It’s hard to believe that Christmas Day is now less than one month away, but if you’re still deciding on what to get your loved ones over the holidays, fret not because you’re certainly not alone.
As is Eat North tradition, we’ve come to offer a few pointers on what we believe to be the perfect gifts for the Canadian food-enthusiasts in your life. From A Spice Affair’s vegan bacon blend to a tasty introduction to Indian cuisine from The Paisley Notebook, to jams, spices, sauces, and everything in between, here are 20 Canadian-made condiments to add to your shopping list this holiday season.
A Spice Affair's Vegan Bacon and Fine Herbs
There are few, if any, offerings on A Spice Affair’s product list that we wouldn’t recommend, but one that definitely stands out to us is the Vegan Bacon and Fine Herbs seasoning. ASA recommends using it as a smoky seasoning to liven up a hummus, but as you’ll likely come to learn, this stuff can literally go on anything.
Frontiersmen Trading Co.'s French Quarter Creole
If you’ve ever wanted to try your hands at cooking Creole, the French Quarter Creole from Frontiersman is a fantastic place to start. The bayou blend is an ideal rub for pan blackening chicken or fish, but is also versatile enough to use in gumbos, soups, stews, and jambalaya.
Gr8 Thai Sauce's Thai Panang Curry Sauce
Since their popular pad kra prow sauce is dangerously low on stock, another terrific Thai sauce that we plan on stuffing in our stockings this holiday season is Gr8 Thai Sauce’s panang curry. If you’ve ever wanted to cook like the street food vendors in Thailand, this is a great vehicle to help you get there.
Haute’s Crispy Garlic Fire Chili Oil
If you’re the kind of person who prefers their sauces to pack a powerful punch, allow us to direct you toward the Crispy Garlic Fire Chili Oil from Haute Foods. The recipe derives from its OG Hot chili oil and features a blended mix of Carolina reaper and ghost pepper. Definitely not for the faint of heart, but if you or the person you’re buying for like their food extra spicy, don’t be surprised if you/they become addicted.
The Indian Pantry's Aai’s Malvani Gravy
Though the Indian Pantry has a slew of Indian spices and simmering sauces, Aai’s Malvani Gravy is the one that stands out because the recipe itself dates back to before the Indian Pantry was even a thing. An heirloom recipe passed down to chef Tushar Tondvalkar from his mother, the Malvani Gravy is an intoxicatingly aromatic sauce that will transport your kitchen to the beaches of Southern India.
Kanel's Porcini Umami Rub
As a brand that specializes in serving up some really cool spice blends, Kenel is one of our favourite places to gather recipe inspiration. The Porcini Umami Rub is one we constantly find ourselves going back to for its deep and rich umami flavour and addictively nutty punch. Perfect for adding a pop flavour to sauteed vegetables or taking a steak sauce to luxurious new levels.
Kula Kitchen’s Pili Pili Sauce
Kula Kitchen’s Pili Pili Sauce is inspired by the traditional East African sauce, and according to the B.C.-based brand, it is “a spicyphile’s dream.” We’re not entirely sure whether or not the term spicyphile will stick, but we are sure it will put a smile on the face of anyone who loves East African cuisine.
Maritime Madness’ Mustard Pickle Hot Sauce
If you’re located on or around the East Coast, there’s a good chance that you already have one in your fridge, but for those located elsewhere in Canada, well, it’s a good thing Maritime Madness offers free Canada-wide shipping on orders of $49 or more.
Unquestionably its most popular offering, and for good reason, Maritime Madness’ Mustard Pickle offers an awesome bite of mustard, pickle, and habanero, but is also subtle enough to let the protein it’s paired with shine.
Monster Sauce's Monster Crunch Chili Crisp
One of the newest additions to Calgary’s food scene, Monster Crunch debuted at Dandy Brewing Co. a little over three months ago, and since then the hype for Monster Crunch has only heightened.
Our favourite of the inaugural lineup has to be the original Monster Crunch Chili Crisp and we think the company's description of “a roasty, toasty, garlicky, savoury, flavour-bomb” is pretty on point.
Mumgry's Pistachio Chocolate Almond Butter
The Paisley Notebook's Edible Adventures
Created by acclaimed Kelowna chef and founder of The Paisley Notebook, Aman Dosanj, the Edible Adventures spice mixes offer up a versatile assortment of spices that serve as a wonderful introduction to Indian cuisine. Of the three creative spice concoctions, we love to use the Malabar Mix on savoury food items that can use a touch of sweetness.
Pay Chen & Zing's Sacha-ish
Created in collaboration with Zing, food writer and TV personality Pay Chen recently launched a new savoury chili condiment inspired by her favourite memories of hot pot. The Sacha-Ish sauce features a combination of earthy ,salty-sweet, and umami flavours designed to add depth to whatever you’re serving.
Pei Pei Chei Ow's Berry BBQ Sauce
Edmonton’s popular pop-up-turned restaurant Pei Pei Chei Ow is known for creating incredible products that are inspired by the land, life, and seasons that surround us, so when they bottled a new Blueberry and Sage Jam we knew it would basically fly off the shelves.
Availability tends to vary, so if you’re able to snag a jar there’s a good chance you won’t want to give it away.
Preserved's Saskatoon Berry Gin Jam
It’s no secret that we are proud to be from the Prairies, and few offerings on our list encapsulate that feeling more than Preserved’s Saskatoon Gin Jam. The simple, yet highly satisfying blend is made from Alberta-grown Saskatoon berries and Eau Claire Distillery’s Parlour Gin. Need we say more?
Primal Pasta’s Haskap Hot Mustard
Speaking of Prairies cuisine, one of our favourite restaurants in all of Canada is Saskatoon’s Primal Pasta. The award-winning eatery’s Be Magic products have been in high demand since it was first developed during the pandemic.
Just about every jar in the Be Magic lineup would make for a great gift, but since we can only pick one, it has to be the Haskap Mustard. Made and jarred in-house from locally-sourced fruit and mustard seeds, the Haskap Mustard is truly unlike any other.
Saltspring Kitchen Co.'s Winter Wonder Jam
Not unlike Pei Pei Chei Ow, Saltspring Kitchen Co.’s latest seasonal offering has been garnering tons of buzz. The aptly-named Winter Wonder Jam is a celebration of all things winter with a wonderful assortment of strawberries, oranges, cranberries, bourbon, cinnamon, and cloves. The jam is a great addition to toast, scones, baked Brie, and festive cocktails.
The Silk Road's Holiday Spiced Sugar
If you plan to get festive with your food and drink in more ways than one, having a versatile holiday spice or sugar that you can use on a number of holiday dishes and drinks is essential.
The Holiday Spiced Sugar from The Silk Road is just that; a sweet and spicy blend of white sugar, ground vanilla beans, and holiday spices that will enhance everything from baked goods to warm beverages.
Smak Dab's Cranberry Wine Mustard
Known for producing delicious and inventive gourmet mustards, Smak Dab’s latest seasonal offering is a tangy mustard that blends festive notes of cranberry and red wine with a warm hint of spice. The Cranberry Wine mustard is perfect for pairing with Christmas ham, roast turkey, or charcuterie boards.
Smoke Show's Jalapeño BBQ Sauce and Aioli
While you might have a tough time getting your hands on both, Smoke Show’s popular Jalapeño BBQ Sauce and Aioli each offer a unique flavour profile that showcases lightly smoked jalapeño peppers. The BBQ sauce leans to the savoury side of things, while the Aioli serves as a delicious replacement for mayonnaise.
The Warrior Blends' Boreal Bacon Pepper
Known for transforming regular meals into boreal delights, the Warrior Blends’ decadent smoked Bacon Pepper mix is a great addition to just about any protein-heavy dish. In addition to being downright delicious, the mix features a slew of ingredients harvested by hand and packed by people with limited mobility.