11 Gifts for the Home Chef in Your Life

Amazon
Amazon

Everyone knows someone who just loves to cook, but they can't show off their skills if they don't have the proper kitchenware. So if there's someone in your life that's always ready to offer you a homemade meal that tops any restaurant, the holidays are the perfect time to show your gratitude. This year, get them a gift that will make their time in the kitchen even more enjoyable.

1. Instant Pot Duo Mini; $60

Instant Pot.
Instant Pot/Amazon

Home chefs don’t need a lot of mouths to feed or counter space to justify owning an Instant Pot. This version of the electric pressure cooker has all the capabilities of the original—including quick settings for rice, soups, yogurts, and stew—with a smaller, apartment-friendly footprint. With the colder weather approaching, an Instant Pot should be a staple in any kitchen.

Buy It: Amazon

2. Le Creuset Heart-Shaped Casserole Dish; $199

Heart-shaped casserole dish.
LE Creust/Amazon

Le Creuset is known for making enameled cast-iron cookware that’s durable and functional. It’s also really nice to look at, and this heart-shaped casserole dish is no exception. Even if the home chef in your life already has a collection of cookware, this two-quart dish makes a great item to have for special occasions.

Buy It: Amazon

3. Veggie Spices; $30

Veggie spice packets.
Uncommon Goods

When it comes to special seasoning blends, meat usually gets all the love, but veggies can also benefit from the right mixture of herbs and spices. This veggie lover’s cooking kit can help anyone looking to upgrade their produce from simple side dish to memorable main course. The kit comes with six flavor packets, such as coconut curry, maple brown sugar, and Mexican street corn. And for even more culinary inspiration, a booklet of plant-based recipes is included.

Buy It: Uncommon Goods

4. Cast-Iron Garlic Roaster; $25

Best Kitchen Gadgets to Buy
Charcoal Companion/Amazon

Roasted garlic is great mixed into condiments, mashed into potatoes, or simply smeared onto a slice of bread. The only drawback is that transforming a raw garlic clove into a soft, caramelized flavor bomb requires some time and patience. With this cast-iron garlic roaster from Amazon, the process becomes as simple as possible. Ventilation holes allow the aroma of garlic to fill your home as it cooks, and a silicone accessory lets you squeeze the garlic from its husk when it’s fresh out of the oven, without burning your fingers.

Buy It: Amazon

5. Thai Chef Knives; $70-$80

Thai chef's knives.
Uncommon Goods

A good chef’s knife is one of the most important tools a home cook should have in their kitchen. This gift includes two: an all-purpose cleaver and a sleek, lighter-weight blade for more precise cuts. Both knives are forged from stainless steel and hand crafted by artisans in Thailand.

Buy It: Uncommon Goods

6. JAWZ Blender; $299

JAWZ blender.
Jawz/Amazon

Whether the foodie in your life prefers to make smoothies or cocktails at home, they’ll benefit from having a high-powered blender in the kitchen. The JAWZ blender boasts 10 speed settings, making it perfect for pulverizing everything from berries and leafy greens to ice cubes and nuts.

Buy It: Amazon

7. Star Wars Death Star Cutting Board; $13

Star Wars Death Star cutting board.
Underground Toys/Amazon

Add some geeky charm to anyone's kitchen with this cutting board shaped like the Death Star from the original Star Wars. With a strong, heat resistant glass surface, this cutting board is a great way to indulge anyone who splits their passions equally between cooking and menacing Imperial super weapons.

Buy It: Amazon

8. Altifarm; $359

Vertical indoor garden.
Altifarm/Amazon

Anyone who loves to cook at home knows the importance of using fresh herbs and produce in their food, and it’s hard to get any fresher than the bounty offered by Altifarm. The system's built-in LED lights promote plant growth without the need for direct sunlight, and its modular design makes it easy to place your garden just steps away from the stovetop. It works with a variety of plant seeds, including basil, tomatoes, and microgreens. Plus, it’s self-watering, so you only have to fill it once a week and let the garden do the rest. There's no green thumb necessary to reap these rewards.

Buy It: Amazon

9. Spoon rest; $7

Spoon rest.
Kamenstein/Amazon

Creating a little bit of a mess while cooking is unavoidable, but there are small things cooks can do to keep that mess under control. One of them is to use a spoon rest: Instead of resting a dirty spoon on a clean countertop, or leaning it precariously against a pot, cooks can set it aside in its designated spot. Kitchen surfaces stay clean, and when it comes time to stir or taste something, the tool is within arm's reach. This Acacia wood rest from Kamenstein isn’t just useful—it also looks nice next to the stove.

Buy It: Amazon

10. Air Fryer; $57

Air fryer.
Amazon

Deep-fried food is messy and high in fat. Unfortunately for anyone concerned about those two points, it also tastes really good. With an air fryer, you can achieve the delectable texture of frying without the downsides. This model from Dash uses air instead of oil to get food hot and crisp. Plus, it’s compact, making it the perfect addition to a kitchen of any size.

Buy It: Amazon

11. Cooking Temperature Magnet; $7

Temperature chart fridge magnet.
RSVP International/Amazon

When handling raw meat, looking up the correct cooking temperature for a specific product is best done hands-free. A magnetic temperature chart keeps this information in one convenient spot. It sticks to the fridge, so whether a home cook wants to know the best internal temperature for lamb chops or a whole chicken, all they have to do is glance at it.

Buy It: Amazon

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Turn Your LEGO Bricks Into a Drone With the Flybrix Drone Kit

Flyxbrix/FatBrain
Flyxbrix/FatBrain

Now more than ever, it’s important to have a good hobby. Of course, a lot of people—maybe even you—have been obsessed with learning TikTok dances and baking sourdough bread for the last few months, but those hobbies can wear out their welcome pretty fast. So if you or someone you love is looking for something that’s a little more intellectually stimulating, you need to check out the Flybrix LEGO drone kit from Fat Brain Toys.

What is a Flybrix LEGO Drone Kit?

The Flybrix drone kit lets you build your own drones out of LEGO bricks and fly them around your house using your smartphone as a remote control (via Bluetooth). The kit itself comes with absolutely everything you need to start flying almost immediately, including a bag of 56-plus LEGO bricks, a LEGO figure pilot, eight quick-connect motors, eight propellers, a propeller wrench, a pre-programmed Flybrix flight board PCB, a USB data cord, a LiPo battery, and a USB LiPo battery charger. All you’ll have to do is download the Flybrix Configuration Software, the Bluetooth Flight Control App, and access online instructions and tutorials.

Experiment with your own designs.

The Flybrix LEGO drone kit is specifically designed to promote exploration and experimentation. All the components are tough and can totally withstand a few crash landings, so you can build and rebuild your own drones until you come up with the perfect design. Then you can do it all again. Try different motor arrangements, add your own LEGO bricks, experiment with different shapes—this kit is a wannabe engineer’s dream.

For the more advanced STEM learners out there, Flybrix lets you experiment with coding and block-based coding. It uses an arduino-based hackable circuit board, and the Flybrix app has advanced features that let you try your hand at software design.

Who is the Flybrix LEGO Drone Kit for?

Flybrix is a really fun way to introduce a number of core STEM concepts, which makes it ideal for kids—and technically, that’s who it was designed for. But because engineering and coding can get a little complicated, the recommended age for independent experimentation is 13 and up. However, kids younger than 13 can certainly work on Flybrix drones with the help of their parents. In fact, it actually makes a fantastic family hobby.

Ready to start building your own LEGO drones? Click here to order your Flybrix kit today for $198.

At Mental Floss, we only write about the products we love and want to share with our readers, so all products are chosen independently by our editors. Mental Floss has affiliate relationships with certain retailers and may receive a percentage of any sale made from the links on this page. Prices and availability are accurate as of the time of publication.

This $30 Guide Will Teach You How to Train Any Pup

Iuliia Zavalishina/iStock via Getty Images Plus
Iuliia Zavalishina/iStock via Getty Images Plus

The number of people adopting new dogs during quarantine has skyrocketed—and if you just gained a furry friend to keep you company, you can train your dog from home with the eight-course Guide to Puppy and Dog Training program for just $30.

The A-Z Guide to Puppy and Dog Training, the first course in the program, begins helping you before you even get your dog, teaching you to understand how to support adoption rather than puppy farms, and how to select the right puppy for you. Then, set a solid foundation for good behavior by learning to train and socialize your dog from a young age. You'll also be equipped to help your new pup overcome nervous crying, howling, and separation anxiety.

If you already have a dog, don’t worry—there are lessons on teaching them to start and stop barking on command and how to walk confidently and calmly by your side on a leash so you never get tangled around a pole again.

Bark and leash training can make your dog the perfect roommate, but a roommate who doesn’t know a guest from an enemy can be trouble. Learn how to tame aggressiveness with a course designed to help you recognize signals before aggression happens. The training bundle also includes a course that teaches you how to make a career out of dog training and another that focuses on natural remedies for dog health and diet.

The Complete Guide to Puppy and Dog Training is discounted at $30 for a limited time.

 

The Complete Guide to Puppy & Dog Training Bundle - $29.99

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At Mental Floss, we only write about the products we love and want to share with our readers, so all products are chosen independently by our editors. Mental Floss has affiliate relationships with certain retailers and may receive a percentage of any sale made from the links on this page. Prices and availability are accurate as of the time of publication.