The holidays are here and it's the time of year when people feel most generous and want to help others by donating.  Donations are always appreciated throughout the year, but this is the time of year local food banks receive the most help in feeding those less fortunate in our communities.  But when making that donation this year you might be a bit more creative and help add flavor to your donation.

A recent survey on listed lots of ways folks can help out their local food banks by donating items that might be overlooked during normal food drives.  People who have donated their time or actually worked at a food bank recommend donating these items instead of the usual can of green beans.

Here are a few of the items that food banks could use most.

Canned Fruits - something sweet is sure to be a treat for those dependent on assistance.

Soup Packets - just add hot water and poof - an easy to make and a nutritious meal, not to mention a great way to warm up on a cold winter day.

Crackers - they can keep for longer periods of time and can be enjoyed with things like cheese, peanut butter, soup, etc...

Chocolate - Not really a necessity, but think about eating chocolate and how it makes you feel.  This would be a treat for anyone around the holidays for sure!

But the biggest item that local food banks could use is:

Spices - simple things like seasoned salt, pepper, oregano, basil and others can go along way to making a blah meal taste great!!  But according to people who work at food banks, spices are often overlooked when people are considering donations.