Since you know you are going to be at Whole Foods at some point in the next week or so for grocery shopping, why not multitask and pick up some goodies for the foodie in your life? These gifts thoughtfully and deliciously upgrade the drinks bar, pantry, or fridge of your friends and loved ones. While several feature holiday-themed flair, many of them (including the pickles, peanut butter, and salt) will be loved even after the seasonal decorations have disappeared. And since your foodie friend or family member will likely want to celebrate her new goods with a dinner or get-together, you may even get to sample the gifts as well. One of the efforts we love at Whole Foods is how they choose to feature local food companies and artisans—be sure to check out the unique offerings at your local store.
These are likely not the pickles you grew up with. With flavors like Phat Beets (beets pickled with rosemary, lemon, and ginger) or Smokra (okra with smoked paprika) as well as classic sour pickle spears, these hand-packed pickles will find their way into salads, dips and on cheese plates and burgers. Once all the pickles have been gobbled up, the savory brine can also be used in marinades or reused with new veggies to make more pickles.
What we love about these full-flavored peanut butters: the variety of flavors, the fact that they are handcrafted with no added salt or preservatives and with only real fruit and natural extracts, and their versatility on PB and J sandwiches, in peanut sauce, and drizzled on waffles and pancakes with maple syrup. The only thing we don’t love: They don’t come in super-sized jars. (On second thought, maybe that’s a good thing.) Whoever is gifted one of these (perhaps matched with some locally made jam) is in for a holiday treat.
This panettone can double as a low-key hostess gift and a dessert. A traditional Italian holiday favorite, this sweet bread gets a tart and tasty upgrade with the addition of limoncello cream and candied lemon peels. Leftover panettone makes delicious bread pudding or French toast, so this is truly the foodie gift that keeps on giving.
Give the indulgence of cheese! This decadent cheese is from a third-generation family business and stuffed with truffles or porcini mushrooms. The layered camembert is almost too pretty too eat, but once it’s cut, we don’t think anyone will have a problem digging in. Consider bringing along some crackers or fresh figs to round out your present. Instead of praying that the giftee will break out the crackers and celebrate eating this cheese with you, purchase some for yourself, too.
Sweet little indulgences to gift to a friend you love spending hours with catching up over coffee. These cappuccino truffles are creamy and decadent but suitable for vegans, too. Made in France using an old family recipe, they are a perfect two-bite dessert delight.
If the winter chill has you dreaming of warm weather, this perfectly pink drink is like the gift of summer in a bottle. Crafted from elder flowers, elderberry juice, and rose petal extract, it’s a sweet, yet not cloying and non-alcoholic sparkling alternative. And it will dress up anyone’s bar cart.
Every foodie needs an array of candles to freshen up the air after cooking. Why not choose a candle with a cause? Thistle Farms Candles are made through a job-training program to provide women who have survived situations of violence, prostitution, and addiction with the opportunity to earn a living wage. The soy candles are handmade and come in heady scents like Geranium and Citrus (Hope), Fresh Pine (Home), and Frankincense and Ylang Ylang (Strength).
How gorgeous is this Australian-made sea salt? We can already picture it topping chocolate truffles and adding a beautiful hue and taste to a piece of fish. The gourmet flakes are naturally pink with a delicate flavor and a light texture that virtually dissolves into foods while enhancing the dish’s elements. This pretty pink salt also has a lighter environmental footprint than many other mined salts and is produced using underground saline water sources.
We like to think that if you have a bottle of champagne on hand, you’re more than halfway ready to have a party. Help a friend of loved one remember this by gifting them with this bottle of champagne straight from Montagne de Reims. This crisp, light, and layered bubbly also handily solves the quandary of remembering whether the giftee prefers red or white and will be a welcome kick-off for any meal.
These hand creams are not edible, but their sumptuous scents may stir your appetite. The trio includes Blackcurrant & Fig, Sugar & Orange Spice, and Cardamom Tea and is crafted in France with moisturizing shea butter and boosted with soothing argan and olive oils. Hands go through a lot during winter—especially with all that holiday cooking and dishwashing. A deliciously scented hand cream is a necessity.