father's day 2022

The Best Gifts for Foodie Dads

Photo-Illustration: The Strategist; Photos: Retailers

Dads are notoriously difficult to buy for, but if he loves to cook (or eat or drink), you’re sure to find something on this list he’ll appreciate unwrapping this Father’s Day. Maybe he already started firing up the grill and is hankering for some specialty gear. Or perhaps he has an ever-growing bar collection that could always use another bottle. Whatever his comfort level in the kitchen, we’ve rounded up 45 gift ideas to suit every type of foodie dad, many of which we’ve written about before and all of which are sure to please.

If you’re shopping in a specific budget, you can jump to gifts under $25under $50, under $100under $200, and under $500. One note: We’re getting close to the big day (June 19), so make sure to keep an eye on delivery dates if you care about an on-time gift. And if you really are too late, consider a digital gift card (we’ve got a whole food and drink section in there).

Under $25

He’ll certainly be pleased to receive is this classic knife from Opinel with a sharp stainless-steel blade that folds into a wooden handle (said handle is quite nice to grip, for the record). The blade is super-versatile, but we think some of its best uses are for cutting fruit, cheese, or other treats on a hike or at a picnic.

Mike’s Hot Honey
From $12

For the dad who likes things spicy and sweet, Mike’s Hot Honey comes highly recommended by connoisseurs of both hot sauce and honey. As cookbook author and Strategist contributor Priya Krishna told us, the condiment “gives you the complexity of the honey itself, but with a subtle yet effective kick.” (It’s also a favorite of actress Debi Mazar.)

Dubbed the “next Lucky Peach” by Strategist contributor and cookbook author Priya Krishna, Whetstone magazine, co-founded by Stephen Satterfield and Melissa Shi, is a journal of food origins and culture, with an emphasis on storytelling. There are digital and print subscription options and single issues available for purchase.

If you think he’d like to find out what a dish called Potato Insanity is all about, consider this recent title from Carla Lalli Music, whose approachable recipes are just as good for someone getting comfortable in the kitchen as they are for a seasoned home cook.

A never-miss gift, we promise he won’t run out before next Father’s Day.

If he already has Maldon, Strategist contributor Hannah Howard, a former restaurant cook, says this jar of smoked salt is worth having in his spice rack. “It’s the secret ingredient on my meat, my salads, my chocolate-chip cookies; it makes everything taste better and fancier,” she says. “As for the texture, it’s crunchy and slightly chunkier than Maldon’s paper-thin flakes.”

The Vacu Vin is a sommelier-approved wine stopper that’ll keep an open bottle of wine fresh overnight. “Their vacuum seal really does help preserve delicate aromatics and flavors that are otherwise lost,” says Victoria James, sommelier and beverage director at Cote.

For the dad who wants to keep the coffee coming, consider a subscription to Trade. Each delivery — which can include three, six, or 12 bags — can be customized to his taste and will introduce him to some of the nation’s best roasters (many of which he might never have heard of before). If you’re interested in giving him a coffee subscription but would like to shop around, be sure to check out our full list of Strategist-approved options.

Or how about a new barbecue sauce? This one comes recommended by former Strategist writer Chloe Anello, who said it went over well after she gave it to her own foodie dad. The traditional Japanese barbecue sauce can go on anything from short ribs to grilled vegetables. And it comes in a gluten-free version if Dad (or someone he’s cooking for) has an allergy.

Under $50

A dad who is a farmers’ market regular would surely appreciate this trio of Baggu totes. They’re super sturdy, can fit a surprising amount of stuff — from freshly baked baguettes to gallons of organic milk — and pack down to fit inside any other tote (or the convenient pouch they come in).

If he’s all about the maple-syrup pockets, this super-affordable waffle iron comes highly recommended as a reliable and easy-to-clean model — which means Dad is sure to love it. After all, what better way to spend weekend mornings than making thin and crispy waffles with “Eggo vibes”?

We first heard about Brümate’s stainless-steel koozies from a Strategist writer who used one to keep her White Claw ice-cold, even on a hot summer day. If Dad’s a beer drinker, they come in a standard size that’ll keep his favorite 12-ounce IPAs chilled, too.

This sweet bottle opener comes recommended by designer Ben Kicic, who first spotted it at a friend’s house (and immediately asked about it). It “has a strong graphic element, but because of its size, it’s not too loud or overbearing,” he says. “And clearly it works as a conversation starter.”

From $39

A Hydro Flask, which will keep water (or, ahem, picnic wine) cold for hours, is a favorite insulated water bottle of many discerning people (including a lot of Strategist staffers), but here’s a longer list of recommended bottles if you want to shop around a bit.

For the dad who wants to dabble in the art of sushi, contributor Eunice Byun swears by this inexpensive knife that a fisherman recommended for making it at home. It’s not a proper sushi knife, but Byun says it’s good enough to get Dad started until he wants to upgrade to a higher-end model.

Co-created by sisters Vanessa and Kim Pham, Omsom delivers traditional Asian spices to any doorstep. There are plenty of options to chose from, but this sampler of Southeast Asian spices seems particularly giftable to a dad who can never have enough flavor.

For the dad who watched all of Anthony Bourdain’s shows and misses his friendly but irreverent presence, the late chef’s first cookbook could be both a balm and a resource for new dishes.

This Vietnamese-coffee kit from Nguyen Coffee Supply will let him try his hand at brewing some beans he probably can’t pick up at any old grocery store. It comes with the tools he needs to brew them traditionally, too.

Photo: retailer

If he’s an iced coffee guy, this Ovalware carafe, which brews overnight in the fridge, is a sure hit. He can wake up to his caffeine ready to go in the morning. (It works for tea, too.)

You can never go wrong gifting a knife to someone who loves to cook. This one, a particularly affordable Japanese-style blade, was recommended to us by food writer and editor Matt Rodbard, who found his digging through Tokyu Hands in Shibuya. “It feels like a high-quality knife for the price,” he says. If you like the idea of giving a knife but this one doesn’t strike your fancy, check out our list for more options.

TNK All-in-One BBQ Multitool
$20
$20

If he’s already started charring sausages and flipping burgers, consider this clever multitool for grilling. With seven functions, including tongs for flipping and a fork for piercing vegetables, it’s the only one he’ll need all summer long.

If he likes to sip on whiskey, a delicious bottle is a sure bet. We’ve got several to recommend, but this one “stacks up against the best in the business,” according to spirits writer Robert Simonson.

This special bottle of olive oil was recommended to us by an olive-oil sommelier who calls it her “steak oil” and describes its peppery notes as perfect for searing the cut itself and then making a chimichurri to go with it. “It can really stand up to all that garlic and all those herbs,” she says.

From $25

If he’s always on the go, consider gifting him a new travel mug so he can take his coffee with him. The MiiR Flip Traveler is a particular favorite of many coffee experts who appreciate its fantastic temperature retention, tight-fitting lid, and sleek design — but if you want to shop around even more, head here.

Under $100

A foodie dad who cooks a lot should have an apron so he doesn’t accidentally splash red sauce on that shirt you gave him over the holidays. Hedley & Bennett’s come recommended by several chefs we’ve spoken to; they aren’t the cheapest, but that’s part of what makes them giftable (if Dad already has a workhorse apron, this could be the “fancy” one he throws on when cooking for guests). It has three front pockets (one at the chest and two by the hips) and the deep charcoal color will look sharp while hiding stains. It’s available in lots more options, though, and you can even get it monogrammed for a small fee.

Good sheet pans are essential for so many culinary pursuits, whether you’re baking chocolate-chip cookies, roasting broccoli, or even cooking a whole chicken or turkey. They’re also the type of thing you can use for decades without replacing. If Dad’s pans are looking a little (or a lot) the worse for wear, consider surprising him with this trio of cheery blue ones from Great Jones, a brand on our list of expert-recommended sheet pans. Included are two quarter-sheet pans and a larger half-sheet pan, but if you think Dad doesn’t need all three, you can get a single half-sheet pan for $40.

Benriner Mandoline Slicer
From $40
From $40

This is the upgraded version of Japanese company Benriner’s classic green mandolin slicer that chefs swear by. (If Dad’s clumsy, consider throwing in a pair of cut-resistant gloves.)

If he’s still dragging his feet about hopping on the Instant Pot train, a Father’s Day gift of the perennially popular appliance might finally be what gets him onboard.

$56

Maybe your foodie dad likes to start his day with freshly made juice. According to Debi Mazar, who has been juicing since the ’70s, this model is better than any of the “expensive, fabulous juicers” she’s bought over the years — so much so that she calls it “the best juicer I’ve ever used.” As she explains, “It fits perfectly on my counter, is easy to assemble and clean, and makes two and a half glasses of the most fabulous juice ever, without all the pulp others can give you.”

good pepper mill can truly improve his cooking — and his dinner-party tablescape, if the pepper mill’s as attractive as this one. Its shiny brass finish not only looks standout but holds a lot of peppercorns, has a consistent grind, and an oddly satisfying hand crank.

If he’s the kind of cook who gets very into projects, why not let mastering pasta be his next one? The Marcato Atlas Pasta-Maker is considered one of the best nonelectric versions (an electric model is probably overkill for someone dabbling in the art anyway). As is, the machine can make lasagna, fettuccine, and tagliolini, but if he wants to level up, he can buy accessories that allow it to do even more.

For the dad whose favorite breakfast is buttered toast, curator Larry Ossei-Mensah told us about this roomy model that he says is the first one “I’ve had where I don’t have to smoosh bread to make it fit.” Another surprising feature? It has a gluten-free setting. Gluten-free breads and other baked goods notoriously burn, but must be toasted to be edible. If your dad is gluten-free, having a toaster built to handle that balance could prove priceless.

Flynn McGarry, the owner and head chef at NYC’s Gem restaurant, told us he loves to give this handsome copper pot to friends. A foodie dad would surely like it, too, and can use it to make sauces or heat up small portions of soup in addition to melting butter.

If you want to give a wine stopper that’s more like a piece of art than the aforementioned Vacu Vin, it doesn’t get any more beautiful than these from FS Objects. They’re pricey, yes, but that makes them the kind of thing he likely wouldn’t buy for himself. “They add a little drama without being too much,” says Chris Leon, owner and wine director of Leon & Son in Brooklyn. He also endorses the company’s bottle openers, which work for beer, of course, but also for wines with a similar style of cap.

Brightland is known for its olive oil, but it also makes delicious vinegars, like this raw balsamic. And now it has teamed with Burlap & Barrel on a custom spice blend that’s perfect for grilling. In this just-launched package, you can find all three of those pantry goods, plus bronze titanium-coated stainless-steel grill tongs and a book of barbecue recipes.

If your dad is the type to make you wait for wine to decant until he pours you a glass, this sculptural decanter that Philadelphia 76er Ben Simmons told us about will at least be more interesting to look at as Dad’s favorite red breathes.

The Thermapen ONE is arguably the best gift to give the home cook who has it all. It’s easy to use and provides superaccurate readings in a matter of milliseconds.

Under $200

Cosori Pro II XL Air Fryer
$105
$105

Maybe he’s been itching to try out an air fryer. With this one — which we named our best overall pick for its ease of use — he’ll be turning out platters of his world-famous wings in no time.

Another countertop-appliance idea? A rice cooker, which he’s sure to appreciate whether or not he’s good at cooking grains in a pot. There’s a reason so many people are obsessed with using them.

A foodie dad probably has a pretty good cutting board already. But if his is looking a little worse for wear, Michelin-star chef Missy Robbins (one of many people who have told us about Boos cutting boards) says this is one of the only cutting boards she’ll use, especially for pasta-making. One tip you can pass along with the gift: Don’t get it wet or else it won’t last as long, according to Robbins.

$119

If Dad’s serious about making coffee at home, then he’s going to need a serious grinder. The Baratza Encore conical grinder is one of the best out there — and was recommended to us by multiple experts. It has 40 grind settings, allowing him to choose grounds for all the different kinds of brewing methods, from French press to pour-over to drip to cold brew.

Click & Grow Smart Garden 3
$80
$80

If he doesn’t have the outdoor space to grow his own ingredients, he can tend to them indoors with this expert-recommended herb garden that requires minimal effort, thanks to its built-in grow light and self-watering mechanism.

If he’s a frequent host, he’s sure to appreciate this beautiful and practical cheese stone. Kurt Beecher Dammeier, the founder and CEO of the Seattle-based Beecher’s Handmade Cheese, likes the stoneware surface because, unlike some wood or marble boards, ceramic “won’t stain from oils or acids and is very easy to clean in the dishwasher, which is especially handy when you’re serving a really soft cheese,” he says.

If he loves drinking cocktails but has yet to jump into making them at home, this expert-approved barware set is a solid place to start. It includes a shaker, muddler, strainer, and jigger — basically everything he could possibly need to concoct his favorite beverages.

Photo: retailer

If he’s already a master bartender with a fully stocked bar cart and lots of mixology books, cocktail expert Fred Minnick says this dehydrator can help take his cocktails (and breakfast) to the next level. Minnick uses it to dehydrate oranges that he says will improve “the taste of whatever spirit is poured, be it a $10 bourbon or $100 Scotch,” with just one slice. The appliance has also become an integral part of his morning routine: “My favorite thing to make after oranges are dehydrated cured egg yolks. With toast and coffee, they are just sublime.”

If he has a coffee or tea setup at home, consider upgrading his electric kettle to this highly durable one recommended by professionals. It has precise temperature control (important no matter what form you take your caffeine in) and temperature hold, a gooseneck pour spout for ultimate control, and looks really nice sitting out on the counter.

Under $500

If he’s just a tea guy, consider this smart kettle that Strategist contributor David Schwartz (a self-professed tea enthusiast) calls “groundbreaking.” It’s expensive, yes, but not only does it brew tea at precise temperatures depending on the type of leaf and your desired strength, it automatically removes the leaves by way of a robotic component once the steep time has been reached. That means Dad can walk away and get a perfect cup of tea without having to worry about over- (or under-) steeping.

If he likes to sip on whiskey and you want to go all out, these glasses are to whiskey what Zalto glasses are to wine: the veritable height of sophistication. “They’re handcrafted by skilled artisans in Tokyo,” says Ann Soh Woods, founder of Kikori Japanese Whiskey. “In other words, a delicate, graceful vessel.”

The Yeti Hopper is the best cooler on the market, and doesn’t your dad deserve the best? It’s virtually indestructible and keeps food, drinks, and even ice cold for literally hours.

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The Best Gifts for Foodie Dads