I’ve learned the best thing to give someone is something you’ve made yourself. The effort and thought are always appreciated, and I find I feel the most confident giving gifts I made because of that. If you ever feel stumped on gift giving — whether it’s for a birthday, holiday, or just because — the sentimental value of a DIY gift is the way to go! Almost everyone loves food or food-themed things so why not make something delicious or deliciously cute for someone you love? Maybe you can sneak some bites for yourself, you are the one who made it after all.

Sourdough Starter

Let’s start with a classic, the sourdough starter. A sourdough starter is basically a jar of active yeast created by flour and water mixed together to create a natural yeast to make sourdough bread. All you have to do is mix together the two ingredients — water and flour — let it sit for a few days while taking care of it by removing overgrowth (this bad boy will grow like crazy if you let it) and feeding it warm water and more flour. It’s like taking care of it like a plant until you gift it. Just make sure the giftee knows how to take care of it. Maybe make a cute care guide to go along with the jar. The great thing about a sourdough starter is that it is the gift that keeps on giving, as it will grow constantly and the overgrowth can be jarred and gifted to others as well. Here’s a recipe for sourdough bread using the starter you can steal.

Infused Sugars

A very versatile gift indeed. Infused sugars are simple depending on what you plan to infuse the sugar with. Usually, all you have to do is let the ingredient you want to infuse sit in sugar for a month. You can take simple white sugar and infuse it with fruity flavors for your alcoholic concoctions or with vanilla bean or florals like lavender for baked goods. Infusing sugar takes a while, so receiving some infused sugar ready to use would be a sweet little gift, especially if you create an assortment of little jars.

Rim Salts

For your alcohol-aficionado friends, you can make rim salts to compliment their favorite drinks. It’s another simple gift, where all it takes is some thoughtful mixing of matching flavors to create flavored salt to go on the rims of glasses of alcohol. Here is a citrusy salt to go with margaritas, and over here is a spicy savory salt for Bloody Marys. Those are just a few examples, but the sky's the limit, well, provided you know what goes nicely with a hard drink.

Homemade Pickles

Now, I know pickles aren’t everyone’s cup of tea, but the people who do like them tend to like them a lot, so why not make some for the pickle-crazy person in your life? Pickles are very easy to make if you are making quick pickles, and you can follow my guide here to learn about the process and for a simple dill pickle recipe that will have your friends or family saying “You made these?” The gift is even better if paired with some nice bread, cheeses, and one of those weird sausage logs that get given out on the holidays. Make it a nice deli basket with a handmade touch.

Pasta Picture Holders

Let’s move on to some cute kitchen decor. A small but mighty little craft are these pasta picture holders made from clay. They would look perfect on the kitchen of your friend’s or family member’s windowsill, preferably holding a picture of you. This is also great if you want to get crafty and create something that will last. The shapes and yellow color of the pasta holders would add a playful pop to any kitchen.

Spore Paintings

You’re probably asking, ‘What on earth is a spore painting?’ Yeah, me too. Perfect for your local goblincore girly, or someone who just really likes to cook with mushrooms, you just use the spore-markings of a mushroom to create a work of art. You simply put mushrooms down on a piece of paper that would best make the colors of the spores pop, and then you get an abstract yet completely natural little picture to go in your kitchen or anywhere else. If you are picking mushrooms outdoors in the wild, please be careful and follow a guide before touching them.

Honey Bear Planter

If you have a honey container shaped like a bear, don’t throw it away, but instead turn it into a planter. Those jars are so cute that they would look great growing some rosemary or maybe even with some small flowers. You can keep the colors coordinated by filling it up with sand and having a succulent sticking out the top. The size of the jar had an effect on what can go in it, so this gift may be for honey lovers only, but that doesn’t make it any less thoughtful.