38 thoughtful, work-appropriate gifts under $50 that your boss will love

If you buy through our links, we may earn money from affiliate partners. Learn more.

the sill hoya heart plants

  • If you have a great boss, show them your appreciation with a thoughtful (but office-friendly) gift.
  • Below, we rounded up some of our favorite work-appropriate gifts, from tech to coloring books.
  • Looking for more gifts from Insider Reviews? Shop gift ideas for everyone in your life here.

Whether virtually or in person, you spend the majority of your day with your coworkers. If you like them enough, you might even plan on getting them a gift as a thank you for all the good times in and out of the office.

Giving a gift to a great boss – someone who makes a big difference in how you approach daily work activities and grow professionally – can feel a little tricky. Since they’re your manager, it’s important that your gift maintains professionalism but still gets the message across that you appreciate their hard work.

Below, we’ve rounded up 38 great gifts for your boss, from useful desk accessories to gorgeous notebooks.

See all 38 affordable gifts for your boss:

This list includes a Sponsored Product that has been suggested by Crowd Cow. It also meets our editorial criteria in terms of quality and value.*

A fun desk toy

Gifts for boss Speks

Speks Unblocks, $14.95, available at Speks

The makers of our favorite magnetic desk toy have a new way to reduce stress and keep your boss entertained. With these colorful magnetic blocks, they can take a mental break or use the opportunity to refocus their mind as they build creative sculptures. 

Trendy olive oil that elevates any meal

Best gifts for boss - The Brightland Alive Olive Oil on a marble countertop with kitchen supplies

Alive Olive Oil, $37, available at Brightland

If they spend a lot of time in the kitchen, they probably already know the merits of high-quality olive oil. A drizzle of Alive from Brightland adds a vibrant, zesty flavor to any dish. Plus, the beautiful bottle will look great on display in their kitchen.

A relaxing adult coloring book

Best gifts for boss - Cover of The Art of Mandala Adult Coloring Book

The Art of Mandala, $4.99, available at Amazon

Studies focused on the benefits of adult coloring books often reveal mandalas are the most effective designs for relaxation and induction of a meditative state. Their complex geometric patterns can be traced back to both ancient Buddhist and Hindu traditions.

This affordable book contains 50 mandalas that vary in complexity and detail, so you can work your way up to the most challenging patterns slowly or you can work on a simple design when time is limited. 

A virtual helper

Best gifts for boss - A Google Nest Mini on a coffee table

Google Nest Mini, from $49.99, available at Walmart

The Google Nest Mini offers a compact, affordable smart speaker with Google Assistant built-in. They’ll love being able to dim lights, control the volume on their TV, check the weather, and more, all with just the sound of their voice. Read our full review of the Google nest Mini here.

This option is best for people who prefer Google’s tech ecosystem. You may also want to consider the Amazon Echo Dot for Amazon users.

A personalized video message from their favorite celebrity

CAmeo

Cameo video, from $1, available on Cameo

If your workplace is less formal, you could get them a personalized message from their favorite celebrity. Whether they love a certain musician, reality TV star, comedian, or actor in a show you’ve both bonded over, there’s a good chance you can find them on Cameo. The price will depend on the star, but there are plenty of options.

A desk-friendly succulent garden

the sill hoya heart plants

Hoya Heart Plant, $20, available at The Sill

This heart-shaped succulent provides the perfect touch of greenery to any space. The miniature plant is pet-friendly and thrives in bright direct light. 

A debut cookbook from a Michelin-starred chef

Best gifts for boss - Cover of My Korea: Traditional Flavors, Modern Recipes

“My Korea” by Hooni Kim, $22.94, at Amazon

Michelin-starred chef Hooni Kim’s debut cookbook is a crash course in the essentials of Korean cuisine. The book’s tagline of “traditional flavors, modern recipes” is exactly what you should expect — from its take on Dolsot Bibimbap to Budae Jjigae to Hanjan’s Spicy Rice Cakes. 

A face mask they can work out in

Best gifts for boss - A man wearing the black UA SPORTSMASK from Under Armour

UA Sportmask, $30, available at Under Armour

Under Armour’s Sportmask was designed with athletes in mind, as reflected in its breathability, water resistance, and UPF 50+ sun protection. Thanks to the Sportsmask, they won’t have to sacrifice their workout routine or their comfort.

Comfortable house slippers

Best gifts for boss - Everlane The ReNew Slipper

The ReNew Slipper, $50, available at Everlane

Most of us are spending a lot more time at home these days. And it’s more enjoyable to do that when you’re wearing some of the most comfortable slippers on the planet. We are big fans of the ReNew Slippers from Everlane — and they’re relatively inexpensive.

The best pens for their office

Best gifts for boss - Muji Gel Ink Ball Point Pen

Muji Gel Ink Ball Point Pens, $5.53, available at Amazon

Muji’s fine 0.38mm tip pen is a cult favorite — including among our teammates. According to the company, the water-based ink enables smooth writing, minimal bleeding, and a mechanism that helps keep the ink from drying out. If they write handwritten notes for work, they may have an outsized appreciation for this small but impactful upgrade. They’re sold out on Muji, but you can still find them on Amazon.

A set of notebooks with a bullet journaling system

gifts for boss 10

Word. 3 Pack Lined Pocket Notebooks, $10.99, available at Amazon

These small books are the perfect size for jotting down quick notes and to-do lists. Each page is printed with circles to help them set up an efficient, organized bullet journal. 

A custom book embosser

Best gifts for boss - A custom book embosser

Custom Stamp, from $15, available at Etsy

This unique, thoughtful gift embosses books with “from the library of [their name]” by pressing down on it like a hole-puncher — it’s the kind of thing most people would never buy themselves but will genuinely cherish if they receive it as a gift. They can use it on books as well as envelopes. 

Three months of great hardcover books delivered to their door

Book of the Month subscription

A Book of the Month subscription, from $49.99, available at Book of the Month

Book of the Month has been around for more than 90 years — and it’s credited with hand-selecting and helping popularize books that range from Ernest Hemingway’s “The Sun Also Rises” to J.D. Salinger’s “Catcher in the Rye.” With your gift, your boss will get to choose between five new hardcover options the book club suggests every month.

Their favorite food from across the US

goldbelly

A meal from Goldbelly, prices vary

No matter where they’ve spent the year, you can send them their favorite foods from across the US by using Goldbelly — the company will deliver everything from Junior’s cheesecake to Lou Malnati pizza to their doorstep. Or, give them a gift card so they can pick out a treat for themselves.

A kit built for the work-from-home lifestyle

Gifts for boss WFH Survival

Pinch Provisions Work From Home Survival Kit, $20, available at Bloomingdale’s

If they’re getting tired of their office being in their living room, they’ll appreciate this kit that takes a bit of the strain out of working from home. A conference call bingo card, desk yoga guide, and fidget cube are just a few of the quirky (yet useful) items they’ll find in this set.

A desk sign with a hint of humor

Gifts for boss office sign

Desk Name Plates, from $14.99, available at Etsy

If you and your boss have a humorous rapport going, they could get a kick out of this witty take on the everyday office signage. Plus, the sleek wooden and gold design let the sign speak for itself without appearing as overly kitschy. 

A healthy snack subscription

love with food $26.97

Gift a Love With Food subscription, from $8.99/month

Love with Food delivers organic, all-natural, or gluten-free snacks that serial snackers won’t feel guilty about eating. The better-for-you chips, candy, and bars come from new and trending food brands, so they’ll always be excited to fuel their work day. 

A comfortable travel-sized pillow

casper $35

Nap Pillow, $32, available at Casper

Not that we’re encouraging sleeping on the job, but this mini pillow does make spontaneous naps very tempting. It’s the smaller but equally comfortable and supportive version of one of our favorite pillows and even has its own pillowcase and travel bag. 

A leather business card holder

leatherology $35

Business Card Case, $45, available at Leatherology

First impressions matter, which is why they should be pulling out business cards from a handsome leather case. It has a no-fuss, invisible magnetic closure and can hold up to 20 cards. Choose from pebbled or smooth leathers in a variety of colors, or upgrade to premium leather. You can also add a monogram for an additional $10. 

A soft throw to fight freezing office temperatures

gifts for boss 1

Eddie Bauer Sherpa Throw, $39.99, available at Kohl’s

Owners of this large, cozy throw only have good things to say about it. It’s plush and warm, with one side made of micro-fleece and the other made of sherpa fleece.

A gift card to a popular women’s workwear shop

mmlafleur $50

Gift Card, from $50, available at MM.LaFleur

Popular women’s workwear brand MM.LaFleur makes excellent pants and blazers that are definitely an investment, but totally worth the price. Its Bento Box contains these stylish and comfortable wardrobe staples to take the headache out of getting dressed in the morning. 

A phone dock that also holds flowers

uncommon goods $32

Bedside Smartphone Vase, $32, available at Uncommon Goods

It’s a pretty vase that pulls double-duty, holding both the fresh bouquet that brightens their day and the electronics that keeps them productive. There’s a groove at the bottom of the stand to keep unsightly charging cords out of the way, too. 

A lightweight portable keyboard

Gifts for boss Logitech

Logitech K480 Bluetooth Multidevice Keyboard, $34.99, available at Best Buy

With a slim Bluetooth keyboard, your boss can leave the laptop at home and still get work done while traveling. We like this one because it’s quiet and comfortable to type on. 

Their new favorite way to make delicious cold brew

Blue Bottle, $35

Hario Cold Brew Bottle, $35, available at Blue Bottle

If there’s anything that can power them through a long workday, it’s cold brew. Just combine water and ground coffee (not included), and stick the bottle in the fridge for a refreshing caffeinated treat. 

A box of Korean sheet masks

facetory $19.90

Seven Lux 1 Month Gift Subscription, $19.90, available at FaceTory

The Korean sheet masks in this box are sure to bring some much-needed relief to any stressed-out boss. The brands, which often use out-of-the-ordinary ingredients, are usually difficult to find outside of Korea, but FaceTory makes them both accessible and affordable

A delicious and unique food gift

gifts for boss 11

Make-Your-Own Four Preserve and Butter Sampler, $27.99, available at Harry & David

Mix and match jars of fig preserves, triple berry preserves, apple butter, pumpkin butter, and more to create a sweet breakfast starter kit. The size is also perfect for their desk if they ever want a small and sweet afternoon pick-me-up. 

*Note: This is currently out of stock.

A key cable they can bring anywhere

native union $29.99

Native Union Key Cable, from $29.99, available at Amazon

This portable cable charges up Apple devices quickly and claims to be six times stronger than the standard lightning cable, boasting a 10,000-bend lifespan. The knotted cable also looks great and makes it easy to fish out the charger from their bag. 

A versatile toiletry bag to bring on their travels

dagne dover $35

Small Hunter Toiletry Bag, $35, available at Dagne Dover

Dagne Dover’s durable and quick-drying neoprene is most notably featured in the brand’s popular backpacks and gym bags, but it’s also well-suited for this small bag that organizes your boss’s life on the go. It includes a removable air mesh pouch and is available in a range of dusky colors and camo patterns. 

A durable suitcase

gifts for boss 8

The Mini, from $65, available at Away

Away’s highly popular mini versions of its internet-famous suitcase are back. The light and stylish polycarbonate accessory can store and protect your boss’ essentials like jewelry and accessories — and it’s nowhere near as expensive as a real suitcase. 

Enjoyable, sustainable seafood and meat

Corproate gifts Crowd Cow

Check out Crowd Cow’s gift bundles

Crowd Cow specializes in environmentally conscious seafood and meat that doesn’t sacrifice quality, all the way down to its 100% carbon-neutral packaging. If you’re not sure which gift bundle is best based on your boss’ dietary preferences, stocking stuffers like jerky and rubs also make great choices.

*Sponsored by Crowd Cow

Desk cable clips that keep cords neat and organized

Shintop Cable Clips, Desk Cable Drop

Shintop 6-Piece Cable Clips Set, $5.69, available on Amazon

This small but practical gift will sort out their jumble of cords for good. If you’re worried that the set doesn’t look significant enough, you can pair a few of these cable clips with a nice card and some candy. 

An insulated tumbler

gifts for boss 2

Hydro Flask 32-Ounce Travel Tumbler Cup, $26.21, available at Hydro Flask

The ergonomic comfort of a classic tall cup plus Hydro Flask’s signature double-wall vacuum insulation makes this a coffee or tea vessel they’ll always keep on hand. It keeps their beverage hot for up to six hours and includes a press-in lid to prevent spills. 

A luxurious candle

otherland $36

Otherland Candles, $36, available at Otherland

With its beautiful packaging, unique scents, and special matchbox messages, Otherland turns the otherwise ordinary candle into a cherished gift. Take advantage of its limited-edition scents while they last, or find a suitable match in its diverse Core Collection. 

A way to celebrate the end of Q1

Gifts for boss Moose Munch

Moose Munch Premium Popcorn Classic Tin, $49.99, available at Harry & David

Send them this assortment of sweet and savory popcorn to get the new quarter started. This particular edition contains four decadent flavors of Moose Munch: classic caramel, milk chocolate, dark chocolate, and milk chocolate s’mores. 

A decorative trinket tray

Gifts for boss Jonathan Adler dish

Jonathan Adler Hollywood Tray, $49.30, available at Bloomingdale’s

A sturdy and stylish stoneware tray from Jonathan Adler comes in handy for holding jewelry, accessories, and stray trinkets. 

A protective cover for their AirPods case

podskinz $7.95

PodSkinz AirPods Case Protective Silicone Cover, $4.95, available at Amazon

Apple AirPods: incredibly convenient, but also incredibly easy to lose and scratch up. A silicone cover is a cheap and attractive way to protect the case protecting their beloved earbuds. 

The newest smart home device

Amazon Echo Dot 2020

Echo Dot (4th Gen), $49.99, available at Target

Amazon’s newest version of its bestselling smart speaker has an improved sound and look. Whether they want to coordinate a smooth-sailing smart home experience or enjoy music out loud, the Echo Dot can keep up. 

A reusable utensil kit that helps them cut down on waste

gifts for boss 7

Utensil Kit, $24, available at United by Blue

When they leave the office to grab lunch (or if they’re into camping and hiking), they can use these stainless steel utensils instead of plastic or paper options. It folds up conveniently so it can go with them anywhere. 

Read the original article on Business Insider