This is the definitive gift guide for those who are hungry, thirsty, and sweet-toothed. For those on your list who’d rather pull a bottle of hot sauce out of their stocking than socks. Here, 14 locally made treats, meats, drinks, and eats that will make for a delicious holiday season—and are sure to please the gourmands in your life.


Tamales By La Casita

La Casita tamales. Photo courtesy of La Casita

For nearly 50 years, the Sandoval family has been supplying us with our tamale fix. The holidays are La Casita’s busiest season, when the team stuffs thousands upon thousands of corn husks with masa, meats, and secret spices. To secure your tamales (a dozen for around $16, depending on which option you choose) for gifting (or for yourself—no judgment), call or order online. Pick up at 3561 Tejon St.

Uncle Tony’s Chili Oil and XO Sauce from MAKfam

New Denver restaurant MAKfam’s chili oil and XO chili sauce have earned the approval of the toughest critics: owners Doris Yuen and Kenneth Wan’s Chinese families. Gift your own family with Uncle Tony’s Chili Oil ($9), loaded with bird’s eye chile, chile de árbol, and garlic, or the spicy, umami-rich XO Chili Sauce ($12) to add some kick to eggs, noodles, dumplings, and more. Purchase at MAKfam (39 W. First Ave)

Rugby Scott Meats

Rugby Scott tomahawk steak. Photo courtesy of Rugby Scott

Give your favorite carnivore some of the best meat they’ll ever bite into with prime picks from Rugby Scott (from $22 for seriously good steaks). The family-owned ranch raises Black Angus Prime beef and Wagyu, and the steaks, ground beef, and short ribs are the perfect gift for any meat-eater. Visit Rugby Scott’s new store in Washington Park (731 S. University Blvd.) or order online

Women’s Bean Project Subscription Boxes

Women’s Bean Project subscription box. Photo courtesy of Women’s Bean Project

It’s not like you need a reason to send someone the Women’s Bean Project’s quarterly subscription boxes ($75 per box), filled with delicious soup and brownie mixes, spice blends, fancy popcorns, and plantain chips. But your gift gets even sweeter when you learn that 100 percent of proceeds go toward training and employing at-risk women for work in the food industry. Available online

Dreams Aren’t This Good Salsa Pack

Dreams Aren’t This Good salsa pack. Photo courtesy of Dreams Aren’t This Good

Is there anyone who wouldn’t enjoy pulling a jar of fresh, spicy, locally crafted salsa out of their stocking? Dreams Aren’t This Good, a newish, now-Denver-based salsa and lifestyle company, bills itself as one of the world’s first salsarias, and, really, we think it’s about time we paid more attention to this versatile condiment. Gift a sampler pack ($30) of the garlic- and cilantro-laced Fighter; the spicy, avocado-laden Now or Never; and the salsa that started it all, the Original. Available online

Local Hot Sauces

Merfs’ hot sauces. Photo courtesy of Merfs

Nothing says “I love you” like gifting someone a Carolina Reaper hot sauce to scorch off their taste buds. Or maybe a habanero and peach blend to make them sweat just a little. Whatever level of heat your loved one prefers, there’s a Colorado-made hot sauce for them. (Here’s a list of the absolute hottest local sauces.) From Quarantine Project’s serrano-laced Dieselbones ($8), which somehow works on everything, to Merfs Condiments‘ tropical (but still fiery) Cooyon SuperHot ($8.50), there are plenty of Colorado hot sauces to spice up the season.

Kitchen Gear

O’baware Pottery

O’baware pottery. Photo courtesy of O’baware

Chef-turned-artist Kazu Oba perfectly marries form and function in his ramen bowls, slab plates, and teacups (from $60), among other handmade pieces. The Japanese artisan has been throwing pottery in Boulder for decades, and his salt-fired, pearlescent wares are coveted by Front Range restaurants and home cooks alike. Available online

The Fort Restaurant Cookbook

The Fort’s cookbook. Photo courtesy of the Fort

Learn to make the Fort’s green chile mac and cheese savory pudding, Mexican chocolate ice cream mud pie, and Rocky Mountain oysters with panko—okay, maybe not that last one—at home with the Morrison restaurant’s cookbook ($22). Featuring 150 recipes from its 60-year history, it’s a delicious taste of the Mountain West for any Colorado cook. Available on Amazon and at major book retailers


Cherry’s Cheesecakes Pie/Cheesecake “Charcuterie” Boards

A pie charcuterie board from Cherry’s Cheesecakes. Photo courtesy of Cherry’s Cheesecakes

Consider this the mic drop of holiday gifts. Lafayette’s Cherry’s Cheesecakes makes pie and cheesecake charcuterie boards ($85 to $150), which are trays filled with owner Cherry Shuler’s homemade mini pies (in flavors like bourbon pecan, sweet potato, and caramel apple) and mini cheesecakes (Shuler makes more than 100 flavors, so yeah, you’ll find something they’ll like). The boards are available for pickup at the Lafayette store, but Cherry ships her mini cheesecakes nationwide. Order online or visit 111 N. Harrison Ave., Lafayette

Send Flours Portioned Frozen Cookie Dough

Send Flours cookie dough. Photo courtesy of Send Flours

Even your hardest-to-shop-for family member will delight in receiving Send Flours Baking Co.’ ready-to-bake frozen cookie dough. From classics like peanut-butter-chocolate-chip and ginger-molasses to the graham cracker- and marshmallow-filled Will Camp for S’mores, the two-dozen, four-flavor variety pack ($64, comes with a baking sheet) is the best possible taste test we can think of. Available online

Cioccolatier Chocolates

Cioccolatier chocolates. Photo courtesy of Cioccolatier

Some of the best chocolates we’ve ever had come from a tiny Cherry Creek chocolate shop. Brazilian chocolate makers Silvia Valentoni and Ronald Peach Jr. make Colorado their chocolate laboratory and continuously dazzle us with flavors like pistachio praline, lemon pie, and cherry and Champagne. Treat someone who’s been very nice this year to a 30-piece assortment of luxury chocolates ($100). Order online or at the Cioccolatier shop at 300 Josephine St.

Rodelle Baking Supplies

Rodelle gourmet cocoa powder. Photo courtesy of Rodelle

For the baking enthusiast, Fort Collins–based Rodelle crafts premium Dutch-processed cocoa powders (from $7) and pure vanilla beans and extracts (from $11), meaning your beloved’s next batch of brownies could be their best ever. (Don’t you want to be the gift giver responsible for the best-ever brownies?) Load their pantry up with everything they need to get baking, and hopefully they’ll share with you. See where to buy online


Uncle Tim’s Cocktails Negroni Set

Uncle Tim’s Cocktails’ Negroni set. Photo by Werk Creative

The perfect party-host gift, boss gift, thank-you-for-watching-my-pug-again gift does exist, and it is the ready-to-drink cocktail set from Denver’s Uncle Tim’s Cocktails ($30 for three 100-milliliter bottles; $90 for three 375-milliliter bottles). While the business also bottles its Manhattans and old fashioneds, our favorite is the Negroni trio, a bottle each of the classic Negroni, white Negroni, and boulevardier. Order online or pick up at the Ruby Hill tasting room (1150 S. Lipan St.)

Cocktail Caravan’s Cocktail & Mocktail Club

Cocktail Caravan’s cocktail mixers. Photo courtesy of Cocktail Caravan

Boulder’s Cocktail Caravan makes fresh-pressed, locally sourced cocktail and mocktail mixers, meaning you can whip up speakeasy-level drinks in the comfort of your coziest winter loungewear. The company’s Cocktail & Mocktail Club ($108 for a three-month subscription) is like a wine club for cocktail lovers, delivering two mixers each month in flavors like Rhubarb’s Return—a mix of strawberry, cardamon, and rhubarb—and Good Vibes Only, made with cucumber, lavender, and lemon. Order online for local delivery or pick up at Mondo Vino (3601 W. 32nd Ave.)

Allyson Reedy
Allyson Reedy
Allyson Reedy is a freelance writer and ice cream fanatic living in Broomfield.