Gift baskets could possibly be the perfect gift for just about anyone on your list. When you need to get a gift for someone you don’t know well, a gift basket comes to the rescue. When you want to provide a variety of little treats for a friend, a basket full of goodies is always welcome. And when you’re shopping on a budget, yet again the gift basket comes to the rescue. You can always customize gift baskets based on the recipient’s tastes and interests, but if you need a good all-purpose basket, here are the top ten foods used to make them.
Baked goods. Cookies and brownies are almost universally loved. There are times, though, when you want to avoid indulgent treats like these, such as when you know the recipient is on a restricted diet and cannot have sugar. In general, though, cookie gift baskets are great because even if the recipient is cutting back on sweets, her family, coworkers, or friends will certainly be willing to share!
Nuts. Anything from a simple package of peanuts to exotic, and beautiful, brazil nuts can be used for a gift basket. Pistachios, macadamias, almonds, and walnuts are all excellent choices. There are endless varieties of mixed nuts in the stores, especially around the holidays, and you can also order more unusual gourmet nuts online.
Cheeses. Cheddar, camembert, chevre (or goat cheese), blue cheese, brie, Swiss, and other cheeses are nearly always a favorite. From a simple basket with pepperoni and cheddar to a gourmet basket with herbed chevre and wine, cheese is an excellent accompaniment to a wide variety of foods. You can also find organic, kosher, and reduced fat cheeses to suit your recipient’s tastes. A cheese knife and cutting board make thoughtful additions to this gift basket.
Crackers or Bread. If you are giving the delicious gift of cheese, you need to give something to enjoy with it! Light water, cracked wheat, organic, or flavored crackers are a great idea. Bagel crisps or pita chips may also be a nice touch. If you like, get a small loaf of artisan bread.
Meats (Sausages). Another popular food item for gift baskets is meats, in the form of sausages, which do not spoil. Summer sausages are a great idea because they slice easily and can be eaten with the cheese you so thoughtfully gave. Pepperoni is another good choice. For something a little different, try jerky. It can be beef, but you can also find more exotic varieties online, including elk, bore, alligator, caribou, moose, and venison.
Wine. Try finding a bottle of your local wine to put into a basket with cheeses and other treats. Wine doesn’t have to be expensive; in fact, there are several excellent brands to be had at your grocery store. When we think of wine, we usually think of California, but several states have high quality vineyards. Vermont’s cold climate, for instance, produces more sweet grapes, which can be found in wines like Vermont Ice. Try something a bit unusual for your wine gift basket.
Fruit. Fruit is safe. Fill a basket with bright oranges and multi-colored apples and oranges to make a luxurious fruit gift basket. Choose fruits that have a bit of longevity in them! Bananas, for instance, can quickly become overripe. You can fill in the gaps with cheeses, chocolates, or other goodies.
Teas, Coffee, Hot Cocoa. Another safe bet. A basket with delightful flavored coffees, teas, or hot cocoas will be appreciated, especially if you are giving a gift in the winter. Again, try something a bit different. For instance, you could buy several loose teas and a tea ball to filter it. All your recipient has to do is put the tea in the ball, close it, and submerse it in water for wonderful tea. .
Pasta or Soups. Dry pastas and soups can be great for a gift basket. Make a colorful bean soup mix, for instance, and put it in a jar. Simply tie a ribbon around it and write the instructions for making the soup. You can then fill around it with cheeses or other foods that convey the same sense of warmth as soup. You could also put different types of colored pasta into your basket, with great tomato sauce, extra virgin olive oil, and a small bottle of red wine. You can even put this into a colander to make your Italian gift basket even more practical and special.
Organic Foods. Organic gift baskets are growing in popularity and are perfect, especially for the health-conscious people on your shopping list. Fill a basket with organic cheeses, wines, beers, cookies, chips, dips, sauces, and pastas.
Gift baskets are wonderful for any occasion because they are so versatile. You don’t have to buy a pre-made basket; try making your own. You may save money, and you’ll certainly create a more beautiful, personalized gift basket.