Delight Friends, Family, and Hostesses With These Homemade Food Gift Ideas
Whether you're on the hunt for the perfect hostess gift or simply want to bring a smile to a neighbor's face, homemade gifts are always well received. You can bake that iconic cake you're known for or create small containers filled with jelly, seasonings, or syrups. We've even been known to create sampler gift boxes, baking several different flavors on one theme. Shortbread cookies and cheese straws work particularly well in a mix-and-match package. No matter what type of treat you're looking to make or the occasion, we've got the recipe you need. From food Christmas gifts to birthday treats, these Southern homemade food gifts, complete with charming packaging and thoughtful details, will put a smile on anyone's face.
Shortbread Cookie Sampler
Buttery bites make for well-received packages. We used a 9- × 6-inch box and inserted individual white treat boxes as dividers.
Mexican Hot Chocolate Mug Cake
Mini cake mixes, wrapped individually in 12-ounce microwaveable mugs, make adorable gifts.
Recipe: Mexican Hot Chocolate Mug Cake
Homemade Soft Pretzel
For a new twist on a hostess gift, try these buttery knots inspired by the Lowcountry. Pack pretzels in a decorative box or basket that the hostess can reuse, and line it with fabric. Mini country Dijon mustard jars round out the gift. Secure our custom label to a small wooden spreader.
Recipe: Homemade Soft Pretzel
Apple-Pie Infused Bourbon
Turn a plain bottle of hooch into a top-shelf indulgence, infused with sweet autumn ﬂavor. At 7 ounces, these cute corked bottles are the perfect size for gifts. You can also use mini mason jars or any other food-safe glass container with a lid.
Recipe: Apple Pie-Infused Bourbon
Cheese Straw Sampler
Wrap these savory bites in a fabric-lined 9- × 4 1/2-inch box. Make dividers out of corrugated paper or lightweight cardboard.
Sweet Potato-Cranberry Scones with Molasses-Orange Butter
These scones look great and travel well when tucked in a bowl wrapped up in a large (30 inches or more) kitchen towel or pretty linen.
3 Fresh Spring Vinaigrettes
Bottomless Vanilla Extract
Easy homemade vanilla extract is the gift that keeps on giving. Choose bourbon or vodka as your base, then let the vanilla bean do the work. The longer it steeps, the better the flavor.
Hoppin' John Soup
For a charming fall gift that's more inspired than a bottle of wine, wrap a loaf of our moist Pumpkin Bread in a pretty fall-inspired tea towel.
Recipe: Pumpkin Bread
Pineapple Craft Cocktail with Lime Sea Salt
When poured into a glass bottle, this tangy mixer makes a fantastic hostess gift, especially when it's packaged with a batch of Lime Sea Salt and a bottle of tequila.
Peppermint Pinwheel Cookies
Fill inexpensive metal containers from crafts stores with Peppermint Pinwheel Cookies for a gift your neighbors and friends will love.
Recipe: Peppermint Pinwheel Cookies
Milk Chocolate-Peppermint Bark
As if milk chocolate morsels and peppermint candies weren't perfect enough a mixture, we added rich cream-and-mint-filled chocolate sandwich cookies and salty pretzel sticks to our peppermint bark. This recipe is great for giving as gifts, but be sure to save a few pieces as a holiday treat for yourself.
Recipe: Milk Chocolate-Peppermint Bark
Lemon-Poppy Seed Zucchini Bread
These little loaves freeze (and thaw) wonderfully, so keep them on hand by the bushelful for last-minute gifts. Package the bread in a pint-size wood berry box for rustic charm. Add high style for low cost by wrapping the loaves with fabric scraps. (We used a Bed, Bath & Beyond curtain panel, torn and frayed at the edges.) Tie on our downloadable gift tag with embroidery thread for a pretty finish.
Recipe: Lemon-Poppy Seed Zucchini Bread
Prepare batches of this spicy gift and divvy it up by the cupful. It's the perfect base for pork butts, ribs and more. And these small jars make charming gift wrap—they come with a wooden spoon, just right for dipping out spices. Find them at Hobby Lobby ($2.67 each).
Recipe: Smoky-Sweet BBQ Rub
Coffee Cake Pound Cake
Resolve to think beyond a ho-hum box of chocolates for a food gift. Instead, pass on this sweet treat, which marries two Southern specialties, coffee cake and pound cake, to create one buttery, best-of-both-worlds dessert.
Recipe: Coffee Cake Pound Cake
Vidalia Onion & Peach Relish
You will need a canner, jar lifter, and canning rack. Look for a 9- or 12-piece canning kit, which will include all of these pieces and more.
Get this look by using decorative craft paper and homemade gift tags. They add a touch of charm to canned gifts—slip a serving spoon into the twine for extra thoughtfulness.
Recipe: Vidalia Onion & Peach Relish
Because a good Southerner doesn't let guests leave empty-handed. Recycled cardboard drink containers make perfect car carriers for the ride home—just stash a cellophane-wrapped snack in each slot. We gave our container a coat of white spray paint, glued on scrap fabric, and affixed a custom "Happy Trails!" label to the front.
Blueberry Streusel Muffins
Bake several batches of these delightful Blueberry Streusel Muffins or your favorite muffin or quick bread. Wrap them up with tea bags and mugs for a complete tea-time present. For added flair, use festive muffin wrappers.
Recipes: Blueberry Streusel Muffins
Delicious drizzled over biscuits and fried chicken or whisked into a vinaigrette, this chile-infused honey will make a welcome addition to anyone's pantry. Present it in a cute jar jazzed up with washi tape.
Recipe: Hot Honey
Crunchy Pecan Pie Bites
With just seven ingredients and 15 minutes of hands-on time, creating multiple jars ready for gifting will be easier than you think. For extra decoration, add ribbon to the rim of your jars or festive red doilies to the base or top.
Recipe: Crunchy Pecan Pie Bites
Fudgy Pecan Bourbon Balls
These decadent little delights are a cross between bourbon balls and chocolate truffles. Nestle each one in a mini baking cup, and place them in cardboard jewelry boxes wrapped in holiday paper before delivering.
Recipe: Fudgy Pecan Bourbon Balls