If you’re like me, no December is complete without turning your kitchen into a small factory for making food gifts. Over the years I’ve tackled everything from English toffee to Italian biscotti. I used to make a variety of treats each season, often working late into the night to package things up like a Martha Stewart protégé. These days, I typically opt for one idea and aim to keep the wrapping as simple as the recipe. With that in mind, I’ve pulled together 10 tasty, terrific food gifts, none of which will break the bank, require special ingredients or equipment, or keep you from your holiday season slumber.

Dark Chocolate Almond Bark 1. Dark Chocolate Almond Bark

My personal favorite because it’s so easy to make, so pretty, and darn delicious.

coconut_granola_bark / momskitchenhandbook.com

2. Coconut Granola Bark

This should come with a warning label: highly addictive. It will also make your kitchen smell amazing as it bakes. photo credit: Jennifer Martine

Easy Hot Fudge Sauce

3. Easy Hot Fudge Sauce

Ridiculously easy to make and so good you won’t want to give it away.

Moroccan Spiced Walnuts

4. Moroccan Spiced Walnuts

A little something savory, these walnuts are so full of Moroccan flavors, it’s impossible to eat just one.

Molasses Ginger Cookies

5. Double Ginger Molasses Rye Cookies

Two kinds of ginger and two whole grain flours add up to a flavorful cookie that tastes like a holiday cookie should.

Cranberry Ginger Baked Oatmeal in a Jar / momskitchenhandbook.com

Baked Cranberry Ginger Oatmeal

6. Cranberry Ginger Baked Oatmeal

A baked oatmeal “kit” that involves layering ingredients in a jar along with “how to” instructions. Once assembled, it makes a terrific holiday breakfast for a small crowd.

Cranberry quick bread

Cranberry Cardamom Loaves with Tangerine Glaze

Little quick breads are terrific for wrapping up and giving as gifts. These are a holiday favorite.

Dark Chocolate Muesli

 7. Deep Dark Chocolate Muesli

For your “health nut” friends … but with a decadent touch, this muesli involves toasting oats and nuts and tossing it with chopped dark chocolate. Easy and delicious when served with fresh berries under a pool of cold milk.

Ginger Walnut Date Truffles

8. Ginger Walnut Date Truffles

A healthier, more sustaining spin on chocolate truffles whereby walnuts, crystallized ginger, and dates blend up into a sweet filling that gets dunked in dark chocolate. Yum!

Maple Ginger Pearsauce

9. Maple Ginger Pearsauce

Pears make a tasty swap for apples in this creamy sauce, one that requires refrigeration, so it’s best for local gift giving.
Chocolate Hemp Bars

10. Chocolate Hemp Amazebars

A no-bake bars chock-full of good-for-you ingredients that have just enough decadence to feel like a treat. a


For more homespun gift ideas, check out this recipe feature I wrote for the San Francisco Chronicle that includes

  • Homemade Apple Butter
  • Cranberry Ginger Granola
  • Honey Lacquered Almonds with Rosemary and Black Pepper
  • Cranberry Walnut Bread
  • “Better for You” Peppermint Chocolate Sauce.healthy holiday food gifts