48 Genius Edible Holiday Gifts (& Handy Wrapping Tips)

Things the best edible holiday gifts will always do: warm hearts, fill bellies, fuel holiday travel, get shared, spark conversation, inspire your loved ones to start making their own granola (or hot sauce, challah or macaroons), and disappear, leaving …

Things the best edible holiday gifts will always do: warm hearts, fill bellies, fuel holiday travel, get shared, spark conversation, inspire your loved ones to start making their own granola (or hot sauce, challah or macaroons), and disappear, leaving only happy memories.

Here are 48 Genius Recipes and community favorites—along with some creative wrapping ideas—for edible holiday gifts that have been passed from cook to cook for years and, in some cases, decades. Yes, three of them are chocolate cakes, but each one is perfect for a different sort of gifting experience. I've provided color commentary.

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Why Are We Throwing Away the Best Parts of the Tomato?

There may be perfectly good reasons for coring or seeding or peeling a tomato—sometimes.

Maybe you want a supersmooth sauce. Maybe that unpredictable pool of juice could throw off the ratio in your nkrakra or pudding. Maybe you’re in French culinary s…

There may be perfectly good reasons for coring or seeding or peeling a tomato—sometimes.

Maybe you want a supersmooth sauce. Maybe that unpredictable pool of juice could throw off the ratio in your nkrakra or pudding. Maybe you’re in French culinary school and it’s tomato concassé day (when you’ll learn to strip away everything but small cubes of flesh—and then form your own opinions).

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The Single Most Genius Thing You Can Do to a Ripe Tomato

There are heaps of inarguably perfect ways to eat a ripe tomato—on plain-jane sandwich bread with a cushy swipe of mayo, blistered hot and fast in a skillet till the skins peel back and the oil swirls with juice, cherry babies squished behind your seal…

There are heaps of inarguably perfect ways to eat a ripe tomato—on plain-jane sandwich bread with a cushy swipe of mayo, blistered hot and fast in a skillet till the skins peel back and the oil swirls with juice, cherry babies squished behind your sealed lips.

But the one way to make a tomato taste its most tomatoey, to become a fully actualized, out-loud version of itself, is to very verrrry slowly remove that which isn’t tomato. And the part that isn’t pulling its weight as tomato is the 94% of it that’s water.

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The Secret to Your Next Easy Dinner is Your Kettle

Yes, simply buttered noodles or a packet of instant ramen can make for a nearly effortless dinner. And yes, my family has made it clear they generally prefer them to anything more complex that I can whip up. And sometimes, that’s exactly what we do.

B…

Yes, simply buttered noodles or a packet of instant ramen can make for a nearly effortless dinner. And yes, my family has made it clear they generally prefer them to anything more complex that I can whip up. And sometimes, that’s exactly what we do.

But, as the third party naysayer who always wants (but rarely has time for) much more, I latched onto this line in Lara Lee’s new cookbook, A Splash of Soy: Everyday Food from Asia, about Lara’s take on the iconic Jakarta noodle dish, ketoprak: “The kettle is your friend in this no-cook version.”

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The Genius Secret to Juicy Turkey Burgers (Chicken & Pork Burgers, Too)

This post contains products independently chosen (and loved) by our editors and writers. Food52 earns an affiliate commission on qualifying purchases of the products we link to.

Who among us hasn’t been burned by a dry turkey burger before? (Or chi…

This post contains products independently chosen (and loved) by our editors and writers. Food52 earns an affiliate commission on qualifying purchases of the products we link to.

Who among us hasn’t been burned by a dry turkey burger before? (Or chicken, or pork, or even beef, that time whoever was in charge of shopping went down a dark path and bought the 98% lean mix.) I had an especially dismal one just recently at the burger joint across the street from my apartment. Fool me, I don’t know, a hundred times?

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52 Essential Genius Recipes for Beginners & Busy Cooks

Fifteen-minute dinners from the pantry. Shakshuka and ragú you can make ahead to take the angst out of having friends over. Shortcut recipes filled with things you don’t have to do, like babysit beans, slow-scramble eggs, peel squash, or knead bread do…

Fifteen-minute dinners from the pantry. Shakshuka and ragú you can make ahead to take the angst out of having friends over. Shortcut recipes filled with things you don’t have to do, like babysit beans, slow-scramble eggs, peel squash, or knead bread dough.

These are the sorts of Genius recipes that welcome beginners and soothe busy cooks. Below are 52 essentials, broken down by needs from speedy workday breakfasts to no-special-equipment desserts (there are loads more like them in the Simply Genius cookbook, with extra riffs, how-to photos and illustrations, and tips for fixing the oopses). Share with graduates, newlyweds, weary new parents, and all those in your life who could benefit from such magical intel—then tuck them into your back pocket, too.

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You Asked, We Tested: Here Are Our 5 Favorite Grill Tool Sets

This article is part of a product-testing series called Food52 Approved, a column where we thoroughly try, test, and review the kitchen and home products you’ve always wondered about. Food52 earns an affiliate commission on qualifying purchases of the …

This article is part of a product-testing series called Food52 Approved, a column where we thoroughly try, test, and review the kitchen and home products you've always wondered about. Food52 earns an affiliate commission on qualifying purchases of the products we link to.


You won’t find a lot of reviews for grill tool sets out there. In fact, Wirecutter deliberately sidesteps them, noting they’re “usually of substandard quality and poorly designed.” (Usually.) J. Kenji López-Alt even once wrote at Serious Eats, “And please, don't even think about buying those ‘grill kits.’ Not even as a gift.”

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You Asked, We Tested: Here Are Our 5 Favorite Spatulas

This article is part of a product-testing series called Food52 Approved, a column where we thoroughly try, test, and review the kitchen and home products you’ve always wondered about. Food52 earns an affiliate commission on qualifying purchases of the…

This article is part of a product-testing series called Food52 Approved, a column where we thoroughly try, test, and review the kitchen and home products you've always wondered about. Food52 earns an affiliate commission on qualifying purchases of the products we link to.


Chefs and diehard home cooks love to love fish spatulas. (Don't believe us? Behold exhibit A, B, C, D, and E.) They talk about how nimbly they move in a pan, how strong they are for their very light weight, and that they can be used not just for their namesake fish but anything you’d want to flip or toss. They even double as a slotted spoon or strainer.

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12 Genius Salads You’ll Be Making All Spring & Summer Long

Salads have always been sleeper Genius Recipe hits year-round (the butternut you don’t have to peel? The radicchio with the secret onion? The bitter greens doused in melted cheese, nachos-style?).

But spring and summer, of course, with a rainbow of pl…

Salads have always been sleeper Genius Recipe hits year-round (the butternut you don’t have to peel? The radicchio with the secret onion? The bitter greens doused in melted cheese, nachos-style?).

But spring and summer, of course, with a rainbow of plant friends bursting forth, are when salads with a smart trick or two really get their day in the sun. Below are 12 of my favorites for prolific gardens and warm days, picnics and backyard barbecues—conversation-sparkers, each and every one.

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Nigella’s No-Churn Ice Cream Is a Genius Way to Chill Out

Every week in Genius Recipes—often with your help!—lifelong Genius-hunter Kristen Miglore is unearthing recipes that will change the way you cook. Today: Four ingredients. One step. No cooking. No churning. Ice cream!

Not having an ice cream maker n…

Every week in Genius Recipes—often with your help!—lifelong Genius-hunter Kristen Miglore is unearthing recipes that will change the way you cook. Today: Four ingredients. One step. No cooking. No churning. Ice cream!


Not having an ice cream maker never stopped us before. We've done all kinds of weird stuff in the name of doing it for ourselves. We've nested coffee cans and shaken them; we've returned obsessively to the freezer to stir; we may or may not have purchased this ball.

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