Share the wealth of DIY Apple gift baskets this season

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ALWAYS IN SEASON—Apples, especially the gift of apples in a basket, will be welcomed year round. But as a holiday gift, it has its own special magic.

NAPS)—Looking for an inspired, affordable holiday gift this season? The key ingredient may already be in your kitchen: Apples, a perfect centerpiece for a custom, create-your-own gift basket.

NAPS)—Looking for an inspired, affordable holiday gift this season? The key ingredient may already be in your kitchen: Apples, a perfect centerpiece for a custom, create-your-own gift basket.

Apples are affordable, delicious, universally loved and always available—and presenting them in beautiful baskets that you’ve complemented with other personalized gifts makes for a truly creative and healthy holiday gift. Giving apples also shows you care about your friends’ and family’s well-being, and adding extra items shows you took the time to make something just for them.

Consider these five simple steps for a do-it-yourself (DIY) apple gift basket:

1.      Find an artful basket—either one you already have or a simple, inexpensive basket from a craft store, closest big-box retailer, or even your grocery store.

2.      Fill with healthy, wholesome apples—red, green and yellow—the more colors, the merrier.

3.      Personalize with foods or trinkets your giftee will enjoy—nothing fancy; simple stocking stuffers will do.

4.      Consider a theme for the basket—Is the recipient a music aficionado? Bird watcher? Golf addict? Match the theme to the person—like our suggestions, pictured.

5.      Accent with ribbons, stuffing and personalized labels—so they know this was created by you just for them.

Looking for inspiration for your DIY apple gift basket? Here are four ideas:

•        For Kids. Fill a bright basket with colorful apples, crunchy crackers and other fun surprises such as books or small toys. Customize a basket for each kid in your life!

•        For Fitness Fanatics. Give your workout buddy a head start on his or her New Year’s resolutions with a basket full of post-workout snacks such as apples and walnuts, gym accessories and a clean eating cookbook.

•    For Sweet Tooths. Have a sweetie who loves sweets? Satisfy his or her cravings with a basket of apples paired with yummy caramel, chocolate sauce and honey (homemade or store-bought).

•    For Friends, Family and Co-workers. Whether you’re playing secret Santa or looking for a last-minute gift, prepare a basket for a perfect night in: A beautiful assortment of apples (with a handy slicer), savory cheese, delicious wine and a fun wine stopper as a keepsake.

Have a DIY apple gift basket idea of your own? Share it on Pinterest and other social media. After all, what’s better than sharing ideas for the gift of health?

Learn More

For apple health information and delicious recipes for any season, see www.USApple.org and @USApples on Pinterest.