There is nothing more heartfelt than a one-of-a-kind gift you make yourself. So many different types of gifts lend themselves to being handmade — candles, soaps and, of course, edibles and drinkables. Most folks on the receiving end of such gifts appreciate the thought and time it took to create such a personal gift, and love that they don’t have to find a place to put yet another knick-knack (aka dust collector).
When it comes to creating and giving homemade foods and drinks, you can create very fancy gifts by going just a bit beyond the edible portion:
- Pick up a cute basket or holiday box at your local Michaels, AC Moore, (don’t forget to bring your 40% or 50% off coupon) or Christmas Tree Shoppe.
- Scrunch up some colored tissue paper or shred some colored paper to use as a basket or box liner.
- Use your computer to print up cute labels to tie to bags or stick on jars. You can create your own labels on your computer or using the apple app Makr. You can also find several options for free printable labels–some you can personalize to make them extra special. These labels are a bit elegant. Here are about a dozen more label options — chalkboard, shabby chic, cutsie, simple, and more.
- Foods and drink mixes can be packaged in cellophane bags, canning jars or decorated foil pans. Pinterest is a great resource for creative ideas. Check out this board and this one to get you started.
- Place your gift in the basket or the box and fill with coordinating accessories. More on that below.
- Wrap with clear cellophane and tie a big bow at the top using wired ribbon, which will hold its shape better than fabric ribbon.
- Don’t forget to include any preparation instructions the receiver will need.
A flavored coffee mix is perfect for the coffee lover and can be accessorized with a mug for home, a thermal travel cup like this one, and a package of biscotti or stroopwafels for dunking. Try this Mocha mix.
For tea-drinkers, gift this chai tea mix along with a tea cup and saucer, a tea cup cover to let tea steep, a tea ball and a tea towel. Maybe even some individual packages of shortbread cookies. For those on the go, a thermal travel cup like this would be nice paired with a tea mix as well. You might even whip up a loaf of quick bread to complete tea time. Try this lemon poppy seed bread or this seasonal cranberry orange bread.
Or, you can give a homemade hot cocoa mix.
Homemade gift baskets can also be a great way to embellish a small gift. If you have a wine lover on your list, you could get them a nice wine bottle opener. Then pair it with, mulled wine mix, an inexpensive bottle of a favorite wine, a pair of wine glasses,and a fancy wine bottle stopper.
Yummy hot chocolate mix can be put in a cellophane bag and paired with a big mug. Add another bag full of mini marshmallows and perhaps a few individually wrapped chocolate candies or a couple of pretty candy canes they can use a stir sticks.
Brownie mix can be packaged along with a personalized baking dish, spatula and pot holders. Or make your favorite brownie recipe and bake in mason jars. Once sealed they’ll keep fresh for a year. A few of these packaged in a gift basket along with some of the sauces below and a few cute little ladles.
Who wouldn’t want to receive a selection of sweet, gooey sauces? They can be used on pies, to dip cookies in, on cakes or ice cream and more. An adorable way to gift these is in a basket along with a nice ice cream scoop, a couple of sundae glasses and an assortment of colorful sprinkles. Maybe even a little jar of maraschino cherries to add a pop of color. Try these hot fudge, caramel and butterscotch sauces.
Be sure to store any perishables in the refrigerator until gift-giving time.