In the midst of all the holiday cheer, there’s nothing worse than giving a gift that bombs. This season, rise above the expectations of that special someone and surprise them with a great and useful new gadget. Here are some truly affordable gifts under $30 that any true foodie would love to have:
1. Spiral Slicer
Use this handy tool to turn veggies into noodles with this spiralizer. Perfect for college students who want to up their veggie intake, spiralized veggies can be substituted for or combined with traditional pasta to pack a punch of nutrition.
2. Apple Peeler
Why spend your time peeling your own apples when a machine can do it for you? This nifty contraption peels, cores, and slices apples with little wastage. Better yet, it can also be used for potatoes, root vegetables, and just about any fruit or vegetable with a similar shape. More time saved preparing food means more time to be spent enjoying delicious food.
3. ManaTEA Infuser
Perfect for tea connoisseurs, the great thing about tea infusers is that you can mix several tea leaf flavors to your liking, unlike with prepackaged tea bags. Add a bit of personality in your drink by adding all-natural components (like grated ginger, dried rose petals, or mint leaves) to the leaves in the infuser.
4. Silicone Ice Cube Molds/Chocolate Molds
Who says ice cubes have to be boring? Instead of freezing just water, try freezing chocolate syrup, strawberry syrup, or caramel in molds and serve in a tall glass of cold milk. To get more bang for your buck, these silicone molds can also double up as chocolate molds or baking molds.
5. Magic Wand Salt and Pepper Shakers
Channel your inner child and bring some magic to the dinner table with these magic wand salt and pepper shakers. Perfect as a gag gift or a real gift. You won’t be able to season your food at the table without a good laugh.
6. Handheld Milk Frother
A huge difference between ready-to-drink coffee (from joints like Peet’s Coffee and Tea) and homemade coffee is the frothiness of the milk, a texture hard to obtain if you don’t have the right tool. But for someone on a budget or for the frequent at-home coffee drinker, consider this handheld milk frother. While it might not perfectly replicate a Starbucks latte, it can definitely come close.
7. Indoor S’mores Maker
Close your eyes, channel your inner child, and take yourself back to lazy summer nights with this fun s’mores set. Enjoy this campfire treat sans the campfire with your family then take it back to school for those times you just need a break.
Esther Chen is a fourth year student studying clinical nutrition at University of California, Davis. She hopes to complete a dietetic internship and become a registered dietitian.