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27 Foods to Make from Scratch

27 Foods to Make from Scratch

There are so many reasons to make food from scratch — the cost, the taste, the lack of preservatives to name a few. When it comes down to it though, successfully tackling DIY food projects is fun and the fruits of your labors incredibly rewarding.

Think of these recipes as building blocks for great wholesome meals. They do vary in skill level and time length, but they’re all quite accessible for even the most casual home chef or baker. You won’t find much need for specialized equipment here, either.

Earlier: 8 Benefits of Home Cooking


Sauces, Spreads & Dressings

If you’re going to make anything from scratch, sauces, spreads and dressings are a great place to start. Not only are they usually cheaper to make, but the flavor of homemade sauces, spreads and dressings is unparalleled to the store-bought kind.



Maple-Mustard Barbecue Sauce

Classic Tomato Marinara

Red Pepper Hummus

Parsley Pesto with Walnuts

Low-Fat Vinaigrette

Click here for 5 tasty vegan salad dressing recipes.


Grains & Potatoes

These grains and potato recipes are a little more time-consuming, but definitely worth the time and effort. I like to think of them as an every-once-in-a-while project.

Pizza Dough




Whole-Wheat Sesame Crackers

Sourdough Starter

Rosemary Croutons

Related: 7 Delicious Vegan Bread Recipes



These recipes for cheese and yogurt are surprisingly easy. You’ll wonder why you ever paid $4.99/pound for store-bought mozzarella! You will need to get your hands on some special ingredients and supplies to make cheese, however.


Including recipes for mozzarella, soft goat cheese & mascarpone.



Meat & Dairy Substitutes

Meat and dairy substitutes can be pricey and difficult to find in some places, so why not make them from scratch?



Cashew Nut Cheese

Almond Milk

Creamy Soy Yogurt


Pickles & Other Fermented Foods

Move beyond dill and bread & butter — when you’re making pickles at home,try out unconventional flavors. Sauerkraut, too, is a great food to experiment with flavor-wise.




For more tips on fermenting vegetables, Click Here.



I have a love-hate relationship with ice pops, in that I love them in theory but the store-bought kind taste so artificial. I’m looking forward to next summer so I can experiment with all sorts of fun and interesting flavors!


Ice Pops (10 recipes)

Ice Cream

Read more: All recipes, Appetizers & Snacks, Basics, Conscious Consumer, Diet & Nutrition, Eco-friendly tips, Food, Green, Health, Side Dishes, Vegan, Vegetarian, , , , , , , , , ,

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Katie Waldeck

Katie is a freelance writer focused on pets, food and women’s issues. A Chicago native and longtime resident of the Pacific Northwest, Katie now lives in Oakland, California.


+ add your own
1:20PM PDT on Apr 2, 2013

I've found delicious recipes in this article.Thanks for sharing

8:05AM PST on Mar 1, 2012

ver nice ,ideas,...

5:37AM PST on Feb 25, 2012

I am always looking for recipes for store bought products - as I can't eat some of the preservatives that are commonly used in the food industry.

For any one reading this who would like more homemade recipes, the book Nourishing Traditions by Sally Fallon has a TON of wonderful recipes to try. Her perspectives challenge how we think about food, and the articles are an interesting read, in addition to the yummy recipes.

9:32PM PST on Feb 23, 2012

These look so good :)
Thanks for the article, can't wait to try some of these!

4:14PM PST on Feb 23, 2012

What a great article, thanks so much for all these fabulous recipes...

2:50PM PST on Feb 23, 2012

Kat E., not everyone is fortunate enough to have parents or even parents who will teach them how to cook. My mother, for instance, was obsessive about doing everything around the house herself. So to learn how to cook, I took courses when I left home. Now I know how to cook or prepare almost anything, from salads to macrobiotics to the Standard American Diet. Really, this should be taught in elementary schools (minus the S.A.D. diet), in addition to family teachings, if available. And I'm not talking about Easy Bake Ovens!

2:09PM PST on Feb 23, 2012

I wish more people would cook at home and stop relying on packaged food and eating out. I am shocked by the number of people that don't cook and don't teach their children how to cook. Being in the kitchen with my mother and my grandmother were some of the most special moments of my life, not just learning cooking but an opportunity to talk and learn.

8:13AM PST on Feb 23, 2012

Wow. Some of these sound so good!! I can't wait to try the Cashew Nut Cheese, the Simply Sauerkraut, and the Ice Cream. I hope you don't mind, I made copies!!
Thanks for the recipes!

8:33PM PST on Feb 21, 2012


6:37PM PST on Feb 19, 2012

Nice thanks!

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