Finding a unique hostess gift can feel overwhelming when there’s so much to do during the holidays. This year, skip the mad rush to the mall. To thank your friends and family who welcome you into their homes, consider bringing a thoughtful, edible gift.
Here are 11 homemade food gift ideas for hostesses, neighbors, co-workers, and beyond.
1. Mini Donuts
If your search for a meaningful hostess gift ends in front of a gift card display, consider showing your appreciation with homemade donuts. And not just any donuts—make tender, cake donuts. Need a baked donut recipe? Try one of these classic recipes like chocolate, vanilla, and apple cider donuts baked in a nonstick donut pan. You’ll make your hostess feel a little extra special without maxing out your holiday budget.
2. Holiday Breads
Turn your grandma’s famous banana bread or pumpkin bread into holiday gifts your family and friends love by using a mini loaf pan instead of a traditional bread pan. It’s also helpful when giving baked treats to friends and family who need allergy-free treats. Use rustic brown boxes and tags to wrap the treats.
3. Brownie Cups
Easily turn basic brownies into an elaborate dessert. Bake brownies in a brownie pan, then use a square boat press to create brownie cups. You can top the brownies with anything you want, like candies or berries. Let your imagination run wild!
4. Mini Bundt Cakes
Do you have more than one holiday party to attend? Multiple family parties in one day? A mini cake pan lets you bake six small cakes at once. Customize cakes with a special glaze, sprinkles, or powdered sugar. The Mini Cake Gift-Making Set includes everything you need to turn personal cakes into gifts.
5. Mini Pies
Give your host or hostess a tiny, decadent pie wrapped in a decorated box. Create seasonal pie favorites like apple, pumpkin, pecan, or cranberry. There’s no need to go to multiple stores or buy all your gift wrapping supplies separately. Find everything you need to beautifully package six gifts. The set includes six boxes with liners, precut twine, and gift tags.
6. Cookie Dough Ornaments
Here’s another gift idea for salt dough—press a child’s hand or a pet’s paw into the dough for a more personal gift.
7. Layered Cookie Mix
8. Cocoa mix in a jar
Start with a layer of hot cocoa mix, then add your host’s favorites toppings. Crushed peppermints, chocolate chips, and marshmallows make yummy cocoa toppings. Pack the cocoa in a reusable BPA-free jar that the recipient can use in their day-to-day for lunches and snacks.
9. Cookie Gift Ideas
When done with a little flair, small gestures can be very meaningful. Look at basic sugar cookies, for example. It takes almost no time to bake them, but they make a wonderful gift for a hostess or a neighbor. This cookie gift set has everything you need to make big batches of cookies in a variety of shapes thanks to the rolling cookie cutter.
10. Homemade Chocolate
Beautiful chocolates nestled in a brightly colored liner are sure to make your hostess’ day happier. A chocolate mold lets you put your own personal spin on this gift. You can dream up tons of creative candy creations. Layer white and dark chocolate melts. Try mint candy melts or caramel-flavored melts—there are so many possibilities!
Just melt chocolate, pour it into the wells, and pop it in the fridge. It’s that easy.
11. Whisk Gift Idea
When you need a last-minute gift, fill a whisk with chocolate kisses and tie it with a bow. For a finishing touch, add a tag that says, “We whisk you a merry kiss-mas!”
Need help with your holiday DIY gifts? Pampered Chef’s Bake to Gift Collection includes beautiful, useful tools, and easy recipe videos you can use to craft gorgeous baked goods to give as gifts—creating sweet traditions along the way.
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This post has been updated since it was originally published in October 2017.