10 Homemade Food Gifts for Christmas and New Year's

There's no better way to show you care than by making homemade gifts. Even better if they're delicious, too! These eight recipes (plus one kit and one book) make great presents for the folks on your list who like to eat, drink, and be merry. Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

Vanilla, Lemon, Orange, and Mint Extracts: This is essentially homemade vodka! Just add your favorite flavors to the mix. And it keeps for years.

Bottles of Bubbly: We picked out three of our favorite California sparkling wines, in order to make your celebrations go all the more smoothly. And yes, one of them is called Goat Bubbles.

Pomegranate Molasses: This extremely easy-to-make elixir is great as a dessert topping, in a cocktail, mixed with club soda ... you name it.

Spiced Fig and Walnut Roll: This is great to have on hand for your own holiday gatherings, but it also makes an excellent hostess gift. Make a bunch and give them as gifts for the rest of the month.

Vanilla-Ginger-Pear Shrub: Shrubs are vinegar-based drinks, and they're very, very trendy right now. They're a great base for hippie soft drinks -- you can feel healthy about them!

Orange, Pistachio and Date Granola: This uses all kinds of local products, it's gluten-free (check your oats' labels), and tasty any time of day.

Wine Apothecary: Have a wine-lover in your life? This will be the best present they get all year. The kit comes with some measuring equipment and small bottles of wine: experiment with different blends, find one you like, and send the measurements to the apothecary! They'll send you a run of your very own wine.

Homemade Applesauce: If you're just getting into canning and jarring, this is a great intro recipe that you can feel confident giving as a gift -- applesauce is so dang good!

Salsa Verde with New Mexico Green Chilies: And if you're comfortable whipping up something with a little heat, this is the recipe to give your loved ones. You can even add tequila to the mix.

Food Lovers' Guide to Los Angeles: And if your people love food, but you just can't face any more cooking right now, purchase this food-focused guidebook to L.A. for your friends and family. And then go out to eat!

About the Author

Katherine's role as the Living editor at KCET.org keeps her running from farms to markets to restaurants to pop-up swaps all over SoCal. She's been living in and writing about this area for over a decade.
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