Updated: May 27, 2020
It’s the most wonderful time of the year ... unless you are stumped by what gift to give your parents/siblings/significant other/best friend who has started their journey to plant-based eating. After all, the gift boxed roll of summer sausage and cheese block no longer qualifies as appropriate. So, now what?
If you asked, I bet they would tell you that they are doing a lot more cooking at home these days (because homemade plant-based cooking is delicious AND fun!). To that end, here are some suggestions for gifts that will make their time in the kitchen full of joy—‘tis the season!
Subscription to Veg News Magazine
Sure, these days, you can browse online all day for great plant-based content, but there's nothing better than getting a fun colorful surprise in the mail! Gift the plant-based foodie in your life with a subscription to Veg News, the go-to magazine for all things vegan, from food and fashion to travel, celebrity interviews, and beauty. For only $20 a subscription, make sure to grab one for yourself as well!
High Speed Blender
A powerful blender is a necessity for any plant-based eater. It can be used to make smoothies, smoothie bowls, soups, or sauces. A high-speed blender can take frozen fruits like berries, bananas, and pineapple chunks and swirl them into the smoothest treat they’ve ever sipped through a straw. Some blenders can even heat up the contents, which is great when making soup. Check out Vitamix for various models.
Think it’s overkill to have both a blender and food processor? Think again! A blender is best used to blend things fully into a liquid, whereas a food processor breaks food down and combines ingredients. A food processor is preferable for chopping nuts and making nut butters, making flour from grains or nuts (like oats or almonds), mixing the ingredients for protein balls or black bean burgers, and making pesto or hummus that they don’t want fully liquefied. Food processors usually come with multiple blades for slicing and shredding veggies depending on which blade is used. A great place to look is Cuisinart for a dependable food processor.
Fresh citrus juice adds tons of flavor to so many recipes. The bright, acidic kick of a few drops of freshly squeezed juice can elevate any dish to another level. And a tool like this makes it so much easier. It’s a must-have for every plant-based kitchen.
A microplane is the ideal tool for zesting citrus fruits. Zest will give a dish that fantastic flavor without the juice. A microplane is also great for grating fresh cinnamon, nutmeg, and even garlic. This is one kitchen tool that gives a plant-based cook a lot of bang for not a lot of bucks.
Glass Storage Containers
Glass is a safe, nontoxic way to store, freeze, and reheat food. Glass is particularly helpful if they are going to reheat food in the container. A wonderful benefit of
cooking plant-based at home is being able to prepare meals in batches and have lots of leftovers that make future meals a snap! Use glass storage containers for large batches of vegetables, roasted potatoes, and cooked grains. Check out these Pyrex glass containers. The variety of sizes and colorful lids in this set make it a super practical gift for meal prepping.
Good quality chef’s knives are essential for food-prep tasks. A paring knife is ideal for finely trimming produce, while a multipurpose 6" chef's knife is useful for chopping vegetables as well as cubing potatoes or squashes. A set of quality knives is an investment, but will make all the difference in their time in the kitchen. Start with the basics by looking at Wusthof Classic 2-piece Chefs Knife Set.
The flavor that garlic adds to a dish is unparalleled. But mincing garlic is low on the list of fun recipe steps. Enter a kitchen tool that they may not be familiar with, but may just change their life – the garlic press! This $20 gadget lets them enjoy the flavor of fresh garlic without the hard work of mincing and without their hands smelling like garlic. They can press fresh cloves of garlic (even the really big ones!) without peeling them first. Bonus points for putting it in their stocking :)
Stainless Steel sauté pan
As the term “plant-based” implies, they will be eating a lot of plants — and plants are delicious, especially when sautéed with some garlic (see, that garlic press is really gonna come in handy!) They will love using a top quality stainless steel sauté pan. As with quality knives, top of the line cookware is an investment. Stainless steel cookware ensures even heat distribution and it won’t react with ingredients, so there is no risk of food picking up a metallic taste. This pan is made in the USA, is dishwasher-safe, and will last a lifetime.
Eating plant-based is good for overall health. And now it’s easier than ever, thanks to super helpful cookbooks like Forks Over Knives, The Cookbook , Power Plates: 100 Nutritionally Balanced One-Dish Vegan Meals, and Isa Does It. These gorgeous cookbooks will help them learn to cook plant-based meals with tons of delicious recipes. You may even want to get one for yourself!
Hopefully this list will give you some direction for what to give the plant-based eaters in your life for Christmas this year. They will be so appreciative—you may even find yourself with an invitation to a home cooked dinner. Told you it was the most wonderful time of the year!
Hey y’all! My name is LuAnn Parker and I am a graduate student in the Coordinated Program in Dietetics, Department of Nutrition at Georgia State University, on my way to becoming a Registered Dietitian. I am super excited about this opportunity to learn more about helping and educating others on improving their health through nutrition. I am especially interested in working with those affected by cancer, as I have experienced this in my own family. Jesus follower, wife to Greg, mama to 3 beautiful girls, plant-based lover of food! “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure” – Benjamin Franklin