Doomsday Kitchen: “Meals in a Jar” Cookbook

meals in a jar cover

I’ll admit first off that I thought Meals in a Jar sounded like a FANTASTIC idea, sort of along the lines of Dream Dinners. I imagined a book of step-by-step recipes that would end up in a jar, only to be brought out sometime later when I run out of fresh ingredients and I want to prepare a quick meal that was home-prepared without all those pesky chemical preservatives.

That’s what I got. Sort of. And so much more.

I’ll admit also that this book is not for me. But since I’m not the only person who reads this site, I had to share it with you because a) you might be interested and b) I thought it was fascinating that there are people who do these things in real life.

Meals in a Jar by Julie Languille is not just a cookbook. Oh no. It is also a very lovingly prepared instruction manual for how to feed yourself and all of your nearby survivors in the event of an apocalypse. It’s impressive – Languille teaches you how to can and dehydrate food and how much to prepare and how long it will last. She includes recipes like Cream of Asparagus Soup and Braised Chicken and Mushrooms and White Chocolate Cranberry Cookies.

I was disappointed, actually, because I kind of want to make Tamarind-Braised Pork Ribs, but I don’t want to make it for 8 people three weeks after a massive zombie attack. I would rather travel to Languille’s house on Whidbey Island in Washington state with what’s left of my family’s canned goods as a peace offering and hope she invites us to stay for dinner. I suppose that after the power goes out we will need a sailboat. My husband will come in handy there.

Okay, I suppose I shouldn’t be so flippant about it – next year is the 20th anniversary of The Big One – the Northridge Earthquake that turned the power off for much of Los Angeles for quite a while. If I had a bunch of meals in a jar, a stash of propane, and a full 50-gallon water drum, we would be just fine.

And Languille does publish the meal planning website, where “normal” recipes like Healthy Apple Chicken can be found for free and a lot more is available to members.

If you live in a place that is at risk of hurricanes, floods, and blackouts, AND you are not afraid of phrases like “retort pouches,” then this is the cookbook for you!


  1. Just as wry, dry and hilarious as you ever were. I love (and am so proud) that you faithfully blog so that I can just get a little dose of you every few days, without even asking! I also note that in a very short time you have taken to “stay -at -home mom-dom” in a very “publishing” way, in a way that I never even came close to. I am still in denial, and figuratively put on my business suit and brief case each day, before I realize that I only have to cart my kids around to pre-K and cheerleading, so I change and over-dress more appropriately for that setting. I also confess that I am sampling a twist-off Cabernet this evening, which I initially found horrifying, but my local wine proprietor claims is ” all the rage” for organic wines. xo

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