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Food and travel are an inseparable pair—one bite can bring back a rush of delicious memories. Whether it's memories of a special trip, a city once called home, or a bucket list destination, there's no doubt that an edible gift can do more for its recipient than taste delicious. Fortunately, shippable options abound. Bagels from a classic New York deli can create the brunch of holiday dreams, small-batch chocolate can add sweetness to someone’s day, and home cooks will find delight in luxe kitchen ingredients and so much more in between. This list isn't just for the holidays, either: Bookmark it for those future special occasions—birthdays and “just because” days included.
Below, dig into 33 of the best food gifts for Christmas and beyond, no matter what type of foodie your giftee might be.
- Iconic eats
- Gifts for the sweet tooth
- Savory gifts
- Gourmet gift baskets and sets
- Hostess gifts
- Saucy gifts
This article has been updated with new information since its original publish date. Additional reporting by Debra Kamin and Madison Flager.
The Festival of Lights calls for deliciously oil-laden treats and the classic gourmet grocery store (literally) delivers big time. Send this glorious box filled with one pound of latkes, house-made applesauce, Schicks Hanukkah cookies, gelt, and—as a bonus—dreidels, and your loved one’s Hanukkah celebration will be complete.
Even folks who’ve never stepped foot in New York likely know about Levain Bakery’s over-the-top cookies. The chocolate chip cookies are perennial favorites, but you can take it up a notch this holiday season with their seasonally-inspired dark chocolate peppermint cookies. Available in four- and eight-packs, they deliver the gooeyness for which Levain is beloved with the added touch of festive peppermint chips. If you want to show some extra love, go ahead and add the bicycle or taxi tote bag.
Sending a Southern breakfast from the renowned Nashville-based Biscuit Love is the next best thing to an in-person hug. The biscuit joint wins people over with its flaky, fluffy butter bombs and even those who haven't yet had the pleasure will be thrilled to sink their teeth into these. The veritable breakfast feast in a box includes cinnamon rolls, biscuits, granola, jams, and more—mimosas not included, but recommended.
There are plenty of top-notch bakeries to visit while in New York City, but few are better known than Magnolia Bakery. Their banana pudding is one to beat, and thankfully for any devotees, it can be shipped nationwide—this package comes with six large cups of the classic flavor, so no one in the family has to share.
For foodies, the main event of any trip to Maine is biting into the quintessential Maine lobster roll. Served on a fluffy toasted and buttered hot dog bun and packed with fresh lobster chunks, this purist’s delight is hard to match—but easy to source and ship, thanks to this lobster roll kit available on Goldbelly.
Any way you slice it, pizza is the ultimate comfort food—and therefore, one of the best food gifts. Whether your loved one prefers their pie soft, thin, and hand-tossed, à la a NYC slice; or deep-crusted and layered thick with toppings, as they do in Chicago, there’s no doubt that pizza, consumed hot, bubbling, and straight out of the oven, is one of life’s most delicious pleasures. Lou Malnati’s deep dish has been satisfying Windy City appetites for half a century; Roberta’s is still considered one of the most important pizza joints in the Big Apple. And if you're a fan of Detroit-style, or want to give it the old college try, you can't go wrong with a pie from Emmy Squared: the Colony is a sweet and spicy mix of jalapeños, honey, and crispy cupped pepperoni. Order a pie to bake from home from any of these spots with just a few clicks.
For the person in your life who can’t get enough of brined and seasoned meat, send over some sandwich fillings from either coast. Pastrami, which is corned beef that’s been rubbed down with herbs and spices and then smoked and steamed, has aficionados in both New York and Los Angeles. Angelenos swear by Langer's, the kosher-style delicatessen in L.A.’s Westlake neighborhood, while New Yorkers have been lining up for Katz’s pastrami on rye since 1888.
Philadelphia loves few things as much as it loves its cheesesteaks: paper-thin slices of saucy ribeye and melted cheese, served up hot and dripping with mushrooms and onions on a long and toasted roll. But for decades, the City of Brotherly Love has been divided by a fierce rivalry over who prepares the best of these messy, melted sandwiches, with Pat’s King of Steaks, Jim’s Steaks, and Campo’s among the joints staking their claim as the superlative purveyor of Philadelphia’s favorite sandwich. As for us, we’re content ordering up one of each and holding a taste test at home.
Gifts for the sweet tooth
Salt & Straw’s decadent ice cream is the stuff of legends—and now you don’t have to physically be on the West Coast to enjoy it. A real treat to consider shipping is their ice cream cake made in collaboration with Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson. It comes in both “naughty” or “nice” varieties (naughty has cookie dough, peanut butter, and coffee-chocolate cake, while nice has coconut cake, marionberry jam, bananas-foster, and peanut butter ganache). And when the holiday moment has passed, their pints always make for a lovely surprise.
A world of chocolate wonder awaits in this gift set by Seattle Chocolate. The company is down for its creative flavors and this collection is no exception. Vibrant packaging, with cheery art by the Dutch artist Bodil Jane, gives way to an assortment of chocolate inspired by world travels, from the Holy Cannoli and Creme Brûlée Crackle chocolate bars to a chocolate airplane mold.
It’s hard not to love the clever flavor combinations that the creative geniuses in Columbus, Ohio, come up with for Jeni’s. If you’re tired of the same old, same old cookie swap, may we suggest shaking things up with an ice cream-tasting party instead? Jeni’s new holiday flavor bundle, which includes Boozy Eggnog, Buckeye Frenzy (a very crunchy peanut butter-chocolate situation), and Merry Berry, lends itself perfectly to such a situation. BYO-Spoon?
Craving some real-deal Vermont maple syrup? Or have a friend or relative pining for the good stuff? There’s an easy way to help them out of that sticky situation. Goldbelly ships pure Vermont maple syrup from Burgess Sugarhouse nationwide, so pancake lovers don't have to settle for supermarket brands.
For the chocolate fiend who likes a more subtle sweetness, there’s Spring & Mulberry. The company uses dates to sweeten its organically grown Ghanaian chocolate resulting in a rich, mellow bar that doesn’t cloy. The company’s bars also look beautiful with additions of dried fruit and flowers, and come in seasonal flavor combinations like pear, ginger, and rosemary (which stars in the holiday trio).
Real mustard lovers know that Maille reigns supreme. Its mustards are zippy, creamy, and downright smooth (unless you’re enjoying the whole grain variety, naturally), making it ideal for charcuterie boards, sandwiches, and other mustard-based dishes. Any home chef would be delighted to receive the variety pack which includes the original dijon, whole grain, rich country dijon, and honey dijon mustards.
Ideally, if you’re going to give someone the gift of mouthwatering steak, it should be as high-quality as possible. Porter Road is up there with the best thanks to its pasture-raised approach. Your favorite carnivore will be grateful when you gift them the Porter Road Box filled with steaks, pork chops, and ground beef among other goodies (tell them to save some in the freezer to really stretch it).
A gift that’s sure to impress, Paramount Caviar’s variety pack includes the best of the best roe. Think of it as the greatest hits, but for caviar. It includes imported trout roe and Imperial Ostera as well as domestic golden whitefish roe and hackle back. More than just the caviar, however, is the stunning presentation within the black leatherette box that contains the set which comes with five mother-of-pearl caviar spoons, a caviar key, 30 pieces of blini, and clotted cream. The carefully sourced caviar bursts with fresh flavor and will make any recipient feel like royalty.
For anyone yearning for their favorite Balkan dishes, Balkan Bites makes homemade burek—the flaky, stuffed phyllo pie found in the Balkans, Middle East, and Western Asia. This business hand-stretches the dough and makes its burek according to beloved family recipes. Choose from mushroom and goat cheese, beef and onion, spinach and cheese, and more, and have them shipped frozen to your friend missing their favorite treats.
Gourmet gift baskets and sets
Chai is the ultimate warming beverage and possibly no one does it better than Chai Box, a woman-owned company that carefully sources and blends its tea and herbs. This kit makes it easy to enjoy chai with two bags of blends, one bottle of chai concentrate, and a package of biscuits (perfect for dunking).
In this booze-laden time of year, it's important to remember the friends who don’t drink. Ghia’s got them covered with this darling cozy kit to get through the cold months ahead. It includes four cans of the Aperol-like spritz (the Ghia-ginger is a standout, while sumac and chili’s spice keeps things warm), chocolates, and a puzzle. All that’s missing is a friend to toast the good times with.
Sweet Grass Dairy, located in Thomasville, Georgia, produces award-winning cheese and, fortunately, cheese-lovers around the country can partake in it. The Georgia On My Mind box will have the gift recipient humming along with Ray Charles as they dip into the box filled with pimento cheese, Georgia gouda, and their soft-ripened, brie-like Green Hill among others. It's a one-stop shop cheese party as it also includes crackers, meat, and jam.
For the Brit missing home this Christmas, Williams Sonoma's F&M collaboration is here to fill the gap. The iconic hamper comes filled with raspberry preserves, Sir Nigel's marmalade, two types of teas, Piccadilly Stem ginger biscuits, shortbread fingers, Salisbury honey, and Champagne truffles.
For the traveler who can't stop raving about their stay at Tennessee's Blackberry Farm, bring a piece of the magic to their kitchen with this breakfast set. They can plan a post-holiday brunch for six complete with Blackberry Farm coffee, griddle cake mix, biscuit mix, apple butter, honey, Appalachian maple syrup, Allan Benton's bacon, and of course, blackberry jam.
This family cooking kit blends a cultural lesson with a cooking exercise, while also providing harder-to-find ingredients and sauces that define the meal. The subscription service allows you to explore a country, a continent, or the world, and each box comes with three recipe cards, ingredients, essential sauces, a shopping list, an activity sheet, and a collectible, like a cooking tool or flag pin.
For the nut butter enthusiast, it doesn’t get much better than the creative flavors churned out by the mad geniuses at Big Spoon Roasters. The holiday trio shows off their perfectly spiced blends in combinations like carrot cake almond and walnut butter (it doesn't actually have carrots, but it does hearken to the classic dessert with maple syrup, cinnamon, nutmeg, allspice, and sea salt) and the warming chai spice peanut and almond butter.
Trust us: Home chefs can never have too much olive oil. And an extra virgin olive oil from the California brand Enzo is like gold. This kit also comes with a beautiful cruet made by Farmhouse Potter as well as a canister of Jacobsen’s salt and salt cellar waiting to house it. It’s a gift with staying power that will remain long after the last drop of olive oil is gone.
Opening Brooklyn Delhi’s aptly named Celebration gift box reveals shimmering stainless steel compartment plates by Ahimsa Home. The mermaid-like hues are beautiful and will have your gift recipient ready to host a dinner party—starring the gift set’s jars of achaar and chutney, of course.
If your giftee is 1) a fan of sours and 2) in need of a winter project, send them this beer-making kit from Talea Beer Co., a female-founded brewery based in Brooklyn. They can cook up their own fruity (but not overpoweringly sweet) ale, full of peach, strawberry, and pink guava flavors.
Spruce up a home chef's everyday essentials with this Brightland olive oil set. They'll get four 3.4-ounce bottles of chili pepper-, garlic-, lemon-, and basil-infused oils, each in beautifully-designed packaging they'll be happy to display on their countertops.
Ideal for anyone who appreciates a flavor-packed, easy-to-prepare meal, this Omsom set is a winner. The producers of Chinese, Thai, and Vietnamese-inspired sauces and noodles bundled their greatest hits into this box with 10 noodle boxes and 15 sauce packets.
Siete, the Austin-based brand dreaming up delicious gluten and grain-free Mexican snacks, knew what they were doing when they made these botana sauces. The squeeze-bottle sauces come in four different flavors (chamoy, jalapeño, traditional, and habanero) that can be used on top of anything from tacos and grain bowls to vegetables and snacks. Gift them to anyone that wants a taste of Mexico at any time.
Launched this year by two female Japanese American founders who “wanted to share the beauty and ease of Japanese home cooking,” Cabi's trio of sauces makes a great gift for anyone looking to shake up their cooking routine. From left to right, there's a sweet yuzu vinegar, umami dashi soy sauce, and zesty sansho peppercorn miso sauce.