With high school and college graduations in full force throughout May and June, it can get a little overwhelming trying to pick out the perfect gift(s): one that’s going to be fun, yet useful, and also incite excitement about the future prospects and adventures that lay ahead. Well, if you have a graduate who happens to love food (or want to adequately prepare a high school graduate for college dorm life), then stress no more. We’ve rounded up some gifts that we think would be best for all kinds of food lovers out there.
From basic cookbooks to cool kitchen gadgets for more advanced cooks, we’re positive you’ll find the perfect gift(s) to give this graduation season. (They also work for birthdays too!)
The Joy of Cooking by Irma S. Rombauer, Marion Rombauer Becker, and Ethan Becker: Whether it sits pretty on the bookshelf or gets covered with sauces and food, this is a classic book that deserves to be in every kitchen.
How to Cook Everything by Mark Bittman: A fantastic reference, this cookbook provides easy-to-follow recipes and cooking ideas for both novice and advanced cooks. For vegetarians, try Bittman's How to Cook Everything Vegetarian.
On Food and Cooking by Harold McGee: A good choice for the science-oriented food lovers.
Martha’s Baking Handbook by Martha Stewart: Let the baking queen teach beginners how it’s done.
More Advanced and Specific Cookbooks
The One-Block Feast by Margo True and the staff at Sunset Magazine: Perfect for the D.I.Y. graduate who wants to learn how to raise cows, chickens, and make their own honey — best if they live in California. (Plus delicious recipes like the one pictured left.)
My Bread by Jim Lahey: Great recipes from New York's bread and pizza master.
The Essential New York Times Cookbook by Amanda Hesser: Released in 2010, this massive book is a collection of over 1,400 recipes plushed in the Times since 1850. Included in it are recipes like Alice Waters' Baked Goat Cheese Salad.
Salted by Mark Bitterman: A passionate manifesto about salt, this fabulous encylopedic-like book also comes with fantastic recipes like the one pictured left. (You can also pair this gift with the salts from his store listed below.)
Tender by Nigel Slater: For eaters whose diets are mostly based on vegetables, this book from English writer Nigel Slater is perfect. Beautiful writing, stunning photography, and fantastic recipes make this book a great gift — just be warned that it's quite heavy and large.