As the holidays approach so do the seasonal gatherings. Instead of spending time you may not have baking or preparing tasty treats, there are plenty of things you can order online that still taste amazing. Bring a fancy charcuterie board to impress your friends. Or a box of pretzels and specialty waffles to share with family.
If it’s not the parties that you’re concerned about, there are also some thoughtful food gifts, as well. A collection of artisan chocolate bars or a bag of specialty coffee make excellent and thoughtful presents for the right people. As always, the prices listed may fluctuate over time.
Omaha Steaks Tis the Season Gift Collection
If you’ve never actually tried food from Omaha Steaks, you’re missing out. My first encounter was with the Tis the Season Gift Collection, and it blew my expectations. It comes with four 8-ounce New York strip steaks, four 6-ounce bacon-wrapped pork chops, four boneless chicken breasts, four filet mignon burgers, four jumbo franks, four individual scalloped potatoes and four caramel apple tarts. It’s a lot of food that can feed plenty of people or serve a couple of people for a few nights.
It’s hard to decide, but I think the bacon-wrapped pork chops were my favorite selection of meat. In fact, I was so impressed with this collection that I was sent to sample that I ended up buying more for a few special occasions we had at our house. Everything from the easy-to-follow instructions to the included steak seasoning makes this food a joy to prepare and serve.
Buy at Omaha Steaks for $170.45.
The Morning Dram Bourbon Barrel Aged Coffee
The Morning Dram Coffee makes for a unique gift or special treat for guests visiting. Their Bourbon Barrel Aged Coffee includes beans from Mexico that have been aged in emptied bourbon barrels before their roasting. There’s no alcohol in the coffee, but there are hints of bourbon that add to the flavor of the coffee itself. I’ve tried a couple of bags from the Morning Dram and each has been a real delight.
Buy at the Morning Dram Coffee for $27.
Eastern Standard Provisions Comfort and Joy Holiday Gift Box
Pretzels and waffles probably don’t come to most people’s minds when they consider holiday treats. It didn’t for me, but now I continually think of those food items after sampling the Comfort and Joy Holiday Gift Box from Eastern Standard Provisions.
This particular selection comes with eight larger pretzels and a bag of pretzel bites, as well as four Belgian waffles. Included are two dipping sauces, chocolate and Maui Onion Mustard. There’s also cinnamon sugar, Classic Pretzel Salt and Chili Lime Pretzel Salt. The different foods only take a few minutes to warm in the oven before they’re nice and hot and ready to enjoy.
Boarderie Ciccetti Cheese and Charcuterie Board
Boarderie’s charcuterie boards are impressive all around. From the packaging that kept everything intact during shipping, exactly as the pictures show, to the taste and freshness.
The entry-priced Ciccetti Cheese and Charcuterie Board serves three to four people and comes with 15 artisan kinds of cheese, meats, dried fruits, nuts and chocolates which are arranged in a delightful way. There’s also a box of rosemary and olive oil crackers, the Acacia wood board and a bamboo cutlery kit.
If you want to host more people, there’s also the Arte Cheese and Charcuterie Board, which has all the Ciccetti Cheese and Charcuterie Board does, and more—and serves up to 12 people. Everything from the taste to the presentation is a premium experience and one you can be proud to bring to any event.
Buy at Boarderie from $129.
Opopop Holiday Collection
Opopop is a company with a new take on popcorn with its microwavable pouches. The company offers a range of savory flavors but is introducing a new Holiday Collection this year. In addition to Salty Caramel and Fancy Butter—both Opopop staples—Cocoa Mint is also included.
It shouldn’t have surprised me that the Cocoa Mint flavored popcorn tasted exactly like its name. The chocolate is subtle and laid-back. Hints of mint popped up every so often in my mouth. It’s like a peppermint hot chocolate drink sprinkled over popcorn. My kids and I loved it.
Buy at Opopop for $46.99.
Jones Turkey and Gravy Soda
Put this product in the fun category rather than the thoughtful one. Jones is bringing back its Turkey and Gravy Soda as a seasonal tradition. True to its word, this drink is about how a Thanksgiving dinner would taste if it were blended up and chilled with carbonation. It’s not the best-tasting flavor, but bringing this to a family gathering is more about the bonding experience it creates.
If this particular concoction is too much, Jones also has a Sugar Cookie flavor that should be much more acceptable to people. Both sodas will only be around for a short time and can be found in select U.S. grocery stores. The company will have a limited supply on its website, too.
Buy at Jones for $30.99 (4-pack).
Williamette Valley Pie Company
I’m not saying you should try to deceive people by passing off a pie from the Williamette Valley Pie Company as your own homemade dessert, but if you do, be prepared for quite a bit of praise. The company sells a 2-pack of pies online that arrive frozen and can be stored in the freezer until you’re ready to bake them.
I received the Dutch Caramel Apple Pie and a Cherry Crunch Pie. Within moments of putting the Cherry Crunch into the oven, I was already able to smell its buttery crust. Waiting for it to heat up and then letting it cool afterward were a bit excruciating, but the taste was worth it. Even the leftovers were better than most other pies I’ve tried over the years. Do yourself a favor and save your time, and treat your friends to some of the best pies they’ve ever had.
Buy at Williamette Valley Pie Company for $39.99 (2-pack).
Desserts get most of the attention around the holidays, but don’t overlook a good appetizer like chips and salsa. I tried a couple of the salsas from Somos and was instantly hooked. The Roasted Tomatillo Jalapeño Salsa was both my and my wife’s favorite. Living in Southern California, we have an abundance of Mexican food and condiments to choose from, and still we were both very impressed with this mild green salsa. Of course, the chips from Somos were also fantastic and worthy of bringing along to a party.
Buy at Somos for $8.50 (2-pack).
Compartes Los Angeles Chocolate Bar Gift Set
When you’re not quite sure what to get a chocolate lover in your life, a specialty batch of chocolates is never the wrong choice. Compartes sells a 4-pack of limited-edition candy bars that I haven’t been able to stop thinking about since I finished them.
The four flavors of bars include Donuts and Coffee, Potato Chip Crisp, Strawberry Shortcake and California Dreaming (Dark Chocolate Brownie). Each has little bits of the food it is supposed to taste like mixed throughout. For example, the Donuts and Coffee bar had bits of fluffy donuts mixed in, complementing its rich coffee flavor. I felt as though I were sitting in a diner at 6 a.m. as I ate it. Personally, I also really loved the combination of salty potato chips blended into my sweet chocolate.
Buy at Compartes for $49.95.
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