When in Doubt, Twitter Says to Pick Up This Pantry Staple as a Holiday Gift

updated Feb 24, 2021
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There is always going to be someone on your holiday shopping list that totally stumps you — whether it’s a neighbor, coworker, distant cousin, or Secret Santa. What do you get this person? Luckily, after a recent Twitter thread we saw with thousands of likes in agreement, we are no longer going to have this problem. What is this sure-to-please present, you ask?

According to Joel Golby, a writer for Vice UK and the author of Brilliant, Brilliant, Brilliant, Brilliant, the very best gift to give someone when in doubt is what Ina Garten might refer to as “good” olive oil. #GetThemTheFancyOil.

Specifically what hits home here is the idea that people “begrudge paying for it themselves,” which, honestly, is extremely relatable. In a reply, Vox writer Rebecca Jennings chimed in with an observation, comparing olive oil to “candle and bath stuff” that we also wholeheartedly agree with.

There are a lot of reasons why quality olive oil makes an excellent gift, no matter who the gift recipient is. In the same way that soap is a fairly universal gift (especially these days!), pretty much everyone who cooks uses some form of olive oil, even if just a few tablespoons per day. A bottle of liquid gold is more thoughtful than a bottle of wine or a bouquet of flowers because it serves a very specific, daily purpose. (Plus, you could be shopping for someone who doesn’t drink or is allergic to flowers!)

Like Jennings says, no matter who you get it for, olive oil “will get USED,” unlike a last-minute tchotchke or something you had on hand for future re-gifting purposes. Plus, even budget olive oil is somehow one of the higher-priced items on any grocery list, so treating someone to a fancier brand (one they might not shell out for on a regular grocery run) will feel like a treat.

Now that we know what we’re getting all the slightly random people on our Christmas list, here some of Kitchn staffers’ very favorite olive oils that would make excellent gifts.

Credit: Brightland

1. Brightland

We can’t sing the praises of this California-based olive oil company enough. Not to mention, a bottle of this looks prime on a countertop. Brightland offers two olive oils in its core, everyday line: Alive and Awake, and both are extremely high-quality. It’s a bit of a splurge, but that’s what makes it a great gift.

Buy: Alive and Awake, $37 for a 375-milliliter bottle at Brightland

2. Pineapple Collaborative The Olive Oil

We promise we’re not just choosing olive oils that are aesthetically pleasing, but these all happen to have very beautiful packaging, especially Pinapple Collaborative’s “The Olive Oil.” Choose whichever color tin you like best — they’re all filled with the same good stuff that’s made from a blend of organic Koroneiki and Picual olives grown by the Ricchiuti family at ENZO Olive Oil Company and Rio Bravo Farm.

Buy: The Olive Oil, $34 for 16.9 ounces at Pineapple Collaborative

Credit: Amazon

3. Laudemio Extra Virgin Olive Oil

Last holiday season Kitchn’s Editor-in-Chief, Faith Durand, gifted all the editorial staffers with this brand of olive oil. Ours came in fancy golden bottles, but the liquid gold inside is what counts.

Buy: Laudemio Extra Virgin Olive Oil, $45.98 for 16.9 ounces

Credit: Amazon

4. Zoe Extra Virgin Olive Oil

This beauty is cold pressed from Spanish Cornicabra olives and makes the perfect finishing oil for dips, soups, and salad dressings. Not to mention, the tins are simply gorgeous (olive oil as art seems to be a theme!) and fairly inexpensive.

Buy: Zoe Extra Virgin Olive Oil, $23.99 for two 1-liter tins

Credit: Exau

5. EXAU Due² Olive Oil Gift Set

Every year husband and wife team, Guisseppe and Skyler, travel from their business headquarters in Austin, Texas, to Calabria, Italy, to harvest, press, bottle, and import their gorgeous olive oils. This gift set was named one of Oprah’s Favorite Things for 2020. Buy the pair and split the bottles among two people for a more budget-friendly gift. Note that stock is limited!

Buy: EXAU Due² Olive Oil Gift Set, $62 for two 16.9-ounce bottles

Would you like to receive olive oil as a gift?