Homemade Father’s Day Gifts You Can Make in the Kitchen

He doesn’t need more novelty neckwear. Instead, surprise your Dad with a bottle of DIY bloody mary mix or a pile of salty-sweet espresso almonds—and congratulate yourself on cracking the Father’s Day code.

1

Bacon Salt

bacon-salt
Photo by Sarah Karnasiewicz

Know a Dad who thinks everything is better with bacon? If so, this ingenious (and super simple!) spice blend is perfect. Try it as a garnish for bloody marys, sprinkled on eggs to spice up a ho-hum weekday breakfast, or as a dangerously addictive popcorn topping for movie night.

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2

Mini Guinness Cakes

mini-guinness-cakes
Photo by Sarah Karnasiewicz

What’s better than chocolate cake? Chocolate cake with beer in it. Adding a scoop of Greek yogurt to the batter for these mini cakes keeps them moist, while a cupful of dark stout accentuates the cocoa’s richness and lends an irresistible malty edge.

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3

Old Bay Bloody Mary Mix

old-bay-bloody-mary-mix
Photo by Sarah Karnasiewicz

Upgrade brunch with a bottle of homemade bloody mary mix—but be warned: once you realize how easy it is to make your own, you’ll never want to go back to the store-bought stuff. Here, the juicy sweetness of San Marzano tomatoes is perfectly balanced by the bite of horseradish, a tart hit of citrus juice, and classic Old Bay seasonings.

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4

Parmesan Ranch Popcorn

parmesan-ranch-popcorn
Photo by Sarah Karnasiewicz

This savory popcorn is dressed with a heaping flurry of parmesan cheese, a surfeit of spices, and a generous bath of butter. Simply toss the kernels with the seasonings, spread them on baking sheets and pop them in a hot oven for 5 minutes—this sharpens and seals in the flavors. Note: this recipe is also easily doubled—which is handy, since you’ll want to eat it by the fistful.

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5

Mint Syrup

mint-syrup
Photo by Sarah Karnasiewicz

Simple syrup is a bar staple, but adding fresh herbs can transform it into something truly special. For instance: Cheer the cocktail connoisseur in your life with a bottle of homemade mint syrup and—so long as there’s a bottle of bourbon and a cupful of crushed ice on hand—he’ll never be more than minutes away from a perfect mint julep.

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6

Dark Chocolate Espresso Almonds

dark-chocolate-espresso-almonds
Photo by Sarah Karnasiewicz

A little bit salty and a little bit sweet, these delicious nuts get their kick from a bold blend of cocoa powder, brown sugar, and espresso powder. Agave syrup is a nice neutral sweetener that helps bind the mixture together, but any number of pantry staples—like honey, golden syrup, or brown rice syrup—could also work in its place.

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