People Newspapers’ Last Minute Gift Ideas

Stumped for what to gift this year? Here are some ideas for you that include fun cooking lessons, great cookbooks, and some wonderful items from local small businesses.


The Cookery – This Design District space hosts private events and cooking classes for everything from sushi to steak.  Gift certificates available here.

Panther City BBQ hosts BBQU classes one Saturday a month at which attendees will learn all about smokers, wood selection, meat selection, and other essential elements of great barbecue. Learn more here. BBQU – Panther City BBQ

La Scuola di Eataly Dallas offers hands-on cooking classes where you can discover dishes from different regions of Italy. Prices vary depending on the class topic. Classes can be purchased here.

Dallas Mozzarella Company are you even a foodie if you’ve never taken a cheese-making class here? Classes are scheduled regularly and can be found online here.  You can also attend wine and cheese and beer and cheese pairing classes.  If you’d rather just give cheese instead of asking someone to make it, try the Mozz Co’s Cheese of the Month gift.  Learn more here.

Mimi’s Pizzeria has a Dough it Yourself Pizza party kit with fresh ingredients needed to make a 14-inch pizza. Pizza Kits are available for pick up and delivery. Learn more at or call 972- 215-7290.

That Photo School features Dallas photographer Justin Clemons who is widely published and has an online course that concentrates on teaching you how to use studio lighting in a supportive community setting with video teaching, online interviews with notable photographers, and Zoom critiques.

Local and Small Businesses

Urban Spikes is best known for their cute succulent or cactus designs utilizing clear glass containers layered in intricate sand designs, using accents like agates and porcupine quills. The retail studio is located at 4885 Alpha Road, or you can order online here and they deliver anywhere in the Dallas area.

Autside Everyone is so into pickleball now, and this company has great stuff to turn any driveway into a pickleball court. Bundles include the Pickleball Present Bundle, the Autside Mandoline, Oso Pickleball Balls, Autside Tote, frisbee, and lots of other cool merchandise.  This company also donates a portion of proceeds to Autism-related organizations. All products are local and ready to ship now. Order here.

Lizzy Lu Luxury Treats Every single thing this gal makes is adorable and delish.  Perfect gift-giving items, especially these over-the-top candy apples.  Peruse the goodies here.

MIXY These cocktail kits are great gifts and they come in lots of different flavors and gift packs.  Just choose a MIXY and if you’re feeling really generous, go to Pogo’s and pick up the perfect spirit to pair with the mix and you’re set.  Order at UPDATE: MIXY is sold out online but is available ay Hiatus Spa, Sample House and the T Shop. You can always by gift cards, too.

Bisous Bisous Besides having the absolute cutest holiday cookies and treats, Bisous also has a wide selection of take-and-bake treats such as croissants, cookies, and scones.  Visit the location at West Village or order online here.


Does anyone really need another cookbook?  YES, unequivocally, yes. 

Lush Life Food & Drinks from the Garden by Valerie Rice
People Newspapers Publisher Pat Martin sent this to me and I have to say, it’s now my most-used resource.  The book is divided into seasons, featuring ingredients that are peak season in each.  Sumptuous photography and delicious, easy-to-follow recipes make this new book an instant classic. Order here.

Jubilee Recipes from Two Centuries of African American Cooking by Toni Tipton-Martin
This book is culturally and texturally rich, with stories of how dishes we know and love today came to be more than 200 years ago.  The Sweet Potato-Mango Cake with Orange-Bourbon Glaze is one of the most amazing cakes I’ve ever made. Ms. Tipton-Martin will be in Dallas at the end of March to host the Visiting Nurse Association’s Celebrity Chef Event. Order this book through Interabang or here.


GoldBelly Did you know you can send Fletcher’s Corny Dogs to people who don’t have the good fortune to live in Dallas?  Now you do.  Order here.

Gift Cards to your favorite restaurants are always a great idea, some of my favorite places that might not be on your radar screen: Lavendou, Suze, Miriam Cocina Latina, Little Greek Fresh Grill, Anise, and Haute Sweets Patisserie.

Philanthropy Making donations to a cause that is near and dear to you or your friends is always a good idea. From The Birthday Party Project to Dallas Children’s Advocacy Center to Meals on Wheels or whatever causes speak to you, agencies make it very easy to go online and make a donation in honor of someone. They will even take care of the letter to the recipient alerting them of your gift.

Have a holly, jolly holiday, Merry Christmas, eat well, be well.

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Kersten Rettig

Kersten Rettig is the only DFW Food/Travel writer with luxury hospitality leadership experience and a former restaurant owner, employee, and chief marketing officer. Kersten's worked on the inside and has the insight and experience to tell the stories to the outside. She's a Park Cities resident, mom, wife and a decent cook. Follow her on Instagram @KerstenEats.

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