In this guide, I share 22 practical gift ideas for anyone who likes to cook.
These products won’t add clutter or end up stuffed away in a closet or re-gifted. These are gifts that whoever you give them to will actually use.
Some of the products in this guide are expensive, but as I go through the list, I’ll explain why I chose each item and give you more affordable alternatives to consider.
Use the links below to navigate the gift guide:
- Gifts for Home Cooks: Video Summary
- Cutting Board
- Knife Sharpener
- Pizza Stone
- Pizza Oven
- Chef’s Knife
- Prep Set
- Bakeware Set
- Pie Pan
- Dutch Oven
- Cast Iron Skillet
- Carbon Steel Skillet
- Food Storage
- Steak Knives
- Serving Platter
- Waffle Maker
- Air Fryer
- Magnetic Knife Stand
- Digital Scale
- Stainless Steel Saucier
Gifts for Home Cooks: Video Summary
Watch this video to see the gifts featured in this guide in action.
A cutting board makes such a good gift because it’s something the person you give it to can use every day. And, even if they already have one, it’s helpful to have 2 or 3 handy for prepping a big meal or when one is dirty.
There are dozens of great options available, but I recommend this Made In cutting board because it’s an inch and a half thick and weighs eight pounds, so it won’t slide on your counter. One side is flat, and the other has a groove to catch juices. Handle grooves on both sides make it easy to pick up.
I also recommend the Sonder LA Alfred cutting board, which is made in the USA from American Black Walnut.
It has juice grooves on one side and three compartments on the other. The compartments are perfect for holding diced ingredients or dips, nuts, olives, berries, or anything else you want to serve when using it as a charcuterie board. It also has removable rubber feet on both sides to prevent slipping.
The Epicurean board is a good alternative if the Made In and Sonder LA boards are too expensive.
This board is much thinner and lighter than the other two. It’s made in the USA out of paper composite that won’t dull your knives and is dishwasher safe.
Speaking of dull knives, another incredibly useful gift is a knife sharpener.
All sorts of sharpeners are available, from whetstones to pull-through hand sharpeners. But the type I’ve been obsessed with lately is the roller sharpener. The Horl 2 is the one I recommend — it’s a gift any home cook would love.
Whetstones can be intimidating for beginners, and pull-through sharpeners, frankly, don’t work that great. These roller sharpeners solve both problems. They are simple to use and highly effective.
All you have to do is attach the knife to the magnetic angle support, then use the roller to gently grind the edge back and forth with the diamond disc. After you grind the edge on both sides, use the ceramic honing disc to finish them. Finally, remove any remaining particles with a strop or cloth.
If you’re shopping for a home cook who likes to keep their kitchen tidy, consider buying them the SplatterDōm.
This product is designed to sit on top of your pans and prevent grease from splattering all over your cooktop.
I was skeptical when I first tried it, but it actually works. It’s especially useful for gas cooktops that are a pain to clean. Any product that limits the number of times you have to remove and clean stove grates is a winner in my book.
You can adjust the height, and it comes with lids, so you don’t have to remove the whole dome to check on your food.
A pizza stone is an excellent gift for anyone trying to level up their pizza-making at home.
The ceramic stone absorbs moisture, which results in a crispier crust. It also retains heat more evenly than a metal pan.
I recently conducted a controlled test where I made two pizzas using the same dough, cheese, and sauce measured precisely to match both pies. I hand-stretched each dough ball using identical techniques.
The only variable was the cooking method — one pizza was cooked directly on a pizza stone, while the other was on a sheet pan. With all other factors controlled, the pizza baked on the stone came out with a crisper, browned crust, and better melted cheese than the sheet pan pizza.
Culinary Couture makes my favorite pizza stone, but the brand matters less than the material, thickness, and size. Look for stones made of ceramic or cordierite between a half inch and an inch thick with a diameter of at least 14 inches.
Speaking of pizza, if you want to spoil someone who loves making pizza at home, a pizza oven like the Ooni Karu 16 is a fantastic gift.
These portable backyard ovens have become highly popular in recent years, and for good reason. They produce restaurant-quality pizza at home in minutes. Because the Ooni can reach over 800°F, the crust puffs up and gets crispy on the outside, while the inside of the dough stays soft.
In that same test I just mentioned, I cooked a third pizza in the Ooni Karu 16. Though the stone upgraded the pizza, the Ooni’s extreme temperature took it to the next level in terms of texture and flavor.
These ovens are expensive, but for someone special in your life who loves to make pizza, they’re worth the money.
Anyone who loves to cook already has a chef’s knife, but that doesn’t mean they can’t use another one. I like keeping a rotation of chef’s knives, so I always have a clean one ready without interrupting my meal prep to wash a knife.
Plus, it’s important to use separate knives for produce and aromatics. You’d never want to cut fruit or herbs with the same knife you just used on onions.
Luxury chef’s knives from high-end brands like Wusthof, Zwilling, Shun, and Oishya make impressive gifts with their sleek designs, premium materials, and sharp, precision-forged blades. Expect to pay a premium, but these knives are an investment built to last decades with proper care.
I also like Made In, an up-and-coming direct-to-consumer knife brand. Their blades rival more expensive competitors but cost less by selling directly. Made In’s chef’s knives have a nice weight and balance for all-purpose use. They let you personalize their Chef’s knife with a custom engraving, a great way to make the gift even more special.
I don’t usually recommend full knife sets, but the Caraway prep set is an exception. It’s the perfect starter kit for first apartments, college dorms, newlyweds, or anyone equipping their first kitchen.
The Caraway set comes with all the essential cutting tools like a chef’s knife, utility knife, bread knife, and paring knife. The knives feature sturdy German steel blades with a Rockwell hardness of 58+ for decent edge retention without being high maintenance. The ergonomic handles offer a comfortable, controlled grip.
Beyond the knives, the set includes five handy FSC-certified birch wood utensils, kitchen shears, and modular storage units to keep everything organized.
The Caraway bakeware set is a baker’s dream gift. It comes equipped with everything an avid baker needs for cookies, cakes, muffins, breads, and more.
This 11-piece set comes in eight colors and includes two sturdy baking sheets, a muffin tin, a rectangular pan, a cooling rack, a 9-inch square pan, a loaf pan, two 9-inch round pans, and two organizers to minimize cabinet clutter.
Each piece is made with an aluminized steel core that heats evenly and prevents warping and a ceramic non-stick coating that’s oven-safe up to 550°F. The PFOA-free coating delivers effortless food release and fast cleanup.
If you don’t want to give a complete bakeware set, a pie pan is a simple gift that anyone who loves to bake will appreciate.
I highly recommend the Le Creuset stoneware pie pan. With its beautiful scalloped edges and vibrant glaze, it’s as stylish as it is functional.
It’s crafted from premium stoneware that distributes heat evenly to produce golden, flaky crusts and perfectly baked fillings. The angled side walls help serve neat slices that hold their shape. Plus, the durable enamel resists scratches, stains, and absorption while providing a virtually non-stick surface for easy food release and cleanup.
This pie dish can go from the freezer to an oven up to 500°F. The thermal resistance also keeps baked goods warm or cold for serving. Its colors won’t fade thanks to Le Creuset’s high-quality glazes.
Dutch ovens are one of my favorite pieces of cookware because they retain heat well, and the heavy lid locks in moisture. They’re ideal for soups, stews, chili, and other slow-cooked meals.
If the person you’re shopping for doesn’t already have a Dutch oven, it’s a special gift they are guaranteed to love.
Misen Dutch ovens feature four layers of premium enamel coating sprayed evenly over the cast iron for optimal durability. The wider base prevents overcrowding when searing and browning, while the broad handles allow a comfortable grip with oven mitts.
A cast iron skillet is a practical gift for any home cook thanks to its superior heat retention and versatility for everything from searing steaks to frying eggs.
Made in the USA by skilled craftsmen, Stargazer stands out for its longer handles that keep your hand farther from the heat and its oversized helper handle that’s easy to grip.
These skillets have a smooth cooking surface that prevents food from sticking better than the pebbly texture of typical cast iron. And each skillet has the date it was made stamped on the bottom side of the helper handle.
This high-performing American-made heirloom skillet is guaranteed to wow the recipient, and their reaction when they unwrap it will be worth the higher price.
Consider gifting a carbon steel skillet if you like the idea of cast iron but prefer a lightweight pan.
These pans are durable and versatile and perform almost the same as cast iron. The main difference is that they have thinner walls, and because of that, they heat up faster and weigh significantly less. Watch my comparison video of cast iron vs. carbon steel to learn more.
Blenders aren’t just for smoothies. You can make soups, nut butter, dressings, sauces, and more. If you know the person you’re shopping for doesn’t have a blender, it’s an incredibly useful gift. I use mine almost daily.
I highly recommend Vitamix Ascent series blenders, specifically the A3300 model.
This blender has built-in wireless connectivity for self-detect containers to automatically adjust settings, a programmable digital timer for custom recipes, variable speed and pulse controls, aircraft-grade stainless steel blades, and a sleek touchscreen interface that wipes clean easily.
If you don’t have the budget for a Vitamix, check out these affordable but high-performing alternatives.
OXO food storage containers are an affordable and thoughtful gift. These containers are perfect for storing rice, oatmeal, cereal, pasta, coffee, sugar, and other pantry items.
The lids have an airtight seal to keep food fresh, but they open quickly with a push of a button. And the curved corners and angled sides make dispensing ingredients easy.
With options like sugar shakers and lidded scoops, you can customize a set tailored to how the person you’re shopping for stores ingredients.
Braisers are made of enameled cast iron and have thick construction, similar to a Dutch oven. But the sides are much shorter, and the cooking surface is wider.
These pans are ideal for searing, simmering, frying, and, of course, braising. Short ribs, brisket, chicken piccata, and ossobuco are perfect recipes for a braiser.
For people who love to cook and eat meat, a new steak knife set is a practical and thoughtful gift. I recommend two great options with distinct styles.
The Robert Welch set has classic black riveted handles and serrated edges. The serrations allow you to cut through fibrous steaks like ribeye easily.
For a more eye-catching set, the Dalstrong Gladiator knives feature moisture-resistant fiberglass handles and satin-finished German steel straight-edge blades. Its straight edges create cleaner slices but require occasional sharpening.
I’m often asked about serrated versus straight-edge steak knives. Choose straight edges if you don’t mind sharpening them occasionally. They cut cleaner with less juice loss. But serrated knives make slicing fibrous steaks effortless despite messier cuts.
A serving platter makes a fantastic gift for home cooks who love entertaining. Even seasoned hosts likely have room for more platters. It’s always handy to have options to mix and match depending on the size and style of a gathering.
When choosing a serving platter, brand reputation matters less than with something like cookware. But for a beautiful yet durable option, I suggest Made In’s 13-inch oval porcelain platter. This platter is handcrafted from fine English porcelain in Stoke-on-Trent, nicknamed “The Potteries” for its storied history of exceptional ceramic craftsmanship.
The porcelain has a bright white look that provides an elegant backdrop for presenting foods. And the fully glazed top and bottom prevents scratching when stacked. The porcelain can withstand up to 580°F in the oven without cracking or crazing.
A waffle maker is an excellent gift for breakfast lovers, people with kids, or anyone who appreciates chicken and waffles once in a while.
The Presto FlipSide waffle maker is affordable and simple to use. It has no temperature settings; plug it in, wait for it to preheat, and put it in the batter.
If you want a higher-end model, the Breville Smart 4-Slice Waffle Maker costs more but has controls for specific types of waffles, a browning control dial, and what they call “A bit more button” that lets you cook for a minute longer without restarting.
Air fryers have become wildly popular lately, and for good reason. They cook food fast and evenly and mimic the results of a deep fryer with little to no oil.
If the home cook you’re shopping for doesn’t have an air fryer yet, it’s a practical gift they’ll use often (I use mine daily).
I recently reviewed the Ninja Air Fryer Max XL and was impressed with its performance. It’s easy to use, versatile, portable, and, based on my testing, one of the best air fryers on the market. It’s ideal for two adults or families with young kids. Watch the full review.
But if you have a large household with more than two adults or teenagers, you’ll be better off with the Ninja 10-quart two-basket air fryer.
A magnetic knife stand is a practical gift home cooks will appreciate. I prefer this style over bulky knife blocks for a few key reasons.
First, you can see the entire knife clearly, making it easy to grab the right one for the task. Secondly, the magnetic storage won’t dull or damage the blade like some slots in knife blocks can. And lastly, it’s an excellent way to show off a beautiful collection.
The magnetic knife bars you can mount to the wall free up counter space, but I wouldn’t recommend giving that as a gift. Not everyone has the space or desire to drill holes in their wall to hang a permanent knife holder. The knife stand is less of a commitment since you can move it around or store it if necessary.
This stand from Oishya has a stunning wood grain pattern and a powerful magnet hidden inside the wood to hold knives securely. There are cheaper options, too, but beware of models with weak magnets (read reviews before buying). Though pricier, Oishya’s stand combines strength, beauty, and functionality.
A digital scale is a helpful gift for anyone who loves to bake. It’s also great for people on a diet or anyone wanting to measure certain ingredients accurately. Measuring cups are easy to use, but weighing ingredients on a digital scale is more accurate.
I recommend the Amiloe MAX 33 lb Kitchen Scale. It’s the one I use in my kitchen, and you’ve probably seen me weighing knives and pans with it in other articles and videos.
The Amiloe is easy to operate — turn it on, select your preferred unit, tare it to zero, and add ingredients. You can place a bowl on the scale, tare it, and then only the added ingredients will register.
It can weigh ingredients up to 33 pounds but is sensitive to increments as small as 0.1 ounce. It measures in grams, ounces, kilograms, pounds, and milliliters.
The final gift idea on this list is stainless steel cookware. It’s the most durable and versatile type of cookware.
But instead of staples most cooks already own, consider a specialty piece like a saucier. This wide, shallow pan with curved sides excels at making sauces, risotto, rice, pasta, and any other liquid-based meal that requires stirring.
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