20 Employee Appreciation Day Food Ideas For Your Best Team

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By Alisha Zoe

Employee Appreciation Day Food Ideas For Your Best Team

Giving food gifts is a delicious way to show employee appreciation. Food brings people together and puts smiles on faces. Thoughtfully chosen edible treats demonstrate caring while also satisfying cravings. 

When looking for food gifts, focus on the recipients’ preferences. Offer variety for different tastes. Combine classics with creative options. Below are 20 ideas for employee appreciation edible gifts.

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1. Sweet Baked Goods

Treat your team to freshly baked sweet indulgences like cookies, brownies, cupcakes, and doughnuts. These sweet classics tend to be crowd-pleasers. At the local bakery, choose an assortment so everyone can pick their favorite. 

2. Fresh Fruit Arrangements

Vibrant fresh fruit arrangements make healthy, eye-catching gifts. Fill wicker baskets or wood crates with pineapples, kiwis, grapes, berries, and other bright, juicy fruits. Tailor fruit choices to the season. Local orchards and fruit stands offer farm-fresh options.

3. Gourmet Cheese and Charcuterie 

For savory sophistication, gift gourmet cheese flights, meat and cheese boards, or ready-to-assemble charcuterie kits. Carefully curated combinations of artisanal cheeses, cured meats, toasted nuts, chutneys, crackers, and dried fruits turn grazing into a gourmet experience.

4. Comfort Food Care Packages

Warm hearts with comfort food care packages. Snuggly pairings like mac and cheese, tomato soup and grilled cheese sandwiches, hot chocolate mixes and chocolate chip cookies conjure up cozy feelings. 

The Annie’s Organic Vegan Mac and Follow Your Heart Smoked Gouda Flavor Vegan Shreds makes plant-based comfort food possible. Pair it with Mary’s Gone Crackers Original Crackers. For sweet comfort, the perennially popular Oreo Chocolate Sandwich Cookies and Swiss Miss Milk Chocolate Hot Cocoa Mix delivers chocolatey goodness. The Keurig K-Mini Single Serve Coffee Maker brews quick cups of joe.

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5. International Flavor Tour  

Take tastebuds on a world flavor tour with gourmet gift baskets showcasing delicacies from different foodie destinations. Italian gift crates could include olive oils, pastas, biscotti, and Panettone. Spanish gifts might feature paella kits, saffron, chorizo and manchego cheese.

6. Coffee and Tea Break Bundles

Coffee connoisseurs will perk up over specialty whole bean coffee packed in burlap gift sacks. Or assemble ready-to-brew boxes with fair trade ground coffee, coffee mugs, biscotti, chocolate spoons, and tiny pitchers of creamer.

7. Foodie Classes and Tours 

For memorable experiences, gift food-focused classes and tours. Arrange baking sessions at the local pâtisserie. Check nearby wineries, breweries, distilleries, cheese factories, and chocolate shops for insider tours and tastings. Many restaurants now offer cooking demos and cocktail workshops too.

8. Pantry Staples and Gadgets

Even foodies appreciate having kitchen, pantry, and grilling basics on hand. Gift quality oils, spices, grains and legumes in reusable containers. Include cooking gadgets and appliances they can use daily like stainless steel mixing bowls, digital meat thermometers, silicone baking mats or multi-function pressure cookers.

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9. Care Packages with Sweet Notes

Make care packages extra thoughtful with handwritten cards attached. Write genuine messages thanking recipients for their daily dedication and efforts. List specific contributions they make that encourage the entire team. Add gift cards to favorite cafes or restaurants so they can grab a bite.  

10. Bountiful Breakfast Baskets

Fuel busy teams with breakfast baskets brimming with baked breakfast treats, fruit, yogurt, juice and coffee. Options abound – from grab-and-go egg sandwiches, burritos and handpies to overnight breakfast casseroles and quiches that feed a crew.  

11. Batch Cocktail Mixes 

Happy hours start early with batch cocktail kits including recipes, mixes, garnishes and vessels for stirring up pitchers of craft cocktails. Creative combinations like Negroni, Moscow Mule, sangria, mint julep or margarita kits have all the fresh ingredients needed for pouring up a party.  

12. Choice and Variety 

Giving recipients options and alternatives suits a wider range of preferences. Create a tasting menu of multiple small-portion savories like a charcuterie board with different cured meats, cheeses, mustards and flavors of crackers. Or gift a stack of gourmet pizzas with instructions to freeze extras. Varied flavors in shareable amounts means everyone experiences something they love.

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13. Something Sweet

A few final bites of something sweet make tasty tapering treats to end meals on a high note. Individual desserts feel fancy yet remain easy to distribute. Hand out token gifts like chocolate truffles, French macarons, madeleines, petit fours, or mini cupcakes presented in decorative boxes or bags.

14. Dipped Fruit Boxes

Gift a colorful assortment of fresh fruits dipped in decadent Belgian chocolate or yogurt coatings. Pineapples, strawberries, orange slices, bananas and apples become elegant party treats when bathed in creamy white, dark or milk chocolate. They look fancy yet remain finger-food friendly.

Edible Arrangements Deluxe Dipped Fruit Box lets recipients indulge in two dozen chocolate-dipped strawberries, pineapple daisies, apple wedges, banana slices and grapes – a healthy balance of fruit and chocolate. Arrange wow-worthy fruit kebabs in a box for easy gifting.

15. Homemade Cookie and Salad Dressing Kits 

Empower your team’s inner bakers and mixologists with customized add-ins for cooking up homemade treats. Cookie kits could contain sugar cookie dough logs or pre-portioned dough balls alongside sprinkles, candies, nuts and drizzles for decorating. Salad dressing kits provide herbs, oils and vinegars for mixing signature vinaigrettes. 

16. Personalized Recipe Books

Help devoted foodies preserve treasured family recipes for generations to come with custom printed cookbooks. Services like Mixbook and Shutterfly allow you to upload recipes then edit fonts, images and layouts to reflect their cooking style. 

Fill pages with their signatures dishes along with photos of memorable meals they’ve prepared together over the years. Whenever they crack open your gift, fond food memories wash over them. 

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17. Monogrammed Aprons

Top chefs deserve to look the part with monogrammed aprons customized just for them. Choose quality cotton canvas materials cut for comfort and coverage. Opt for handy front pockets that provide storage for recipe cards, kitchen tools and phone holsters while they cook. Add extra personalization with custom imprints of their name or initials so they feel famous in the kitchen.

18. Year of Grilling Kalendars

Help backyard barbecue bosses plan unforgettable grilling adventures with a gift calendar outlining 12 months of mouthwatering menus. Each month features a different succulent theme from Asian skewers and Brazilian churrasco to pizza night or surf and turf. Calendar pages include spice rubs, marinades, suggested sides and pro grilling preparation tips to guarantee grill game success. 

19. Online Cooking Courses

For kitchen skills enhancement, gift virtual cooking classes led by renowned chefs, cookbook authors, and restaurant owners. Topics range from sushi rolling, handmade pasta shaping, and knife techniques to Indian curries, French pastries, regional barbecue and more. Videos let home cooks learn quality tips without leaving their kitchen via desktop, phone or tablet. Master new cooking methods from the masters with e-learning gifts.

20. Luftal Badges

Make terrific team members feel famous by naming sandwiches or pizzas after them featured on menus or stickers. Immortalize their monikers on menus, sidewalk sign boards or table tents for months. Custom edible trophies in their honor spread smiles daily. 

Luftal’s Restaurant Menu Name Badges customize printed menus to showcase silly or serious sandwich names personalized with employee titles or references meaningful to your organization. Seeing their name up in lights – even if in lettuce leaf font – gets laughs while making them feel uniquely appreciated.

People Also Read: 15 Creative Employee Appreciation Day Social Media Post Ideas

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Final Verdict

Gifts from the heart that feed the soul are memorable ways to express employee appreciation. Tailor food gifts to team tastes and dietary diversity so everyone feels included. Combine classics with creative touches that showcase how much care and thought you put into showing gratitude towards your hardest working players. 

Whether you choose fruits, baked goods, grilling guides or online cooking courses, let recipients feast on your thoughtfulness!


  • Alisha Zoe

    I am a professional writer passionate about the workplace. My articles offer insights on business, team building, and corporate culture. I help you create unforgettable work events and celebrations.

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