It’s that time of the year again when shopping for gifts can become a very stressful experience! Unless I’m buying for my husband, I’ll spend most of my time shopping online since it means I don’t have to walk around aimlessly from store to store and worry about wrapping gifts, and writing cards. Sounds terrible of me? Perhaps, but to me Christmastime is more about relaxing and cherishing moments with the people I love.
I’ve made a quick, no fail Christmas gift list for cooks, foodies and aspiring chefs. Essential and fun items to create dishes and simplify the cooking process.
I only advertise products I own, have given to friends as gifts, and feel strongly about their quality, and use.
Best Gifts for a Cook
If you follow my blog, you know I couldn’t live without my immersion hand blender. This is the tool I use most, by far, in the kitchen. You can make whipped cream, purees, soups, mayonnaise, dressings – the list goes on. A wonderful weight loss tool too as you can quickly blend boiled veggies and make pots and pots of delicious, savory soups.
There are plenty of rice cookers out there that are less expensive than this one but Zojirushi is a Japanese brand that makes high quality and long lasting machines. Having a rice cooker is so much easier than cooking rice in a pot. It also keeps the rice warm for a long time (automatic feature) so you don’t have to worry about perfect timing come dinner time. For rice lovers, this is the ultimate gift.
The Flavor Bible: The Essential Guide to Culinary Creativity, Based on the Wisdom of America’s Most Imaginative Chefs
This James Beard award winning book helped me understand a lot about combining flavors, making me much more daring in the kitchen. It’s a very detailed book that lists thousands of ingredients and what they pair well with (spices, herbs, etc..) I used this book almost every day when I was learning to create recipes and wasn’t sure if one ingredient went well with another. This is one of the best and most descriptive books about food you’ll ever find.
This is my knife, the one I’ve been using every single day for the past 5 years. I can proudly vouch for the high quality, long lasting, amazing capabilities this knife has – the blade measures 8 inches and the handle is extremely comfortable. This is not a huge knife, but perfect for every day butterflying and chopping. It even peels hard shells like a butternut squash, quite easily.
A knife sharpener is essential if you cook every day like I do. This is the one I use and love because it has a 2-stage santoku sharpener – one coarser than the other. The coarser side is to reset an edge on a dull knife, while the other is to fine-tune (add more sharpness) to an already sharp knife. The handle grip is also very easy and comfortable to hold.
This set was given to me by my lovely mother-in-law about 3 years ago and has remained perfectly durable. There’s enough pots and pans to make a complete meal (soup, side dishes and meats). They’re very easy to clean and stack up nicely to save space. A must for gourmet cooks.
Flavored olive oils are great gifts to give! Everyone loves getting these cute little bottles of extra flavor as they add dimension to the simplest of dishes and look adorable on shelves. They’re also very affordable if you’re on a budget.
This is a fun and innovative gift to give, especially to someone who’s kitchen seems to already be entirely stocked. This little gadget helps wine to breathe faster, making it taste better immediately. A must for wine lovers!
Every woman needs a cute apron in the kitchen! I have 3 that I love to wear because they make me feel so girly and playful. I love the retro-chic look of this one, especially the A-line cut, making it look like an actual dress. So cute!
This is something cooks won’t buy for themselves (real chefs only use knives right?) but secretly dream of owning. This is another great gizmo to have if you’re planning to go on a diet as it dices and minces pretty much anything in seconds, making cooking much faster and easier.