Whole Story

The Official Whole Foods Market® Blog

10 Spring Cleaning Photos That Will Make Type A Cooks Swoon

By Paula Forbes, April 9, 2018  |  More Posts by Paula Forbes

Credit: @withsarale
There’s just something about a hyper-organized kitchen. Something ridiculously satisfying, almost soothing. And while it may seem a daunting task to get all your containers labeled and your shelves neatly arranged, an organized refrigerator or pantry can be the calm in the middle of the weeknight dinner storm. We asked 10 of our favorites how they stay so organized, and they shared tips sure to inspire you before the next grocery shop.
The Organizer: Minneapolis-based nail designer Sara Le (@withsarale) could definitely have a second gig as a pantry designer. Not only is this space well-organized, it’s also gorgeous!
Spring Cleaning Tip: “Keeping my pantry organized is fun and simple when using glass jars labeled with a white paint marker. I have a clear visual when it’s time to restock my bulk items such as pasta, rice or cereal. I store produce in wire baskets so I can see what’s fresh and healthy snacks and canned goods in large baskets, so they are easily accessible.”
The Organizer: Of course, stylist and photographer Katie Jacobs — @katiejacobsnashville — has a picture-perfect kitchen in her Nashville home. And when it comes to dry storage, she is not messing around.
Spring Cleaning Tip: “Organizing your pantry with labeled clear containers just makes life more simple. It’s easy to see what you’re out of which makes grocery shopping a cinch, and the air-tight containers keep food fresher longer.”
The Organizer: Ellen Charlotte Marie has an app called Effortlessly Healthy, and she certainly makes pantry organization look effortless as well.
Spring Cleaning Tips: “I like to use a combination of up-cycled jars from jams or olives along with screw top jars and hinged canisters to store my dry goods. Hinged top canisters are great for storing everyday ingredients that you need to access quickly and easily.”
Credit: @raw_manda
The Organizer: Amanda Le, a Los Angeles-based vegan Instagrammer and blogger who, as you can see above, has a very serious seeds and nuts storage situation. You can read all of her nuts and seeds storage tips on her blog.
Spring Cleaning Tip: “I typically buy nuts, seeds, beans, grains, etc. in bulk. I store what I’ll eat in the upcoming weeks or months in the pantry and the rest in the fridge/freezer. If they’re not stored properly, they‘ll go rancid or stale quickly. If you have enough fridge or freezer space, I would recommend popping them in there right away to keep everything fresh — you don’t have to worry about any food going to waste.”
The Organizer: Bi-coastal blogger and Instagrammer Meera of Nutriliciously keeps an eye on the environment through bulk shopping and reusable storage.
Spring Cleaning Tip: “I like buying bulk items and storing in recycled jars (I also reuse pasta jars and glass jelly jars) and spices in vintage tins I collect while traveling. I love dried beans, nuts and granola from Whole Foods Market bulk bins for their quality, and I can buy the quantity I use regularly. This reduces package and food wastage.”
The Organizer: Kristen Hong is a California wellness blogger with some serious rainbow-colored refrigerator game.
Spring Cleaning Tip: “I pre-cut and stock veggies in clear jars so I can see exactly what ingredients I have on hand and when it’s time to make a run to the produce department. I also like to store my fresh herbs in water so they stay fresh longer.”
The Organizer: South Florida-based marathoner and blogger Sanaz of S Runs for Cake has a knack for getting her kitchen up and running.
Spring Cleaning Tip: “My biggest fridge tip is storing condiments on a lazy susan, which saves a ton of space and lets you easily get to everything with a turn of a finger.”
The Organizer: Wellness blogger and plant-based cook Sapana Chandra, of Real + Vibrant, is based in Seattle and she’s a huge avocado fan.
Spring Cleaning Tip: “Since I enjoy avocados on a daily basis, I buy enough for an entire week. While I store the avocados on my kitchen counter until they’re fully ripe, I move them to my fridge immediately after where they keep well for up to a week (sometimes longer)!”
The Organizer: Wellness coach and blogger Caroline Ginolfi of Plant Based Blonde lives in Philadelphia where she loves to eat her greens.
Spring Cleaning Tip: “I try to buy only organic leafy greens so I love that Whole Foods Market sells organic herbs — a leafy green that is often over looked. I keep them in a jar of water in the fridge to keep them fresh for weeks at a time!”
Credit: @kalejunkie
The Organizer: Nicole M. is an Instagrammer and mother of two who finds the key to calming the chaos is planning ahead.
Spring Cleaning Tip: “I have a Sunday routine. Every Sunday, I wake up and go through my refrigerator and toss anything that's expired and make a quick grocery list so that I know what to buy for the upcoming week. Once that's done, I head straight to the store and pick up most of the produce I need for the week, as well as a few other items, such as yogurts, almondmilks, pasta, pasta sauces and the like. Once I come home, I move quickly. I remove everything from the refrigerator and place it on the counter. Then I clean the inside, and start putting everything back in, grouping like items together.
My top two tips for maintaining an organized fridge is to do a weekly clean out, so that you see what you have and consume it before it expires (always minimize throwing away food!), and second, only buy what you really need. Not only will you save money, your fridge will be less cluttered, and again, you will be less likely to throw away food at the end of the week.”
Bonus tip: While you’re organizing and prepping your pantry for meals ahead, take advantage of new lower prices on some items in our bulk bins and a new selection of buy-as-much-or-as-little-as-you-like nuts, dried fruit, candy, grind-your-own nut butters, grains, beans, trail mixes and more. 
Taxonomy: Trends & New Stuff, Pantry Makeover

5 Fast Tips for a Cleaner Spring from Seventh Generation

By John Stewart, April 9, 2018  |  More Posts by John Stewart

Because a big part of Earth Day (and Earth Month) is about getting out and enjoying all that our lovely planet has to offer, we’re sharing some quick time-saving spring cleaning tips that’ll help you get to the things you really love to do. These tips come to us from Seventh Generation, whose botanical-based cleaning solutions — sprays, surface wipes, laundry detergents, dish soaps and more — are powered by plants and rooted in results. Bonus: Save on a variety of Seventh Generation cleaning solutions through May 1*.
  1. Clean as you go.
    Spend a few minutes wiping down the sink after you brush your teeth, and give kitchen surfaces a quick once-over with cleaning spray after cooking meals. Tip: Try Seventh Generation All Purpose Natural Cleaner to wipe up grease, grime and dirt without harsh fumes.
  2. Don’t let clutter happen. 
    When you bring something in the door, find a place for it immediately. Don’t leave a mess you’ll have to tidy later.
  3. Multitask. 
    Wash prep dishes as meals cook, or start a load of laundry before bedtime stories. Tip: Try Seventh Generation Dish Liquid to limit environmental impact.
  4. Take stock. 
    Every time you reach into your pantry, fridge or freezer, do a quick scan for expired or old food to compost or toss. Before throwing away, be sure to check and see if the container can be recycled.
  5. Hit the hot spots. 
    Make a game out of wiping these down every day: faucets, appliance handles, doorknobs, phones, cabinet knobs, remote controls, toilet handles. Try Seventh Generation Disinfecting Multi-Surface Cleaner to clean with botanical ingredients, including thyme oil.

100% Clean Energy Starts With Your City

Seventh Generation is all about clean — that applies to energy too. This year they’re partnering with the Sierra Club's Ready for 100 campaign by asking mayors to commit their cities to 100% clean energy. Interested in joining the Ready for 100 campaign? More info here.
*Valid 4/4-5/1/18. While supplies last. U.S. only. Not available at 365 stores. No rain checks. Some exclusions apply.
Taxonomy: Grocery

Yogurt on a Mission: The Stonyfield Organic Story

By Whole Story Editors, April 9, 2018  |  More Posts by Whole Story Editors
"I came in with a social and environmental mission — not a money-making mission — that’s what made it a success." — Stonyfield Organic co-founder Gary Hirshberg.
In 1983, co-founders Samuel Kaymen and Gary Hirshberg were running a nonprofit organic farming school on a small New Hampshire farm and were on a mission to help family farms survive, keep food and food production healthy, and help protect the environment. But the school needed funding. So they used milk from the farm's seven cows and began selling really good yogurt. 
The yogurt was a hit. A big one. And Samuel and Gary realized that a successful organic company could make a bigger difference for family farms, people and the planet than their school could. 
Today, Stonyfield Organic proudly makes organic yogurts, smoothies, dairy-free yogurts, frozen yogurts, milk and cream. They call themselves "obsessively organic," and they make all their products without the use of toxic and persistent pesticides, synthetic growth hormones, antibiotics or GMOs.
Co-founders Samuel Kaymen and Gary Hirshberg
The company is still located New Hampshire — about 30 miles east of the original farm — but now their organic ingredient purchases support a huge network of food producers made up of hundreds of organic family farms, thousands of organic cows and more than 200,000 organic acres.
Stonyfield has also pioneered planet-friendly business practices from offsetting their yogurt works’ emissions, to making yogurt cups from plants instead of petroleum, to making their own renewable energy. These efforts have awarded Stonyfield a B Corp Certification, given to companies that use business as a force for good. It means they meet the highest standards of social and environmental performance, transparency and accountability. 
The thought and passion that started Stonyfield has only grown stronger — and they’ve never stopped working for healthy food, healthy people and a healthy planet.
Find Stonyfield products at your local Whole Foods Market.
Taxonomy: Supplier Stories

How to Buy, Prep and Cook Artichokes

By Emily Hankey, March 31, 2018  |  More Posts by Emily Hankey

RecipePan-Seared Baby Artichokes

Emily Hankey is our produce butcher at the fruit and vegetable prep station in New York City’s Bryant Park store. Emily learned her cutting edge knife skills at the French Culinary Institute.
We are getting to the height of artichoke season. These thistles — yes, artichokes are thistles! — are in season from March until May/June, although they can go all summer under the right circumstances. I know a lot of people are intimidated by artichokes, either because they can’t see what’s inside, under the leaves or because they’re not sure how to cook them. But with this guide and a little patience, you’ll be on your way to enjoying this spring treat, whether you steam, pan-sear or bake it.


While grocery shopping, you encounter a huge pile of gorgeous, in-season artichokes. Now what? I tend to look for larger, round artichokes with thick bottom stems. Make sure all the leaves are packed together and intact, with light green or purple and green leaves.


You can leave whole artichokes in the fridge up to three days. Each day, prune any shriveled leaves and trim the stem. 
But I’m usually so excited about artichokes that I immediately begin prepping them when I get home. Doing the prep work in advance can save you a lot of time when you are ready to cook. Trim the artichokes according to your recipe, then store them in acidulated water (a fancy name for water with lemon juice!) for up to two days — this keeps them from turning brown. Make sure you pat them dry with paper towels before cooking, especially if you’re using a dry-heat cooking method such as searing.


I begin by peeling the stem with a vegetable peeler, starting from the base of the artichoke and going down the stem. You don’t have to peel too much off, but do remove the outer layer because it may have small thorns. If the stem breaks, it’s okay, no worries! Artichokes are delicious no matter their appearance.
I peel back the bottommost layer of leaves to help expose the shape of the choke. Next, I take a serrated knife and cut off the top third at the very peak of the artichoke, where all the leaves come together. Then I snip the tops off each leaf. If you’re roasting or steaming your artichokes, then the work is done!
Check out our “How To Prepare Artichokes” video to see these step-by-step preparations and get steaming instructions too. 

How to “Turn” an Artichoke

If you’re going to shave artichoke hearts, then it’s time to turn. (You'll need to pull the outer leaves off before you get to this step.) Turning refers to the process of removing everything but the edible center of the artichoke, called the "heart." Hold the artichoke in your non-dominant hand — if you’re right handed, hold it in your left. Start by turning the artichoke towards you, using a paring knife to remove the leaves from the base. It’s kind of like the motion of peeling an apple with a knife.
If I’m frying my chokes, I stop when I start to see the tiny, tender leaves at the very center of the choke. I cut it in half lengthwise, and use a paring knife to cut out the tiny hairs in the center. I then rinse it under running water to make sure I don’t leave any hairs. Cut the chokes lengthwise in half again, and they’re ready to fry.
If I’m shaving my artichokes into salad, I cut the tender leaves straight off like a buzz cut. You’ll then want to slide the tip of your paring knife just under the base of the hairs to remove them, then rinse fully in water before cooking or storing in lemon water.

And Remember

Go slow, so you don’t cut yourself. You’re in charge, so don’t think you’re in a race against time. If you prepare your dish with love, everyone will be able to taste it!

Recipes to Try

In addition to Pan-Seared Baby Artichokes, one of my go-to recipes, here are four more I highly recommend.  
Taxonomy: Food & Recipes

Add Some Culture to Your Cold One – How to Pair Beer with Cheese

By Cathy Strange, March 31, 2018  |  More Posts by Cathy Strange


Cathy Strange’s role as global specialty foods and cheese buyer for Whole Foods Market® puts her in the unique position of traveling the world to not only discover and encourage the world’s great cheesemakers, but also to help advance the artisanal food movement and investigate new food trends from around the world, one bite at a time.
Beer and cheese. If you haven’t tried them together before, you’re about to uncover a next level of snacking.

4 Reasons Why Beer Pairs Best with Cheese

  1. Beer’s effervescence makes an excellent foil for the creamy richness of most cheeses. The bubbles actually lift the cream off the tongue and refresh the palate.
  2. Bright refreshing notes in beer (think the fruit of an IPA or bite of a pilsner) complement and balance the salt in cheese.
  3. Unique yeast notes and hop styles found in beer celebrate and bring out cheese’s subtle notes and nuances.
  4. The bitter hops in beer add to the overall mouthfeel and accent flavors in aged cheeses.  



Suds and Curds: What Beers Go Best with What Cheeses

Just like cheeses, beer styles run the gamut of flavor profiles, textures and aromas. Here are some general pairing guidelines to get you started.

  • Fuller, darker beers (porters and stouts) do best with bold, flavorful cheeses – think blue or even Parmigiano Reggiano.
  • Lighter beers like pilsners and wheat beers love young, fresh cheeses. Chèvre and other fresh goat cheeses are a good choice here.
  • Belgian-style beers with their floral notes shine with mild, buttery Trappist-style cheeses or washed rind cheeses like Taleggio.
  • Sip an IPA or other hop-forward beer and then have a nibble of an aged cheddar. You will not regret it. Ever.
  • Having fondue or making your famous grilled cheese sandwich? Give a bitter beer a try. This is a classic case of finding balance: if the cheese takes you in one direction, pair with a beer that takes you the other.
All our specialty cheeses are made from the milk of animals not given added growth hormones (rBST/rBGH) — come check out our incredible selection. And remember — our Certified Cheese Professionals love talking pairing!
Taxonomy: beer, Cheese