Kelli Brunson from
Homemade, sugar-free ketchup from

Making food from scratch is what food bloggers do. It’s their cup of tea. But sometimes even I am surprised by the recipes that bloggers come up with. So why would you ever care to make your own ketchup or Cool Whip? Reasons provided from bloggers range from health benefits to just to see if you can.

Homemade ketchup. Kelly, from Ambitions Kitchen, finally got her chance to make homemade ketchup after her store-bought stock pile was all used. The texture turned out a little different than store bought, but the flavor was “awesome!” She said the best part of making it at home is that you get “to control how much sweetness to add ... and what type of sweetener to use.” So if you’re worried about the high fructose sweetener that is usually added to ketchup, this could be the recipe for you. Plus, it’s easy to freeze the leftovers.

Cheese crackers. Heidi, author of the blog 101 Cookbooks, made her own cheese crackers. If you’re concerned that the Cheese Nips and Cheez-Its you’re purchasing aren’t cutting it, Heidi says these crackers “deliver big-time on the cheese flavor, are snappy and crisp, and you can bake them off at your convenience.” They contain butter, whole wheat flour, mustard powder, salt, cheese and vinegar. No hard-to-pronounce preservatives here.

Ice cream sandwiches. Deb, from Smitten Kitchen, created her own ice cream sandwiches because she has her “longstanding affair with creating homemade versions of things you normally buy at the grocery store, be they Oreos, goldfish crackers, graham crackers, fudge popsicles, pop tarts or marshmallows.” She promises that “the homemade versions always taste a zillion times better and contain no mystery ingredients.” Although they look absolutely mouth-watering, she warns that the recipe caused a “spectacular mess” in her kitchen.

Cool Whip-like topping. Katie, from Chocolate Covered Katie, came up with a recipe to make a Cool Whip-like topping from scratch. She simply uses vegan-friendly coconut milk and sugar. Although it is very simple to make, Katie promises you’ll be eating it plain with a spoon.

Karen is the author of 365 Days of Slow Cooking visit her blog at