13 Foods You Can Make From Scratch

13 Foods You Can Make From Scratch
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13 Foods You Can Make From Scratch

Mild Taco Seasoning

No packet of taco seasoning on hand? No problem! Make your own spice mix -- minus ingredients like maltodextrin and sugar that some commercially available packets include -- with just a few simple ingredients. (You probably already have them in your pantry!)

Get the recipe for Mild Taco Seasoning

Image Credit: Sarah W. Caron


Fresh ricotta beats the stuff from a plastic container any day of the week, but it can be hard to find in the store. This quick homemade version, which calls for whole milk and a little heavy cream for richness, is very similar.

Get the recipe for Ricotta

Image Credit: Regan Burns Cafiso

Red Wine Vinegar

Don’t let an open bottle of red wine go to waste just because you don’t plan on finishing it. Turn it into your own “artisanal” vinegar instead.

Get the recipe for Red Wine Vinegar

Image Credit: Regan Burns Cafiso

Graham Crackers

You hardly ever see homemade graham crackers, but they’re really not that hard to make from scratch. This whole grain version is extra wholesome – perfect for dunking in milk.

Get the recipe for Grahams from Good to the Grain

Image Credit: Good to the Grain

Vanilla Extract

Real vanilla extract is expensive, as are vanilla beans, but you can stretch the latter a lot further by making your own extract at home.

Get the recipe for Vanilla Extract

Image Credit: Regan Burns Cafiso

Barbecue Sauce

You customize your special burger recipe, so why not make a barbecue sauce that’s also tailored to your own tastes? Best of all, you’ll find most of the ingredients right in your own pantry.

Get the recipe for Bourbon-Brown Sugar Barbecue Sauce

Image Credit: "Planet Barbecue!" Copyright 2010 by Steven Raichlen. Used by permission of Workman Publishing Co., Inc. New York. All rights reserved.


Loved by kids and adults alike, these crispy crunchy crackers only require five ingredients – one of which is water! Wrap the breadsticks with slices of prosciutto or eat them as-is.

Get the recipe for Breadsticks

Recipe courtesy of: "The Fair Trade Everyday Cookbook" by Sophie Grigson, Copyright 2008. Used by the permission of Dorling Kindersely Limited. All rights reserved.


You can buy inexpensive yogurt-making machines in most kitchen stores, but all you really need is a pot and a heat source. Sweeten homemade plain yogurt as your heart desires: with fresh fruit, honey or maple syrup.

Get the recipe for Yogurt

Image Credit: Regan Burns Cafiso

Hot Fudge

There’s nothing better than rich, molten chocolate spooned over ice cream, but most store-bought hot fudge is heavy on the high-fructose corn syrup and skimpy on actual chocolate, which this recipe has in abundance. For a zippy holiday treat, add a 1/2 teaspoon of peppermint extract.

Get the recipe for Hot Fudge

Image Credit: Regan Burns Cafiso

Butterscotch Sauce

This glossy, buttery sauce is delicious spooned over vanilla ice cream or caramelized bananas. And because it’s made from scratch there are no hidden preservatives.

Get the recipe for Butterscotch Dessert Sauce

Image Credit: The Illustrated Kitchen Bible: 1,000 Family Recipes From Around The World

Hot Sauce

Love spicy food? It might be worth it to make a batch of this super-hot condiment. While the recipe requires many ingredients, you'll probably have most of them on-hand and it takes seconds to whip it all up in a food processor.

Get the recipe for Google Hot Sauce

Recipe courtesy of: "Eat Yourself Smart" by Charlie Ayers, Copyright 2008.Used by the permission of Dorling Kindersely Limited. All rights reserved.

Cured Salmon

Really great cured salmon can go for $20 a pound or more, so why not make it yourself? This tender, tasty salmon, based on the classic Scandinavian gravlax, is coated in sugar, salt and herbs and cures in the fridge for 24 hours.

Get the recipe for Cured Salmon

Image Credit: Regan Burns Cafiso

Tartar Sauce

This classic accompaniment to fish isn’t only found in the condiment aisle. You can whip up your own fresh (preservative-free!) tartar sauce at home with just six common ingredients.

Get the recipe for Tartar Sauce

Image Credit: The Illustrated Kitchen Bible: 1,000 Family Recipes From Around The World


Here are 13 foods you had no idea you could make at home. From ricotta cheese to hot sauce, why buy it at the grocery store when you can make it yourself?

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