‘Tis the season for gifting, baking and, above all, eating! But why keep the three separate when you can make delicious gifts from scratch? They say the way to anyone’s heart is through their stomach, and the holidays are the perfect time to show your loved ones just how much you care. From the candy lover to the bacon aficionado, cross every taste off your list with these 6 festive treats.
For the animal lover: Ginger Pigs
Here’s a fast idea for a hostess gift that’s both beautiful and useful: an edible salad bouquet! Here’s the how-to:
Buy starter plants– green-leaf (like oak), red-leaf (like ruby) and flavorful mesclun mixes (arugula, kale)– at farmers’ markets or gardening stores and transfer them to a planter or pot. Add a note on a gardening tag, then let your friends dig in. Your hosts can enjoy it all season long!
More Fast Ideas
If you can’t stand the heat in the kitchen—get out of the house and host a picnic! We’ve got the best gear for a summer day in the park, at the beach or on the lawn—all you have to do is provide the food. Check out our fave products:
1. Forget schlepping around a bulky, boxy basket—this insulated picnic tote holds everything you need and keeps food at the right temp! $42, macys.com
2. Easily carry this large picnic mat to whatever spot you choose—the waterproof bottom means you can lay it wherever you want! Plus, store extra essentials in the hidden pocket. $32 and up, picnicfun.com Special note: 10% of all pink mat purchases will go to breast cancer research.
3. Keep food safe from bugs while you play with these hand-painted food domes. $30 and up for set of three, depending on size, worldmarket.com
4. Just because you’re outside doesn’t mean you have to sacrifice style! You’d never guess these servers, with intricate rope detailing on the bottoms, are melamine. Available in three colors. $18.50, potterybarn.com
5. Need inspiration? Look no further than Tori Finch’s “A Perfect Day for A Picnic” loaded with tons of decorating and recipe ideas for your outdoor party. $17, amazon.com
6. Don’t forget the wine! This three-bottle-tote ensures the vino keeps flowing all day long! $30, builtny.com
7. These bright, printed melamine plates will survive the trip outside—and impress your company! $4.50 each, westelm.com
Pair your picnic gear with these delish just-for-summer recipes:
- Tasty summer side dishes
- 15 no-cook recipes
- Mediterranean potato salad
- An Orangina cocktail
- Pigs in ponchos
More Picnic Posts:
Here’s to you Dad!
Stumped on gift ideas? We’ve got some quirky, foodie and all-around awesome presents to show your dad just how much you love him this Father’s Day!
1. I mustache you a question! How cool would your old man look in these stache-covered socks? $12.50, fredflare.com
2. Whatever his title may be at work, we promise you he’s most proud of the title “Dad.” So let him brag at the office with a special for-dad-only mug. $14 each, rockscissorpaper.com
3. Guys aren’t all about meat and potatoes, they have a secret sweet tooth too! Fill up his candy drawer with a three piece candy collection, loaded with fruity sour gummies, gummy cola bottles and gourmet gummy papa and baby bears. $16 for set, sugarfina.com
4. Happy hour just got better! With this age-your-own whiskey kit he can pour friends a drink and brag about it. Each kit comes with two 110-proof bottles of un-aged White Dog Whiskey, an aging barrel and two drinking glasses. $150, binnys.com
5. Make a statement! This wood sign (5″x4.5″) let’s him show off just how much you care. $11, paper-source.com
6. If he’s more of a beer guy, try a garden kit that lets him grow his own hops! In this garden dome, he’ll grow wheat, barley and hops (seeds included in the kit) so all he has left to do is brew a pint! $28, overstock.com
7. Here’s a treat he’ll eat right up: Slow-roasted pecans smoked and seasoned with chili powder, thyme, brown sugar, salt and Old Bay for true Southern BBQ flavor. $24, blackberryfarm.com
8. If he’s a grill master that loves to entertain, he—and his guests—will get a kick out of these Claudia Pearson beach-inspired hot dog plates. Surfs up! $16 each, westelm.com
Looking for more Father’s Day ideas?
According to the National Retail Federation Mother’s Day spending survey, consumers will spend an average of $168.94 on mother’s day gifts this year with a majority of people splurging on electronics. Instead of giving mom a straight-out-of-the-box gift like a phone though, we suggest showing her a little TLC with a care package specially customized to compliment her personality. Use our three suggestions below as a starting point, then get creative by adding other items you know your mom will love!
For Moms Who Love a Little Nosh:
Give her an edible world tour: Line the inside of a cardboard box with an old map and pack it with treats like jasmine tea pearls from China, French macarons, figs from Spain or Belgian chocolate. Or look to family vacations for inspiration: saltwater taffy from San Diego, bagels from New York or maple syrup from Vermont.
For Moms Who Put Everyone Else First:
Encourage her to indulge her interests. If she’s a cook, try colorful kitchen tools, an apron and a cooking-class gift certificate. Add a recipe box filled with notes and family photos. Or inspire an artistic mom with an art or photography book and a set of brushes and paints.
For Moms Who Want Something You Made:
Create a memory box: Write down your most heartfelt thoughts on separate slips of paper. Roll and tie each one with a bit of ribbon and stash them in a vintage tin. Include a photo in a recordable frame with a message from the whole family, or go all out with a customized photo book from a site like pinholepress.com.