Thoughtful Holiday Gift Guide: Kitchen Edition


Hello and welcome back to my series of thoughtful gift guides! If you’re just tuning in, be sure to check out yesterday’s post which included a very 2020 gift guide.

Today is all about kitchen gifts! While not everyone necessarily loves their kitchen, it’s a place we all need and use and have to at least make our coffee in the morning. That’s why kitchen gifts are so popular—because we really all need them.

Trust me, by now, if your loved one wants an Instapot, they have one. So let’s skip that ever popular gift recommendation (or is it air fryers this year?) and just share thoughtful gifts, okay?

To start off, I’m going to share some thoughts on gift giving, but then we’ll dive right into kitchen gifts (feel free to scroll to that if you’re chomping at the bit!). Ready? Let’s go!

My Philosophy on Thoughtful Gifts

In my opinion, if you want to give a good gift, it should acknowledge more than just one fact about someone. Instead of “you like coffee, here’s some coffee” it’s more like “you like coffee and you are very particular about it, here’s a gift card to your favorite coffee shop.”

Does that make sense? 

  • You like wine = wine glasses, funny signs about wine, random bottles of wine.
  • You like wine but you never want to open a bottle just to drink a glass by yourself = a wine preserver, a Coravin wine system, a collection of their favorite kinds of wine in splits or cans.

See how that added dimension makes for a gift that’s a lot more thoughtful and specific to the person? They’re probably much more likely to use and love that item.

Plus, while they might like the wine glass you got them anyway, if they love wine, they probably already had glasses.

Obviously, sometimes you buy a stocking stuffer and just grab something random and cute and don’t have to think about it this much. But sometimes, especially if it’s a splurge gift, it’s fun to go a little deeper.

Obviously I don’t know your loved one, but I’m trying to spark ideas here! As you’re looking through these ideas, think about those added dimensions, the added specificity you can use to show your friends you really know them.

Now, let’s dive into some actual gift ideas. 

Thoughtful Kitchen Gift Ideas

Looking for the best kitchen gifts? I've got 3 categories and 20+ specific gifts to get your thoughtful kitchen gift ideas flowing.

Sources: Utensil Crock + Utensils | Pepper Grinder | Silver Pasta Measurer | Always Pan | Lidded Mixing Bowls | Knife Set | Tongs Set | Salami Bouquet | Bluetooth Meat Thermometer | Fortnum and Mason Gift Basket |New York Bagel Delivery

1. A nice version of something they use all the time

There are some things in the kitchen that you just end up reaching for every time (or nearly every time you cook)—mixing bowls, sheet pans, wooden spoons, spatulas, etc. These things also tend to be basics you’ve had forever and they end up stained, cracked, chipped, whatever.

I’m a big believer in having the things you touch all the time be beautiful, so why not upgrade one of these basics that your friend uses all the time?

Remember to think about what they’re usually cooking in order to determine the basic they might need upgraded.

(In this category I’m also putting things they might not even know exist but they would definitely use all the time.)

2. Essentials for people who finally learned how their oven works thanks to the pandemic

Of course, not everyone has well-established basics that they’ve used for years. This year especially, there’s a whole bunch of brand new chefs and bakers—the type of people who probably don’t know what they really need in the kitchen.

For these people, let’s find some quality, multitasking basics to continue developing their newfound cooking skills.

3. Food gifts for people who don’t need more stuff

Some people are big on cooking…which means they pretty much have all the great kitchen gadgets. And some people just have small kitchens where they can’t really fit a lot of stuff.

That’s why I love giving food gifts! I get to give something thoughtful and special without worrying I’m cluttering up someone’s house. Plus, this is another opportunity to show that you know someone: send their favorite from a city they once visited or used to live in, or just send something they’d never make themselves!

This year, I’ve sent crab cakes, raw sushi-grade fish, and pastrami sandwiches. I even ordered bagels for myself because none of the ones outside of New York City are any good.

  • After going to London in December last year, I’d love to receive a little taste of Christmas afternoon tea—as, I’m sure, would any of your tea-loving friends who’d rather be English.
  • I’ve given this salami bouquet a couple times, and no dads have ever been disappointed by it.
  • Don’t forget to support local shops, bakeries and restaurants. See if any local restaurants are offering virtual tastings or cooking classes, and check local shops for delicious food gifts. If you’re in the Twin Cities, Cooks of Crocus Hill has holiday bon bons that would make a great gift!

The Best Thoughtful Kitchen Gifts

I hope this post was helpful and you have a bunch of fresh ideas for things you might want to get for friends and family.

Remember, gift giving can be fun!

For more gift ideas, check out my other gift guides:

This post may contain affiliate links, which are a way for you to support our blog at no cost to you. Thank you! 

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