21 Cool New Orleans Souvenirs to Buy in the Big Easy

Heading to New Orleans soon and hoping to make some souvenir (and/or gift) shopping part of your trip?

We love bringing bits and pieces of different destinations home with us, and NOLA is no exception–especially when it comes to delicious foodie souvenirs from New Orleans!

If you’re curious about what to add to your NOLA shopping list, we’ve rounded up exactly what to buy in New Orleans here, from hot sauce to Mardi Gras trinkets and beyond.

Here are the best New Orleans souvenirs to consider picking up on your next trip to the Big Easy!

kate storm and ranger storm inside cafe beignet during 3 days new orleans itinerary
Some links in this post may be affiliate links. If you make a purchase through one of these links, we may earn a small commission at no extra cost to you. Please see our disclosure policy for more detail.

The Best Foodie Souvenirs to Buy in New Orleans

With a cuisine as detailed and unique as NOLA’s, is it any surprise that this souvenir roundup runs heavily to food?

Whether you’re looking for distinctive gifts from New Orleans to bring home to loved ones or you just want to stock your pantry with a stash of Creole and Cajun flavors, these foodie souvenirs have you covered.

READ NEXT
How to Spend One Perfect Day in New Orleans (Itinerary + Tips)

Hot Sauce

The ultimate New Orleans souvenir is as obvious as it is delicious: hot sauce.

Options include everything from mass-produced staple brands (locals will heartily recommend Crystal for this) to niche, small-batch products sold in local shops and markets–and yes, taste-testing before you buy is often an option.

Whatever your exact taste in hot sauce is, there’s a flavor for you available in NOLA!

bowl of new orleans gumbo with bottles of ot sauce visible behind it

Cajun Seasoning

Like hot sauce, cajun seasoning is a classic NOLA souvenir option that will allow you to bring local flavors into your kitchen long after your trip ends.

READ NEXT
25+ Best Weekend Getaways in the South

And, also like hot sauce, options abound from mass-produced staples to niche products.

Cajun seasoning is an absolute staple in our kitchen, and we keep it stocked year-round.

We use it most frequently by shaking generous helpings over chicken and fish, but the options are endless!

selection of cajun seasoning on display in a new orleans gift shop

Olive Salad

The muffuletta is one of New Orleans’ most famous sandwiches for very good reason!

Hearty, delicious, and meant to be shared (seriously: don’t plan on eating a full muffuletta from Central Grocery by yourself… at least in one sitting), they’re a must-eat for us every time we’re in the city.

Want to bring the flavor of muffulettas home with you?

Consider picking up a few jars of olive salad to add to your sandwiches at home!

portion of a muffuletta with olive salad visible, which is one of the best new orleans souvenirs to buy

Beignet Mix

One of the most popular souvenirs from New Orleans is easily a container of beignet mix from Cafe du Monde or Cafe Beignet–it’s so popular that you can even pick it up at the airport!

READ NEXT
NOLA for Bookworms: Best Books About New Orleans & Coolest Bookstores

That being said, this is one souvenir option we haven’t been tempted to try ourselves.

Part of the charm of beignets for us is the setting, and we’re happy to keep enjoying them as a New Orleans-specific treat–but there’s no denying that beignet mix is one of the top things to buy in New Orleans as far as visitors are concerned.

beignet mix and chicory coffee from cafe du monde for sale as gifts from new orleans things to buy

King Cake

If you’re lucky enough to be visiting New Orleans during Carnival season–or perhaps a bit before, as some places do like to get a jump on things–add a King Cake to your NOLA shopping list!

This classic New Orleans treat is not only a sugary, cinnamony delight, but it’s also the origin of one of the Big Easy’s most famous traditions: the King Cake baby.

Hidden inside each King Cake is a plastic baby–and whoever finds it in their slice is responsible for keeping the merriment of the season going, typically by either providing the next King Cake or throwing a Carnival party.

mardi gras king cake iced and surrounded by mardi gras beads

Pralines

Part cookie, part candy (or maybe it’s more accurate to say a cookie-shaped candy), pralines are a traditional sweet in New Orleans (and Savannah).

They’re also very easy to transport home with you!

READ NEXT
55 Best Things to Do in Savannah, GA (+ Food Tips!)

Traditional pralines are made with milk, butter, sugar, and pecans, though can find versions with all kinds of twists and unique flavors around the city.

It’s also worth adding that while you should bring some pralines home as a souvenir (and they make excellent NOLA-themed gifts, too), nothing beats a still-warm, freshly-made praline, so be sure to sample at least one fresh praline when visiting New Orleans!

new orleans praline being held up in front of shop sign, one of the best gifts to buy new orleans souvenirs

New Orleans Cookbook

Want to bring not only a few treats or ingredients but the ability to replicate NOLA’s unique flavors home with you?

Consider picking up a Creole or Cajun cookbook as a souvenir from New Orleans!

If you want to get the lay of the land before trying the recipes out yourself, the popular cooking demonstrations at the New Orleans School of Cooking (complete with an included multi-course meal) are a fun way to up your skills before heading home.

fried oysters on a new orleans food tour, one of the best things to do in new orleans this weekend

Decor + Collectibles to Buy in NOLA

Does your idea of the perfect gift or souvenir run more toward home decor than anything else?

If so, these souvenirs from New Orleans might be right for you!

READ NEXT
The Epic, Exciting 3 Days in New Orleans Itinerary

Mardi Gras Mask

Perhaps the most ubiquitous of any New Orleans souvenir out there, Mardi Gras masks aren’t just for Carnival season in NOLA: you can buy them year-round!

Prices and quality vary dramatically, from inexpensive souvenir masks all the way up to one-of-a-kind art pieces.

Suffice it to say that the most inexpensive masks are far from unique–I swear I’ve seen many identical masks for sale in both New Orleans and across the ocean in Venice over the years–but they do make a fun photo prop during a night out!

mardi gras masks for sale as gifts from new orleans shopping guide

Original Art

New Orleans is a city that thrives on art of all mediums, and bringing a piece of local art home is a fantastic way to commemorate a trip to the Big Easy.

Royal Street in the French Quarter is famous for its seemingly endless rows of galleries (Chartres Street has its share, too), and even if you don’t plan to splurge, window shopping is a fun addition to any walking tour of the neighborhood.

READ NEXT
21 Intoxicating New Orleans Quotes to Inspire Your Trip to the Big Easy

Antiques

From flea markets to ritzy, glamorous shops in the French Quarter, browsing antiques (or even just enjoying some general vintage and second-hand shopping) is a fantastic way to pick up a truly unique souvenir from New Orleans!

antique and home furnishing store interior as seen when shopping in new orleans louisiana

Miscellaneous Things to Buy in New Orleans

Books

New Orleans has a long history of inspiring artists of all kinds–including writers!

READ NEXT
13 Epic East Coast Cities for Weekend Getaways

The Big Easy is one of my favorite cities in the world to read about, and whether you’re looking for a novel set in NOLA, a dense history book, or something else, there’s an option for you.

Our detailed guide to literary New Orleans covers both the best books about the city and the best bookstores in town to find them in!

interior of crescent city books with stack of prints on the left and bookshelves on the right in new orleans

Music

New Orleans and music go hand-in-hand, so why not bring some of it home with you?

Whether you’re perusing music shops for classic jazz records or CDs or clicking “download” on a local artist’s album after hearing them play live, music is a wonderful way to bring the sounds of New Orleans home with you.

Virtually every busker and performer in NOLA will direct you to their social media these days–albums will be easy to find!

3 Days in New Orleans Itinerary: Outdoor Jazz Band

Fleur de Lis-Themed Items

As the symbol of New Orleans, you’ll find fleur de lis’ just about everywhere throughout the city: carefully topping wrought iron fences, printed onto flags, incorporated into Mardi Gras decor, and much more.

Whether you’d like to purchase a fleur de lis-shaped baked good, piece of jewelry, cookie cutter, baking dish, or just about anything else you can imagine, there’s an option available somewhere in NOLA!

READ NEXT
25 Best Road Trips in the USA (Itinerary Ideas + Tips!)

Voodoo and Occult Items

For some of the most unique New Orleans souvenirs possible, head to one of the many local occult shops, where voodoo remains a living practice, and not simply an offering to tourists.

Charms, dolls, gris gris bags, and much, much more are available in a voodoo shop–and for a gift that indisputably screams New Orleans, it’s hard to imagine a more memorable place to look.

collection of voodoo items laid out on a table with red candles

Inexpensive (But Fun) New Orleans Souvenirs

Looking for something small, affordable, and easy to transport that you can bring home from NOLA?

These easy-to-find items might belong on your New Orleans shopping list!

READ NEXT
3 Days in Charleston SC: The Perfect Weekend in Charleston Itinerary

Magnets

A ubiquitous souvenir choice all over the world, NOLA-themed magnets are inexpensive, extremely easy to find, and very simple to pack on your way home.

There is a huge variety of magnets for sale in gift shops around the city, so if you’d like to buy one, I’d recommend waiting until you see one that sticks out to you.

collection of signs in the french quarter nola, one closest to camera says mint julep

Mugs

Like magnets, mugs are a favorite souvenir from around the world: inexpensive, personal, and something that is easily incorporated into your daily life back home.

What better way is there to reminisce about your vacation than to be reminded of it every time you go to make a hot drink and pull your mug from New Orleans out of the cabinet?

READ NEXT
17 Spectacular Southern USA Road Trip Itinerary Ideas

Shot Glasses

… but while mugs are cozy and lovely, NOLA is a nightlife city at the end of the day.

Looking to reminisce with a different kind of drink?

Shot glasses are cheap souvenirs that are both easy to find and easy to transport.

T-Shirts

Novelty T-shirts in just about every style imaginable are easy to find when shopping in New Orleans, and make very popular souvenirs!

new orleans gift shop facade in the french quarter, displaying fun things to buy in new orleans

Postcards

Postcards are the ultimate combination of inexpensive, easy to pack, and easily personalized, making them one of the best budget souvenirs from New Orleans!

For extra personalization, consider filling it out with vacation memories during your trip and sending it home to yourself!

READ NEXT
25 Best Christmas Vacations in the USA

Christmas Ornaments

Christmas ornaments from around the world are one of our favorite souvenirs to collect, and you’ll find beautiful options in New Orleans year-round!

collection of stained glass fleur de lis decor in new orleans

Mardi Gras Beads

Like masks, Mardi Gras beads aren’t just for Carnival season in New Orleans–at least as far as the visitors are concerned.

If you’d like to bring some home with you, you’ll be able to find them in just about any souvenir shop or market around the city.

The traditional option would include opting for purple (representing justice), green (representing faith), and gold (representing power) beads.

mardi gras beads for sale in new orleans louisiana

Tips for Souvenir Shopping in New Orleans

Don’t overlook basic grocery stores for foodie souvenirs.

Simple foodie souvenirs like hot sauce and cajun seasoning don’t necessarily need to be purchased at a kitschy gift shop in the French Quarter!

Stop into any standard grocery store in the New Orleans area, and you’ll be able to load up to your heart’s content–at good prices.

For example, Slap Ya Mama cajun seasoning is a staple in our house, but we’d never buy it in a gift shop (though we have been known to order it online from the company website if we run out when across the country–another valid option for NOLA souvenir shopping).

READ NEXT
25 Best Weekend Getaways in Texas

Have a plan for what to buy in NOLA before starting your trip.

You won’t need to stick to your plan exactly, of course–shopping spontaneously can be part of the fun of travel–but having a general idea of what you want to look for when shopping in New Orleans can help add structure to your browsing.

In some cases, it can also help limit indecisiveness (for me, anyway)!

halloween masks and dolls for sale in an oddities store on magazine street in new orleans
Just your everyday odds and ends for sale in a shop on Magazine Street!

Shop around before purchasing simple souvenirs.

When it comes to small, cheap items that are a dime a dozen in the French Quarter, like inexpensive Mardi Gras masks and beads, magnets, T-shirts, etc., be sure to visit a few shops before deciding what to buy in NOLA!

Many of these simple souvenirs are sold all over the place, but prices can vary–it’s worth checking out at least a few shops to be sure you’re getting a reasonable deal.

stand in french market nola selling mardi gras masks and beads

Note the trip and date of purchase on your New Orleans souvenirs.

You may find it easy to remember when and where you purchased your beautiful souvenirs from New Orleans now–but give it a decade or three, and you may be very glad you noted the place and year of purchase with the item!

READ NEXT
USA Bucket List: 50 Best Places to Visit in the US

We tend to write the info on the bottom of all the home decor pieces or Christmas ornaments we purchase around the world and love the tradition of it.

It’s also a great way to help bring old memories to the surface when decorating our Christmas tree each year!

collection of books about new orleans on the shelf in a shop

Read More About Visiting New Orleans (+ the South)

Planning a trip to the Big Easy soon and want to keep reading?

You can browse all of our 100+ USA blog posts here, or check out these guides:

4 photos of things to buy in new orleans, fleur de lis, king cake, mardi gras masks, oddities. black and purple text reads 'what to buy in new orleans'
About Kate Storm
Image of the author, Kate Storm

In May 2016, I left my suburban life in the USA and became a full-time traveler. Since then, I have visited 50+ countries on 5 continents and lived in Portugal, developing a special love of traveling in Europe (especially Italy) along the way. Today, along with my husband Jeremy and dog Ranger, I’m working toward my eventual goal of splitting my life between Europe and the USA.

Leave a Comment