Items Only a Southerner Would Get in Their Christmas Stocking
Southerners love to give gifts. We’re also planners, thinking and plotting and shopping for months ahead of the holiday season in order to secure the perfect present for everyone on our list. We don’t rest until we’ve thoughtfully and comprehensively considered each and every gift. Christmas stockings, though, are where we have fun and think outside the box—literally and figuratively. There are some Christmas-stocking traditions we follow every year (an orange in the toe, anyone?), and there are also clever and funny stocking additions that we include to put smiles on our loved ones’ faces. But that’s not all. There are some stocking stuffers that can be classicied as so very Southern. We’ve rounded up a few of those below—the quirky, the classic, the time-tested, the delicious, and the utterly Southern. Take a look and let us know: Have you given (or received) any of these Southern stocking stuffers? We hope they’ll also give you some gifting inspiration for the upcoming holiday season.
These stocking stuffers are even sweeter when made by Mama. Southerners are known for gifting their homemade canned goods—jams, jellies, preserves, and all the rest from the year’s harvests—in the season’s Christmas stockings. It’s usually a jar of a Southern classic, and it may just be something you can only find in the South, like mayhaw jelly.
Buy it: $12.95, amazon.com
Don’t mess with the classics. Church and Junior League cookbooks are the gifts that keep on giving. There are some time-tested treasures (like Charleston Receipts) that we pass on to everyone we know, but every region has its favorites, and they make their way to the stockings on Christmas morning.
Buy it: $19.95, amazon.com
Oh, Moon Pies. This Southern-made treat always sneaks into Southern Christmas stockings—and for good reason. Whether classic, mini, double-decker, chocolate, banana, salted caramel, or vanilla, we love our celestial sweets.
Buy it: $19.84 for 24, amazon.com
A New Heirloom
Southerners are notorious for filling stockings with heartfelt gifts that will make the recipient well with emotion—like a tea towel inscribed with a loved ones’ hand writing, a baking dish personalized with a secret family recipe, or jewelry with sentimental value. They’re heirlooms in the making.
Buy it: $74.99, etsy.com
SEC and ACC Gear
Sure, football season just ended, but it wouldn’t be Christmas if our stockings were bereft of our school colors. Gear from our favorite schools and teams are fair game—hats, t-shirts, coolers, anything we can look forward to using once tailgating season rolls around again. (But of course we’ll also be wearing it in the meantime.)
Buy it: $22, amazon.com
Mint Julep Cups
Who says you can’t include glassware (or silver cups) in a stocking? Southerners are good at gifting what their loved ones want and what they need. Even better when you can check both boxes with the same gift. A set of mint julep cups is a want and a need. Why? Because we’re all already looking forward to the Derby.
Buy it: $19.95 each, crateandbarrel.com
Receiving some sort of sauce or spice is a cheeky tradition in some regions of the South. Tabasco hot sauce is a Southern stalwart because it’s made by the McIlhenny Company on Avery Island, Louisiana. Old Bay is a Baltimore, Maryland-based favorite, and if you find yourself in Alabama, don’t be surprised if you’re gifted some Alabama-style white barbecue sauce.
Buy it: $29.95, amazon.com
The time-tested, perfectly seasoned, Southern-favorite skillet also checks the boxes of “useful” and “wished for.” It may not fit in a stocking (depending on the size of the stocking in question), but, when passed down from the kitchens of previous generations, it’s a classic Southern present (and it’s also sure to be put to use before the day is done).
Buy it: $15.92, amazon.com
This tradition has been passed down through the ages, and more than a few Southern households still add oranges to Christmas stockings. It’s especially popular in Florida (for obvious reasons), but the tradition isn’t confined to the coast.
Buy it: $13.97, amazon.com
You don’t have to be on one of the Southern coasts to appreciate this gift, but that’s where you’re certain to find it. A stocking filled with all the utensils needed to eat the season’s best catch (i.e. oyster knives, seafood crackers, and lobster picks) will satisfy every Southern seafood aficionado.
Buy it: $69.95, williams-sonoma.com
A Gnat Hat
Don’t laugh. This is serious business in the South. A gnat hat (or mosquito hat) is a not-unheard-of stocking stuffer because we all know that gnat season will be here before we know it. (If you live below the Gnat Line, you don’t mess around when it comes to gnat season.)
Buy it: $26, amazon.com