Seattle souvenirs: food gifts your friends will actually like

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You can get a ton of great Seattle souvenirs- food, art, home decor, etc.

But how do you know which ones to bring to everyone back home? Seattle has an amazing food scene, and you know that your friends will actually use a food gift (unlike the tourist T-shirt souvenirs – because who says no to free food? and who says yes to basic shirts?). Food is the best gift you can get from Seattle, in my opinion.

To help you decide which foods to bring back from Seattle, I put together this list. Why trust my list? I ate out like daily when I lived in Seattle, so I know a lot of the best foods to eat. I still visit Seattle every couple of months, and I always bring my friends food souvenirs from Seattle! Plus, most of my California friends are actually my Seattle friends who also had to leave Seattle because of the soaring cost of living, so they know exactly which food souvenirs they want to enjoy from their parent’s basement (PS: Ube cheesecake is probably the most requested item, but I don’t want to Internet recommend something that could go in the food danger zone). 

So here are the best Seattle food souvenirs that you can bring back for your family and friends! 

These are all by local Seattle/Washington companies or products that are unique to Seattle/Washington and are popular with locals (aka not those like gross, overpriced, touristy shortbread cookies or dried fruit souvenirs that no one actually likes). You can get many of these in souvenir shops, grocery stores, the airport, at their Seattle area location directly, or even online (see the last section) if you forget to do your shopping on your trip!

Chocolate souvenirs

Theo’s Chocolate

Theo’s Chocolate is one of Seattle’s iconic local, sustainable chocolate companies. While they do have “regular” flavors like sea salt and toffee, they’re also well-known for having “experimental” flavors like ghost chili, turmeric, and root beer, which makes a great present for the adventurous, high quality chocolate connoisseurs in your life. Also, their peanut butter cups are life changing. You can get these at most grocery stores in Seattle or at their factory in Fremont, which offers tours!

Seattle Chocolate

Seattle Chocolate is another local, sustainable company like Theo’s, but their chocolates are a little less experimental, and they’re also well known for their truffles. If you’re going during holiday season, their gingerbread and eggnog chocolate bars are my absolute favorite. Similar to Theo’s, you could either get these at the grocery store or at their factory location a little outside of Seattle and go on a tour.

Dilettante

Want more than chocolate bars? Dilettante is a Seattle based chocolate company, and while they do have bars, their best products in my opinion are their truffles and sauces. Technically you’re supposed to put their chocolate sauce on stuff, but I can literally just eat it from the jar. While Dilettante doesn’t have a factory that’s open to the public, they do have several cafe locations where you can grab souvenirs and coffee.

Savory souvenirs

Salmon

Washington state’s Puget Sound is home to different types of salmon that are around both seasonally and year round- which make them a fresh, popular, local fish. If you’re not on a budget and like cooking, you can get fresh salmon shipped to you from the fishmongers at Pike Place Market. If you want something cheaper that keeps better, you could also get smoked salmon or salmon jerky at any grocery or souvenir shop and even throughout the market.

Beecher’s cheese

Beecher’s Handmade Cheese in Pike Place Market is a popular spot for visitors. Their flagship cheese is almost like a cheddar and is delicious. Many people go for the mac n cheese or grilled cheese sandwiches, but at their store you can also get gift sets, cheese curds, or blocks of cheese for Seattle presents.

Cougar gold cheese

Cougar Gold cheese is a cheddar sold by Washington State University, and it’s really freaking good. The school sells these cheeses in cans which were developed as part of a research project to keep cheese indefinitely successfully in cans, which makes a cute and delicious present for any cheese lover. And actually- Beecher’s cheese was inspired by Cougar Gold. You can get these online, but sometimes I randomly see them in Seattle area markets.

Oberto’s jerky

Technically, you can get this anywhere, but Oberto’s is a Seattle based company with an outlet store outside of downtown. If you’re on a budget, this makes a unique souvenir since the jerky here is discounted (it’s like the ‘reject’ jerkies because they’re not pretty) and has random flavors you don’t always see in the stores.

beecher's cheese

Beecher’s Handmade Cheese, Pike’s Place, Seattle by Darcy is licensed under CC BY 2.0

Non-alcoholic drink souvenirs

Coffee Beans

Since Seattle is famous for coffee, brining coffee beans back makes a perfect local gift. It’s not hard to find amazing local coffee shops, but Vivace is a popular favorite. I would recommend going to a random coffee shop to buy these rather than a souvenir shop- you never know what you’ll get at the souvenir shop if you’re not sure which coffee shops are good! And of course, you could grab beans from the global chains Starbucks or Seattle’s Best since they’re from Seattle, if you want to say that they’re from the OG location.

Rachel’s Ginger Beer

Rachel’s Ginger Beer makes the best ginger beer ever- even considering all of the local ginger beer I’ve had in cities outside of Seattle! If you’re checking in a bag, bringing a few bottles of this ginger beer home will make your friends really, really happy if they like a good ginger beer. They have a few stores throughout Seattle, and you can also grab them at the grocery store too.

Jones Soda

While you can get some flavors of these cane sugar sodas at many grocery stores, Jones Soda is a Seattle company and they have their headquarters near downtown Seattle. Here, visitors can come in and buy sodas of which they have a ton of flavors. When I worked nearby years ago, you could get free sodas (aka, free souvenirs!) on Fridays after 3, but I can’t find anything on their site that says that this is still a thing. Either way, getting sodas from here can be a unique gift because of all the flavors they have that can be hard to find elsewhere.

rachel's ginger beer

Rachel’s ginger beer. by steph_peregrine is licensed under CC BY-NC-ND 2.0

Alcoholic souvenirs from Seattle

Locally made wine

If you have a car or don’t mind bussing (and walking up a hill) outside of the city, check out Woodinville for a variety of delicious wineries close to Seattle. Chateau Ste Michelle is one of the most popular wineries, and they offer tours where you can try different wines and bring some home for your friends. Aka wine tasting for you, and souvenirs for your friends!

Local craft beers

There are a ton of local breweries in Seattle, but Mac & Jack’s is one of Seattle’s most visible local breweries with their African amber being one of their most popular brews. Unlike Chateau St Michele, you can’t really find Mac & Jack’s or many of the other local breweries’beer outside of Washington- so it makes a more unique present for the beer lovers in your life.

Fruit souvenirs

Rainier cherries

If you go in the summer and aren’t flying overseas from the mainland US, rainier cherries are the best tasting fruit in the US (in my totally not expert opinion), and they make a healthier-than-chocolate souvenirs to fruit lovers in your life. These are local to Washington and were also developed at Washington State University- you can read more about them here. Technically, I’m allergic to them, but I eat them anyway… that’s how good they are.

Washington apples

Washington is famous for having a variety of local apples, and actually, apples are the state fruit. I highly recommend Pink Ladys (and if you can get this in local apple juice form- do it!), and for more varieties, check out this site. Again, these only make a good souvenir if you’re not flying somewhere you can bring fruits

rainier cherries

Rainier Cherries by jennofarc is licensed under CC BY-NC-ND 2.0

Souvenirs from local bakeries

Seattle’s amazing food scene doesn’t just include brunch and vegetarian food- there are also amazing bakeries as well! For a more full list of dessert gift ideas (mango cheesecake, specialty donuts, etc) check out my best desserts in Seattle post (just don’t bring the ice creams back), but for now, here are a few that I typically get asked to bring back! 

Cupcakes

There are so many local, sustainable, and amazing cupcake places in Seattle. Cupcake Royale and Trophy Cupcakes are a couple of local favorites. If you want your friends and loved ones to love you even more, get a box of cupcakes to go for them from one of these shops! Cupcake Royale also has a few vegan options for the vegans in your life. 

Pastries

There are even more amazing pastry shops in Seattle (I did not like pastries until I moved there!). If your friends watch Great British Bakeoff, they’ll be so excited if you bring amazing versions of those pastries back from Seattle! Head to Crumble and Flake to bring back the Kouign Amann or Bakery Nouveau for a twice baked chocolate croissant. 

Macarons

You can get these at any of the above shops, but Lady Yum has some of my favorite macarons in Seattle! They have a location in Belltown and also a stand at the airport if you forgot during your trip. 

chocolate croissants at bakery nouveau

Chocolate Croissants” by Foodista is licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0

Still not sure what to get?

Anything from Pike Place Market

Olive oil, balsamic vinaigrettes, jams- Pike Place Market is a haven for locally made goods. If nothing in this list strikes your fancy, head to Pike Place and see what catches your eye! You can check their directory beforehand if you want to plan out what to get, but since there are so many samples, it’s easy to just follow your nose and get whatever looks the tastiest!

Where to get Seattle souvenirs online

Some people have asked if it’s possible to get these food souvenirs online. Thanks to capitalism and globalization- yes you can! If you didn’t have time to get souvenirs for everyone while on your trip, you can check out each company’s official website to potentially buy online or just use Amazon for easier shipping. I put some of my favorite souvenirs together here:

And there you have it – some ideas of food souvenirs from Seattle made by local companies! What would you add? What would your friends be most interested in? Let me know in the comments!

Seattle food gift ideas Pinterest imageseattle souvenirs pinterest image

 

Psst – Still need to plan our your Seattle trip? Check out my guide on best neighborhoods to stay in Seattle, and my non-touristy things to do in Seattle guide! 

Angelica

Traveler. Foodie. Student debt haver. I love finding the best things to do and eat when traveling, and sharing them with everyone else who likes experiencing local culture or exploring the outdoors too! You can read more about me in my about page.

Note: Some links in this post are affiliate links. If you make a purchase from an affiliate link, I will receive a small commission at no cost to you (thank you!). For more info, check out my disclosure policy.

17 Comments

  1. October 28, 2018 / 9:51 am

    Great post – it’s always hard to know what to bring back, and this is a very thorough list. I would also add Fran’s Chocolates to the list – you can buy Fran’s caramels in many stores across the country, but the bonbons are harder to come by!

    • Angelica
      Author
      October 28, 2018 / 12:35 pm

      Thanks for reading and thanks especially for your suggestion- I totally forgot about Fran’s! There are too many great chocolatiers from Seattle 😍

  2. BaZoooooot24
    October 28, 2018 / 11:19 am

    Great post and recommendations! Mac & Jacs with some Oberto Jerky is the perfect combo for any beer/meat lover!

    Keep up the amazing work!

    • Angelica
      Author
      October 28, 2018 / 2:19 pm

      That’s so true- I hadn’t thought of mixing those together for someone’s souvenir, but I’m definitely doing it next time I come back from Seattle! 😍

  3. November 14, 2018 / 4:28 am

    These all look so good! I especially would love the cheese & chocolate. Either of them or both! I’ve never been to Seattle. I will have to make a trek up there sometime.

    • Angelica
      Author
      November 15, 2018 / 12:44 pm

      It’s the perfect US destination for chocolate and cheese if you do make it up πŸ™‚

  4. November 14, 2018 / 10:59 am

    Eating locally is one of the best things about travel. LOVE this detailed list of things I need to try when I visit next (and that I should bring home)! πŸ™‚

    • Angelica
      Author
      November 14, 2018 / 6:48 pm

      I totally agree, each place has their own unique food culture and it’s so fun to learn about/taste πŸ˜›

  5. November 15, 2018 / 6:12 am

    Anyone who brings me food is a life-long friend! That Ginger Beer looks fascinating and I can never get enough cherries!

    • Angelica
      Author
      November 15, 2018 / 9:00 pm

      Same, food is the way to my heart :D. Ginger beer and cherries would be a great souvenir combo!

  6. December 16, 2018 / 2:24 pm

    These gift ideas surely looks good for souvenirs! I personally would like the Seattle Chocolates since anyone would like anything sweet! Thanks for this love!

    • Angelica
      Author
      December 16, 2018 / 4:29 pm

      No problem, and I agree- sweets are always a safe bet for souvenirs!

  7. December 17, 2018 / 12:45 am

    Loving these foodie souvenir collections from local companies! So many cheese options and cool chocolate souvenirs. Those cherries look so fresh. Perfect food gift ideas!

  8. December 17, 2018 / 5:32 am

    What a great souvenir list. Those Washington apples look divine, as does the chocolate. My partner would love to try the beer, it looks so refreshing!

  9. December 17, 2018 / 2:19 pm

    I never thought of buying food souvenirs but it looks a really nice idea. I love the chocolate bars (and I have an addiction to it) and I would love to receive one of them from Seatle! The packaging is so nice too! Thanks for the great, informative post.

  10. December 19, 2018 / 3:24 pm

    Some great gift ideas here. Food gifts are the best gifts! I want to visit so I can go on Theo’s factory tour..

    • Angelica
      Author
      December 20, 2018 / 10:34 am

      The Theo’s chocolate tour is really fun. You get so many samples! πŸ˜€

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