The Ultimate Thanksgiving Hostess Gift That’s Better than Anything Else

updated May 1, 2019
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(Image credit: Rachel Joy Barehl)

Even when everyone’s contributing, the Thanksgiving host ends up doing the bulk of the work. Between getting the entire house guest-ready, pulling the folding chairs out of storage, and getting the silverware polished and the linens pressed — not to mention the making of labor-intensive foods like turkey and pies and all the prep and cleanup that goes into it — it’s a pain in the butt. That’s why it’s especially kind to bring a little something to thank your host for having everyone over.

Usually people pick up a bottle of wine, a candle, or a small gift that perfectly suits someone. But we’ve got one idea that will trump any of those ideas (and all the other ones, too). That is, the gift of not cooking.

How to give the gift of not cooking? There are two main ways.

1. A gift card to a restaurant

Give a gift card to a restaurant so that the next night (or whenever she’s done with the leftovers), your host can have a meal as good as the one she served you — but without any of the work that goes into it. We’re not saying you have to get her a gift card to the nicest restaurant in town (in fact, you shouldn’t do that!), just $20 or so to a casual place. Her favorite pizza joint or a cute farm-to-table sandwich shop should do the trick. Again, it doesn’t need to be anywhere fancy and you don’t have to spent a lot of money.

(Image credit: Lauren Volo)

2. Breakfast for the next day

Pick up bagels, pastries from your favorite bakery, doughnuts, or anything else you think your host might like in the morning. You could even make your own treats instead of buying them. The idea here is that your host can wake up and just eat something delicious with zero prep and minimal cleanup. Note that we didn’t suggest a fruit platter here? That’s because it has to be refrigerated and she might not have room in the fridge for that. Bring her something that can sit out on the counter overnight.

Some DIY Breakfast Gift Suggestions

Have you ever given either of these things as hostess gifts? What’s your go-to hostess gift?