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Gift giving can be hard, and when you get into the vegan niche it can become even more overwhelming! I’m here to help with my DIY Vegan Gift Guide, featuring homemade gifts, books, goodies, and more.
Now, I’ve done gift guides in the past, featuring some DIY tips, but I’m going gung-ho on this one! Of course, I’ve still included a few non-DIY gifts in this guide, for those who aren’t fluent in the kitchen. But, I promise you, these are EASY PEASY! It also helps if you, or someone you know, has an herb garden. That way you can incorporate even more love into the ideas from this DIY vegan gift guide.
Seasoned Salts & Sugar
First, one of my favorites to make for those who love food/cooking/eating: seasoned salts! At its most basic level, you pulse herbs and/or spices with coarse salt and get a flavorful gift. I always leave a note in the card with suggestions on how to use each finishing salt. For example, the rosemary salt is great sprinkled on a plate of pasta! I also made a HOT Serrano Salt, using dried peppers from my garden. Be prepared with a damp towel over your mouth, because once that dried pepper dust gets in the air, it is intense. But, the salt tastes delicious, especially on some tacos.
Another mix that’s equally as easy, but satiates that sweet tooth: infused sugars! I made two different mixes this year, one that was Cacao Rose Sugar (great for adding to tea or maybe an avocado pudding). The next blend was Lemon Vanilla Sugar, and OH MY GOODNESS does it smell incredible. I love it over yogurt with fresh fruit!
- 1/2 cup coarse sea salt
- 1 tablespoon minced fresh rosemary, or 1 teaspoon dried
Hot Serrano Salt
- 1/2 cup coarse sea salt
- 1 1/2 tablespoons chopped, dried serrano peppers, stems and seeds removed
Vanilla Lemon Sugar
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 3 tablespoons chopped, dried lemon peel
- 2 teaspoons vanilla powder (the tan powder), or 1/2 teaspoon vanilla bean paste
Cacao Rose Sugar
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 2 teaspoons dried rose petals
- 2 teaspoons cacao nibs
- For each recipe, all that you need to do is pulse the ingredients together in a food processor for roughly 30 seconds, or until all pieces are small and incorporated. For the sugars, this may take longer.
- These recipes can be scaled up to make large batches! Store in airtight jars for up to one year.
Be cautious with the pepper salt, as the pepper dust will get in the air and probably make you sneeze and cough. Cover food processor with damp towel to keep it to a minimum. Wearing gloves also helps!
Serving Size:1 grams
Amount Per Serving: Unsaturated Fat: 0g
Now, something I started making last year: Limoncello! It is actually really easy to make at home, as long as you have some patience. I had an excessive amount of lemons from my mom’s tree, so I made her one of her favorite liqueurs. This year, I printed out the recipe for my Limoncello Cranberry Spritzers, and attached it to the small bottles for a seasonal drink idea.
It wouldn’t be a VYA gift guide if I didn’t mention making chocolate vodka! I love Fran Costigan’s recipe for it, and have been inspired to make some derivatives of it. Like below, to make Mexican Hot Chocolate Vodka I added a stick of cinnamon and a couple dried chilies to her recipe! So many possibilities.
I’ve also made an infused vodka with halved cranberries, sliced apples, sliced oranges, and a cinnamon stick. Almost sangria-ish? I think it’s great with sparkling water and simple syrup!
Baked Goods + Food Gifts
If you loved ones are anything like me, I LOVE sweets! Try making a platter or box of vegan cookies, like the one below, as a delicious homemade gift.
These Sweet & Salty Rosemary Nuts from Homestead & Chill are AMAZING, I made a whole batch for myself and I’m in love. I used vegan butter in my batch, and definitely recommend including pecans and walnuts in your batch because the coating sticks so well in all of the crevices.
Herbal Tea Blends
Next up in the DIY vegan gift guide, it helps if you have a surplus of homegrown herbs, BUT you can always buy some in bulk. I started growing Lemon Balm for my anxiety, and had a HUGE bushel of it when I went back to my parents house. So, I hung bunches to dry, then mixed it with dried mint for a calming tea, to give some of my friends that lead stressful lives.
But, you’re not limited to this! Buy some bulk lavender, dried rose, different teas, and put a tasty mix together! It’s a nice, low-waste, cost-effective alternative to buying fancy packaged teas.
Other gift options
Lastly, if you’re not up for making gifts, try getting a friend or family member one of these cookbooks! I picked a few of my favorite from the past year, plus included one that is relevant to this gift topic. And I included a list of other sustainably-minded gifts for y’all as well.
- Vegan Food Gifts by Joni Marie Newman
- Vegan Yack Attack On the Go! by me 😀
- The Korean Vegan by Joanne Molinaro
- Vegan Comfort Classics by Lauren Toyota of Hot for Food
- The Wicked Healthy Cookbook by Chad and Derek Sarno
- Mississippi Vegan by Timothy Pakron
- Vegan Yack Attack’s Plant-Based Meal Prep
- DIY Sugar Body scrubs – I made some based off of Lisa from The Viet Vegan’s blog, but omitted food coloring and added some ground lavender buds. SO easy, and great for taking care of dry, winter skin.
- Get them a cute kitchen linens, napkins, and more! I personally love my apron and linens from Magic Craft. (Pictured below)
- Donate to a vegan-friendly non-profit like Mercy for Animals or Farm Sanctuary in their name.
- Offer to make them a homemade dinner! Never underestimate the value of this, plus you can find tons of recipes right here on Vegan Yack Attack.
- Buy them a spot at a local, vegan cooking class, or even better, online at Vegan Fusion with Mark Reinfeld!
- If you’re not into cooking, take them out to a cool vegan or vegan-friendly restaurant, or get them a gift card for future use.
Because I’m feeling the holiday spirit, let’s do a giveaway! One lucky winner will receive a copy of Vegan Yack Attack On the Go! AND a membership with Vegan Fusion for cooking classes.? Giveaway open to US residents, 18 & older. Good luck and Happy Holidays! EDIT: Giveaway over!
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