Get Well and New Mom Meal Suggestions


Ideas for Gift Baskets

I was putting together a little package for a friend and thought I would post it for those of you that might be looking for ideas for new moms or friends that need cheering up.

I have a good friend that just had surgery and I wanted to drop some things off to her.

I wasn’t sure how many people would be dropping things off (and how quickly she would get to my basket) so I put together a really easy Italian Night basket that would last a few days.

My basket was just a metal basket from Michael’s, I included a placemat in a fun pattern (this was like $3 or something from Williams Sonoma or maybe Crate n Barrel.)

I also included a large jar of homemade spaghetti sauce (this is so delicious and just cook it right in your Crock pot- recipe here). 

I picked up some Rosemary French Bread from Trader Joe’s and pasta and then put a simple green salad in a Ziploc.  I included a homemade ranch dressing plus I took fresh Parmesan cheese and grated it up and put that in a little jar.

So simple and everyone likes spaghetti so they just need to cook the pasta and dinner is ready!

Italian Night gift basket

Another idea would be nice coffee for a new Mom, gourmet hot chocolate, tea (I love Good Earth tea), or homemade lemonade in the summer. (Here is a recipe for Awesome Lemonade here or a recipe for Starbucks Passion Fruit Iced Tea here.)

If you are delivering something to a new mom, you might consider a little gift for her and a little something for the baby.

If the Mom has other children, I also like to include a little something for them so they don’t feel forgotten about. A coloring book and new Crayons, a small toy, bubbles, Hot Wheels, books, a movie… I try to think of things that might occupy a child for a few minutes so Mom can shower or do what she needs to do.

Most people will bring a casserole or chili or soups- things that will freeze and reheat easily.  I don’t like to take heavier dishes unless it is the middle of winter.

Here are a few other ideas:

  • A bagged salad with a roasted chicken dish and fresh bread or fingerling potatoes sliced with olive oil and herbs (ready to roast in the oven)
  • Crock Pot BBQ Chicken Sandwiches- get the recipe here– just put the chicken in a Tupperware, add delicious buns, a side salad or fruit salad or cole slaw.
  • Fresh pizza dough balls, marinara sauce/white sauce or pesto, shredded cheese and whatever other toppings you think they might like.  (This is so easy to put together and can be a fun idea for parents that have small children underfoot).
  • Short on time or not much of a cook?  How about a rotisserie chicken, a great deli salad and a wonderful baked something from the deli.  You certainly don’t have to cook or bake-really it is the thought that counts.
  • Most people focus on bringing dinner.  New parents also need to worry about everything else in between and remember the schedule is often a bit of a mess those first few weeks after a new baby comes home.  You might also consider putting a care package of breakfast items (after all who wants to fuss around the kitchen when you have been up all night with a baby)- a delicious gourmet jam, fresh fruit, muffins, scones or french bread would be fantastic.  There is a fast and easy fruit dip recipe here that will give Mom tons of protein.  You might even boil some eggs and include those for a savory option or this mushroom frittata is delicious!
  • You could do a bag of delicious snacks with fresh veggies all washed and put in containers with hummus or salad dressing.  Sliced tomatoes and mozzarella cheese, a great crusty bread, olives etc… would be delicious.  That is a great option for someone that isn’t eating as much or might want a healthier meal.
  • Another idea if you are short on time is a gift card to a pizza place that you place inside a clean pizza box.  Fun and they can order anytime they like.  Add some gourmet sodas or beers and maybe a salad in a zipoc bag or dessert.

You might check with the person and see if they have any dietary restrictions or in my case I just checked my friend’s pinterest boards to see the kind of foods she had been pinning.

You can pick up super cheap disposable containers at the Dollar Store or I like mason jars as well.

New Mom Meal Ideas


Here is another meal I made for a friend recently.  Super simple taco basket– after all who doesn’t like tacos?  I made the Creamy Chicken Crock Pot taco meat – recipe here- and popped that in a Ziploc.  I added a bag of tortillas (those are under the food in the tray above), some chopped lettuce, olives, limes, cheese, avocado,  and I made fresh salsa (so easy and so delicious- see recipe here) just popped into a mason jar.

I also wanted to do a dessert and this Homemade Chocolate Magic Shell takes seconds to make.  I popped it into a mason jar and brought a pint of vanilla ice cream. Another delicious option would be Crock Pot Caramel Sauce with apples in fall or ice cream in summer.




  1. Sara says

    Great post! I just brought over dinner for my best friend who had baby #2. Homemade chicken pot pie, salad, cookies and cinnamon rolls for the next morning. I remember people bringing me over food after I had my second, things where such a blur it was nice to not have to think about food…it was just there.

  2. Kelly L. says

    How incredible thoughtful are the gifts you chose to give to your friend! Thanks for the ideas.

  3. Stephanie says

    You are a genius! I love your ideas! So creative… Thank you for sharing!

  4. Judy says

    Nice post. I was recently on the receiving end of meals and babysitting services while my daughter was in the hospital. I had a hard time knowing how to thank people properly. Any ideas on that?

  5. Renae says

    This is awesome. My friend just had a hysterectomy and I bought stuff to make chili but I never thought of the other stuff – I can make some fresh bread (poor bread maker hasn’t been used since Thanksgiving), some chocolate chocolate chip cookies or chocolate cake and maybe some tortilla chips and cheese. She likes a particular kind of ginger ale so I got a 6 bottle pack at the store. I didn’t even think of magazines but that is a great idea. I did get two Thermacare wraps, too, so I have enough items to make a nice bag to take over with the crockpot of chili when she gets home. Thanks for the ideas!

  6. Charlene says


    Some cornbread would be good with that too but I personally love the smell of french bread :). The tortilla chips are great because she can snack on the chili as a dip later.

  7. Charlene says


    Thank you for the reminder because I meant to include another idea of putting a nice pen and thank you notes in with a care package. I firmly believe a nice thank you is more then enough. If you have the ability to write notes to those that helped out that is perfect. One of the lessons I have had to learn is how to just thank people and not feel obligated to give them something in return :). I think if someone really really went out of the way, you might consider a small treat like a lovely cupcake from a bakery and include that with the card to drop off. Depending on how close of friends you are, you might also just write a note and ask to meet for coffee or something and let them know it is your treat after the wonderful xyz that they delivered for you. If it is coworkers or someone you see at Church or something in the morning you could always get an extra Latte for them at Starbucks and just bring that with your note. Although really a note of thanks is more then enough. Hope your daughter is feeling better!

  8. AL says

    You are such a kind and wonderful friend. I wish I had friends like you. God bless you!

  9. Cyndi says

    As a mom with a newborn, I would be perturbed with someone dropping off a jar of red sauce and a box if noodles. I mean, I have that lame stuff in my pantry already! It’s not a help if I have to cook something someone drops off.
    Also, I am truly thankful for the people that give me a not saying “part of the gift is that you DO NOT have to send me a thank you note for bringing you dinner”. It’s hard enough keeping up with a family with a newborn and it’s so nice when people realize that and acknowledge that they know you are thankful but don’t expect you to take time to write a note, find your address, hope you have a stamp, and actually get the darn note into the mailbox!!

  10. Charlene says

    Goodness! I think if someone takes the time to make a delicious homemade pasta sauce and put an entire meal together as a gift -many people would appreciate that. Lots of us have other children and specific diets or vegetarians in a home so that is just an example of a crowd pleaser that is versatile and perfectly suits people trying to eat healthier foods. I didn’t have much of an appetite with my children so I would personally appreciate a lighter meal and not a heavy freezer meal.

    I think a grateful heart is something we should all strive for. Lots of us have had newborns in various situations and some have numerous children or multiples- you are not the first one to have a baby and feel overwhelmed. Short of sandwiches or a tossed salad or delivering promptly at dinnertime, I had a hard time thinking of a healthy meal that would require zero preparation. A freezer meal is still going to need to be cooked. It takes 8 minutes to cook pasta. I don’t think that is an unreasonable preparation for most people.

    Also I personally would never neglect to thank someone for a gift and I would feel uncomfortable suggesting that others do that- especially a food gift which are often made with a lot of love. I have never found myself in a situation in my life where I was unable to thank someone for caring about me. I am sorry that you don’t care for the gift I made and I am sorry you can’t find the time to thank your friends and family. I hope things get better for you soon.

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