Primal Gift Guide 2020

gift guide 2020People rag on the holiday season for being too commercial. You can certainly go too far in that direction, but there’s absolutely nothing wrong with giving meaningful gifts to people you care about. In fact, that’s one of the kindest acts a person can do. Today’s Primal gift guide does not consist of pointless consumerist pap that your giftees will enjoy for a day or two until the newness wears off and they move on to the next thing to spend their money on. These are useful gifts. Gifts that enhance life, that further our relationships, that expand our culinary horizons, that compel us to go out and experience the world. There’s no shame in celebrating the holidays in this manner, because these are good gifts given out of love, fellowship, and friendship—all of which embody the true meaning of the season.


That said, let’s get to the gifts!

Note: I’ve broken these down into Gifts for Men, Gifts for Women, and Gifts for Kids, but don’t let that tie you down. I happen to personally enjoy many of the gifts mentioned below in the “women” and “kids” sections.

*Special offers were active at the time of posting and may have changed. Contact the company for current promotions. 

Gifts for Men

Camp Chef Lumberjack Over the Fire Grill 

A large sturdy steel grill with folding legs, so you can place it directly over the fire to cook right on the grill or use the grill as a stand for your pan or griddle. I’ve used these types of grills to cook fresh fish in the sand over a bed of coals as the sun dips down below the horizon, and there’s nothing like it. Anyone who loves to grill or cook in the great outdoors needs this.

Ken Onion Knife Sharpener

Ever go to farmer’s market and there’s the knife sharpener with a Honda generator going and his belt sander cranking out razor edges on santoku blades that haven’t been sharpened in 5 years? There’s a smaller, consumer version available known as the Ken Onion knife sharpener. I don’t have one myself but know a few people who swear by them. They don’t provide the meditative effects of spending 45 minutes on the sharpening stone, but the learning curve is quite moderate. You get in with a dull knife and out with a sharp one in a couple minutes.

Butcher Box Free Steak Pack

In case you aren’t aware, Butcher Box delivers grass-fed beef, pasture-raised pork and chicken, and wild caught fish to your doorstep. This is meat and fish whose provenance you can be assured of. What could be better than that? I for one am a huge fan of high quality meat appearing at my house.

It’s also the perfect gift for any meat lover. And if you use this link, you get to add on 2 NY strips and 4 top sirloin steaks for free to whatever package you order.

Adaptogenic Calm

Men, you need this. If you’re anything like I was—a driven, type A personality, someone who accepts stress even when objectively I shouldn’t be involved and certainly aren’t culpable—you need to get a handle on your stress. You need to learn how. And that’s what Adaptogenic Calm does: it trains your body to adapt to the stress. It helps calm down your stress response system so you’re not overreacting to the little things that don’t matter. This allows you to respond to the stressors that do matter. Adaptogenic Calm is not a blanket snuffing out stress no matter the source. It helps you adapt in either direction.

Gifts for Women

Pique Ode to Tea gift box

Pique tea crystals distill the essence of tea leaves through a unique proprietary process known as “cold brew crystallization” that maximizes the extraction of antioxidant compounds and makes your job as tea quaffer easier. Because let’s face it: actual tea is a fickle, finicky beast. Each tea requires specific temperatures and steeping times to extract the good stuff while preserving the taste. The beauty of this product is that you don’t have mess around with all that if you don’t want to.

Included with the broad selection of tea crystals is a music box that plays Beethoven’s “Ode to Joy” every time you open it, along with a guide containing ancient and hidden secrets for unlocking your full potential as a human.

Breville Control Grip Immersion Blender 

I’m sure better, stronger immersion blenders exist for more money, but I have never met this blender’s equal in the home kitchen. It’s not inexpensive by any means. It is effective, though, and well worth the money. Cheaper immersion blenders require liquid to start. This does not. You can make some incredible whipped butternut squash, for example, just by adding a touch of cream and butter to steamed squash and putting the blender to work.

Earthing or Grounding Sandals 

groundingGrounding is legit. I don’t know exactly what’s happening, but there’s something special about connecting yourself to the earth—ideally barefoot on bare ground. However, going barefoot isn’t always in the cards. Sometimes you need shoes. Sometimes society expects you to wear them. And so the Grounded Athlete, a one-man operation, has created a Tarahumara-style sandal with a piece of copper in the sole that interfaces with the earth and connects to silver threading that runs through the strap attached to your foot. You can hike and run and train in these things while staying connected.

Support a small business doing something important and meaningful. Connect to the earth even when you’re shod. Try Gaia Grounding Sandals.

Primal Connection book

primal connection book coverOf all the books I’ve written, this one sold the least. And yet it’s my favorite one of all time, and it’s the one that generates the most heart-felt responses from readers. Those who did buy it and read it were almost all affected. It helped them re-evaluate the way they’re living (not just eating and exercising). The way they practice self-care and gratitude. The way they form and maintain relationships, professional and romantic alike. Most importantly, it has helped thousands have a better relationship with themselves—because that’s the relationship modernity has fractured more than anything else.

Gifts for Kids

Stock Tank

Growing up my friend had a giant stock tank at his house that his dad used to wash the dogs and we used as a “pool.” Hey, when you’re six years old a stock tank feels like a swimming pool in the summer. This is one of the weirdest gifts, and no kid will probably ask Santa for one, but if you have the room for it the stock tank will quickly become a favorite. Don’t ask me why. It just works. Get as big as you can handle.

Amber Reading Lights

I have fond memories of sneaking books and a flashlight under the covers after lights out, reading adventure stories late into the night. But man, I look back and shudder at what that was doing to my circadian rhythm. Luckily, there are better options for kids who want to trade sleep for trips to the world of literature: Amber clip-on reading lights. These clip on to the book and emit a warm, amber-colored candle-like glow that is easy on your circadian rhythm and has minimal impacts to melatonin production. Kids need to read but they also need to sleep. This let’s them do both.

Paleo Girl book

I’ve raised a boy and a girl up from childhood through adolescence and on into adulthood. I have to say, the teen years for my daughter Devyn was probably the toughest bit of parenting I’ve ever had. It wasn’t bad, it turned out great, but it wasn’t easy. There’s a lot going on during those years. I wish I’d had this book, Leslie Klenke’s Paleo Girl, on hand to at the very least hand it over to her to read. I consider it an invaluable resource.

Oh, and they’re great for adults, too.

What about you, folks? What Primal gifts are you currently coveting? What are you giving out this year? Let us know in the comment section!

About the Author

Mark Sisson is the founder of Mark’s Daily Apple, godfather to the Primal food and lifestyle movement, and the New York Times bestselling author of The Keto Reset Diet. His latest book is Keto for Life, where he discusses how he combines the keto diet with a Primal lifestyle for optimal health and longevity. Mark is the author of numerous other books as well, including The Primal Blueprint, which was credited with turbocharging the growth of the primal/paleo movement back in 2009. After spending three decades researching and educating folks on why food is the key component to achieving and maintaining optimal wellness, Mark launched Primal Kitchen, a real-food company that creates Primal/paleo, keto, and Whole30-friendly kitchen staples.

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47 thoughts on “Primal Gift Guide 2020”

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  1. Nevermind my friends and family – this list contains the 2 things I want to buy myself next – alignment socks and a spiral veggie slicer!

    Love the kid suggestion – not cheesy at all.

  2. A favorite small gift to bring for dinner parties and such is a quality sea salt. People who have always used just regular table salt are often blown away by how sprinkling some good sea salt on the food improves the taste of almost anything. Voilá – a nice gift that instantly improves the receiver’s life forever 🙂

    1. That’s a great idea! Though it does remind me of a hilarious episode of Corner Gas … is that just a Canadian thing?

      Emma: Lacey’s bumped us up to a new wine bracket. She…She’s opened our eyes to a whole new world.
      Oscar: I hate having my eyes opened!
      Emma: I wish we were back in the rut. I liked the rut.
      Oscar: Change is bad.

  3. I need to make my Christmas list. I wish you guys offered CEU’s for healthcare professionals at Primal Con 🙁

  4. Mark–the kid gift is perfect. Even at the time, i prized the time my grandmother spent with me over any material gift (although those were appreciated as well.) Kids, i feel, get so little of this undivided attention these days. And with technology dividing their attention, this seems like the perfect gift for so many reasons.

    1. Adult undivided attention is terrific for kids! My question is what else are parents doing? I understand different circumstances necessitate different opportunities, but seriously; undivided attention for the kids needs to be an as much as possible deal.

  5. Great gift ideas, Mark. So excited for Denise’s book release tomorrow. That’s what I’m giving to everyone this year!

    1. Yes, the Lifestraw is awesome. Woulda saved me about 22 bouts of Moctezuma’s Revenge during my travels…Gotta get me this.

  6. Love my spiral veggie slicer! The bio lite looks really neat too. I thought I was finished shopping for Christmas but now I’m inspired to check out the new goodies! The PrimalCon is a dream but it’s not going to happen this time. I’ll just have to create my own little Grokfest in New Orleans to make up for it!

    But the best present on the post is definitely for the kiddos. They seem to need that type of present above all the others! 🙂

  7. I like and really need the socks and mogo. But the socks don’t come in my size – 13 wide – and the Mogo is pricey. 🙁 Will look for options.

    1. I just called the socks company because I was in the same dilemma and the lady I spoke with assured me that the Charcoal ones are made larger, so they’ll accommodate a size 13 foot.

  8. I love my jelly yoga toes, but my biggest complaint is that my feet get cold. Those Happy Toes should fix that, and I actually can think of someone on the list who should receive them, too!

    As for that blue light gizmo, I desperately need one of those!!

  9. Thanks, these are some great ideas. I’m ordering the Life Straw for my son who loves to camp in remote places.

  10. The Biolite Wood Stove would be terrific as an addition to an emergency supply cache if you live in hurricane or tornado-prone areas. For me, it would be handy, because I already have a fireplace with lots of firewood stacked and ready.

    Trouble is, the fireplace has an electric blower motor, so is inoperable with no electricity. The heat ends up going right up the chimney without it!

    Thinking back to Hurricane Sandy and electricity-deprived NYers frantic to charge their cellphones, they could have had one of these (still can), taken it down to Central Park, burnt fallen limbs and CHARGED THEIR OWN CELLPHONES! Yes, there are car chargers, but what do you do if you don’t own a car?

    If going out to the woods, a gas generator is a wee bit heavy and clunky to haul around just for a little electric convenience, so this stove may come in handy for serious camping. Or, the homeless with phones and/or laptops can now charge them, cook, and keep warm while burning tree litter.

  11. On the fifth day of Christmas, my true love gave to me…..Five Golden Egg Yolks!…..etc….

  12. A ticket to PrimalCon would be an amazing present without a doubt.

    I do plan on getting the book set for my mom, as I think that the gift of health that comes along with the Primal lifestyle would be the best gift imaginable.

  13. Great list! I so want a spiralizer, and whenever we go camping, we always bring our life straw 🙂

  14. $100 for a stick up my bum? No thanks, I’ll just stand! 🙂

  15. Oh dear – stop tempting me, I’m already playing the “one present for them, one present for me” game!
    The Mogo looks like a shooting stick to me. I suggest accessorising with tweed knickerbockers, a waistcoat and a flat cap a la the Royal Family/Downton Abbey. 😉

  16. Oh hey, those veggie bags… I could MAKE those. It’s just organic french terry… For those of us without a $150 budget to even spend on all christmas presents, much less one, that looks like a good idea.

  17. The light bulb and water filter are cool but all you need is a damp paper towel or tea towel over a bowl of lettuce to get the same result as the salad bag, would still make a good gift I guess.

  18. I love Lunchbots in theory, but I ordered the Uno and found it way too small for my lunchtime salads. Can anyone recommend a similar brand with bigger container options? I’m currently using glass containers, but they’re heavy and obviously breakable.

  19. Searching for bugs with your kid…great.
    Eating the bugs with your kid…priceless!

  20. That Spiralizer really looks like a neat gadget, and I’ve seen youtube cooking vids using them. I seriously considered getting one; however, the last thing I needed was another kitchen appliance — I’m really trying to downsize not add to all the stuff I already have.

    So I settled for a Jullienne peeler which probably isn’t quite as versatile as the Spiralizer (and somewhat cheaper), but does a great job and is small enough to fit in one of my kitchen drawers without a problem.

    That said, my Jullienne peeler is one of the best little gizmos I’ve ever bought so the concept is definitely a “go” especially if you’re trying to avoid the CW wheat-based pastas. A peeler would be small enough to make a great stocking stuffer.

    Either way – consider a veggie “noodle” maker and if in doubt, watch some youtube videos and see how versatile the concept is either with a Spiralizer or a hand-held peeler.

    1. I have both, & they’re great– we use the spiralizer for real noodle-like vegs, wide as well as spaghetti-like, & the peeler for finer shreds. (But maybe there are coarser ones out there.) It’s true that the julienne tool fits easily in the drawer while the spiralizer is a cabinet-hog. Depends on how much you like veggie noodles, & how much room you have. Both are a huge asset to the grain-free kitchen!

  21. we use the lunch bots for the kiddo’s lunchbox. super easy to clean and we can sleep at night knowing they are safe.

  22. I got one of those spiral slicers this year and it has been such a life saver! Best invention ever for sure.

  23. Sorry but the Sawyer Squeeze is better than the life straw and that stove is ridiculous. You can make a clean-burning alcohol stove out of an aluminum drink can and if you really want to use wood, you can just make a tiny stick fire. If you need to recharge your electronics on the trail, you’re better off with a solar charger.

  24. The veggie bags are awfully pricey. I can (and have!) made them myself for about a twentieth of the cost……

  25. The veggie spiral slicer is fabulous! Root veggie noodles pick up the flavor of the sauce and are a tasty substitute for the wheat version.

  26. The Biolite stove seems like a good idea, but it is not as practical as it seems. First, it is overly complex. There are other wood gas stoves that work about as well, without the weight or complexity of a fan. (See the Solo Stove, Bush Buddy, etc.)

    Second, as a charging device, it leaves a lot to be desired. Most of the power extracted goes to the fan. Only excess power can be used to charge something, and you have to keep feeding it continually for hours to get a charge on a smartphone.

    For the weight and complexity, I will take a Solo Stove, plus a charger that uses AA batteries, plus a pile of batteries, and I will still save money and weight.

  27. I’m so sorry to be the political correctness police but did you really have to split it into gifts for men and women? Am I supposed to be cutting with dull ass knives while I sip my feminine crystal tea?

  28. In this year, with so many people out of work, I felt more than ever that homemade gifts were the best. So far, I have made a big batch of salsa, with some of my own garden vegetables, and canned pints for gifts. I also made some homemade moisturizer for some of the older women I know. There is plenty of room for low-cost, high-love homemade gifts!