Ryan Shepard
About Author
December 17, 2021

Holiday Gift Guide: Calling All My Budding Chefs

Omsom Seasoning Packets: I was introduced to this amazing brand by a friend and I have been obsessed with these packets ever since. Omsom was created by Vanessa + Kim Pham, two sisters who want to introduce the world to the glorious flavors of Southeast Asian cuisine. With these packets, cooking dishes like chicken larb or Vietnamese lemongrass bbq is a simple as tearing open a pouch. If you know someone who loves bold flavors and likes to have fun in the kitchen, I cannot recommend Omsom more.

Jubilee (Recipes from Two Centuries of African American Cooking): This cookbook by the esteemed Toni Tipton-Martin belongs in everyones arsenal. Tipton is somehow able to mix recipes with historical facts to create a book that is not only beautiful to flip through but also has some of THE best recipes I've ever tried (looking at you shrimp and grits).

Cuisinart Multiclad Tri-Ply Stainless-Steel 12-Piece Cookware Set: I've written at length about the importance of a good cookware set and this one from Cuisinart doesn't miss. There is no way that your favorite kitchenista would be anything but blissfully happy to see this set under the tree this Christmas. This versatile 12 piece set can go from stove top to oven with no problem and looks and feels more expensive than it is.

Wüsthof Classic 8" Chef’s With Bonus 3½" Paring Knife: Whenever anyone asks me what the single most important tool in my kitchen is, I always say a good chef's knife. Investing in one doesn't mean you have to spend hundreds of dollars, but every cook should have a quality knife that they reach for regularly. This set by Wüsthof is a workhorse that, if taken care of properly, will last a lifetime.

Vitamix A3500 Ascent Series Blender: Okay, okay I know this is on the pricer side but hear me out: this blender is one of the best investments anyone can make in their kitchen and makes one hell of a gift. I don't know how, but this blender truly can do it all from making your favorite smoothies to soups and even kneading dough. When I worked in kitchens professionally, there was always a few of these laying around. The blender comes in different finishes like black and even rose gold.

Linen Cooking Apron: When I was younger, I thought aprons were unnecessary and frankly speaking, dumb. Now that I'm older and cook basically non-stop I realize how important they are in the kitchen. Not only do they keep you relatively mess free, but the apron strings are great places to hang towels and the pockets hold space for things like thermometers or even tongs.

Great Jones "The Dutchess" Pot: Quality cookware is where I spend the bulk of my money in the kitchen and Great Jones is who is getting the majority of my dollars these days. Think of them as competitors to Le Creuset and Staub but the cooler version. I adore their massive dutch oven. You can literally make any and everything with this pot. Chili? YUP a delicious roasted chicken? Bet your ass you can. It's truly the gift that will keep on giving for years to come.

Pineapple Collaborative Holiday Set: This gift box includes an award-winning olive oil, a deliciously bright apple cider vinegar and small batched salts. I loveeeee the olive oil and use it in my salad dressings or even just over some crusty bread. The entire set is worth giving and if you play your cards right, you might be able to enjoy some as well.

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