16 Easy, Delicious and Homemade Gifts

Instead of fighting the crowds at the mall and hunting for bargains this holiday season, why not take to your kitchen? (See also: 10 Homemade Liqueurs to Bottle for Tasty Gifts)

Forget that dry soup mix and heavy-as-a-rock fruitcake — homemade, edible gifts can be a real treat, not to mention being very economical. Stop fretting over what to get your growing list of recipients, and surprise them with some of the following tasty (and easy!) gifts.

1. Infused Alcohol

Infused spirits make beautiful gifts, and who doesn't like getting booze? Luckily, less is more when it comes to these flavorful drinks, and there's no need to go top shelf, so you can give an alcoholic gift without breaking the bank. Follow these guidelines and pour into bottles or jars with a label.

2. Quick Pickles

This crunchy, salty, and tangy snack is to sure to delight. Quick pickles are quick (…yep), easy, and you can change up the flavors depending on your mood. Use saved jelly jars and attach a nice label for a special gift.

3. Coconut Macaroons

Macaroons are pretty, really tasty, and so easy to make. Make traditional coconut macaroons for Hanukkah or Christmas gifts, and package them in plastic gift bags with red ribbon. Make them extra special by dipping them half-way into melted dark chocolate.

4. Seasonings

Spice mixes are convenient, but the store-bought varieties can be lackluster and often contain unnecessary fillers and chemicals. Whip up some Italian seasoning or Cajun seasoning, garnish with a pretty label, and give as flavorful gifts. Note that these recipes (and others) are easily doubled and tripled.

5. Matzo Candy

An easy and delicious treat for Hanukkah, simply dip squares of matzo into melted chocolate, and sprinkle with crushed peppermint or nuts for a festive looking candy. Unless you want to get fancy about it!

6. Peppermint Patties

This refreshing after-dinner candy is a crowd-pleaser, and fun to make. Dress them up by sprinkling crushed peppermint candy on top while the chocolate is still warm. Put a dozen in a small, parchment paper-lined tin for excellent gifting.

7. Spiced Nuts

Spiced nuts are a favorite snack around the holidays, and with so many variations, they make a perfect treat for a loved one. Try these roasted Sugar-and-Spice Nuts or Jessica's Spiced Pecans, and present them in a pretty mason jar.

8. Granola

Homemade granola is economical, easy, and healthier than store-bought varieties. It lasts for a couple of weeks in an airtight container and can be made in lots of flavors, so it's a great gift. Start with a basic recipe and mix up the nuts and fruit for variety. Pistachio and cranberry is especially festive!

9. Dog Treats

Have friends or family who love their dog above all else? Wish them a happy holidays by bringing a tasty homemade gift to their pooch!

10. Fudge

The varieties of fudge are endless, and as long as you follow the directions, it's also easy to make. Impress your loved ones with some White Chocolate Fudge With Cranberries and Pistachios, Nutella Caramel Pretzel Fudge (or maybe a little of each!).

11. Syrups

Try making a homemade syrup for an easy but impressive homemade gift. Save pretty bottles and fill them with Homemade Vanilla Coffee Syrup (for your friends addicted to Starbucks) or Homemade Raspberry Syrup, which goes beautifully on top of pancakes.

12. Preserved Lemons

For your friend and family that love to cook, give them a beautiful jar of preserved lemons. This easy-to-make jarred fruit adds vibrancy to lots of dishes. Don't worry if they aren't ready in time — just put an "open by" date on the tag, and they'll have a tasty treat that keeps giving for months later.

13. Truffles

Truffles are easier to make than they seem, and they are so decadent and delicious that they make a fantastic gift. Plus, you can roll them in different ingredients (cocoa powder, coconut, nuts, the list goes on) and they make a lovely display.

14. Olive Tapenade

Save that nice-looking mustard jar to fill with your very own homemade olive tapenade, and the recipient will be more than impressed. Include recipe cards with ideas for using the condiment for a nice touch.

15. Popcorn

Instead of giving a giant Christmas tin full of artificially flavored popcorn, make your own gourmet version. Popcorn is easy to make and you can flavor it in lots of ways. Make a few kinds and put them each in pretty bags with ribbon and a label.

16. Chocolate-Dipped Everything

Want to make something look and taste fancy? Dip it in chocolate. Try melting dark, white and/or milk chocolate and dipping strawberries, pretzels, shortbread, or anything else that sounds good to you. Make them even prettier by then dipping into finely chopped nuts, holiday sprinkles, or sea salt.

What edible gifts do you whip up for the holidays? Please share in comments!

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Forget that dry soup mix and heavy-as-a-rock fruitcake — homemade, edible gifts can be a real treat, not to mention being very economical. Surprise your friends, families or colleagues with these tasty (and easy) DIY homemade gifts! | #DIYgifts #homemade #frugalliving

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Guest's picture

A few years ago our families decided to dispense with the "buy a gift for everyone" and now we bring one gift to exchange. In my family you can either go into the chocolate exchange or the beer exchange. We bring mostly homemade chocolates, fudge, or other candy and a small item like a cookbook, or bowl or such. We wrap the chocolate gifts and you draw blind. The beer exchange is 2 6-packs of something interesting. We play games that we make up each year to determine what order we pick. With the beer, you only get to pick one 6-pack at a time. In my husband's family it's a chocolate and wine exchange, or the beer exchange. We have a ton of fun with the silly games and we laugh a lot! Takes so much pressure off wondering if your gifts will be ok.

By the way, the website Allrecipes has a ton of seasoning recipes and Amazon has spice bottles. You can always do a wine and spice exchange. So much more fun than bringing home yet another gift you cannot use.