The Best 2021 Food and Drink Advent Calendars

The holiday season may be a month away, but it’s never too early to start planning to honor family traditions, especially given the current uncertainties of the supply chain. Old-school advent calendars — the kind filled with crappy foil-wrapped milk chocolate Santas — are so 2011. These days, advent calendars aren’t just for the kids. They come in all shapes and sizes, and are filled with everything from flavored popcorn to mini bottles of wine, and if you’re hoping to score some of the more coveted calendars, you best be ordering it soon. Here are some of my favorites 2021 food and drink Advent calendars; some are available immediately, while many start shipping November 1. Get clicking!

Sweet Treats

McCrea’s Caramels Advent Calendar, $40

caramel advent calendar
Photo courtesy of McCrea’s Candies

We love our pets, and we love our caramels, so this one’s a win-win. This 24-day calendar features pet-shaped caramels in celebration of the dogs, cats, fish and gerbils that saw us through the pandemic. With fanciful flavors like Black Lava Sea Salt, Ginger Fusion, Dark Roasted Mocha, and Cinnamon Clove, these delightfully creamy caramels are sure to be a big hit. A portion of online sales proceeds will benefit NEADS World Class Service Dogs.

Bonne Maman Limited Edition Advent Calendar, $35

Bonne Maman Advent Calendar
Photo courtesy of Bonne Maman

This 24-day calendar from everyone’s favorite preserves maker sells out every year. Behind each door is an adorable jar of Bonne Maman in unique flavors for the holiday, including Cherry with Hibiscus, Sweet Orange and Passion Fruit, Peach Jasmine, Wild Blueberry with Lemon Balm, and more. Just ordered mine!

Williams Sonoma Peppermint Bark Advent Calendar, $30

peppermint bark advent calendar
Photo courtesy of William Sonoma

I’m a sucker for this peppermint bark, made of semi-sweet chocolate, white chocolate, and crushed peppermint candies. This 24-day calendar contains mini Peppermint Bark holiday characters: 6 each of Santas, Toy Soldiers, Snowmen, and Christmas Trees.

La Maison du Chocolat Advent Calendar, $75

chocolate advent calendar
Photo courtesy of Food52

This giant ornament-shaped, 24-day calendar will take pride of place on your mantel ‘cuz it’s so darn pretty. Each numbered door hides a sweet from world-renowned French chocolatier La Maison du Chocolat, with dark chocolate pralines, pâte de fruit, mini chocolate bars, barks, and more. Oo la la!

Harry Potter Advent Calendar, $40

harry potter advent calendar
Photo courtesy of William Sonoma

Is it weird that I still dig Harry Potter (I’m a Gryffindor, if you must know)? Feast your eyes on this gem, a Williams Sonoma exclusive. This 24-day calendar has 24 treat packets filled with Harry Potter confectionery favorites like Fizzing Whizbees, Bertie Bott’s Every Flavor Beans, Gummy Slugs, and Lemon Sherbets. Be a Hermoine and order early before they’re all gone.

Sugarfina’s 8 Nights of Delight: A Hanukkah Tasting Collection, $24

Photo courtesy of Sugarfina

Jewish friends need holiday-candy calendars, too! This Kosher-certified candy collection from Sugarfina will hit the spot with eight days of their signature treats: Dark Chocolate Sea Salt, Birthday Cake, and Robin’s Egg Caramels, Sugar Cookies, Champagne Bubbles, Heavenly Sours, Cold Brew Cordials, and Dark Chocolate Toffee Almonds.

Popcorn Factory’s Holiday Popcorn Advent Calendar, $40

Popcorn Advent Calendar
Photo courtesy of The Popcorn Factory

The 12 Days of Popcorn? Yes, please. Cheese, Caramel, White Cheddar, Ranch, S’mores, and Drizzled Caramel Popcorn are all present and accounted for, along with Walker’s Mini Shortbread Cookies and Lindt Lindor Milk Chocolate Balls for good measure. Ships November 21.

Savory Treats

ALDI’s Advent Calendars, prices vary

Aldi Advent Calendar
Photo courtesy of Aldi

Folks, this is mission central for adult advent calendars. You’ll find 12 Days of Irish Cream, 24 Days of Barissimo Coffee, Sparkline Wine Countdown to the New Year, the Emporium Selection Advent Cheese Calendar, and the coveted 2021 Collection Wine Advent Calendar. In ALDI stores beginning November 3rd, so get thee hence.

In Good Taste’s Wine Advent Calendar, $135

Wine advent calendar
Photo courtesy of In Good Taste

Behind every numbered “door” on this 24-day calendar you’ll find a 187-ml bottle of wine, from rosé and viognier to grenache and sangiovese. Have a merry Christmas, indeed.

David’s Tea 24 Days of Tea, $30

David's advent calendar
Photo courtesy of David’s Tea

Time to get cozy with a different tea every day of December! You’ll find festive holiday favorites, throwback favorites, limited-quantity teas, and more. All you need is a little honey and it’s time for the perfect cuppa.

Wüfers Advent Cookie Calendar, $60

Wufers advent cookie calendar
Photo courtesy of Wüfers

Your favorite pup can join the festivities with this illustrated box filled with 24 scrumptious doggy treats, each individually wrapped. Christmas Eve means a bigger cookie, just like Santa gets (only safe for dogs, of course). All treats are made with human-grade, locally sourced ingredients.

More From Better :

Julie Chernoff, Better’s dining editor since its inception in 2007, graduated from Yale University with a degree in English — which she speaks fluently — and added a professional chef’s degree from the California Culinary Academy. She has worked for Boz Scaggs, Rick Bayless, and Wolfgang Puck (not all at the same time); and counts Northlight Theatre and Les Dames d’Escoffier International as two of her favorite nonprofits. She currently serves on the national board of MAZON: A Jewish Response to Hunger, an advocacy group addressing hunger issues in the U.S. and Israel for the nearly 46 million people — veterans, children, seniors, tribal nations, and more — who go to bed hungry every night. 

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