HGHF Holiday Guide
I cannot believe it is the first week of November! We have 15 days left until Thanksgiving break... EEK! I have an amazing lady on my teaching team... well honestly ALL of them are. I have the best team to work with :) So one of them is known for always keeping us in the loop for countdowns to breaks hahah, so obviously her telling me 15 to Thanksgiving break, meant SO close to HOLIDAY BREAK! So immediately I started thinking of all the gifts I need to get going on. With that being said, I thought it was about time I finally published HGHF gift guide. I thought you'd want to get in the holiday spirit for that foodie lover of yours or yourself... no judgements. Last year I ordered my Insta Pot that I have on here , plus accessories for my mom to then wrap to give to me hahah. Sometimes you do what you gotta do right ;)
All the things on here are things I have tried and really love. They have become staples in my kitchen. Some range from low price tag, to some higher ticket items. I have the range on here, because I feel that everybody's range is different.
One year my family went in on the pots & pans for me. Another year an amazing family I nannied for gifted me the vitamix for a graduation present. So on here, in no means do I think it would be realistic for all of these things. I just want you all to know what I LOVE & hope to help spark ideas for you! So snuggle in on the couch, grab your computer & start searching for these great ideas!
None of these items are sponsored at all they are my HONEST FOODIE opinion of what I ACTUALLY love & use. There are affiliate links on here, so anything that you do buy through those links will add a little bit to my affiliate link program through amazon, however at no extra cost to you. It just lets me know what you are liking!
I am going to start from LEFT to RIGHT. I tried to clump them by category, however some were kind of odd balls. If you have any questions at all, feel free to message me through my site, shoot me an email or DM on Instagram! I am here to help!
These are probably my favorite lunch containers. One thing that would drive me crazy about making lunches was how many containers I used. Then I would have to try & TETRIS it in my fridge. Then once I started making Ainsley's lunch too, I was like forget it! Then I stumbled upon this awesome company, run by a BOSS BABE :) Heather, started this company & was a blast to work with for HGHF lunch week. I love knowing exactly who it is running a company & I can say it is awesome being able to support businesses run by women ;) I have the one I am linking here & then Ainsley has the stainless steel one for her lunch I am linking here as well!
I am obsessed with Stasher bags. Seriously my goal one day is just to be able to purchase so many of them that I will never need a plastic bag in my house again. It is one of those things I have had to gradually purchase. When I see them on sale on their website or on Amazon. I mean when you think of how many plastic bags you individually use in a day & think of the billions of people in this world..... It is a no brainer to start getting some of these! I personally love the large ones for freezing meals & meat :) I also really love the small sandwich ones for keeping avocados or herbs fresh longer--- it is amazing how fresh it keeps items!! This would be a perfect thing for a stocking stuffer, with favorite lipgloss, nail polish, earring or any other tiny gifts inside.
I mean lets be honest, my addiction to my mug cakes is a real thing. I have even passed it along to Ainsley, she loves her "mud cakes" as she calls them. Today she ate one for breakfast. I got her off her chair & she had brown smeared ALL over the back. I immediately thought the worst lol & she goes "oh momma I accidentally sat on bite of my mud" hahahah I about died. So needless to say they are YUMMY & a little on the messy side for toddler who just devour them, but hey I'm all for it. So these Ramekins are perfect for making the best easy breakfast. Two of our favorite mug cakes can be found on the blog. I will link them here :)
I am a big fan of organizing my dried pantry goods in mason jars. They keep longer & a lot of times I can get away with putting my bulk items in the ones I still have marked. Even so, it really helps to keep oat flour I make in here, dried nuts, dates etc. I can easily consolidate packages as well for a more organized pantry! I also have to make my overnight oats in mason jars. I recommend the 8oz mason jars for overnight oat recipes OR you can make it in there for more people... very efficient!
I make muffins all the time, like HGHF Banana Spice muffins or two of my new favorites Orange Lemon Cake muffins & the BuckWHAT Chocolate Peanut Butter cupcakes .SO needless to say I would be using so many paper liners. Not only would that be such a waste, but they also pull off a lot of the cake part! So I adore having silicone liners, it makes me feel better about the environment & easier to clean up than the muffin tins themselves :) WIN WIN. Would fit perfect in a stocking for that baker of yours :) Also if you have a kiddo, mine uses them with her play dough or play kitchen all the time now.. multi use am I right? ;)
Okay, so yes this is obviously one of the bigger ticket items. However, I recommend this 100000000X over. I really never understood why people spent more money on a blender or coffee maker until I actually did. I mean the taste difference goes from like zero to 100 so quick. The consistency & efficiency of this blender is out of this world. I joked... but kind of am not joking, that is like my second baby. I would take it to the basement if there is a tornado:) I make soups, smoothies, hummus, muffins, pancakes.... literally almost anything in it! My favorite is the one I linked here, because it is a low-profile so fits underneath our cabinets perfectly. However, there are other ones, refurbished ones etc. for cheaper! That is why I put the range price above. I am not kidding, worth every penny. They also have a great warrantee.
If you love that special someone or yourself... seriously purchase now. This is the pot I use at least twice a week. ESPECIALLY during winter. It is a DREAM for soups. Like my Tortellini Soup on the blog.(It is also pictured in that post) I also use it for anything I am making double of. Forget more than one pot, this thing has enough room & is perfect to make sure nothing spills over. I use it for Taco nights, sautéing anything... so really basically this is my main go to when cooking. My family got it for me for a Christmas gift one year & we looked forever for the best one that was most versatile. We also loved that it dishwasher safe, lifetime warrantee & if it couldn't get any better, it has a dual layer of stainless steel that keeps everything hot, not just what is on the base but sides as well. IT IS PERFECT! Alright, I could type more about how much I am obsessed with it, but you all probably think I have lost my mind by now.... or my foodies out there, you get it right?! :)
8. Instant Pot DUO60 6 Qt 7-in-1 Multi-Use Programmable Pressure Cooker, Slow Cooker, Rice Cooker, Steamer, Sauté, Yogurt Maker and Warmer- $79.99
DO NOT BE INTIMIDATED:) I think that whenever I talk to people who don't have one yet, it is because it is overwhelming. That was my sister, until I got her one for Christmas, along with the accessories I have on this list & the cookbook that made me feel like a insta pot pro. I am sure there are going to be more flashy ones come this season, but in all honesty a lot of times with these popular items, there is nothing REALLY that big of a difference and this a good price for it right now. I really think everyone should have an insta pot. It is so handy & makes my life so much easier with it being hands off. My top favorite things about it:
1. How it cooks meat, EVEN when it has been frozen-- chicken breast especially
2. How I can throw in soups & do NOTHING else to it & have it ready
3. The sauté, feature incorporated with it
4. How perfect it cooks rice, without having to deal with the whole boiling & covering aspect
5. Making simple things like apple sauce, butters etc.
6. Okay..... just like above with my calphalon I could go on and on :)
I use my insta pot for a lot of recipes for example my Korean BBQ on the blog or my Buffalo Chicken bowl OR soups like my White Chicken Chili. All recipes that are made 10X simpler by using it. I have yet to make yogurt... to be honest, it intimidates me, but this year I WILL!
Sizing: I recommend the 6qt if you have a family that is 3 people and over. However, if you have 2 people in your family, I'd still say 6qt so you have plenty of leftovers. The 8qt I have heard mixed reviews. It takes longer to come to pressure & so a lot of times I hear people only getting that one when it has to do with large meats being cooked. I have heard that from a lot people personally & then the same thing from Meghan Gilmore the author of the cookbook down below.
Alright, so my new found love is the Air Fryer I purchased this year. I bought mine at Cost Co & the last time I was there a couple weeks ago they still had it. So if you have a membership, I would strongly suggest going & looking for it, because it is such a steal there! I would say that if you have a bigger family than 4. to get the next size up. I feel like the 5 qt is just right for our family, I could even honestly go a bit bigger. Especially, when I make batches of fries or My BEST Chicken Sliders. It cooks fries AMAZING & anything for that matter. PRO TIP: Get avocado or olive oil spray, and spray on top of the food before putting it in there to get it extra crispy :) I love the cookbook that comes with this one, it makes you become really comfortable with it. I LOVE the fact that you use way less oil which is both WAY healthier & WAY cheaper, because oil is expensive to buy. DOUBLE WIN WIN!
So I would say that this is a kitchen staple. I also feel like the Kitchen Aid is the boss of the baking arena, the vitamix is in charge of the liquid arena & the calphalon cookware is in charge of the stove top arena :) SO needless to say those 3 are what you want for all 3 of those areas you have to cook in. You have them and you are set! This kitchen aid has enough capacity for up to 9 dozen cookies & 4 batches of bread! I love the dough hook & the variation of speeds. Talk about through with ANY baking task at hand. It makes you want to kick your hand mixer to the curb ASAP!
Now this is one of those, that is it absolutely necessary... no, however it is so freaking cool! I use to use this at one of my friends house all the time & then lost mine during a move. I am in need of my new one & will be purchasing it again ASAP! I loved how easy it was to strain meat grease or juice, pasta etc. anything to avoid those awkward spills & wasting food down the drain OR burning yourself with trying to strain it!
Honestly, this book will motivate you to throw any fad diet out the window & just believe in fueling your body with real food & real ingredients. It is a fabulous cookbook for anyone who is wanting to shift gears food wise & needing lists of staples, grocery guides etc. for making that shift! It is one of my absolute favorite guides, I HIGHLY recommend this, as well as her other cookbooks! I have gifted this to numerous people over the years & all have loved it.
If you are intimated by using your insta pot or not knowing what settings go with what-- look no further than your go to guide for your insta pot. Seriously, I feel this cookbook should be paired with Insta pot & always sent to everyone! I look back at her conversions guide almost anytime I cook something in mine, it is beyond helpful! Not to mention she has great healthy recipes & I really enjoy following her. She has helped a lot with questions I have had in the blogging world!
These MAD SHARK knives are going to be what I purchase when Ainsley and I move out. I have used these numerous times before & the difference good knives make is HUGE. These are stainless steel, resist rust & corrosion. They cut with such ease & perfection. Every chef deserves a set of easy to use knives. Even though nicer knives look more "dangerous" it is actually more "dangerous" to use duller, harder to cut knives, because there is more chance of slipping or getting yourself, when trying to cut through something like potatoes.
These are my favorite cooking sheets! The fiber glass material of the mat, cooks things to perfection. I truly love these so much, we use them 24/7. Once I bought these I don't think I have ever really gone back to my other baking sheets. They can resist high heat & freezer temperatures, so makes it easy to move from one place to another. On Amazon they have a variety of sizes & off brands. So just make sure you look for the authentic silpat brand by the French Pantry. Also that you have a sheet to place the mat on top. That is why I loved this set so much!
So there are 2 things you need to go along with your Insta Pot purchase. Also if you already have the Insta Pot but not these two things, you gotta do it! These accessories, plus the Megan Gilmore cookbook & your insta pot, then you will be ALL set! I love these group of accessories, because I feel like there are so many groupings you can get, but they come with a lot you wouldn't use a lot. This one however comes with very practical ones, that I use a lot! Especially the hand mits. I bought these for my sister as well last Christmas and she loves them!
Everyone needs a set of non stick pans & these are just the ones for you. I love the Calphalon brand-- make sure on Amazon that they are being sold by Calphalon brand.
More Natural Shift to the Face Routine:
I cannot say more good things about Andalou & Cocokind. Immediately after I started using these 4 items for a week I saw a difference in my under eye circles, wrinkles & overall tone. I feel much better about their ingredients & their missions, than a lot of face products. Really worth trying this, I will not go back to my previous routine!
AND that's a wrap! Again, if you have ANY questions at all or see prices change, items out of stalk etc. Please reach out, I am here to help make the holiday shopping just a little bit easier for you foodie lovers out there :)