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Between feedings, diaper changes, naps, and all the other responsibilities, excitement, and exhaustion that come with a new baby, parents don’t have a lot of time or energy to think about cooking, grocery shopping, and meal planning. One of the most thoughtful things you can give new parents is a gift of food or kitchen products that will make life a little easier. We’ve rounded up some of our favorite meal deliveries, care packages, and gear that help get food on the table faster so parents stay nourished and can focus on what matters most—their new bundle of joy.
Here, our list of the best gifts you can give to new parents.
Instant Pot Duo 7-in-1 Electric Pressure Cooker 6 Quart
Remembers previous settings
Three temperature levels
Precise temperature control
Comes with minimal accessories
Difficult to see the pressure valve
A multi-purpose appliance like the Instant Pot Duo is a must-have for parents short on time in the kitchen. It can be used as a slow cooker, pressure cooker, rice cooker, steamer, saute pan, warmer, and yogurt maker. It’s equipped with preset controls for soups, stews, meat, and more, and it automatically monitors pressure and temperature and adjusts accordingly during cooking for optimal results. It can even handle cooking from frozen, so if busy parents forget to defrost a few chicken breasts, they can still have a speedy meal on the table.
Cleaning up is as easy as it gets, with our reviewer being "pleasantly surprised to find out the entire lid can go in the dishwasher" along with the stainless steel pot, steamer rack, plastic tools, and silicone ring.
Functions: Pressure cook, slow cook, rice cooker, yogurt maker, steamer, sauté pan, and food warmer | Capacity: 3, 6, or 8 quarts | Power Rating: 700, 1,000, or 1,200 watts | Warranty: 1-year limited
"This Instant Pot has its temperature and pressure sensors dialed in, resulting in precise results when cooking." — Danielle Centoni, Product Tester
Thrive Market Build Your Own Mixed Meal Bundle
Convenient for those with dietary restrictions
No additives or preservatives
Quick and easy to prepare
Expensive compared to other frozen meals
Small serving sizes
Microwavable meals are a huge convenience for new parents when they’re too tired or overwhelmed to cook but still need to eat something ASAP. Thrive Market lets you create a bundle of frozen, single-serving meals and send them straight to your doorstep. Bundles are available in counts of six, eight, 10, or 12 meals, and there are both plant-based and paleo options. Most of the meals contain organic ingredients, grass-fed meat, and plenty of veggies, protein, and whole grains so parents will feel like they’re getting a wholesome meal.
Diet Options: Gluten-free, vegetarian, paleo, vegan, keto, Whole 30, organic | Shipping: Frozen boxes ship free on orders over $99, otherwise shipping costs $19.95. Can not ship to P.O. boxes, Alaska, Hawaii, Puerto Rico, or Canada
Cuisinart Programmable Coffee Maker
Programmable with a 24-hour brew start
Temperature-control technology keeps cups piping hot
Easy-to-use brew strength control
Pricier than its competitors
Digital display has a dizzying array of options
Lots of parts to clean
This programmable coffee maker can be filled and set to brew the night before so there’s a hot, fresh pot of coffee waiting in the morning. Exhausted parents will appreciate having one less thing to do in the early hours following a sleepless night.
With its shiny stainless steel design, 14-cup capacity, settings to control flavor strength and temperature, a built-in charcoal water filter, and self-cleaning mode, this model makes it easy to brew the perfect pot of coffee. Our product tester especially appreciated the 24-hour lead time which is necessary for planning a seamless morning routine.
Style: Drip | Capacity: 14 cups | Dimensions: 7.8 x 14 x 9 inches | Warranty: 3 years
"Considering its sleek design, temperature control, and undeniably useful features, this coffee maker simply brings so much to the table." — Lambeth Hochwald, Product Tester
Nutribullet 600W Nutrient Extractor
Includes two dishwasher-safe cups
Only makes 1-2 servings
Blades need to be replaced every 6 months
The NutriBullet can blend up energizing fruit and veggie-packed smoothies. Parents can also use it to make snacks in a snap, like fresh hummus and salsa, and create their own baby food purees when the time comes to transition to solids in the months to come. There are similar blenders specifically for baby food, but this one will be more versatile in the long run for the entire family. The blender comes with two BPA-free dishwasher-safe cups so each parent can personalize his or her own smoothies.
Capacity: 24 ounces | Power Rating: 600 watts | Warranty: 1 year | What's Included: Motor base, blade, 24-ounce cup, to-go lid, lip ring, and recipe book
Daily Harvest Gift Box
Food options for every time of day
Many food items and flavors to choose from
Organic and plant-based ingredients
No meat options for meals
Can't purchase à la carte
With a gift box from Daily Harvest, new parents can choose nine frozen meals or snacks that take minimal effort to prepare. Offerings include smoothies, flatbreads, energy bites, soups, oat bowls, harvest bowls, and chia parfaits. Smoothies are ready to blend with liquid of choice and soups and bowls just need to be heated in the microwave or a skillet. Everything is organic and plant-based, making it easy for parents to get their daily dose of fruits, vegetables, and whole grains.
Box Options: Nine-item custom box or six pints plant-based ice cream | Gift Card Options: E-gift cards available in $50, $100, or $200 | Shipping: Ships frozen packed with dry ice to most areas of continental US. Delivery availability is checked by zip code
Hydro Flask Wide Mouth Water Bottle
Lifetime warranty from manufacturer defects
Handle on cap for easy carrying
Easy to lose lid as it's not connected to bottle
Straw lids are sold separately
Help parents keep up with their hydration needs (especially important for breastfeeding moms!) with a large-capacity reusable water bottle. Hydro Flasks are made from stainless steel with double-walled vacuum insulation, which means cold drinks stay icy for hours. The bottles are available in fun colors and are dishwasher safe. We recommend choosing a 32-ounce (i.e. 4-cup) bottle with a straw lid so parents don’t have to refill too often and can sip one-handed while they’re balancing the baby.
Capacity: 32 ounces | Material: Stainless steel | Dishwasher Safe: Yes | Warranty: Limited lifetime
Glasslock 18-Piece Assorted Oven Safe Container Set
Oven, microwave, and dishwasher safe
Made of durable glass
Lids are tough to secure at first
Do new parents a favor and pack up any food you bring them in storage containers they can keep. Parents will appreciate not having to keep track of which containers belong to whom and getting them returned in a timely fashion. This container set features nine differently sized glass containers with BPA-free lids. The leak-free containers are safe for the oven or microwave so short-on-time parents can heat food up without dirtying extra dishes. Our reviewer noted the smaller containers were perfect for storing snacks, which are handy for adults and young kids alike.
Bonus: Glass food storage is preferred by many parents for storing and warming baby food.
Material: Glass containers with BPA-free plastic lids | What's Included: One 6.3-cup container, two 3.5-cup containers, two 1.6-cup containers, one 3.3-cup container, one 1.5-cup container, one 3.1-cup container, one 0.7-cup container, and corresponding lids
"This 18-piece set proves thick, sturdy, and completely see-through, so you always know which goodies you’ve stowed in the fridge or pantry." — Linnea Covington, Product Tester
Gourmet Gift Baskets Champagne & Truffles Gift Basket
Can choose between three champagnes
Reusable faux leather basket
Pricier compared to other gift baskets
Sweets aren't customizable
What better way to celebrate than with a glass of bubbly and gourmet chocolate? Since alcohol is on the list of things to avoid during pregnancy, wine-loving moms will appreciate a little indulgence. After all, they just put in serious work and deserve a treat! This gift set contains your choice of prosecco or premium Veuve Clicquot or Dom Perignon Champagne and assorted sweets.
What's Included: One 750-milliliter bottle of Champagne or prosecco of your choice, 4 ounces key lime cookies, 3.5-ounce white chocolate bar, 5.1 ounces assorted chocolate truffles, 3.5 ounces French chocolate truffles, 2.6 ounces chocolate caramel grahams, 1.76 ounces Belgian chocolates | Shipping: Continental United States and international shipping available. A $3,99 delivery fee and signature upon delivery is required for baskets containing alcohol.
Recipes are organized by feeding stages
Both practical and affordable
Includes recipes for both adults and babies to share
Could use more pictures and illustrations
Many recipes are very similar
Not recommended for experienced cooks
Most babies don’t start eating solid food until they’re around 6 months old, but foodie parents will appreciate having a beautiful and educational cookbook to flip through in the meantime. This bestseller is written by a Registered Dietitian Nutritionist and filled with full-color images and over 230 nutritious recipes. It’s also jam-packed with information on introducing solids, the best foods for each feeding stage and age, and a section of recipes parents can enjoy now or as a family, once the baby is an established eater.
Number of Recipes: Over 200 | Pages: 296 | Date Published: 2016
Williams-Sonoma Three Days of Comfort Entrees
Leftovers provide several additional meals
No additional preparation other than reheating
Lasts up to 18 months frozen
Requires to be thawed overnight
If you’re unable to whip something up yourself, you can still send a new family a few meals with Williams-Sonoma’s prepared entrees. Getting dinner on the table is fast and easy since these dishes simply need to thaw in the refrigerator overnight and then bake for 30 to 40 minutes. There are options for Italian, chicken, and vegetarian entrees, but we’re partial to the Three Days of Comfort, which includes ultra-cozy and hearty turkey meatloaf, shepherd’s pie, and chicken spinach lasagna. Each dish contains eight servings, so mom and dad can make several meals out of the leftovers.
Shipping: Ships frozen to contiguous United States. Can not ship to HI, AK, or P.O. boxes. Shipping costs depends on destination
OXO Brew Cordless Glass Electric Kettle
Neutral design to complement all kitchens
Large water capacity
Measurement marks on the kettle
Expensive compared to other kettles
The glass gets extra hot which is not kid-friendly
No sound indication when water is boiling
An electric kettle may not be the first thing that comes to mind when you think of new parent life, but it’s a big help for parents who rely on boiling water for warming bottles and sanitizing pacifiers, bottles, teethers, and breast pump parts. This model heats water faster than a stovetop which will be appreciated during the middle of the night feedings. It holds up to 1.75 liters of water and has a glass and stainless steel design that’ll complement most kitchens.
Capacity: 1.75 liters | Power Rating: 1,500 watts | Dimensions: 9.02 x 6.26 x 11.22 inches | Warranty: 2 years
Harry & David Gift Box
Great mix of snacks
Can upgrade to other tiers for more variety
Pears can become bruised or spoiled in transit
Cardboard packaging isn't aesthetically pleasing
New parents tend to receive a lot of casseroles and baked goods, so a gift that includes some fresh fruit can help round out the offerings. This gift set includes half a dozen Royal Verano pears, plus an assortment of snacks, including cheese, summer sausage, seeded crackers, and nuts. Parents can pick at their leisure or set out a little bit of everything for a sweet and savory snack plate.
What's Included: Approximately six seasonal pears, 6 ounces caramel popcorn, 4 ounces sharp white cheddar cheese, 5 ounces hickory smoked summer sausage, 4 ounces mixed nuts, 4 ounces crackers | Shipping: Standard fees apply depending on total order amount. Deliveries to P.O. boxes require additional $5.99 fee and delivery to HI or AK require an additional $9.99 fee. Limited international shipping is available
Munchkin Milkmakers Sampler Pack
Three choices in cookie flavor
Recommended by lactation consultant
Made in USA
Cookies are high-calorie
Doesn't guarantee change in milk supply
Expensive for what is included
Support a new breastfeeding mom with lactation consultant-approved treats. This sampler pack includes tea, snack bars, and packs of cookie bites that are made with oats, flaxseed, brewer’s yeast, and fenugreek—all ingredients thought to promote healthy milk supply. Some reviewers swear these snacks boosted their milk production, but even if a new mom doesn’t notice a difference or decides not to breastfeed, she’ll have extra snacks on hand to satisfy postpartum hunger pangs.
What's Included: Three bags oatmeal chocolate chip cookie bites, two chocolate chip bars, and 12 tea sachets
Uncommon Goods Tea Drop Sampler
Minimal preparation required
Includes five different flavors
Wooden box can be reused
Sediment doesn't completely dissolve
Each drop is individually wrapped in plastic
This tea sampler contains five tea blends made from organic tea leaves and herbs in a convenient dissolvable tablet form. You can choose a gift box container either 3 varieties of unsweetened teas or 5 varieties of sweetened teas packed in a rustic, reusable wooden box. Parents can drop one into a mug of hot water and let it dissolve for an instant cup of tea to savor—no bags, special tools, sweetener, or other ingredients required!
What's Included: Unsweetened: 40 servings in citrus ginger, matcha green tea, and rose earl grey; Sweetened: 25 servings in citrus ginger, blueberry acai, matcha green tea, rose earl grey, and peppermint | Shipping: Ships to continental United States. Can not ship to APO, FPO, or DPO addresses
Contigo AUTOSEAL West Loop Stainless Steel Travel Mug
Effective autolock and anti-spill lid
Can be locked and unlocked with one hand
Keeps drinks hot/cold for hours
A little wide for smaller hands
Plastic lid seems prone to breakage
Bottle isn’t dishwasher safe (the lid is, though)
This travel mug has a push button that’s easy to use one-handed and a leak- and spill-proof lid so parents don’t need to worry about hot coffee or tea getting everywhere if it happens to get knocked over or tossed into a diaper bag or stroller basket. Insulated stainless steel keeps drinks hot for hours, which new parents will appreciate when the baby's schedule doesn’t allow them to finish a cup in one sitting.
However, during our tests, we found this mug was a bit inconvenient to wash as the bottle isn't dishwasher-safe, so it's a better choice for those parents who are used to washing some dishes by hand.
Capacity: 12 or 16 ounces | Material: Stainless steel and BPA-free plastic | Dishwasher Safe: Lid only | Warranty: Limited lifetime
"The Contigo performed even better than promised. When filled with hot coffee, the mug maintained high heat for roughly three hours." — Suzie Dundas, Product Tester
Thrive Market One Year Membership
Memberships sponsor low-income families
Products can be filtered by diet
Convenient for those not located near healthy grocers
Referral program doesn't apply for gifting
Can't gift a physical version
Membership doesn't include spending money
Spare new parents the chore of grocery shopping with a one-year membership to digital-based Thrive Market. Parents will be able to shop an extensive selection of essential groceries, household items, and personal care products from the comfort of home and have everything delivered to their doorstep.
Gift Options: 1-year membership only, 1-year membership plus shopping credit, or shopping credit only | Delivery: By email only | Special Considerations: Thrive Market currently only ships groceries to customers in the contiguous United States.
KIND Variety Cube
Variety of flavors
Unique gift box display
Individually packaged for on-the-go parents
Made with added sugar
No customization options
We can’t emphasize the importance of grab-and-go snacks for new parents enough, and snack bars perfectly fit the bill. This variety pack contains 20 KIND bars in eight flavors including almond coconut, dark chocolate cherry cashew, and caramel almond sea salt. We love that they’re made with wholesome ingredients like nuts, coconut, dried fruit, and honey and are good sources of protein, fiber, and iron.
What's Included: Three dark chocolate nuts and sea salt bars, three peanut butter dark chocolate bars, two dark chocolate cherry cashew bars, two almond and coconut bars, three caramel almond and sea salt bars, two cranberry almond bars, two dark chocolate mocha almond bars, three maple-glazed pecan and sea salt bars | Shipping: Ships to continental United States and U.S. Virgin Islands. Shipping is free for orders over $40 and $7 for orders under $40. There is a $30 shipping fee for deliveries to AK, HI, and USVI
Bean Box Coffee of the Month
Choice of subscription length
Supports small businesses
Includes artisan chocolate
Recipients need a coffee grinder to use whole beans
Bag may not last entire month
A coffee-of-the-month subscription is a great idea for parents who may no longer have time to hit the nearest coffee house for a custom blend. Coffee delivery will also help ensure sleep-deprived parents won’t run short on a supply of caffeine. You can choose to enroll the new parents in Bean Box’s club for three, six, or 12 months. Each month, they’ll receive one 12-ounce bag of whole bean coffee from a featured Seattle roasting company, plus artisan chocolate.
What's Included: 12 ounces whole bean coffee per shipment | Shipping: Ships to all 50 states as well as US territories and military addresses (AE, AA, AP)
The Instant Pot Duo 7-in-1 Pressure Cooker will be a game-changer for new parents, as its pressure-cooking abilities will allow them to make their favorite meals faster (not to mention it's extremely versatile). Alternatively, you can stock their freezer with delicious premade meals using the Thrive Market Build Your Own Mixed Meal Bundle.
What to Look for in Food Gifts for New Parents
Consider the parent or parents you're shopping for. Are they more likely to appreciate an edible gift or a food-related gadget that would make food prep easier? If you're shopping for someone who doesn't fancy themselves a home cook, they'll likely appreciate something to eat more than something to cook with. Likewise, if you know the new parent loves to cook, something that makes their lives easier in the kitchen may be the way to go.
If you're considering a non-edible gift, like an Instant Pot, coffee maker, or reusable water bottle, consider if the recipient already owns or registered for something similar. If you're not sure and don't know them well enough to ask, be sure to include a gift receipt in case they wish to return the gift or err on the side of caution and send a gift card or edible gift basket instead.
Before sending or preparing an edible food gift, think about the recipient's food preferences. Do they follow a certain eating style (i.e. vegetarian, vegan, or paleo), have any food restrictions or allergies (i.e. dairy- or gluten-free), and/or developed any particular food aversions or cravings? You don't want to send food that won't be enjoyed.
Perishable vs. Nonperishable
You can find gift baskets and food gifts that include either or both perishable and nonperishable items. Gifting nonperishable food, like shelf-stable snacks, tea, and coffee, don't require new parents to make space in the refrigerator or freezer and will last longer than perishable items, so the parents can enjoy the items at their leisure.
If you're sending a gift that includes perishables, such as fruit or frozen items, you may want to make sure someone will be home to receive the delivery and place it into cold storage in a timely fashion. Most perishable deliveries are packaged with dry ice in insulated materials that will keep the items chilled and ensure safety for several hours beyond delivery. You can double check how perishable items are packaged directly with the retailer under shipping information, FAQs, or customer service.
The return policy can be found on retailers' websites or by contacting their customer service. If you are sending a gift that will be delivered straight to the recipient's doorstep, look for the option to mark the purchase as a gift at checkout. Doing so usually generates a gift receipt that enables the recipient to return the item if they wish and a note from the gift giver so the new parent(s) know who to thank. If you prefer a more personal touch, consider shipping gift items to yourself so you can wrap them, include a handwritten note, and deliver in person.
What if I don't know what the new parents like or want to eat?
If you're unsure, don't be afraid to ask. Lizzie Post, etiquette author and co-president of The Emily Post Institute, recommends reaching out to the new parents, letting them know you'd like to give a gift of food, and asking for preferences, restrictions, and what would be most helpful. Some new parents may not want to receive food, while others may happily request something they're particularly wishing for or in need of.
Are food gift cards a good gift for new parents?
If you want to send food, but you're not sure what new parents prefer food-wise, gift certificates are a popular and useful choice. We included several gift card options on this list for grocery and meal delivery, as well as specialty food subscription services. A gift certificate for takeout meal delivery services and/or local restaurants may also be helpful for new parents.
How do I know my food gift has been delivered?
According to Lizzie Post, who has discussed virtual gifting and its potential conundrums on her Awesome Etiquette Podcast, it's A-OK to send a text or email to the new parents with a link to the gift and when they should be expecting it. Doing so gives the recipient a head's up of what to expect and when so they can plan to be present to receive the gift, sign for it if needed, and store any perishable items properly.
Why Trust The Spruce Eats?
Sharon Lehman, RDN is a registered dietitian nutritionist, a first-time mom (established 2020), and the author of this gift guide. One of her favorite parts of those early, ravenous new mom days was finding food- and snack-filled gift baskets on her doorstep that made it easier to focus on resting, healing, and taking care of her baby. Sharon interviewed Lizzie Post, etiquette author and co-president of The Emily Post Institute, for this roundup.