallows and a surprise ingredient–vanilla frosting–and finished with holiday sprinkles. This recipe makes a large batch, perfect for gift-giving!

Candied Ginger  –  One Good Thing By Jillee

Candied ginger is very versatile! It can be used for taming tummy troubles and added to all sorts of baked goods, like muffins, brownies, and cakes, to add a warm and spicy flavor. A jar of candied ginger makes a wonderful holiday gift as well!

Salted Caramel Sauce  –  The Comfort Of Cooking

Homemade caramel sauce with sea salt and vanilla is perfect for giving as a gift, and out of this world spooned over your favorite ice cream (or in a Salted Caramel Milkshake!) You could also wrap a jar up with some apples for dipping.

White Chocolate Chex Mix  –  Mom 4 Real

Once you have one bite, you can’t stop eating it! Make an extra batch for yourself and share the rest with teachers, friends and family! Anyone who receives some of this yummy mix will be more than happy with it as a gift…it’s that good!

Packaging ideas: One Good Thing By Jillee

Homemade Cookie Butter  –  A Beautiful Mess

Has anything ever sounded (or tasted) as delicious as cookie butter? The best part: You can make these using ANY type of cookie.

Candied Almonds  –  Budget Bytes

Infused with cinnamon, these candied almonds are easy to make and taste so much better than the store-bought kind. Hand out jarfuls of them for a yummy holiday snack.

Packaging idea:  Jamie Oliver

Infused Vinegar  –  Food Network

Give the gift of good health and good taste with homemade infused vinegars. Infused vinegars add panache to salads, steamed vegetables, soups and sauces, and allow you to flavor dishes without salt or fat.

DIY Hot Sauce  –  Life’s Ambrosia

Add some to heat to the winter season with homemade bottled hot sauce. This easy condiment isn’t for the faint of heart, but if you love hot sauce, you will love this recipe! And so will the spicy-hot food lovers on your list!

Fried Chicken Kit  –  BuzzFeed

Give the gift of the. best. fried. chicken. ever. One gift, two jars — one for brining and one for coating. Combine all the ingredients for the Brine in one jar and the Coating in a separate jar. Give with directions for frying chicken. A gift guaranteed to impress!

Infused Olive Oil  –  Lauren Caris Cooks

Olive oil may seem like a basic gift, but not when it’s infused with flavors like citrus, herb and chili. These cute little bottles are the ideal size for gifting.

Homemade Salsa  –  I Heart Naptime

It’s fun to give something other than desserts once in awhile. Make a big batch of this easy salsa recipe for family, friends and neighbors! Free printable gift tag included.

Homemade Pickles  –  Martha Stewart

Quick pickles are an impressive gift that’s easy to make. No canning required. Sure to please any foodie on your list! Any sturdy glass jar (new or reused) will work for brining. Just make sure they are clean and dry before using.

Packaging idea: Minted

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Food & Recipes

  • I want to try the Vegetarian Five Bean Soup Mix but a lot of information is missing. Doesn’t say how much liquid, or how to cook the soup mix, only how to assemble the gift jars. Also read directions very carefully if you are making the Vegetarian Five Bean Soup into jars as gifts because you only use 1/4 of the spice mix for each jar. Would appreciate some clarification if possible.

    • I’m not sure what they had in mind, since that recipe doesn’t come from my site. I would guess that she didn’t include cooking instructions because they would vary depending on the cooking method. On the stovetop, use enough water to cover the beans, and add more when/if the beans are exposed. Cook with a lid on medium heat until the beans are tender :-)

  • THANK YOU, THANK YOU, THANK YOU, from my daughter and me! (or is that I?)
    A week ago you offered a “dry skin” cream that you use. I ordered some, and in 3 days my daughter’s hands are actually soft enough that they don’t snag everything she touches. Mine too. AWESOME!!!

  • Dulce de leche was first made in my country, Argentina. It is THE sweet treat here. It can also be made from plain milk (in fact, that is how it was “discovered” in the XIX century, some sugary milk was accidentally left on the stove for a long time, thus turning into dulce de leche).

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