This holiday season, what should you give the food-lover or wine buff who has everything — or, well, almost everything? We've got some ideas for you. These new kitchen accessories and treats are priced mostly in the $50 range or under, but we threw in a couple of worthy splurges too.
Microwave pressure cooker
No more dry microwaved meals: With this handy new pressure cooker, you can steam, stew and braise all types of meats, fish and veggies—and make casseroles, soups and desserts—in just a fraction of the time. And just like a more traditional pressure cooker, this one is designed to lock in the flavor, moisture and nutrients. It’s also BPA-free and dishwasher safe, and has a built-in safety device that releases any excess pressure.
SilverStone® Microwave Pressure Cooker(3.4 Quart). $59.99 at Target.com
Classic French press and frother set
Anyone who loves to entertain can take things up a notch by serving pro-level lattes and cappuccinos after dinner, thanks to this new two-in-one kit that includes a French press and a milk frother.
Two-Piece La Petite French Press & Frother Set (3-Cup). $29.99 at www.bonjourproducts.com.
Handmade toffee in edible chocolate snowman jar
Whoever is lucky enough to receive this gift will be tempted to eat the entire edible jar before even getting to the treats inside—but that would be a mistake. Chocolate Inspirations, a small Illinois-based confectionery known for its handmade English toffee, has released a few delicious new candies for this holiday season, including Coffee Almond Crunch, Cookie Butter Bark and Cocoa Peanut Butter Crunch. When you order the snowman cookie jar for a friend, make sure you load it up with one of those—and send some to yourself too.
Chocolate Snowman Gift Box. $55 at chocolateinspirations.com
Double-duty slow cooker
Arguably the best present you can give the slow-cooker-obsessed home chef, this new version is like having two crocks in one. The 6.5-quart machine works like a typical slow cooker, but it’s a little bigger and has a divider down the middle, allowing you to make two dishes at the same time.
Cook’s Essentials® 6.5 Quart Stainless Steel Slow Cooker with Divided Crock. $44 at qvc.com.
Stocking stuffer alert: Check out the sublime chocolate-covered nuts, plus the dozens of other elegant, addictive new sweets made by Les Cinq Amandes (French for The Five Almonds). The unique candies involve flavorful combos of fine spices, fruits, herbs, flowers, nuts and chocolate. Add a personalized message to your gift for a special touch.
Les Cinq Amandes gift boxes. Prices vary depending on gift box (average cost is $5 for the first piece, then $1 for each additional piece) at www.the5almonds.com.
Legendary cocktail mix
To toast the 80th anniversary of the Bloody Mary's legendary debut at the King Cole Bar in New York City's St. Regis hotel, this limited-edition cocktail kit is now available nationwide from Arrowhead Farms Provisions. The line of cocktail mixes is the brainchild of socialite and party-planner Bronson van Wyck (of the notable van Wyck family, which settled in New York back in the 1660’s), and it's named after the Arkansas farm where he spent his childhood.
St. Regis Red Snapper Blood Mary Mix, 25 oz bottle. $28 at www.arrowheadfarms.com.
Turntable and cake stand
Not only is this accessory a must-have for home bakers, since the rotating plate makes it easier to decorate desserts (like icing borders, frosting cupcakes and piping meringues), but it's also a stylish cake stand for displaying after-dinner treats—even if they’re store-bought. And for "Cake Boss" fans, this gift is even sweeter.
Cast Iron Decorating Turntable and Cake Stand. $59.99 at www.cakebossbaking.com.
Mini hot and iced coffee machine
Sleek, stylish, and so small that it won't clog up your kitchen counter, the latest capsule coffee machine from Nescafe's Dolce Gusto line makes 19 different coffee drinks (hot or cold), from espressos to cappuccinos to lattes and more.
Nescafe Dolce Gusto Mini-Me. $99.99 at www.dolce-gusto.us
Foolproof electric corkscrew
No matter how much you swear by your favorite wine-opening gadget, we're willing to bet that this new electric version from Rabbit is easier, faster and more foolproof. All you do is place it on top of the bottle, switch it on and watch as it takes out the cork in seconds. And even if you're not willing give up your own tried-and-true bottle-opening method, we guarantee that someone on your gift list is still battling mangled corks—and will be eternally grateful.
Rabbit Automatic Electric Corkscrew. $50 at www.metrokane.com
Partida's award-winning tequila (named this year's top-rated blanco—meaning unaged—tequila in Wine Enthusiast) is now available in a smaller and less expensive bottle, at half the price of the standard 750ml size. It comes just in time to help margarita fans ring in the new year, and its pure, rich flavor shows hints of pepper, citrus and fresh herbs.
Partida Blanco, 375ml bottle. $19.99; find availability at http://www.partidatequila.com/
Super-easy knife sharpener
Another stocking-stuffer idea: This safe, simple-to-use, counter-mounted knife sharpener makes it easier than ever to keep the blades sharp on everything from butter knives to top-of-the-line steel knives. And it comes with an extra sharpener to restore kitchen scissors and shears too.
AnySharp Plus. $28 at www.anysharp.com/store.
High-tech cutting board
For the cook who likes to look at recipes on an iPad, Williams-Sonoma has the perfect gift: a cutting board with a slot that holds the slim tablet upright. While the price is a little steep for a cutting board ($75 for a place to slice tomatoes?), some of the proceeds do go to a good cause: No Kid Hungry, a national non-profit dedicated to ending childhood hunger in America. Every purchase of the cutting board will go toward providing 450 meals for kids in need.
Williams-Sonoma Cutting Board with iPad stand, made by Orange Chef Co. $75 at www.nokidhungry.org/holidaygift